I am over 40, why are my muscles not growing?


A very frequent question I get from my followers. They believe they are training the right way, but they just stay at the same uninspired level with their growth and fat-loss.

And the sad truth is that they are correct. They are training intense and hard but results are very slow or non-existent. And then they ask me: “Gert, why is it working for you and not me?”

And this is usually when many struggling over-40 guy would point a finger and scream, “STEROIDS”!


Now let me give you the rundown why my body is responding and not yours.

First, the fault all these over 40 guys (with slow results) make is listening to advice from coaches in their 20’s and 30’s. I got big respect for these coaches, but no pre-40 or pre-50 guy can effectively tell and older guy how to train for results, that wisdom is hard earned by the few that found that golden path to success at the older age. And there IS a path and no, it is not laden with steroids!

Unlike other coaches, I dish out my information for free and simply ask for a small donation (unless you want to signup for my customized ADVANCED SYSTEM II coaching system), so if you are reading this, listen up and let me tell you how this narrow path to success for the older body works.

The 7 FOUNDATION RULES for the older guy

Before we get to the foundation rules, THREE important points:

ONE – Accept the fact that the older body do NOT respond like that of a pre-40 body and be mindful from which coaches you accept information.

TWO – The older body ONLY responds when everything (!) is correctly in place. ONLY then will growth and fat loss occur. I am talking about everything, the whole approach! When even one important foundation rule is missing, then your body’s response will be dismal at best.

THREE – Start at rule one and only move to the next rule once you got it in place. Do NOT skip a FR (Foundation Rule).

40 to 55 BLOGPOST

  1. Know your blood testosterone levels. This is the most critical part for the over 40 guy and especially over 50. The no.1 reason why the older guy’s body is not responding to muscle growth and fat loss is due to average or low T levels. This is the first step you need to take on your journey. Either go to a doctor to get your blood testosterone levels checked (initially only the TOTAL TESTOSTERONE LEVELS required) or what I usually suggest it getting the HOME TESTOSTERONE TESTING kit and completely bypassing the doctors and do the tests in the comfort of your home (only applicable to North America, UK and Europe). The home testing works on the exact same basis as the doctor’s tests, just cheaper and more comfortable. The results are 100% correct. CLICK HERE TO ORDER: https://trylgc.com/gert (use code “GERT20” for 20% discount – yeah got that organised for you guys behind the screens! Life is so expensive and every little bit helps.)
  2. Start managing your blood testosterone levels. Now that you got your results back, you need to embark on a journey to MANAGE your blood testosterone levels to make sure it is in the upper regions of what is considered normal. I say in the top 20% of normal levels. Then and only then will the body start to respond. Even if you have all the foundation rules in place but skip this one, then all your efforts is going to be wasted because your body will NOT respond even close to optimally. Now, how do you “manage” your test levels? Here is the link to the T-Manage plan: https://gertlouw.com/2020/04/13/the-testosterone-management-bible-for-men-over-40/
  3. Follow a sustainable and focused diet approach to deliver muscle building and fat-loss results. So, after you now know your blood testosterone results and have an action plan in place to get them in the top 20% of what is considered normal, the next step would be to ensure the diet you follow is focused to deliver muscle building results and fat loss. Generally, a 40/30/30 macro (protein/fat/carbs) is considered optimal for bodybuilding. What is of bigger importance is to ensure you eat exactly the daily calories as specified by your diet. Do not exceed and do NOT eat less. Here is a link to a solid detailed bodybuilding diet: https://gertlouw.com/2017/09/08/free-cutting-building-diets-for-a-ripped-muscled-physique/ If you do not stick to the specified daily calorie intake there is now way that you can manage your diet to force results.
  4. Start managing your diet scientifically to deliver wanted results. This cannot be done if you do not stick strictly to the allowed daily calories of your diet. Every 14 days you will go through a process where you write down the following:
      1. Weighing scale results,
      2. tape measurement results of key areas and
      3. fat caliper results of key areas.
      4. Then every 14 days your current results must be compared to the previous results 14 days ago. This will give you a picture of what happened to your fat percentage and your lean muscle weight. What is key here is to prevent muscle loss. If any muscle loss occurred then the body is getting in too little daily calories and it struct famine mode (breaking down muscles for energy before breaking down fat storage). This is extremely bad and any bodybuilders worst nightmare. To avoid this the daily calories must be raised but never with a value more than 10% in a 14 day period, otherwise it will take too long for the body to stabilise correctly to new calories. So, depending on the results, the calories must then be adjusted either up or down with up to 10%, obviously considering your goals. All this is explained in detail in my ADVANCED SYSTEM II. By applying this method, you can relatively easily FORCE wanted results with your diet without sacrificing muscle size.
  5. Follow a training regime “friendly” to the older body, that stimulates muscle growth. After you’ve implemented FR (FOUNDATION RULES) 1 to 4, you are now ready to start with the training part of your journey. Believe me, if you did not implement the previous 4 FR you will find it extremely hard to get the body to respond optimally by simply just training, even when your training is perfect. This is where most guys fall flat. They go straight into training bypassing FR 1-4 and then they are perplexed as to why nothing happens! And no, not just any training program is going to cut it! With each decade past (40-50, 50-60, 60-70, etc) your training regime is different and as you age you have to drop weight size and start focussing on other training methods to bring muscle to failure. Also very important is to allow the older body periods to recover and heal, especially tendons and joints. This is done by introducing Building and Cutting phases. In the Building phase one “punish” the body with heavy training while in a Cutting phase one train significantly lighter at higher rep range (per set) to allow the required recovery. Again without getting into too much detail, all this is covered thoroughly in the ADVANCED SYSTEM II But if you search around on my site (www.gertlouw.com), you will find a lot of info dealing with the subject matter.
  6. You need to follow a focused bodybuilding and health supplement regime with the emphasis on the older body. As we get older our bodies become more frail and we also get more frequent sick and also more frequent injuries. For our bodies to have the best fighting chance and limit such downtimes to the minimum, we need a focused health and bodybuilding supplement stack. Ignore ALL supplements advertisements. It is 99% lies. The supplement stacks I suggest is backed up by the necessary science studies which proof they make a real-life difference. Here is a peak into my supplement stack for the older guy: https://gertlouw.com/2019/11/13/focussed-supplement-stack-for-the-older-guy/  You might ask why I do not suggest CREATINE? Although it has all the science behind it, it can only be used if your kidneys are super healthy. So first make sure of that since kidney function decline is directly equivalent to our age. To make it easy for you, here is a link to all the supplements in one place and where to get them online: CLICK HERE
  7. Adopt a philosophy of bettering yourself on every level. Now guys, the last FR is going to determine whether you reach success or not. If your reasons for going on this transformation journey is simply skin-deep (meaning just superficial to look better for the ladies) well, then your chances are 90% to fail sooner than later. But, if your journey is about the “whole” person (body, soul and self-respect) and bettering yourself on every level then your chances of success will be 90%. This is the big unspoken fact about body transformation. When you do it for reasons to become a better person on every level, then the weight this carry is in a complete different league than superficial reasons. And especially because it is so much more difficult for us older guys to make body changes, we need to be very (!) dedicated. This dedication only comes when we do it for the RIGHT reasons. For me the body transformation was a journey in my faith as well. I now like the person in the mirror staring back at me, the inside and outside. Don’t just become a better-looking jerk! There is enough of them in the world!

Off course things like keeping stress levels down (to avoid high cortisol levels which kills testosterone production) and getting enough sleep in is crucial, as is getting at least 3L filtered water in per day and cutting out processed food and limiting any chemical exposure (car fumes, insecticides, deodarants, etc.). Exhaust fumes (especially diesel fumes) has been shown to lower a man’s testosterone levels and raise his estrogen levels = NOT good!


This, guys, WILL bring success to every older guy. That I can guarantee you. But following the complete set of foundation rules will definitely separate the men from the boys. So, show us your true colors!

If this or any of my other free info have help you in any way, please consider making a small donation to my site to help me keeping everything free: https://www.paypal.com/paypalme/GERTFITNESS

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Then off course for those that want a customized ADVANCED SYSTEM II worked out for their body and goals, you can signup here: https://gertlouw.com/my-transformation-secrets/

Wish you all success for your journey!

Gert Louw

Life after 50 b

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