Best Home Workout for Men Over 40
Guest post by Ivii Clement from nutritioninspector.com:
It is stereotypical to believe that being over 40 means you can no longer be the man you once were. The one who went to the gym every day and lifted weights for an hour and a half. Sure, you might be wiser, have a better job, and having a savings account devoted to your child’s college fund, but your youth is gone. What if you could get that feeling back.
Just about any exercise involving your legs is going to transforming your body. The primary movers of the body are the biggest focus for men over 40. As we age, these muscles begin to weaken, especially our lower back and stomach muscles (core). These prime movers are squats, deadlifts, horizontal pull (like a cable row or dumbbell row), vertical pull (lat pull down or pull up), horizontal push (bench press), and a vertical push (shoulder press). There are also the muscles of the core that can be strengthed with anti-rotation, twisting, and iso-stabilization exercises. A solid workout will have some variation of all these types of movements.
The next step is in finding ways to combine at least two of these movements with 1) little equipment 2) optimal real world carries over. Home workout equipment can be anything weighted down and easy to hold on to. An example of this would be a sandbag or bucket with tools. Most of us also have some kind of 15lb dumbbells lying around from our earlier days. Get creative. My dad used to squat buckets of water then use the water to wash the car. He can still do this at the age of 73.
For those who need to see an actual example of a workout written out for them, here is a simple workout you can copy. Once you understand the principles involved, and get used to what exercises mean what on the prime movers scale, you can begin to formulate your own work.
First, we always start with a warm up. Start with a few jumping jacks and lunges. These types of exercises wake up the central nervous system priming our muscles for movement. One of the best exercises to base a workout on is something called “step ups.” All you need is a chair and some weights if your body weight alone is not challenging enough. Simply step up and down only alternating legs after you have finished all the repetitions one a single leg. 3 sets of 10 should get your heart racing. Next are a series of circuit movement like exercises. These are exercises paired together to create the most metabolically active muscles in the body. These also happen to be the prime movers. A sequence of body weight squats, dumbbell lunge and presses, and planks can be rotated one after the other to create a workout sure to have you gasping for breath. Do 3 sets of 10 for each, repeat this cycle three times. After that circuit is complete, we move on to core stabilization exercises. This is not only a good cool down exercise but also an essential for healing low back pain. Start with a set of 3 planks, holding each one for 10 seconds. Once that is complete, lay down on your back. One at a time, you are going to lower one of your legs so that is just barely touching the floor. Your hands will be straight up pointing to the ceiling. Do 4 sets of 8 with each leg. Now, the finisher. Find something heavy to hold. Lay on your back with the weight you are using on your chest. Now get up into a stand position. Wash, risen, repeat. Do this for 2 sets, 10 reps each set. By the end of this workout, you will have incorporated all the essential primer moves in one workout. Think about how else you can push, pull, lift, stack, lunge, and hold all kinds of weighted materials around the house. Do squat and presses with sandbags. Carry paint up a ladder. Load up your truck with the soil you plan to garden with. The workouts end with your creativity. Just lift!