My write-up about Steve’s recomp results that I shared last week was a hit. You loved the level of detail. So as promised, here’s another…
I’m often asked whether it’s possible to achieve a good physique after 40, 45, or 50? (Whatever age the person asking me happens to be.)
👉 Hell yes, you can! I see it all the time.
Here’s my client Scott at 52 years young:
…and you’ll find plenty more examples on the results page.
It’s easy to get the insidious idea that we can’t achieve things past a certain age.
Call bullshit on that and work to break the inertia, or it will become self-fulfilling.
Undoubtedly, this is not as easy to do as you were in your 20s. But the reasons are probably not what you think, the broad principles still apply, and I can teach you what to look out for.
First, let me explain Scott’s results and how we achieved them.
You can see that Scott lost ~7.5–8.5 cm on the stomach. If you recall the heuristic I shared in Steve’s result…
👉 2–2.5 cm of loss in two or more places on the stomach equates to 4–5 lbs of fat loss.
…this suggests around 14-17.5 lbs of fat loss.
He made good progress with his training. You can see that his chest and limb measurements were well maintained for the level of fat loss. This means some muscle gain.
I estimate that Scott gained 3 lbs of muscle while losing 17 lbs of fat.
Though the time frame in the pictures up top is 14 months, he was almost as lean 6 months into this…
I could have shown this as a 6-month transformation. But that would misrepresent things. — The coaching went on for a further 8 months as we settled at a point Scott was happy with how he looked and felt that he could sustain things.
“I’ve struggled with my weight and body image most of my adult life. With your help and guidance, I’m in a good place.
I’ve learned more about how my body works in the last year than in my previous 50.
I feel fit, strong, and healthy at this weight. Words cannot express the depth of my gratitude.”
HOW WE ACHIEVED THIS & YOU CAN TOO
1. Nutrition Setup and Adjustments 🌮
There were no proactive adjustments necessary to account for age.
It’s a common misconception that metabolism slows with age. However, our activity levels decrease. So, if you’re finding it harder to lose weight than when you were younger, this is likely the reason.
We aimed for one pound of fat loss per week, but we fell short of that due to adherence issues.
His starting macros were as follows:
Training days — 2310 kcal, P:200 C:265 F:50
Rest days — 1945 kcal, P:200 C:140 F:65
👉 You can calculate your macros here: The Macro Calculator 📊
The first macro adjustment was needed after six months. We cut ~300 kcal (50 g of carbs, 10 g of fats). We made another cut of 200 kcal three months after that.
👉 I’ve detailed my decision-making framework here: How To Adjust Macros As You Diet To Keep Progressing 🥗
To return to maintenance, I suggested we start by raising calories by ~500 each day (increasing carbs by 100 g and fat by 10 g).
I said, “Expect a rise in scale weight, especially in the first week, then it will likely plateau. Bump your calorie intake by another 150 kcal. Repeat this until you find that your weight trends upward, then cut your intake back a little. This is your maximum maintenance.”
👉 Full details here: How To Find Maximum Maintenance After Dieting
2. Training Considerations 🏋🏻♂️
There are no training plans for older trainees.
All the training principles that applied to your 20-year-old self will apply to your 40-year-old self.
However, you may have picked up some injuries or have limitations now that you didn’t then. And you may not recover quite as well from your workouts.
👉 It’s simple enough to plan around that. See: Training Advice for Older Trainees
We used an upper-lower four-day split. It was similar to the novice bodybuilding program, but with mods for Scott’s home gym equipment availability and a higher overall volume.
This was his exact program:
3. He stayed consistent 🎖
Just as I said with Steve, despite everything that life threw at Scott over this period, he stayed consistent.
As a reminder: “consistent” from my coaching perspective doesn’t mean to always nail adherence. It means to avoid the “all-or-nothing” attitude when things don’t go to plan.
To succeed, you need to do the same. 💪
Thank you for reading. I hope you found this helpful. If you have a friend you think would find this helpful too, please share this link with them. 🙏🏻
Questions are welcomed in the comments. 😊