- Bryan Johnson is a tech exec on a mission to reduce his “biological age.”
- As part of this, he works out every day for 45 to 60 minutes.
- His workouts include elements of cardio, strength exercises, and stretching.
Tech exec and multi-millionaire Bryan Johnson is on an anti-aging mission.
The biohacker and entrepreneur is 45 years old but says his heart’s “biological age” is 37, while he has the lung capacity of an 18-year-old.
The concept of “biological age” is widely debated — some scientists and health advocates say that a person’s “biological age” can differ from their chronological age, or the number of years they have lived, as Insider’s Hilary Brueck reported.
The National Institute on Aging says our “biological age means the true age that our cells, tissues, and organ systems appear to be, based on biochemistry.”
Johnson has a $2 million-a-year anti-aging program known as the Project Blueprint designed to keep him young, which involves daily workouts.
In a new video posted on YouTube, Johnson shared what his daily workouts consist of.
Workouts designed to boost longevity
Johnson said that he constantly adapts his workouts, but currently exercises for 45 to 60 minutes, seven days a week. He stressed that he’s neither training for an endurance event like a marathon, nor with the aim of building muscle like a bodybuilder, nor being able to fight. His workouts are designed “to slow my speed of ageing and maintain optimal health,” he said.
Johnson aims to get his heartrate at a moderate level, between 106 and 159 beats per minute (which is known as zones 2 through 4) for roughly four and a half hours a week, he said. He tries to raise his heart rate above 159 beats per minute (zone 5) for 90 to 150 minutes per week.
Johnson’s daily workouts include the same 30 exercises, many of which will be familiar to most gym goers, such as tricep extensions and face pulls. Some, however, are more unusual, like poliquin step-ups and tibialis raises.
“I feel great when I work out on a daily basis,” he said. “When I don’t, I really miss it.”
For many of the exercises, Johnson performs only one set and mostly works in the 10 to 15 rep range, with no breaks in between, he said.
Working in the 10 to 15 rep range helps build muscle, however for hypertrophy (muscle growth), it’s optimal to do multiple sets with weights that feel really challenging by the final few reps. Applying progressive overload — gradually increasing the weights or reps — is also important for muscle growth.
Johnson also said that he is eating in a calorie deficit (around 1,977 a day) and takes testosterone through a patch on his leg to ensure his levels are healthy. There is some evidence to suggest that low-fat diets can lead to a drop in testosterone.
A mix of strength, mobility, and cardio
Johnson’s daily workout begins with four laps of sled pulls, sometimes pausing between each.
Next, he moves on to exercises designed to improve his posture: scapula shrugs and suboccipital stretches (stretching the muscles that keep the head and neck in line).
Johnson then does tricep extensions, face pulls, and butterfly pulls (also known as resistance band chest flys), working both the front and back of the body.
Next up, resistance band pull aparts and external shoulder rotations.
Johnson then moves on to flexibility work, starting with a weighted hamstring stretch, which he holds for 30 to 60 seconds. It helps him feel “limber of mind and limber of body,” he said.
Then it’s on to a GHD machine for back extensions and oblique crunches.
Next, Johnson does a “couch stretch,” which stretches the quad and hip flexor muscles, a kneeling shin stretch, and a hip flexor (also known as pigeon) stretch.
Johnson’s next exercises work the core with leg raises and oblique touches.
Then it’s on to “reverse push-ups” (more like pull-ups) using parallel bars, seated calf raises, poliquin step ups (standing on one leg on a slant and lowering the other heel to the ground and back), slant board squats, split squats, nordic hamstring curls, reverse nordics, and tibialis raises (holding a weight between the feet while sitting on a bench and raising the weight up and down).
Johnson also does single leg tibialis raises and “isotib ankle rotations,” rotating one foot in a circle with a weight.
He then moves on to chin-ups, pull-ups, and bicep curls.
Three days a week, he includes 10 minutes of HIIT (high intensity interval training) work on an exercise bike, elliptical, or rowing machine.
When he’s not in the gym, Johnson also likes playing basketball and tennis, and trail running, he said.