I turned 50 a few months back.
Honestly, I didn’t make much of it—birthdays start getting old once you start “getting old.”
However, I do think there’s something special about turning 50 and being in decent shape. Certainly in the real world.
There are just not that many fit, jacked 50-somethings roaming around out there. Seriously—it’s a night & day difference from being yoked at 40.
Throw a rock in any respectable gym and you’ll hit a dozen 40-something dudes with below-average hair-lines and above-average physiques.
It’s just not that rare.
On the other hand, the over-50 talent pool is a LOT shallower.
It’s like overnight, many lifters hit the big five-oh and trade the gym for the golf course, road bike, or dojo.
Now, if goals, priorities, or hobbies have changed—no problem! Live your best, evolving life.
But often, the real reason is far more disheartening:
“I can no longer do what I used to love doing, and when I try, everything hurts the next day. So basically training sucks and it’s depressing, so I’m moving onto something else.”
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
My goal—no, my PURPOSE—is to help folks get around that kind of roadblock and get them back to making tangible progress in the gym.
I see “over-40 training” a LOT differently now than I did ten years ago—especially having lived it for the last decade.
And if I could make just ONE recommendation (and one change to my own training resume) it would be to start training like you’re going to be 50 WAY before you hit that milestone.
Perhaps as early as 35, and certainly before your 40th birthday.
At the core, that means training SMARTER.
Not “train LESS because you’re getting older,” that’s bullshit—but less of what you do too much of (and often sets you back) and more of what you’ve been neglecting, like recovery and stress management.
It also means LIVING smarter.
Which looks less like “12-week fat loss diets” and more like “the rest of my life fat loss lifestyle.”
To learn more, check out my rules for THE ROAD TO 50 below. You might be surprised: it’s not all about calories and cardio and crunches. I take a much more “inside-then-out” approach.
And if you’re ready to have a strategy call so you can join me on this journey in 2024, send me a message and I’ll get it scheduled.
7 RULES OF THE ROAD to 50
Rule # 1: Avoiding Injury is #1
Never Work thru Pain
There are NO must do lifts
Stop big barbell lifts a few reps shy of failure, and always use perfect form.
Get most out of least – you don’t need as much volume as you think
Train a little scared. Your next injury could be your last
Rule # 2: Weave Fitness into your Lifestyle, Not the Other Way Around
Number one progress factor? Consistency (i.e. not missing workouts)
To maximize consistency: #1 avoid injury, #2 build the program around life variables (work, commute, family demands, etc)
Start slow and build on success → can always add more work (having to pull back is much harder)
Rule #3: Keep Programming as Flexible as Possible While Still Being Effective
Have alternative workouts in place for high stress/fatigue days, travel workouts, home/office gym workouts
Chase simpler metrics: calories & steps on a weekly average
Most Fitness Rules are Just Guidelines (one hour workouts) or Total BS (anabolic window)
Rule # 4: Have No Holes in Your Game
A young person can specialize on specific fitness qualities while neglecting many others and still excel.
But as you get older, what you neglect can take you out of the gym for good.
Zone 2 cardio, mobility work, quality nutrition, stress management – ignore these things at your peril
Rule # 5: Everything Is Connected
This is where age really isn’t “just a number.”
Ability to compartmentalize different parts of life diminishes with age
A 23-year-old can party ’til 3am and still set a squat PR the next morning. In your forties, more than two drinks and all bets are off that you even show up to the gym.
* Get to bed earlier.
* Practice good sleep hygiene—7 days a week.
* Eat high-quality food.
* Walk more, Stress less.
Rule # 6: Keep it Fun
While you shouldn’t just do what you love at the expense of what you need, training should always be fun
Love training arms? Then train arms! Just don’t make that ALL you do
After 40, with each passing decade your ability to train effectively significantly diminishes
Rule #7: Time Accelerates As You Get Older
You only have so many years to “install” a fitness lifestyle and trial & error is NOT an option.
Coaching GREATLY improves your outcomes by COLLAPSING TIME
Interested in what my coaching can do for you? Book a strategy call by sending me a message here.
– Coach Bryan