How Women Can Lose Weight After 40

When women reach the age of 40, weight loss requires a different approach than it does for teenagers and young adults. As a person approaches the age of 40, changes occur within the body, often causing weight gain. A slower metabolism is a major cause of weight gain for women over 40. As a woman's body ages, she burns significantly less calories per day than she did when she was younger; if a woman does not compensate for these calories through eating less or exercising more, weight gain will be inevitable. However, through a few simple steps, a woman over 40 can lose weight.

Things You'll Need

  • Dumbbells
  • Food journal


    • 1

      Choose a cardiovascular activity that you enjoy. The activity could be jogging, swimming, cycling, dancing, exercising on a stair machine or any other activity that will elevate your heart rate.

    • 2

      Perform a warm-up before your exercise. Exercise at an easy to moderate effort level for at least five minutes. A warm-up will elevate your core body temperature, and facilitate your body's calorie burning capacity.

    • 3

      Complete at least 15 more minutes of your cardiovascular activity, for a total of 20 minutes. Perform this moderate cardiovascular exercise three times per week.

    • 4

      Perform weight resistance exercises on the three days you perform your moderate cardiovascular activity. Using the dumbbells, perform strength training exercises such as arm curls, squats, lunges, shoulder presses and crunches. Lean muscle mass increases your metabolic rate, allowing you to burn more calories when you are at rest, which aids in your weight loss efforts.

    • 5

      Choose one day a week to perform a 60 minute extended cardiovascular workout. Research indicates that during an extended workout, the body uses reserve energy, raises the metabolic rate and is likely to burn more calories throughout the day after the workout.

    • 6

      Perform an interval workout on the remaining three days. An interval consists of alternating short, intense amounts of exercise periods with periods of rest. For instance, begin jogging at a warm-up pace. Increase the speed of your jogging to as fast as you can manage for a minute, then walk for two minutes to recover. Repeat this rotation for twenty minutes total.

    • 7

      Overhaul your diet. Madelyn Fernstrom, PhD, and the director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Weight Management Center advises that, as a result of slowed metabolism, a woman over 40 years old must cut out about 100 calories per day simply to maintain current weight. To lose weight, you will need to cut out more than 100 calories. Consider including whole grains, lean proteins, low fat dairy and plenty of produce for nutritious meals that are low in calories.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consult a doctor before beginning any exercise regiment.
  • Make sure to choose an activity that you enjoy, as you will be more likely to stick to it.
  • Estimate the calories you consume daily by recording what you eat in a food log.
  • Do not exercise if you are injured, as you will exacerbate the injury.
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  • Photo Credit jogging image by Emmanuelle Combaud from

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