It is commonly felt that you can’t build muscle over 40 naturally or without the use of PED’s. In this video, I’m tackling this conception head on. This comes in the form of a question and answer session where we open up our comment section to our viewers to ask their most burning questions. One of the themes that repeatedly comes up is on the subject of how much muscle can be built over the age of 40 naturally.

If you listen to most social media influencers, or simply look at their physiques, you may have noticed a trend in the last couple years towards unnatural development. With the great media push of the benefits of testosterone in “replacement” dosages, we have seen a record number of men move towards exogenous forms of T to help them build muscle.

In fact, some will have you convinced that it is the only way to build muscle, or even look good, over the age of 40.

I couldn’t disagree more.

This has been used as a copout on a grand stage, for a reluctance to engage in hard work and consistent effort in training. In fact, the most rampant use of this strategy for building muscle is occurring in an age bracket far below the men in their 40’s. We are talking about kids in their 20’s who are abusing TRT and engaging in PED use in an attempt to speed up the natural process of bodybuilding.

As someone who has pursued my career as a lifelong natural, I find this to be discouraging and a disturbing trend in the wrong direction. Far too many social media influencers are knowingly or unknowingly leading many men, young and old, down the wrong path to fitness and better health.

Not to mention, the times that the admission of TRT is actually a mere smokescreen for the things they won’t tell you they are taking are countless. Ever see a guy who wants you to think that the only thing he’s using is some replacement dose of hormones, when he has not only a history of long term PED use but a tendency to be caught up in supplement scams and legal troubles? I’m sure you have, because there are quite a few of them.

The point is, when PED’s are the first place our young lifters turn when they want to make muscle gains, we have a major issue and it’s one that has been caused unfortunately by the very platforms that have delivered the education to a hard working alternative.

“You can’t build muscle over 40 naturally” is what they’ll say.

That is simply not true. There have actually been numerous, well conducted studies that have been done that prove otherwise.The key is a dedicated consistency to the cause.

No, I’m not talking about working out and eating right for a few weeks or even months. I’m talking about making sure to have all aspects of your training and nutrition in check and to continue on that path for years and years on end. It’s actually much easier to do when you are following a workout plan that doesn’t break your body down, but makes you feel better or when you are following a nutrition plan that doesn’t rely on starvation and deprivation but on eating in a way that is enjoyable and still progressive in terms of fat loss and muscle building.

If you look even at the case of a younger guy like Jesse from ATHLEAN-X, you can see what realistic muscle gains can look like. Some have witnessed his body transformation and called the 5 year results amazing. Others have viewed the very same videos and said that he is scrawny and hasn’t made any gains at all. It just goes to show you how distorted the perception of natural progress has become because of the blurred lines that have been created by social media and phony fitness influencers.

The key to making new gains starts in your head.

You need to realize that the degree of muscle growth and fat loss you desire is likely achievable through nothing more than hard work and dedication. It truly is. There are people who walk around right now with the type of body that you may desire, doing nothing more than staying true to their goals and leading the healthiest life possible in the pursuit of them.

Does it take more time?


They don’t call them performance enhancing drugs for no reason. They will not only speed up the pace of the muscle building results that you can experience but they increase the degree and the amount of them that are possible. But that doesn’t mean that you need to choose that path.

If you’re looking for a complete workout and meal plan to build muscle and burn fat, be sure to check out via the link below and start training like an athlete today.

For more videos on how you can’t build muscle over 35 without TRT as well as workouts for men over 40, be sure to subscribe to our channel here on youtube via the link below and remember to turn on your notifications so you never miss a new video when it’s published.

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    63 replies to "You Can’t Build Muscle OVER 40 Naturally!"

    • Diggity SC

      Comparison is the thief of joy. There is using other people’s fitness results to inspire you, and using other people’s fitness results to quit. As a guy using your programs to build muscle over 40, I appreciate both you guys.

      • Utkarsh Tripathi

        @MC Mark Markson everything a human does is being human.Using rationale to determine what outlook one should have towards society and oneself in order to have joy is just being a better one.

      • ntsst3

        Comparison IS the thief of joy but joy is the enemy of gains and the enemy of my enemy is my friend. So comparison =’s gains!

      • MC Mark Markson

        @Utkarsh Tripathi No it isn’t we are intelligent, we have the capacity to go against our nature.

        And few people can be robots and plan what joy they want to have in the future. Not sure it’s a benefit either, sometimes it is and sometimes it isn’t. In the end you only change the moments you have your joy.

      • novicetheaf

        @Utkarsh Tripathi well said my friend

      • Yuppi

        In the end the you yesterday is the one you should be comparing your results with. That’s the guy with the same resources and same history. The goal is to beat that guy today, not your neighbor. Progress is progress. If you go forward from where you start, that’s the stuff. Not being ahead of someone else, you could still be comparing terribly against yourself despite being ahead of someone else.

    • ATHLEAN-X™

      *THE GIVEAWAY IS BACK* – I’m giving away my brand new complete 90 Day Beaxst PPL program to 40 lucky clickers within the first hour this video is published! Remember, this is NOT THE FIRST 40, but those randomly selected within the first hour the video is published. Click the link to see if you’ve won. No strings attached! Clicking twice does nothing. Only one entry per video. Remember to watch to the end for more workouts.

      If you don’t win, no worries, you’re not going away empty handed. Just be sure you have your notifications turned on so you can get to my next video quickly and try again. Good luck and thanks for being a loyal subscriber…

      • Prema Pradipa Dasa

        Crooked hips video!

      • Rebeca Palomo

        I got my six pack using his methods! Amen

      • Dt

        Would love to see Jeff’s opinions on supplements for general health and longevity. Things like taking NAC+Glycine after the age of 45 or so, to prevent muscle cell deterioration etc.

      • Mennitti

        Cybergenics twice. It hurt my liver.

      • Yannick Campagna

        Hi Jeff,. I would like your advice how to correct imbalance. My left arm fatigue faster and weaker than my right (easily 5 to 10lbs depending dumbbell exercises). Doing extra set with only my left is the solution or do you have a better plan? Thanks

    • Roman

      This video was put out right when I needed to hear it. Needed that reminder that I’m only competing against myself and I want to be healthy and live longer for my kids. I’m 38 and I feel great. I’m not aesthetically where I want to be but I can’t cut corners and I can reach it.

      • Ph

        Me too

      • Gregory Michael

        37 and I totally agree man

      • rockbe02

        37 and just had my second. I haven’t exercised regularly in so long and I am tired if feeling so beat up. I have gad a lot of back and shoulder issues to work around. Been having a spasm issue I have been trying to work through for a week and a half. I really hope I can get exercising soon and get in better shape for my family

      • Roman

        @rockbe02 hell yeah

    • Chris Bowman

      Been watching you for a couple years. Started weight training at 53. Eighteen months later I’m in the best shape of my life and have put on eight pounds of muscle. Much stronger. Not looking to be a musclebound bodybuilder, but just to look and feel better. Which I do. Thanks so much for your content, it has been a huge help! BTW, better diet, creatine post workout, and some protein powder shakes are the only other things I do with the hard work. 👍

      • JimL

        Same, I trained clean in my 30s and 40s, off and on, and was always able to add muscle. In my 50’s and on Keto, and I can still add muscle even though I know my Testosterone is low. I plan to likely do TRT at some point, but post the Covid lockdowns I’m wanting to see what I can achieve with just good supplements and creatine.

    • Zoran Nesovanovic

      I’m 53 and for last year and a half I work on constructions. I also gained muscle without any supplements. By the way, thank You for posting your extremely valuable videos, about correcting …many things (hips, posture, lower back…etc).

    • Run Frankfurt

      Steps to grow muscle when you‘re over 40:
      – Discipline
      – Dedication
      – Determination
      – Solid training plan (stick to it)
      – Proper nutrition / plenty of protein
      – Enough sleep
      – Patience
      = Done

      • Jasper De Mann

        👌🏽 Agreed.
        It really is as simple as that.
        I’m 58 and only six months in but I can already see and feel the changes taking place.
        I would add ‘track your macros’, ‘experiment with different workout routines’ (push/pull/legs works best for me), and ‘cut out/reduce alcohol’ to that list.
        And ‘keep on watching Jeff’s videos’, obviously! 😁

      • R M

        @Jasper De Mann keep grinding, my man

      • Raoul D

        Absolutely!!!👍👏👏👏I can vouch for this as well!

      • VertiGO !


      • The TV baby

        And face pulls!

    • Stephen Shivers

      I’m 42 and I pretty much only train based on what Jeff has put out here for free. I put in the intensity, but if not for his advice I wouldn’t have the physique I currently have. I can’t thank you enough for showing me how to put in the work around things like having a bad back, and knees, but learning how to adjust so I can still deadlift and squat. Also how to bench press without further destroying my garbage shoulders. My wife and I both thank you for the best physique I’ve ever had. The only things I take are pre-work out, protein shakes, and aminos for afterwards.

      • Master Chief

        Good on you! 🙂

      • VertiGO !

        Do you have a before and after ? Thanks anyhow.

      • Tony L

        Similar story here. Thx 🙏 Jeff

      • Eddy Lee Khane

        Bro well done, show it off

        To motivate others aswell 😍

      • human

        @Edgar Pifflewiff Nice troll

    • Pistol Pete

      Thanks Jeff, Jessie….always good to hear that I’m not wasting my time as a 76 year old gym rat with two new shoulders, knees and , recently a new hip. I am 6’1″ tall and maintain my high school wrestling weight at 190 lbs…keep up the good work – especially those tips that keep me from doing something stupid in the gym.

      • K

        Love your drive and tenacity, silver wolf. Keep grinding! 💪

    • The American American

      I’m just a weekend warrior gym goer, but I’ve been doing that for over a decade now and you guys are the only fitness channel I watch because you keep real both metaphorically and literally! Thanks guys for what you do!

    • Preston Cram

      Glad to hear you touch on the body image aspect of this, I think a lot of guys have their priorities out of order. In my 20s I wanted to be huge, but at 39 I think I look better and feel significantly better physically because I’ve embraced the idea of being lean and fit, prioritizing heart health and overall fitness instead of just trying to look like Arnold. This channel has been such a great resource in helping me get myself in the best shape of my life. Cheers guys

      • C L

        with age comes wisdom, a perspective youth lacks -a 38 year old

    • Jayson Kang

      As a younger person who’s felt a lot of the pressure Jeff is talking about, I’m glad this video was made. PEDs have become more common and normalized among younger people and the temptation is always present because of social media. Glad to be a part of this discussion and I’ll never look like Jeff but hope to look like Jesse in his recent vid next year lol

      • Chikau

        And stay away from social media. Too many low IQ vain people. Focus on yourself.

      • Walshy

        where are they all getting peds from

      • And M

        Agreed. They take them like they’re experimental drugs like weed but they don’t get it could seriously mess up your hormones and how your body functions

    • Stephen Antonelli

      Thanks Jeff, I’m 71 and have been doing resistance trying for most of my life ( on & off – more on than off). I retired several years ago and hit the weight room pretty consistently for the last three years. My T levels have steadily increased year over year for all three. I’m really not seeing muscle gain and was frustrated until I saw this. Guess I’m fighting the decline. Thanks

    • ahessena

      Turned 40 this year and was literally feeling a little down about it today right before seeing this video. The timing is crazy. Thanks for all you do. Just started your “effective rep” approach yesterday.

      • Jeffrey Yeater

        At 40 you aren’t the least bit old . Ignore it and do what you want.

      • casio shock

        40 and down? Man I’m 46 and would love to be 40 again lol

      • OleGaarden

        Lets go man! Congrats on 40, wish you all kinds of gainz this decade!!

    • Chad Delany

      I’m 50 and have been steadily building muscle over the last year and half since I found your channel. Thanks for the great information and embodied life-philosophy.

    • Chris English

      I am 60 years old. I am 6’2″. I am also what you would consider a hard gainer. Jesse, I feel you and congratulate you on your success! Three years ago I had to go through chemotherapy and radiation. During the process I lost muscle mass and strength. I dropped 28 pounds. Once I began lifting again I was able to put on 10 pounds of muscle within a number of weeks. Even now, I can continue to gain as long as I am consistent and all elements are in order (i.e. nutrition, rest, workouts etc.) I appreciate the intelligent and safe instruction and information from Jeff C. My goal is strength and health and longevity. I am proof that even at 60 you CAN gain muscle and strength.

      • RV

        I am 65 and 5″11. I had severe complications from a full jaw replacement and was on a liquid diet for several years. I was nearly hospitalized due to severe weight loss and malnutrition.
        I gained back 25 pounds of mostly muscle in six months.
        I feel great, and am no longer at diabetic levels with no doctors, medication, trainers, supplements, etc.
        For myself, it was just a lot of inspiration, and hard work in the gym.
        I’m glad to hear stories like yours.
        Jeff is absolutely correct.

    • Tom Key

      This video, Jesse’s transformation video, and the mistakes-I-made video have been three of the best videos in all the years I’ve been training with Athlean X – and that was starting in 2008. Thank you Jeff and Jesse not only for what you teach and inspire about how to train for strength, mobility, aesthetics, and health — but for how to evolve and mature as a human being.

    • Adam Lockington

      Jesse’s transformation is a perfectly realistic expectation for 5 years of training without enhancements.
      Great work dude. You put in the effort and it shows

      • Last Ronin

        No sir,

      • Back559

        @Last Ronin wdym

      • jmrjhulk

        @Aamir Bilvani nope.. its like going to the gym for a few months not 5 years

      • sumbitch3rdgen

        @jmrjhulk 540 deadlift at 165 bodyweight within a few months?

      • jmrjhulk

        @sumbitch3rdgen  if your looking for strength ok 5 years but im talking about the physique

    • Nom Nom

      0:16/0:31 Question 1/2
      1:19 Social Media problem
      2:02 5 Years Transformation
      2:33 2 types of “criticism” towards Jesse
      3:26 “Body” back then
      4:35 Paul Sklar
      5:15 The Rock
      7:25 Baseball
      7:52 Liver King
      8:55 Jeff Natural or Not?
      11:25 “First Time I’m Struggled with Putting on Muscle, I’m Jumping on ___” mindset
      12:22 Chasing Aesthetics over Your Loved Ones
      14:00 “You can build muscle at any age, you do not need to dwell into the use of PEDs in order to build muscle over the age of 40”

      • Тень навсегда

        Once in a while a hero like you comes forth to save us from dozing off before watching a relevant portion of a video.

      • Tom Davies


      • F4ZE PACINO

        they gotta pin this

      • razorgarf

        11:45 Jeff is not vaccinated

    • Hunter Smith

      Such an amazing video of revelations! I love the honesty in this one. Great stuff man. Question… have you ever tried Next Level Diet? I got a muscle-building meal plan from them, and I love it.


        ⤴️⤴️Thanks for watching and leaving a comment🎁! send me a direct message with the Telegram username above for support and feedback appreciation🎉 l have something for you🎊

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