Every decade in your life calls for a re-evaluation of your workout routine. While you might still be in amazing shape at 40, your body is not the same as it was when you were 20 — no matter what Tom Brady says. Fitting in that recommended 150 minutes of exercise per week is important, but how you get that exercise is even more important.
Here are the top five workouts to avoid in your 40s, plus the best ones for you.
The problem with crunches is simple: Your spine bends while you do them. If you’re over 40, doing crunches can increase your risk of spinal injury. In order to keep crunches safe, you’d have to do them while keeping your back perfectly straight, which isn’t easy and requires a lot of additional strength. You’re better off doing planks. Planks work every muscle in your body, especially your core. They’ll make you stronger overall and keep that spine perfectly straight. Plus, you can vary your planks to get an even better workout.
Next: This puts your shoulders in a really awkward position.