Get My Free Guide, 40 Laws Of Lean For Men Over 40

If you’re wondering how to lose belly fat for men over 40 you’ve come to the right place. Losing belly fat once we’re over 40 years old comes down to a series of steps executed on a consistent basis until you reach your goal:

1. Know your starting point

The first thing you need to know is how much belly fat you must lose and the best way to calculate this is to get hold of some body fat calipers, they don’t need to be anything fancy or expensive, just something that gives you an accurate measurement of your current body fat.

I recommend grabbing some calipers off amazon, the reason you need to get your body fat percentage is when you’re losing weight you want to make sure its coming from primarily fat, if you rely on the scale alone when losing weight, you’ll have no way of knowing if that weight is fat, lean muscle or water weight.

A single pinch of the waist will give you an accurate measurement, by comparing the measurement to a chart on the back of the packet you can quickly and easily get your body fat percentage and most importantly, keep tabs each week to make sure you’re losing fat.

2. Work out how much fat you need to lose

A mistake that men make when trying to lose belly fat is randomly training in a hope to lose fat, but not actually knowing how much fat they need to lose and how long it’s going to take them.

I recommend a goal body fat percentage of 9-12%, this is lean enough to see your abs but not super ripped, it’s a good goal to aim for so let’s use 9% body fat as your goal for this demonstration.

To work out how much fat you need to lose, use this simple formula:

Desired body weight = lean body weight / desired lean mass percentage in decimal form.

Let’s say you’re a male that weighs 200lb with a body fat percentage of 20%, first we would calculate how much fat you have at 20% body fat:

200 x 0.2 = 40 lbs

Next, we need to calculate your fat free mass, this is your body weight with zero fat. Note, you must have some body fat to be healthy.

200 – 40 = 160 lbs (fat free mass)

Next, you would divide your fat free body weight by your goal body fat percentage. In this example, I’m using a goal body fat of 9%.

160 / 0.9 = 178 lbs

Lastly you would subtract your goal body weight from your current bodyweight.

200 – 178 = 22 lbs

So, in this example you’d need to lose 22 pounds of fat to achieve your goal body fat percentage of 9%.

If you’re losing 1-1½lbs per week it should only take between 15-22 weeks to achieve this goal.

3. Get Your BMR Calories

You can’t lose fat unless you’re in a caloric deficit, BUT if you eat too few calories your body will down regulate its metabolism thinking there’s a famine around the corner. Also, if you restrict calories too much, it will be extremely difficult to stick to and encourage binge eating.

When you restrict calories too much, fat loss comes to a screeching halt. There’s a fine line between too few and too many calories.

The first thing you need to calculate is your BMR, this is how many calories you need to eat without gaining or losing any weight.

The fastest way to get your BMR is to multiply your body weight in pounds x 15.

Example 200-pound male:

200 x 15 = 3000 calories per day

Now to lose fat, aim for 20% LESS than your BMR calories per day. This will keep you at steady fat loss of 1-1½ lbs per week.

4. Break up those calories into the correct macros

This is very important, if you go too high on carbohydrates or fat it will making losing fat slow although you’re still eating in a calorie deficit. You want enough protein to support lean muscle, enough carbs to support training and keep you feeling full and enough fat to keep your testosterone levels high.

You should be getting about 40% of your over all calories from carbohydrates, 30% from protein and the remaining 30% from healthy fats.

Make sure you’re including testosterone boosting foods such as eggs and avocados, keeping our testosterone levels as high as possible is very important for men over 40.

Low testosterone = hard weight loss

Therefore, keeping carbs and fat relatively high is very important, a diet too low in these macros will kill testosterone.

You need a balance that keeps you feeling full, keeps you losing fat and keeps testosterone at peak levels.

5. Eat fewer bigger meals

Stick to fewer bigger meals for fat loss rather than lots of little small meals throughout the day, bigger meals have been shown to have more testosterone boosting benefits, as when you’ve not eaten for a period and then introduce calories into your system, testosterone and growth hormone can sky rocket by as much as 400%.

I recommend under eating in the morning and then over eating for lunch, dinner and having a bed time snack of mainly protein to fuel your muscles.

2 big meals work well. Personally, I eat 2 big meals per day and a bedtime snack, I get most of my carbs for lunch and then gradually reduce them as the day goes on. My last meal of the day is protein based only. Don’t overcomplicate this though, just make sure you’re NOT exceeding your daily calorie limit.

6. Strength train using the basics

Strength training is a very important part of losing belly fat. Nothing has such a dramatic effect on the male hormonal system like strength training does.

If you perform strength training like I teach you’ll build lean muscle that gives you broad shoulders, defined chest, toned legs and arms rather than look like a meat head.

By sticking to multiple sets of low reps you’ll gain strength and build a nice natural amount of muscle that will keep your metabolism permanently elevated.

The beauty of sticking to the compound exercises is you don’t need to lift weights more than 3 x per week to get an awesome body and your workouts will be kept short. This means you’ll have more time for family and the rest of your life, perfect for busy men over the age of 40 that don’t have much time to train.

Note: In my course, Ripped Abs Over 40, I lay everything out for you step by step.

7. Perform cardio

Cardio is important for men over 40 to speed up the fat burning process, it will allow you to eat more calories whilst keeping you in a calorie deficit.

I recommend performing a minimum of 2 low impact cardio sessions for 30-40 minutes using a low impact full body machine such as the cross trainer.

This will elevate your heart rate and keep you burning fat, the mistake a lot of men over 40 makes is thinking that if a moderate amount of cardio is beneficial then more must be better, but excessive amounts of cardio cause the body to release a stress hormone called cortisol.

When our bodies are stressed it’s hard to lose fat and our testosterone levels are destroyed. The moderate dose of cardio for belly fat loss is far more effective and sustainable.

8. Lose Fat Gradually

The worst mistake men over 40 makes is trying to lose fat too quickly. A moderate fat loss of 1-1½ lbs per week is the fastest route to PERMANENT belly fat loss.

The relatively slow route to fat loss is the only way to ensure you’re burning primarily fat and ensure you keep that fat off. Those that try and lose fat faster will just end up with a down regulated metabolism and losing as much lean muscle as fat.

I hope you’ve found the this article useful and if you would like to take your knowledge further, make sure you get hold of my FREE guide, 40 Laws of Lean for Men Over 40.

Here’s to your success!

    50 replies to "How to Lose Belly Fat for Men Over 40"

    • Luis Ferro

      Nice article and very informative, thank you.

      • Rob Richley

        Thanks Luis,

        If I can help you further let me know.


      • Charles

        What carb sources do you recommend?

        Thanks for article.


        • Rob Richley

          Hi Charles,

          Anything you enjoy that’s not processed. For example I get my carbs mainly from oats, potatoes, whole grain pasta, fruits and vegetables. I’ll sometimes have sweet potatoes. Whole grain rice is good, but I don’t personally enjoy it.

          Find carbs you enjoy with as little processing as possible. The main point is maintaining that calorie deficit. Hope that helps.

    • Dave D

      Hey Rob, I have a surgically repaired back, and chronic pain. Stress is also present. What can I do?

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Dave,

        I’m not a qualified practitioner so can’t advise especially not knowing the nature of the back surgery. But I would start with a decent nutrition plan that supplies enough protein, carbohydrates and essential fats whilst maintaining a slight caloric deficit.

        If you’re able to perform some low impact cardio training, such as the cross trainer without any pain, do so and core stability work would strengthen the muscles around the back.

        Slowly working in some resistance-based exercises that cause you no pain would be a great goal to aim for, but consulting with a qualified rehabilitation practitioner would be best for this.

        I hope that helps.



    • Stookey Slaughter

      Great article.

      • Rob Richley

        Thanks, if you need help with anything let me know.

    • Dan Archer

      Good article Rob.


      • Rob Richley

        Thanks Dan. If there’s anything I can help you with let me know.

    • Noel

      How much does the entire course cost?

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Noel,

        Ripped Abs Over 40 course costs $69 – this includes the training program and an extensive nutrition guide that goes into details about how to structure your meals properly for fat loss.

        You also get a lifetime of updates as I’m constantly learning and updating it with anything else I think might help or benefit. My aim is to ensure it’s the best guide out there for getting lean or abs for men over 40.

        Plus you get access to me if you have any questions.



    • Kishore

      I am really keen to learn more. I am 47 and it’s really starting to feel the age!
      Think I need an expert to show me the way!

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Kishore,

        If you want to learn about nutrition for leaning down or need a complete training and nutrition plan, my Ripped Abs Over 40 Program does a very good job.

        I hope that helps.



    • Aubrey

      Hi Rob,
      I’m 45, and really struggling to lose the 5 kilos of weight that’s tucked around my chest and belly.
      I’m not fat, I weigh 94kg and I’m 6’4 but ideally want to shred the 5kg…
      any advice would be appreciated.
      I did read the article above but seemed very complicated.

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Aubrey,

        I recommend keeping a food log and monitoring everything you consume over a 3 month period, ensuring that you’re in a calorie deficit of 500 per day. If you want to take it a stage further, ensure you’re getting enough protein – 0.8g-1g per pound of lean bodyweight per day and make sure you’re sticking to a sensible resistance training program that will ensure you’re holding onto muscle and dropping what you want – FAT.

        For men over 40, 3 strength training sessions works best, using compound movements that boost testosterone and build lean muscle.

        Cardio will help burn more fat and allow you to eat more calories, but there’s no need to go overboard.

        If you’re consistent with the above, you will lean out.

        I discuss all the above in my course, Ripped Abs Over 40.

        I hope that helps.



    • Nilambari ( neelu )

      Good article… Rob

      • Rob Richley

        Thanks Nilambari,

        If you have any questions, please contact me via the contact form on my website.



    • Tim

      Great info, i was looking for a more detailed on the strength exercises..

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Tim,

        The blog is fairly new, I’ll be posting alot more information about strength training for men over 40.

        Check back soon!



    • Paul T

      Very informative and useful article.
      Male belly fat is the hardest to shift and yet your plan makes it look a lot easier.

      I am 49 and finding my belly is the area that causes me the biggest concern. I certainly observe and feel that a binge on alcohol or fast food stretches the abdomen. Would you recommend measuring belly or waist circumference too to monitor belly fat loss?

      Cheers, Paul

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Paul,

        Belly Fat loss will happen as a result of focusing on the whole body i.e. strength training using compound exercises that train all the major muscle groups, eating correctly and making it a lifestyle choice rather than a “diet” and being consistent.

        And for that to be successful, you don’t need alot of training – but it does need to be progressive.

        Drill sessions using compound movements also work well for men over 40 to speed up fat loss – but avoid fads and fallacies.

        1-1.5 pounds of fat loss per week is realistic and sustainable, it doesn’t happen overnight, like alot of people will try and tell you.

        I would keep tabs on everything, waist, body fat percentage, training progression and keep a food dairy for at least 3 months to ensure you’re hitting your macros correctly.

        If you want a complete plan, check out my courses.



    • Andy Bosisto

      Very informative thanks Rob .
      How about cardio with a spin cycle is it as effective as the cross trainer. I am 55 yr old with a home gym . Free weights , spin cycle cross trainer and multi gym . Please help

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Andy,

        to be honest your first priority is abbreviated strength training and nutrition. I’m not talking about those crazy bodypart split routines though, I’m talking about sensible strength training performed no more than 3 x per week using effective (and safe) compound movements. This will boost testosterone and build lean muscle that will ultimately keep you burning more fat at rest.

        And if you do it correctly, you won’t get big and bulky.

        Then if you hit your macros correctly you’ll lean down nicely. Once those two are in place, then we can start to add cardio (to speed things up) but it doesn’t need to be obsessive.

        What I have learned is low-impact cardio performed with a barbell – circuit style works very well for men over 40, as it has more testosterone boosting effects than steady state cardio.(although 2 x steady state is still effective).

        So ultimately 2-3 brief strength training sessions and 1 cardio-strength performed with a barbell works great for men over 40.

        Spin cycles are OK, but I definately wouldn’t be doing alot of them – AND the cardio performed with a barbell will save you alot of time.

        Alot of men overcomplicate this or resort to “group classes” that simply don’t work for men over 40. The key is to keep it simple and effective.

        I will write more on this – as its VERY beneficial for men over 40.

        I hope that helps.



    • Arnie Rushton

      Do you do the cardio and weight training on the same day.

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Arnie,

        It depends how much time you have to train. If you choose to do cardio on your strength training days, make sure you do it after your weights workout not before.

        If you choose to do a cardio session on a non-weight training day, 1-2 sessions is all you need – it’s a fine balancing act of strength training and cardio for men over 40.

        The plan needs to be both effective and sustainable.



    • Jeff Quick

      Hello Rob, I am just getting started with all your articles, they are very informative. Thanks. My question is. I am 47 and in a wheelchair. I have spent years trying not to get too fat. I am 6’2″ and have been as heavy as 325. Now my weight is around 265. Would love to lose pounds and gain muscle. Legs are alittle out. I do do lots of arm movement working at the Home Depot, rolling around for 4 to 5 hours, 4 days a week. So any help you can give me would be very grateful….

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Jeff,

        I’ve been having a good think about this. Drop me an email using the contact form on my website and we’ll come up with a plan.



    • Mac

      Rob, I am 70 years old and in terrible shape. Living very sedintery lifestyle the past few years. Can your program help me get back in shape?

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Mac,

        the nutrition portion of my Ripped Abs Over 40 program will help. But the program might be a bit too advanced if you’ve never exercised before. That doesn’t mean I can’t help you though, it’s just THIS program might not be a good starting point for you.

        I’m working on a beginner program for this purpose. Keep checking back to website or if you have any specific question use the contact form on my website.

        I hope this helps.



    • Tony Wills

      Rob, excellent article, a workout and nutrition plan I can actually follow without just winging it. One question though; are the macros calculated including calories burned during the workout or not? in other words do I factor in how many are burned during my workouts when adding up totals at the end of the day? Or are they added up all by themselves whether I workout or not? The app I use subtracts them and I have to eat a lot more to keep up with my daily goal

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Tony,

        yes I would factor in the cost of exercise and the cost of energy burned over the course of the day as well. For example if you had an active job, those calories burned would need to be taken into consideration aswell.

        The danger is getting hung up on finding a “perfect” calorie total as it doesn’t exist. Even if you managed to get the perfect number, the actual number of calories you digest is going to be slightly different simply by weighing foods – it can never be an exact science.

        But as long as you’re in the ball park, a few hundred calories either way, you’ll do fine.

        If you’re losing 1-1½ lbs of fat every week, then you must be on target despite how it looks on paper. Get a starting point of calories and then adjust depending on how YOUR body responds, not what some calculation says on paper.

        My main point is don’t overcomplicate this process, keep it simple.

        Hope that helps.



    • navin

      Hi Rob am 50.I love doing exercises.when i go to gym.i do 30 to 40 mins cardio eg.eliptical someday and cycling or treadmill the other day .I was weighing 79kg and now am around 70 kg. And am 5ft 5 inches.I am always struggling with my belly fat.I want it to be flat but in vain.plz help.many thks.

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Navin,

        Are you including any strength training exercises in your routine? Strength training is one of the keys to ensuring you’ll drop primarily FAT and keep your metabolism functioning at it’s best as you get older.



    • J Butler

      Hi Rob

      I’m a 43yr old Male living in the UK. I’ve been lucky to have quite a fast metabolism. Over the last 10 years or so, I’ve settled into too much of a sedentary lifestyle. Which is showing on my belly, and frequent sweats when doing menial tasks. Now is the time when I’d like to see some definition in my body, but also not break into a sweat just climbing up the stairs.

      I’ve taken a great interest in your article, but have a question to ask.

      Where you have calculated your BMR calories, does the ‘15’ relate to the weeks needed in your previous calculation? When I worked out my lbs loss, I made it 19 weeks loosing fat at 1.5%.



      • Rob Richley

        Hi Julian,

        pleased you’ve decided to get back in shape! The “15” is simply a quick way of getting an estimate of BMR. For most people multiplying your bodyweight in pounds will provide a good BMR starting point.

        My abs over 40 program comes with a spreadsheet that calculates BMR and how much fat you need to lose based on bodyweight and current percentages if you’d like to take it a stage further.



    • Tony Wills

      Hello Rob, I’ve been following this exactly one month and I’m seeing huge results for the first time ever. Ive lost fat and looking slimmer already. I’ve also lost some muscle. Is that common? Should I adjust my macros or workouts? Just curious, thanks

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Tony,

        that’s fantastic, well done!

        Yes it’s very common without strength training. If you’d like to take it to the next level, check out my Abs Over 40 program, it details everything you need to know and provides a great, sustainable strength training workout that will give you that lean, pleasing appearance with the muscle definition you want.

        If you have any more questions please let me know.



        • Tony

          Rob, month number 2 did not care so good for me. Very little weight loss and appears to be all muscle but I sure look like I’m losing fat. I’m confused

          • Rob Richley

            Hi Tony,

            yes that will happen if you’re not strength training properly i.e. 2-3 times per week. Take a look at my course, Ripped Abs Over 40 it covers everything you need to lean down.

            strength training, nutrition and cardio.

            I’m also offering online coaching (to a select few) if that’s something you might be interested in.



    • Jerry

      Do you have one for men over 50 that want muscle and a program like you have described above. I may try with the info given. GTEAT ARTICLE

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Jerry,

        My abs over 40 program will help build muscle and lean down. If there’s anything specific I can help you with please let me know.



    • Edgar

      Im 44 years old I feel that i have not gained weight but my waist size has gotten bigger. I work out 5 days a week what can be the issue.

      Breakfast= juice
      Lunch= vegetables
      Dinner= salad n meat

      I would be interested in your input

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Edgar,

        this is commmon if you’re losing muscle and gaining fat, whilst staying the same weight. That’s why scale weight alone never paints an accurate picture – it’s bodyfat percentage that’s more important so you can see muscle:fat ratio.

        It’s possible to stay the same weight whilst gaining fat, especially if your strength training workout isn’t in place properly.

        You mention training 5 times per week, can you outline your training for me?

        Calories seem very low at first glimpse with your nutrition – this can be worse than eating MORE calories when trying to get lean.



    • Tony

      I have been following this strictly for 2 months now. I am maintaining calorie/macro intake and exercise like I’m supposed to. My cheat days are few and far between, practically non-existent. I saw huge results the first few weeks but not the last few. My calculations show I am losing muscle and not fat now, but I sure don’t look like that, I Look like I am getting leaner. I can’t figure out what is wrong. A little help here please

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Tony,

        It’s great that you’re losing fat. This article is a START. You need to be strength training 2-3 times per week (more is not better), including moderate amounts of cardio and hitting your macros consistently.

        I do cover all this in my course, Ripped Abs Over 40, it’s a small investment for great results. Other than that I offer online coaching where I could work with you 1-to-1 but this is limited to a select few, if you’re interested make an enquiry at the top of the website.

        I hope this helps.



    • Brad Higgins

      Im a truck driver and have gained some weight and ive noticed it is primarily in the belly area. What exercises can you recommend? Its hard to eat right out here, truck stops dont have the best choices. My wife has made a comment that i have let myself go. Im 56 years old, in decent shape, im weighing in at 185, height 5’10”.

      • Rob Richley

        Hi Brad,

        Stick to whole, natural foods and eat slightly less calories than what your body burns per day. Forget about dieting. If you can, try and stick to compound movements i.e. bench presses, presses, pulldowns, squats etc. rather than using cardio to lose weight.

        I hope that helps!


    • G. Newsom

      Hi Rob, as mentioned with others, this is a great article. What advice would you give to someone on the Keto diet with exercise? I’ve seen pretty good results with this program, however, it seems a bit cumbersome when it comes to ‘ketosis’. Not sure when I’m in ‘Ketosis’ and the food choices (even though I now have some fantastic recipes) does not seem to give me what I need to see in losing belly fat. I’m 54, 5’11” & have a desk job. Currently on vacation’ but have committed to joining a gym in Jan. 2019. Should this (Keto) diet work in harmony with your program? Any advice at this time would be helpful. Btw, I have already downloaded your guide. Also, any recommendation on supplements while working with weights?

      • Rob Richley

        Hi G Newsom,

        I’m pleased it’s helping you. I’m not a fan of Keto, I wrote an article about it that you can read here:

        There are more effective and enjoyable ways of losing fat without resorting to low carb and high protein diets.

        Regarding weight training, you need to stick to compound movements that are both safe and effective for men over 40.
        For example, the conventional deadlift is a great exercise for men over 40, due to its testosterone and lean muscle building effects, but if you use an exaggerated range of motion or perform stiff legged versions, they can cause back injuries and for that reason alone I would never recommend those versions of the exercise for men over 40.

        If you want to build a lean and strong body naturally, you need to weight train no more than 3 times per week on non-consecutive days i.e. Mon-Wed-Fri.

        The full training and nutrition plan are detailed in my course, Abs Over 40.

        I’ve had one of my students Jim Nixon, drop over 4 stone with that course.

        I hope that helps.


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