What age should you stop working out?

If you’re a man over 40 you might have a friend or relative that’s stopped working out or you might think to yourself, am I too old for this or when should I stop working out altogether?

The answer is you should NEVER stop working out! I will always find some way of doing exercise right up until my last days…

You’re never too old to exercise, in fact it’s when you stop exercising that you start to deteriorate.

Let me explain further…

Let’s say you have been working out consistently for a few years and have built up a good fitness level but then decide to stop working out, even after the very first week you will already start to be less fit.

After 2 weeks of not working out you will already start to lose the fitness level you have attained, the human body is a very sensitive system and from this point forward it will begin to go through some major physiological changes.

Strength & Muscle

First off, the strength you have built will start to decline as your training dwindles. Once training isn’t present, your body won’t have anything to adapt to and will start to slip back to baseline.

After 2 weeks you can expect a loss of muscle mass and an increase in body fat, if you don’t make any changes to your nutrition, you will gain a few pounds of fat in this timeframe.

As you experience a loss in muscle mass, capillary size and bone density will also start to decrease. Not only that but overall energy levels will become less because of having a sedentary lifestyle.

Because you have less muscle mass, the muscles won’t fire the same way they used to making strength gains harder to come by.

You will notice you can’t do as much when you start to work out again and can’t sustain the same amount of exercise as you once did.

The muscle fibres will store less glycogen and less energy which leads to shrinking of the muscle fibres. You will need to work harder to get results and get back to the stage that you were at previously.

Aerobic System

The amount of blood pumped from the heart to the body will decrease. The size of the mitochondria which are the power plants within the cell will reduce by up to 50 percent as the heart rate increases and cardiac output decreases.

The maximum volume of oxygen an athlete can use, or V02 max will start to decrease by up to 1 percent per day, this is considered the ultimate measure of fitness by some.

The amount of time you can work out will start to slow down and your muscles will start to tell you to stop. That means you won’t get the same benefits of working out as when your fitness was a lot higher.

The Brain

Fitness levels affect the brain keeping the neurons firing and focus sharp. When you stop working out you will start to feel cloudy as less oxygen is pumped to the brain.

Working out encourages the growth of new brain cells and enhances the connections between the existing ones. You will begin to feel more tired as dopamine levels start to drop. The more tired you feel, the less you feel like going to the gym.

This isn’t good news!


Even sleep is affected when we stop working out, placing stress on the body helps to promote a good night’s sleep as growth hormone and testosterone are affected.

When we don’t exercise, we have higher energy in the blood reducing the need for sleep.

What if I’ve never workout out?

If you’re a man over 40 who has never worked out, then start pronto!

You don’t have to go crazy to start building muscle, losing fat, and getting into your best shape ever. If you start now, you can look better in the coming years than you ever have done.

Age is not a factor for improving. It has been proven you can prevent sarcopenia (the decrease of muscle mass) at any age.

The more muscle you have as you get older, the higher your metabolism and the more fat you will burn. Your bones will be stronger, denser, and much less prone to injury. And it will feel easier doing the outdoor tasks that you enjoy.

The key is to start at your own pace and gradually improve over time. The mistake I see for a lot of men over 40 who are new to working out is trying to do everything at once.

They will start a new diet as well as trying to go to the gym 4-6 times per week running on a treadmill or doing an activity that will lead to burnout fast!

If you’re new to working out, follow a sensible strength training workout that has you lifting weights no more than three times per week.

Then gradually add in 2 cardio sessions per week for heart health and to increase cardiovascular fitness over time.

When you are over 40 it is essential you use the most efficient exercises and choose movements that aren’t going to cause injury.

Compound movements are perfect exercise choices because they build the most muscle by training 2-3 large muscle groups in one movement.

Just make sure you are using exercises that you can progress on over time and make sure you’re using perfect exercise form.

The bottom line

There you have it, never stop working out as you get older. Constantly strive to improve your body as you get older.

Refuse to become sedentary and your body will thank you for it.

If you’re still in your forties you are still young, enough to make huge improvements. Make sure you check out my popular course, Ripped Abs Over 40.

That will teach you how to lose some serious fat and get into great shape without spending your life in the gym!

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