Matt, Author at Healthy For 40

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Nov 22

4 Tips to Help Guys Over 40 Build Muscle

By Matt | Getting Fit

Ahh, the 20’s….

I’m not talking about the 1920’s. I’m talking about those years in your life when you could eat whatever and still be in awesome shape.

Many guys who are above 40 often find that they’ve let themselves go. Even those who were active and had athletic bodies in their twenties may notice that their fit bodies have now…changed.

It’s not your fault. This is usually because family and career commitments took priority while exercise and fitness was relegated to become something that they’d do if they had the time.

Usually the time never came and the muscles just got weaker and smaller due to atrophy.

In fact, after the age of 30, most men experience some muscle loss every year. If you don’t use it, you lose it. To make matters worse, testosterone production decreases and your metabolism drops too. Now you’re dealing with faster weight gain, lower stamina and weaker muscles.

It may seem like it’s impossible to build strength and muscle after all these years of neglect. Yet, the human body is marvelous and dynamic and if it’s challenged, it will respond. You just need to know how to go about doing it.

At the age of 40 and beyond, you’ll most probably not be able to train in the same way that you used to… or the way that younger guys do. Your body will take a longer time to heal and the chances of getting injuries are also higher. With age comes a decrease in mobility, flexibility and limberness.

You’ll need to take these into consideration when you begin your training. In this article, we’ll look at 5 ways to build muscle once you’re in your forties. Adopt them and you’ll be safe and still progress well. It’s never too late to start.

1. 80% intensity

This is a good rule to follow. If your maximum is 10 reps, always do 8. The goal here is to increase volume and not intensity. If you do 3 sets of 10 reps, you may wish to go up to 4 or 5 sets.
Unlike the younger guys who can lift hard to failure and be fine after 2 days, you might either strain your joints or suffer from delayed onset muscle soreness for 4 to 5 days which might mean you not working out because of pain.

This is time wasted and you could have actually been training.

So, aim for volume and over time you will get stronger. Then you may raise the poundage/resistance and still be at around 80 percent of your maximum effort. As long as you’re getting stronger, you’ll probably be gaining lean muscle and boosting your metabolism.

2. If It Hurts, Go Light

If the weight you’re using hurts your joints, use lighter weights. If bench presses hurt your shoulders, you should give push-ups a try. They work the same muscles and are just as effective.

If leg presses hurt, try bodyweight squats. In fact, before even working with weights, it would be a good idea to just stick with bodyweight training for about 2 months. They’re just as effective for building strength and muscle. If you apply point 1 above and go for volume, you’ll see amazing improvements.

3. Stretch after Every Workout

This goes without saying but it’s especially crucial when you’re older. Tight muscles not only cause aches and pains but you can actually strain a muscle or joint if you aren’t flexible enough.

Spend at least 7 minutes doing light cardio before your workout. This will get the blood flowing to your muscles and warm them up. Remember to also do about 15 minutes of light stretches after every workout. This will ensure that you can lift weights through a full range of motion and you’ll gain more muscle over time.

4. Focus on Form

When it comes to muscle building, good form is everything. Always maintain good form when executing the exercises. Do not jerk, kick or do strange flicks and whips with your body just so that you can get the weight up and say you did an extra rep.

If you can’t do an extra rep with good form, then don’t. It just means you aren’t strong enough yet. Give it time and keep training. Over time you’ll get stronger and be able to do that extra rep with good form.
Slow and steady wins the race. As long as your form is good, your progress will not be impeded by injuries due to strain or jerking.

Apr 07

Best Elliptical Under $1000: Schwinn 430 Elliptical Review

By Matt | Home Gym

Today I want to share our pick for Best Elliptical Under $1000, the Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine. We’ll do a full review, but first a little on home gym equipment.

Our Pick: Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine (link to

One of the best things I ever did was set up a home gym. However, it can be a little intimidating at first because some of the equipment can be pretty expensive.

That’s why we started this series of reviews to highlight equipment that is affordable and still high quality.

One important thing to remember when considering the cost of home equipment is what it would cost you to join a gym. That can put some perspective on it. But I digress! Let’s get to the review!

Why Would You Want an Elliptical Machine?

One of the best machines that you can add to your workout routine is an elliptical machine. That’s because these machines do more than offer you a low impact workout. They use a lot of the different muscle groups at one time.

On top of that, they’re well known for their ability to help get rid of stubborn belly fat. Using one of these machines can give you the taut, shapely abdomen that you’re looking to develop.

Using an Elliptical is also a great way to get a cardio workout without putting the stress on your knees that running can.

Best Elliptical Under $1000: Schwinn 430 Elliptical Review

When it comes to buying an elliptical, you really do want to choose something that has a solid reputation and plenty of durability – one like the Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine ( link). This machine has built a name for itself in the exercise world because it helps people achieve results.

The top of the line console gives users a dual LCD window so that they can have plenty of feedback. You’ll be able to track your progress to make sure that you’re right on target for meeting your fitness goals.

There are 22 different programs that you can choose from and the machine offers two separate settings so two people can use it for customized workouts. This elliptical can be changed to offer a ramp range featuring up to 6 choices.

The footplates are roomy and have cushioning for maximum support and protection as you workout. You’ll get 20 different ranges of resistance along with a weighted flywheel that helps cut noise from the workouts.

The machine also offers ergonomic handlebars and extras like speakers and a fan. The Sole Fitness E35 Elliptical Machine is another elliptical you’ll want to take a look at. This one also offers a lot of different features to give you a solid cardiovascular workout.

You can adjust both of the 15 inch pedals as well as the console to make it suited to your preferences. The machine has an adjustable stride so you can choose what’s most comfortable for you.

Plus, you can change the incline so that you can gradually make your workouts more challenging. There are six programs that are already programmed into the machine, but you do have the option of creating two personalized ones.

It also has two heart rate options you can pick from. The pulse grip on the handlebars works great to monitor your heartbeat. The backlit LCD easily displays your workout results so that you can keep track of your progress.

To help keep you cool, it comes with a built in fan. Extra features like the sound system can make the workout fun. You can listen to music from any iPod or MP3 player. A water bottle holder is also included for your convenience.


The great thing about the Schwin 430 Elliptical Machine is that it has a long track record. Reliability is key when you are spending money on exercise equipment.

Overall, this elliptical will give you the most bang for your buck.

Best Elliptical under $1000