There is an article in PopSugar this week talking about the differences between working out in your 20s vs. your 30s.

The article is pretty humorous, highlighting the differences between workout motivation, types of workouts, workout attire, and other things like what to wear, etc. and how our expectations change over time. I don’t quite remember some of the feelings they highlight when I was in my 20s or 30s, but others are nailed perfectly. There are some over generalizations of course, but there’s no doubt that our motivation does change as we age.

Either way, I thought it was pretty funny and with my 42nd birthday approaching in April, I just couldn’t help including my two cents on fitness in your 40s. Here’s their list, along with my additions of the 40s in bold.

Workout Motivation:
20s: To look cute and because it’s fun.
30s: Because none of my jeans zip and so I don’t get some horrible disease and die.

40s: All about my health and not gaining 10 pounds every decade.

Types of Workouts
20s: I’m all about fun, fast, challenging, and crazy!
30s: How about something simple with the least risk of injury?

40s: If I can multitask it in with life, it will work.

Workout Attire:
20s: The wilder the better!
30s: Basic and black (and boring).

40s: Hmmm, is today’s workout attire for working out or leisure? Both! Yes. I don’t have to change. Love all the focus on brands creating cute fitness wear vs. old school sweats!

Who we’re chasing:
20s: Wearing my cutest top so I can chase that cute guy at the gym.
30s: Doing sprinting intervals so I can chase after my kids.

40s: Lower BMI and optimal health for longer quality of life.

Getting Dolled Up:
20s: I’d rather die than show up at the gym without a full face of makeup and my hair done all pretty.
30s: Yay, I actually remembered my hair tie!

40s: Hey, at least I brushed my teeth.

20s: My sneakers are a few years old, who cares?
30s: Without my brand new sneaks and arch-supporting insoles, my plantar fasciitis really acts up.

40s: Thank you Brooks running shoes for becoming more fashionable!

Length of Workout:
20s: Sure I’ll take two classes in a row. I’ve got nowhere to be.
30s: Get in, get out, nobody talk to me, just got to get it done!

40s: Efficiency, efficiency, efficiency.

20s: Wake up for 90 minutes of hot yoga, take a three-hour hike, then follow it with a SoulCycle class!
30s: I think I can squeeze in 20 minutes of a Jillian Michaels video.

40s: Anywhere, anytime I can multitask it in with my busy schedule.

Class Timing:
20s: Get to class early to meet my BFF and to get the best spot.
30s: I barely make it there on time but am typically five minutes late.

40s: Can I just do this online or get in 10,000 steps for my Fitbit?

Weight Loss:
20s: I walked my dog wearing yoga pants. Phew, what a great workout!
30s: At least four workouts a week are a must if I want to just maintain my weight.

40s: How much do I need to workout for an extra glass of wine without gaining weight?

20s: Wow, I can touch past my toes!
30s: If I try to fold in half my back will literally break in half.

40s: Sprints? Oh no you didn’t! I think my hammy just blew up.

20s: I’m wearing two sports bras for added support.
30s: I’ll pay any amount of money for a bra that’ll make my sagging boobs look as perky as they did in my 20s.

40s: Yes! The bra is built inside and actually works!

20s: I better get a manicure so my hands look pretty in Down Dog.
30s: Who cares about my nails? Yoga better help my arthritis.

40s: Sometimes feel like it’s the only thing that still screams athlete.

20s: What can I do to make my butt look smaller?
30s: Bigger the better. Bring on the squats!

40s: Yoga pants and long tank tops are the best.

20s: Leisurely hit the sauna, take a long shower, then meet up with friends for a splurging dinner out.
30s: Bolt out as soon as the class is over to relieve my significant other or sitter.

40s: No time to shower. Think anyone will notice?

Post-Workout Fuel:
20s: Let’s head out for a beer, ’cause whatevs!
30s: Love me my homemade energy ball and coconut water.

40s: Think the kids will notice if I squeeze in a bunch of healthy stuff into their smoothie? I only want to do this once.

20s: What’s DOMS?
30s: Ughhh, DOMS, why do you feel so close to a hangover?!?

40s: Finally realizing I don’t have to workout to the point of being sore to be healthy.

20s: Check out my biceps. I just joined CrossFit.
30s: Check out my biceps! I just had a baby.

40s: Triceps flab, triceps flab…what am I feeding you (to the tune of Phoebe Smelly Cat song from Friends of course)

20s: A morning romp in the hay totally counts as a workout.
30s: I work out just so I don’t hurt myself having sex.

40s: This should classify as high intensity interval training.

20s: I’m a little hung-over, but I’ll work out anyway.
30s: I work out just so I can drink more wine.

40s: I burned enough calories earlier today, so now I can have two glasses of red wine (even if going to mess up my sleep a little).

So, what did I miss? How about all you 50, 60, and 70 year-olds? Some the the fittest people I know are in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. What are your big decade lessons of staying healthy? Send them along and I’ll add them or create a whole new post!

Become an Excy Insider

Make sure to become an Excy Insider at to be one of the first to see our portable exercise bike in action! You can also connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Sign Up for the Excy Newsletter!

Get inspired by the inspired!

I agree to have my personal information to Excy

We will never give away, trade or sell your email address. You can unsubscribe at any time.