How To Get Back In Shape At Any Age – The 5 Step Formula

Written by: Stuart Carter,

Dip. PT, Precision Nutrition 1
C.O.O., The Fit Father Project

Written by: Stuart Carter,

Dip. PT, Precision Nutrition 1
C.O.O., The Fit Father Project

how to get back in shape
Learning how to get back in shape IS possible. And you can do it at any age. All you need to do is follow the five principles in this article, and you'll be back to your old self in no time!

how to get back in shapeWhen most people want to get back in shape, their initial step is to totally change their diet and start a grueling exercise routine.

In most cases, this will come to an abrupt end after two or three weeks when you get tired of eating salad and you’re so sore you can hardly move.

Sound familiar?

If you want REAL RESULTS, there are five very important steps to take before you move on to diet and exercise, and these are the steps that are most often overlooked.

These five steps are explored in-depth in this article:

    • Mindset shows you how to get back in shape by getting you to answer the questions about why you are starting this journey and what will keep you going during tough times.
    • Getting enough sleep is the step that helps your body recover, rebuild, and re-stabilize important hormone levels.
    • A healthy eating plan makes sure you get the nutrients you need to stay healthy, feel good, be energized, and rebuild muscles.
    • A formal exercise schedule helps you to get and remain fit, build a strong and healthy body, and improve your natural movement.
    • Adding supplements to your meal plan will optimize your health and recovery.

We'll dig deeper into these steps below, but first, watch this video.

Welcome To The Fit Father Project – Your New Nutrition and Workout Resource!

Chris Collier

At the Fit Father Project, we specifically help busy men over 40 get back in shape by offering free information and resources on our website, backed up with our Fit Father 30X (FF30X) Program.

This article will teach you how to get back in shape, but we're here to help you make a whole slew of healthy and sustainable lifestyle changes that will last.

Everything we do here at the Fit Father Project aims to simplify eating and exercise for you, so you can get in great shape and stay strong and healthy for your family — without any unnecessary complications.

Sound good? Good. Let's dive in!

Step #1 – Get Into the Right Mindset

how to get back in shapeMindset is the first step on your journey to get back in shape and will help you strengthen your motivation and keep you disciplined when you want to give up and stuff yourself with chips and cookies.

Essentially, you need to ask yourself an important question — “Why?”

It’s usually the first question you ask yourself when you think of giving something up, so knowing the answer and having it strong enough to keep you going will be paramount.

I’m sure you've been there before: “God, why am I doing this?”

If your answer is a flimsy one, like “Because I want to look good,” it will only keep you going for so long.

There is no emotion there, and once you start looking “pretty good,” you’ll probably be happy and have no drive to fulfill your potential.

If your answer has substance behind it, though, like “Because I want to show all the people that poked fun at me for being overweight that I can be in great shape and look amazing,” you have an emotional connection to your goal, and nothing will stop you!

Knowing why you are starting a weight loss program or a muscle-gaining program will empower you, and every time you ask yourself why you are doing it, you will have a solid answer to remind yourself.

Prepare a 30-Day Mission Statement

how to get back in shapeTo get yourself in the right mindset and to give yourself your true ‘why' answer, we recommend preparing a 30-day mission statement detailing exactly what you want to achieve and why.

Firstly, think about what your current habits towards healthy eating and exercise are costing you. Think about the emotional cost, the physical cost, and the time cost.

Then, visualize and imagine what the benefits will be if you change your habits and achieve your goals. Add these to your 30-day mission.

An example could be:

“In the next 30 days, I will focus on improving my eating plan and exercising two or three times per week, so I can create the habits necessary to lose weight, improve my health, have more confidence in myself, and be in a better state of mind. I’m sure this will make me a happier and more positive person, which will have positive effects on my relationships at home and work. I accept the costs of spending the time to prepare nutritious meals and to exercise, as it will give me the benefits of better health and longevity.”

Having your mission statement written or printed out and put in a prominent place where you will see it daily will be helpful to keep your focus on why you are undertaking this journey.

Step #2 – Get Enough Sleep To Rest and Recover

how to get back in shapeThere is a lot of speculation about how much sleep you should get to make sure your body rests and recovers to its optimal level.

As it is such an important part of your daily process, you should sleep an absolute minimum of 7 hours, preferably 8.

Being sleep-deprived will be counter-productive to any steps you are taking to lose weight, and although it will not completely negate them, it will have a negative effect.

Sleep is what helps your body to recover and recharge at the end of every day. Any stresses you have put on your body are fixed, and your hormone levels are re-balanced.

Hormones like HGH (human growth hormone), which is responsible for helping to burn fat, and ghrelin and leptin, which manage fullness and hunger, all need sleep time to balance and regenerate.

What Happens When You Don't Get Enough Sleep?

how to get back in shapeIf you’re sleep deprived, these hormones do not balance properly, and your body will end up holding on to fat; you will get cravings, and you will not feel satiated when you eat, leading to you eating larger portions.

Also, if you consistently sleep less than 6-7 hours, there are more serious consequences. Even just a few days of poor sleep can:

  • Dramatically impair optimal brain function.
  • Halt your ability to lose weight.
  • Decrease recovery from exercise.
  • Impair immune function and disease resistance.
  • Increase your risk for heart disease.
  • Promote insulin resistance and diabetes.
  • Increase the risk for depression.

Many of these effects happen after ONE single night of poor sleep. Most become very noticeable after two to three nights of poor sleep.

It may feel counter-intuitive to sleep more when you want to lose weight, but it is one of the best things you can do to help your body naturally reset and aid fat loss.

Improve your sleep quality at night with these five ways to sleep better!

Step #3 – Focus On Nutrition, Not Restriction

When starting a healthy eating plan, you should make sure that what you undertake is not restrictive, is easy, and is sustainable for the long term.

Going on a crash diet to lose 10 pounds, just to put it all back on again when you return to your old habits, is a big waste of time. Don’t be pulled into this type of dieting.

Remember, a healthy eating plan is more effective than exercise for weight loss. To put it more simply, you can't out-exercise a bad diet!

Here at the Fit Father Project, we have a very simple and straightforward healthy eating strategy that we call the Perfect Plate. Using our Perfect Plate method is simple and doesn't take much planning. It's basic but effective, and here's everything you need to know about to lose weight over 40

    • Half of each plate should be vegetables, particularly lower-calorie, non-starchy ones (remember, green is good).
    • One-fourth of each plate should be nutritious, protein-rich foods (turkey, chicken, lean beef, tuna).
    • One-fourth of each plate should be fiber-rich carbohydrates (sweet potato, brown rice, quinoa).

Also, be sure to mix in healthy fats at each meal, consume three servings of dairy foods or plant-based alternatives (plant milk or plant-based yogurt) daily, and eat about two servings of fruit each day.

If you want to take advantage of our free resource that shows you what to eat for breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner, you download our 1-Day Meal Plan.

1 day meal plan

Here’s A Free Weight Loss Meal Plan For Busy Men 40+

1 day meal plan
Discover exactly what to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to lose belly fat & feel energized 24/7 without hard dieting...

The idea behind our Perfect Plate method is that you can select one type of each food for each meal and combine them to make delicious, easy meals.

how to get back in shapeTo make it even easier, we recommend a meal prep exercise twice weekly to prepare all the food you need for the coming three days.

If you store the food, it will always be handy when you need it, and you will not find yourself rooting around in the refrigerator or cupboards for your next meal.

If you have the decision already handled, you are much less likely to choose something on the go and are much more likely to build the habit of taking the healthy option.

Creating this habit will make it a more sustainable and long-term plan and one less thing to think about each day. Your food decisions only need to be made twice per week.

Step #4 – Start An Exercise Plan That You Can Build Up Gradually

how to get back in shapeOne of the most important things to do when you start an exercise plan is to start slowly and build up gradually. If you start too intensely, you will get sore or injured, and it will put you off from exercising.

It’s possible that this happened to you before, and that is why you’re now learning how to get back in shape again. If that’s the case, listen to our advice, and you’ll be back on track in no time.

Starting too quickly and feeling sore can be extremely depressing as it makes you wonder whether it’s all worth the effort.

Starting gradually will help you to avoid this feeling and is more likely to keep you moving in a positive direction.

Start with two to three structured workouts each week, combining cardiovascular exercise and resistance work.

The cardio will help get your blood flowing, will help you burn fat, and will increase your cardiovascular capacity.

The resistance work will increase lean muscle mass, which in turn will improve your metabolic rate and help you burn fat even at rest.

We have a great 24-minute fat-burning workout you can follow to get started that combines resistance training and cardio in a format called metabolic resistance training (MRT).

Once you have developed the habit of working out three times per week for 25-30 minutes, you can start scaling up the intensity and the number of sessions you perform.

Step #5 – Add Supplements To Your Plan To Boost The Benefits

Once you have the four key principles above, you can introduce supplements into your plan to help boost the benefits further.

At the Fit Father Project, we recommend five core supplements that will help your efforts:

  • A quality multivitamin or greens powder
  • Fish oil
  • Vitamin D3
  • Probiotic
  • Protein powder

how to get back in shapeAlthough you should be getting everything through your natural diet, a quality multivitamin or greens powder is a backup solution to make sure you are getting all the vitamins and minerals you need to keep your body in good health.

Fish Oil

Fish oil supplementation has an abundance of health benefits, including decreasing inflammation, lowering LDL cholesterol, raising HDL cholesterol, and enhancing brain function, to name a few.

Vitamin D3how to get back in shape

Vitamin D3 is often referred to as the ‘sunshine vitamin' as your body produces it naturally when subjected to sunlight.

However, supplementing with it can be beneficial, especially for stronger bones, improved muscle function and less muscle atrophy, decreased risk of certain cancers, and decreased risk of type 2 diabetes.

probiotics for menProbiotic

Your body will thank you for supplementing with probiotics, especially your gut.

Probiotics help with improving digestive function, healing inflammatory bowel conditions, and boosting your immune system.

If you suffer from any symptoms of an uncomfortable stomach, then you need to supplement with probiotics today.

how to get back in shapeProtein Powder

Protein powder can be used to prepare shakes that will replace a particular meal, possibly breakfast, as a convenient way to make sure you are getting enough protein each day to support muscle growth or maintenance.

Meet SuperFuel. The Delicious Protein Shake Packed With 40+ Energy-Boosting Vitamins & Superfoods (Designed For Busy Men)

As a busy guy, it’s challenging to stay consistent with healthy eating. That’s why we created SuperFuel… the delicious “all-in-one” nutrition shake for busy guys 40+ to give your body the protein + key nutrients you need for more energy, fat burning, and muscle building.


So there you have it, four simple steps (plus one bonus step) that show you exactly how to get back in shape at any age.

Step #1 – Proper mindset

Step #2 – The right amount of sleep

Step #3 – A good healthy eating plan

Step #4 – A progressive exercise plan

Step #5 – Supplementation plan

We don’t provide you with anything gimmicky here at the Fit Father Project, just simple, straightforward advice. We want to be your one-stop resource for everything health and fitness-related. Come back and visit us regularly to learn more. We post new articles to our blog every few days and provide exercise tutorial videos and other educational videos on our YouTube Channel throughout the week.

Stuart Carter, Dip. PT, Precision Nutrition 1
C.O.O., The Fit Father Project

Stuart gained his Diploma in Personal Training & Sports Medicine through Premier Global, back in 2001. In 2018, he completed his Level 1 Precision Nutrition qualification.

Throughout his career in Fitness, Stuart has trained hundreds of clients, worked in almost every position in the industry, and ran his own successful training studio.

After a hiatus away from the Fitness industry, working in Corporate Management and Finance, Stuart returned to what he loves… Fitness! This return led to a chance meeting with Dr. Balduzzi, and a place in the Fit Father Project team.

Here’s How Busy Fathers Over 40 Are Finally Burning Stubborn Belly Fat & Getting Healthy Without Restrictive Diets or Time-Consuming Workouts

This proven "Fit Father Program" has helped 38,000 busy men 40+ lose weight, rebuild muscle, and finally keep the weight off.

If you're frustrated with stubborn belly fat, failed diets, and time-consuming workouts, this is the answer you’ve been looking for…

Join 38,000 guys in over 108 countries that are using Fit Father Project to lose weight. You get everything you need to succeed – including:
  • The Fit Father Meal Plan – with simple & delicious recipes
  • Safe & Effective Workouts Program – only 90 min/week
  • VIP Accountability Coaching – our Fit Father Team will personally walk you to success, step-by-step.

*Please know that weight loss results and health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on how to get back in shape.

Written by: Stuart Carter,

Dip. PT, Precision Nutrition 1
C.O.O., The Fit Father Project

Fit Father Project Fact-Checking Standards

Our Fit Father Project Team’s deepest commitment is to helping you live healthier for both yourself and your family. And when it comes to online content, integrity and trust is everything. That’s why our Fit Father Project staff-writers are all trained professionals in the field of health and wellness (registered dieticians, licensed personal trainers, and licensed physicians) – see the full team here. We rigorously run all of our articles through a rigorous editorial process to ensure the accuracy, simplicity, and utility of the information. And we aren’t just a team of “academics” sitting in an ivory tower. We are real people – with jobs, responsibilities, and families – working hard in the trenches and testing our tips & methods out to make sure you can stay healthy for family.

Here is what you can expect from us on our Fit Father Blog and YouTube channel:

  1. All of our content is written and reviewed by licensed health professionals (dieticians, personal trainers, doctors).
  2. In nearly all of our articles, we link to published research studies from the most respected peer-reviewed medical & health journals.
  3. We include research-based videos to accompany our articles to make it easier for you to consume our content, put it into action, and see results.
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Thanks for checking out the blog. We can’t wait to support you toward greater health, energy, and vitality. – The Fit Father Project Team


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