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Q. Change in muscle mass since hitting 40 is this normal?

I am a woman in my early forties and although I have kept my weight stable my muscle tone has changed dramatically – my arms and legs have lost their muscle mass and I’ve noticed a real difference in my body shape. Is this normal?

Muscle mass does decrease as you hit your forties and as you progress through the decade milestones. It can have a real affect on your overall body shape and on your confidence – but you can stop those changes and regain your muscle mass to a large extent.

Now is the time to cut back on your cardio work and to incorporate more weight and resistance work into your fitness routine. A dedicated programme of weight work will help your body regain muscle mass and you can target the areas you are concerned about. Using weights and resistance will have a good effect on your joints, your strength and your done density too and it will help you achieve a sculpted look. Try to increase the amount of protein you eat too. That will give your muscles the fuel they need to grow.

If you aren’t used to using weights, build them up up slowly – but you will be surprised how quickly those visible results come. I would recommend talking to one of the LC fitness instructors at the gym so they can help you draw up a fitness plan tailored to your needs.