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Complete Guide To Building Muscle Over 40

If you’ve feel like you can’t build muscle as effective as when you were in your twenties – it’s because you have lower testosterone levels (we’ll explain why below).

As you get older, your testosterone levels decrease naturally. This is a fact you can’t escape; studies have shown that T levels decrease by 1% after you reach the ripe age of 30.

Not only that, you’re body can’t handle the same punishment as before – meaning you can get injured easier if you don’t warm up properly etc.

For this reason, we’ll give you everything you need to know; in order to build muscle over 40.

Check it out:

Muscle Building Over 40 Guide

1. Clean Diet Plan

7 prepared meals consisting of chicken, broccoli and brown rice.

Nutrition is one of the most important factors – whether you’re aiming to lose body fat, or build muscle.

Without a clean diet plan, you might be wasting your time; simply put, if you’re not reaching your target calorie intake needed to build muscle, then you won’t make any gains.

It really is as simple as that.

Calorific surplus 

Bascially, when aiming to gain muscle mass, you’ll be eating a calorie surplus of around 300kcals. But this doesn’t mean you can eat fast food to get there.

Instead, you should be following a clean diet; this will ensure you gain lean muscle mass to get a rock hard body – not a flabby belly.

Prepping meals 

To make life easier for yourself in the long-run, we recommend preparing your meals in advance.

This allows you to store your meals in plastic containers, taking them to work or wherever you go. In fact, this is common practise in the bodybuilding goals – and it allows you to keep track of exactly what you’re eating, and the exact calories you’re consuming too.

You should plan your meals around:

  • Lean protein (chicken, white fish, lean red meat)
  • Green vegetables (broccoli etc)
  • Complex carbohydrates (brown rice, sweet potato)

3. Workout Routine

a man over 40 performing push ups

We’ve almost dismissed the workout routine in this article so far. But don’t worry, we’re here to help you with this too.

While it’s not as important as people think, training smart will help you avoid injuries in the long run. That means lifting smaller weights for more reps more often.

Lift lighter weights for more reps 

Dont worry, we know what you’re thinking – “won’t lighter weights and more reps lead to me becoming toned and not gaining muscle?”….

The answer: No. As we’ve mentioned, your diet determines whether you lose weight or pack on muscle.

This is why it’s common to see bodybuilders training until failure – lifting lighter weights than what you’d expect (with the exception of Ronnie Coleman, of course…).

But you can lift heavy once in a while 

Okay, so we’ve recommended that you use lighter weights most of the time. But we’ll still let you loose on the weight rack once or twice a month.

Here’s why: interrupting your routine and lifting heavy will shock your body. Ultimately, it’s great to shock your muscles into growth now-and-then – and only lifting weights once-in-a-while will save your joints from complete obliteration too.

Example Workout Routine:

The reason we’re giving you an example workout plan, is because you might have your own routine already. If that’s the case, then carry on what you’re doing – following a clean diet plan will help you reach your goals.

However, if you’re new to bodybuilding, you’ll want a rough guideline to follow for the first month or 2. For this reason, take a look at our example plan below…

*You’ll be decreasing the amount of reps every set – starting with 15, then 12, then 10, then 8.

  • Behind-The-Neck Shoulder Press – 4 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Overhead Triceps and Extension – 4 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Front Raise – 4 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raise – 4 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Curls – 4 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8 reps
  • Dumbbell Shrug – 4 sets until failure

3. Testosterone Booster

We mentioned that your test levels decrease by 1% after you turn 30. Well, one way to combat this is by taking a natural testosterone booster supplement.

This will ensure that your body produces T at optimal rates; helping you build muscle easier, and increase your sexual drive and function too!

For this reason, finding the right testosterone booster supplement should be your first priority here.

Click here to be redirected to our dedicated rundown of the Best Testosterone Boosters for Men Over 40. 


See SpotMeBro’s 
Top Test Boosters Awards Page

And…Less Alcohol…

a man rejecting a pint of beer

Most of you will hate us for this…but if you want to get into optimal condition, you’ll need to consume less alcohol.

Don’t get us wrong; 1 beer every now and then won’t hurt your gains, but your body doesn’t handle alcohol as well as when you were in your 20’s.

So just make sure to limit complete ‘blow outs’ to once a month.

Get Muscle Building!

a man over 40 bicep curling in the gym

Now you’ve read this article, you have no excuse to kickstart your fitness journey. No more wishing you had a rock-hard body…it’s time to get in the gym and earn it!

We’ve given you all the tools you need to achieve your fitness goals – which we’re guessing is building muscle, since you clicked on this article.

But if you’re reading this and want to lose body-fat while maintaining muscle mass – then simply decrease your calories until you’re consuming under your maintenance intake.

Bottom Line

Ultimately, the reason why men over 40 find it more difficult to pack on muscle mass, is because they have lower testosterone levels.

We’ve also directed you the best testosterone booster supplements on the market. By following the link above you’ve be taken to a complete breakdown of the best testosterone boosters for men over 40.

They will encourage your body to produce more testosterone naturally, which will deliver the benefits you need to achieve that rock-hard body you’ve been working towards.

SpotMeBro’s Best Testosterone Boosters for Men Over 40


  1. I don’t know how old this advice is but DO NOT do behind the neck pull downs…ever! Horrible for the shoulder…and everyone should know it!

  2. The main problem with Testosterone boosters is DHT which could cause hair loss and prostate disturbance, so if you are going to take TB, you should combine it with DHT blocker & Estrogen blocker…

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