8 things men over 40 should be doing

1. Dial back the long cardio

Long, slow cardio is time consuming and sucks away your testosterone and human growth hormone (HGH). It also can contribute to erectile dysfunction and other prostate problems if you are spending too much time on the bike seat. Instead, focus on a mix of strength, mobility, and short, high-intensity training, which I call “P.R.I.M.E Training” (Peak Repetition Intervals at Maximum Effort). P.R.I.M.E Training involves an all-out effort doing rowing, burpees, or similar exercises over 20-30 seconds followed by 1-2 minutes rest between sets. This type of training promotes lean muscle, helps drop fat, boosts and maintains high energy levels, kicks up testosterone and HGH levels, reduces systemic inflammation—basically, P.R.I.M.E Training kicks ass!

2. Power up the protein

As we age our muscle breaks down, so combined with hard, fast exercise, and strength training, we need to also eat more protein to help maintain our muscle mass. The official guidelines just don’t cut it for guys who are 40+. We need about 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day (which is equal to 1 gram per pound of body weight). Try to eat organic and plant-based proteins as much as possible.

3. Get your beets on

Beets contain nitrates that aid in the dilation of blood vessels which is good for both your heart and better sexual health. Combine raw beets with ginger and lemon juice for an early morning charge. Use a blender, not a juicer, to mix it all up with added water. Juicers strip away all the healthy fiber that can help maintain blood sugar levels.

4. Stay chill

Cold showers, cryotherapy, or ice baths after exercise are a great way to reduce inflammation and can also help in boosting your testosterone, HGH, and fertility. Try to also sleep in a room that’s between 60 and 67 degrees, which has been proven to enhance sleep quality.

5. Give your doctor a check-up

You should never take health advice from the unhealthy. So next time you see your doctor, ask yourself:

Is my doctor someone who walks the talk?

Is my doctor overweight?

Is my doctor up on the latest studies and clinical studies?

Does my doctor have an opinion on the latest diets and health programs? (For example, Paleo, intermittent fasting, the saturated fat debate, and so on).

Doctors get little-to-no nutritional training, so chances are you’re the more informed one in the relationship. You want your health team to be proactive, so ask informed questions. If you don’t like what you are seeing or hearing, then switch to a new team! Your life may depend on it.

6. Ditch the aftershave

Aftershave and most other personal care products contain compounds called phthalates that have been linked to infertility, cancers, low testosterone, and many other chronic disorders. Choose fragrance-free personal care products and ditch the aftershave. Look for natural, scent-free products or those made from natural plant-based oils. Basically, any personal care products that smell (soaps, shampoo, etc.) usually contain phthalates. I use raw coconut oil to shave and moisturize and a natural coconut based soap. And I never wear aftershave or cologne.

7. Learn to love fats

Fats have had a bad rap over the years, but eating the right fats (e.g., omega-3 fatty acids, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated) is critical for us guys as we reach our later years. The fats in avocados, nuts, coconut oil, and other healthy fats have been shown to increase testosterone, help with Alzheimer’s, reduce inflammation and risk of heart disease, and promote weight loss. So make fats your friend. But don’t overdose, as those calories can add up. You can also get a natural testosterone boost from supplements that promote more energy and better sexual health.

8. Stop eating — (periodically)

Adult onset diabetes is becoming an epidemic. I was personally diagnosed with pre-diabetes a few years back, which is something I discovered through genetic testing. One of the ways I manage to keep my blood sugar under control is through intermittent fasting which has been shown to decrease insulin levels. Fasting also has other benefits in maintaining weight, decreasing inflammation, reducing the hunger hormone (ghrelin), boosting testosterone levels and increasing your natural human growth hormone (HGH) levels. I typically fast once a week — on Tuesdays. There’s no real magic to it. I just don’t eat for a day. Here is a more detailed description of my fasting program.

Don’t let age slow you down. Use some of the tips above to charge forward and make the years ahead of you the prime of your life!

Craig Cooper

By Craig Cooper

Craig Cooper is a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, author, and TV host of CNBC's "Adventure Capitalists". He is an “Ambassador” for both the global men’s health foundation “Movember” and 2XU, the performance sportswear company. He is the author of the Harper Collins book “Your New Prime: 30 Days to Better Sex, Eternal Strength, and a Kick-Ass Life After 40“. Follow Craig on Instagram @craigcooperrrr and Facebook.