≡ Menu

Bodybuilding and Age

bodybuilding and ageIf you’re 40 or approaching 40 years old, don’t put off building the body you’ve always wanted because you believe you’re “too old”.

You’re not!



A 2009 study [1] at the University of Central Florida demonstrated that any difference between the results a 40 year old and an 18 year old gets is actually very small.

A 12-week study was set up with 826 men and women – the largest study ever conducted on strength training and age.

The subjects trained their arms (biceps and triceps) twice a week for the 3 month duration of the study.

Although the 18-19 yr olds did increase their 1 rep max by a little more, there actually wasn’t any difference in how much actual muscle size the groups added.

The researchers concluded:

“The size of this effect is very small in comparison with the enduring ability of skeletal muscle to adapt to resistance. The muscle size and strength response to resistance training is not influenced by age in any practical manner through the fourth decade of life.”

Yes indeed. Skeletal muscle DOES continue to adapt if there is a big enough demand placed on it to do so.

And the best way to place this demand at any age is with THT training.

Train With Intensity – Always!


[1] Association of age with muscle size and strength before and after short-term resistance training in young adults. J Strength Cond Res. 2009 Oct;23(7):1915-20.

Related Post

Mark McManus
Mark McManus
Mark is now available for 1-on-1 consultations to help you take your results to the next level. Click here for more details.
Mark McManus is a trainer & author from Ireland. His work has been featured in major publications all over the world. He is the creator of the free growth-promoting workout Targeted Hypertrophy Training' (THT) and author of the NEW fat-torching system Total Six Pack Abs.
He has also created the BREAKTHROUGH arm and chest maximizer programs The Arms Blast' and 'Chest Blast' workouts.
And if you're a fan of delicious high-protein recipes to fuel your muscle growth, check out his cook book 'Buff Baking' here.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Adam Weichel January 23, 2013, 11:54 am

    Looks like I’ve got a long career in the gym still ahead of me, brother!

  • BIG MIKE January 23, 2013, 12:01 pm

    Enticing and exciting news!!
    Thanks Mark :)

  • Mark McManus January 23, 2013, 12:31 pm

    You got that right, guys!

  • JaSoN January 23, 2013, 12:35 pm

    hey mark, is there any other way for you to send me the new workout logs? been trying to open them and have downloaded all the necessary things and it still wont open…. Apache office don’t work and adobe and Microsoft windows.

  • Herman January 23, 2013, 1:01 pm

    Forty…… I have seen forty nearly seventeen years ago. Started on your program one week prior to my 56th birthday in August 2012. My arms are looking great – chest great – tummy still a healthy bit of “love handle material” but vast improvement on what it was –
    Working hard – great fun


  • paul sutcliffe January 23, 2013, 1:09 pm

    what about if closer to 50??

  • Aanand January 23, 2013, 1:13 pm

    Delighted to read this.
    I used to train with weights irregularly.
    Then I stumbled upon THT.
    I started training regularly with weights on 07 Jan 2012.
    And now, my t-shirts tell me that I have increased my muscles.
    I have never been in better physical shape in my 63 years.
    A big thank you Mark.

  • Gene January 23, 2013, 1:43 pm

    I am a preacher in my 60s and started working out 8 months ago. I have lost my belly and gained nice arms and chest. The best in my life.

  • rycamor January 23, 2013, 3:40 pm

    Yup, 47 here, started training again at 45, cut way back on the carbs and processed food, lost 40 lbs of fat and gained 20 lbs muscle. Fitting into the same jeans I did in my 20s, upper body stretching same shirts, though. Feels great.

  • Liam Winder January 23, 2013, 3:41 pm

    Hi Mark, Might be worth giving some props to the guy in the photo you used. The one and only Dave Draper, aka “The Bomber”, he was Mr. America, Mr. World & Mr. Universe, TV/Movie star. He was mine and many peoples inspiration to get in to bodybuilding. Plus one of the nicest people I’ve ever had the pleasure of dealing with. He has a great book called Brother Iron Sister Steal. Its a fascinating read.



  • Mike Huber January 23, 2013, 6:09 pm

    So True Mark!! 44 years young and Going Strong THT Style!!!

  • Dennis January 23, 2013, 6:37 pm

    Age 57, started weights nearly 3 years ago, gained 35 pounds muscle (135 to 170). Love the site, Mark, thanks for it.

  • Sean Brown January 23, 2013, 9:40 pm

    I’m 37…and in much better shape than I was in my twenties. THT and TSPA for life! :)

  • Android January 24, 2013, 12:25 am

    49yrs old, Mark your costing me money … Buying more weight for my home gym ,
    Training with heavy set first, has made a big different to my workout ,,, only one issue …
    THT volume… ” I cant get a good” Back workout,” after training Bicep the day before” other than that’s,,, Big Thanks mate,,,,

  • Gerhard Varady January 24, 2013, 3:37 am

    Hi Mark,
    I have been using THT for sometime now and after 4 cancer ops. in the middle of last year.I have been back in the gym for the past 4 months. Did the arm blast before Xmas and increased biceps by .5″.Am now on THT5 and making good progress.All thios at 71.5 years of age.
    Keep up the great articles.

  • Kaya Gucmen January 24, 2013, 3:39 pm

    I was obese throughout my life… I had an obesity surgery 14 months ago and lost 45kg. 2 months post-op I started to workout in cardio. 4 months after that, I started to resistance training. As I can eat only very limited amounts, the development is quite small; the strength is increasing faster then hypertrophy. But I deffinately see development. So; I hired a private trainer, as I don’t want to miss and waste my only chance to have some visible muscles, after being morbidly obese for 42 years. I’ll send some pictures, in soon future to show the change. 43 is not too late, at all…

  • Mark McManus January 25, 2013, 9:04 am

    @Jason. It’s OpenOffice you need. Can’t understand why they won’t open if you have it. What error message are you getting?

  • Mark McManus January 25, 2013, 9:06 am

    Really great to read all these awesome comments from you guys!! Keep up the good work!