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Seated Pulley Rows: A Back Exercise

seated pulley rows for back muscles

Seated Pulley Rows

Seated Pulley Rows are a back exercise used to increase the size and strength of your back, biceps, and lats. It is frequently incorporated into routines because the natural movement is low-risk, even at heavy weight. Still, make sure you are not putting too much strain on your neck or back, by keeping the rest of your body at a 90 degree angle to your legs. Keep the motion as fluid as you possibly can, and don’t jerk the weight towards you. Smooth, controlled motions with your shoulders pointing up away from the weights.

  • Main Muscle Group: Middle Back
  • Secondary Muscle: Biceps, Lats
  • Exercise Type: Strength
  • Equipment Required: Cable
  • Experience Level: Beginner

seated pulley rows for back muscles

Seated Pulley Rows Exercise:

  1. Make sure your knees are slightly bent, and firmly placed.
  2. Get a good rope extension, and attach it to the pulley.
  3. Hold your torso to a 90 degree angle to your legs, and pull the handles back toward your torso.
  4. Squeeze your shoulder blades together, and pull the cable toward you while breathing in.
  5. Use the strength of your back to pull your elbows toward your ribcage.
  6. Bring the weights as close to your abs as you can without touching them.
  7. Breath out as you slowly let the weight go back to starting position.

To switch things up, you can also do one-handed seated pulley rows. This allows you to focus on one arm at a time, is a change of pace, and prevents you from accidentally focusing too much on your more dominant arm.

Popular Pulley Row Workouts

  • The Miranda Kerr workout featuring the Victoria’s Secret model uses seated rows. She uses them during her weight workouts. On other days, she uses total body circuits designed by her trainer, Justin Gelband.
  • The Mark Wahlberg workout uses seated pulley rows during his back workouts to gain 40 pounds of muscle.
  • The Rock Workout uses seated pulley rows as part of his legs and back exercise to form that V-shape he is famous for.

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Dips Exercise

Dips exercise

Dips Exercise

The Dips exercise focuses on using your own body weight, or a machine if you need the assistance, to work your entire upper body. The dips exercise is a great way to finish your chest routine. If you’re doing shoulders on chest day, it’s also a good transition into your shoulder routine.

  • Main Muscle Worked:    Chest
  • Other Muscles:    Shoulders, Triceps
  • Type:    Strength
  • Equipment:    Parallel bars
  • Level:    Intermediate

Dips exercise

Begin fully extended on the bars, and lower yourself carefully. Try not to put too much strain on your neck, look forward while you perform the exercise.
Dips Exercise:

  1. Start by hovering above the bars, and then move down slowly until you feel a slight stretch in the chest.
  2. If your not getting the full range of motion, look for assistance by using a machine or elastic bands.
  3. Once you feel the stretch in your chest, move back to the starting position as you breathe out.
  4. If you don’t have access to parallel bars, try using chairs from around your home or office as in the YouTube video below.

If you want to increase resistance during the dips exercise, you can add weight via a weight belt, backpack, or by holding a dumbbell with your legs.

Popular Dips Workout

Here is Instructional Fitness explaining the dips exercise:

The dips exercise is great to do outside of the gym, as well. All you need to do dips is a stable object, like a chair:

Celebrity personal trainer, Simon Waterson, who trained Chris Evans in Captain America says about the dips exercise:

Anything involving your own bodyweight is tough. Start slowly and just go halfway down. As you gain confidence, allow your chest to get lower, until your elbows reach 90 degrees, which is a full repetition.

Reverse Dips

Reverse Dips just means you’re doing the dips exercise with your arms turned around, behind you. What’s great about reverse dips is that you can literally do them anywhere. Not only could you use a bench, but also a table, chair, or other stable, elevated object.

In the reverse dips exercise, celebrity trainer to Jay-Z and Beyonce, Margo Borges, says:

Lock your knees and lower your body toward the ground until your elbows are bent. Then, go up until your arms are parallel to the ground. For an extra boost, keep one leg in the air throughout the exercise, changing legs each rep.

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Plate Push Ups

plate push ups

Plate Push Ups

Plate Push ups utilize 2 stacks of 45 pound weights, in order to make standard push ups even harder. A common variation is to use power plate push up grips, which allow you to stabilize your hands firmly into the ground, and use the grips for leverage while doing push ups.

plate push ups

  • Targeted muscles:    Chest, shoulders, arms, abs
  • Other Muscles:    Shoulders, Triceps
  • Equipment:    Other
  • Mechanics Type:    Compound
  • Level:    Beginner
  • Type:    Plyometrics

plate push up barsPlate push ups work to improve your mobility, quick muscle fiber action, and elasticity.  They are a good warm-up, or cool-down for an upper body workout.

You can also switch the plate push ups exercise around, and turn it into a cardio/cross training exercise. To do this simply use one 45 pound weight, and bear crawl with it across a smooth surface.

Incline Bench Press

Incline Bench Press

Incline Bench Press

Incline Bench Press is an upper-body lift that focuses on the chest and shoulders.

  • Main Muscle Group:    Chest
  • Secondary Muscle:    Shoulders, Triceps
  • Exercise Type:    Push; Strength
  • Equipment:    Barbell or Dumbbell

Incline Bench PressThe Incline Bench Press (if you are using a barbell) or Incline Dumbbell Press (if you are using dumbbells) is key to developing a strong upper body. Make sure that starting out, you don’t use as much weight as you would during the bench press. You may be tempted to try the same amount, but the incline bench press is harder because you are using less muscles to perform the lift. Also, the steeper angle makes it harder.

To do Incline Bench Press:

  1. Rest on the incline bench with your feet on the ground, make sure you don’t move your feet during workout.
  2. Lower the dumbbell or barbell down to the top of your chest without actually hitting your chest.
  3. Press dumbbells or barbells back up with elbows to sides until your arms are extended.
  4. Dumbbell or barbells should follow a slight arch pattern, between your chest and upward towards your shoulders.

Popular Incline Bench Press Workouts

Many popular workouts incorporate Incline Bench Press:

  • Dwayne Johnson, aka The Rock workout, does incline bench press with dumbbells. The Rock does this as part of a pyramid routine. In a pyramid routine, you go up in weight and down in reps each week. The Rock does: (Both Arm) dumbbell incline bench press and (Alternating Arm) dumbbell incline bench press.
  • The Derek Jeter workout uses the Incline Bench Press as part of his superset workout.
  • Joe Manganiello uses Incline Bench Press during the workout that helps transform him into a Werewolf in True Blood.
  • The David Wright workout uses the Incline Bench Press as part of his superset workout.
  • Alex Rodriquez starts his workouts every Monday with this exercise.
  • The Patrick Willis Homegrown Workout uses this exercise during his Upper body workouts.
  • The Hugh Jackman workout uses this exercise during his Wolverine Workout. He then does a superset with Incline Dumbbell Chest Flys.
  • The Kobe Bryant workout uses this exercise during his 6-6-6 basketball workouts. Kobe Bryant’s off season workouts last over 6 hours a day: 2 hours running, 2 hours of shooting and skill conditioning, and 2 hours of weights/cardio.

Incline Bench Press Exercise Video

Here’s an Incline Bench Press Exercise Video:

Here’s another video detailing the Dumbbell Incline Bench Press Exercise:

Flat Bench Press

Flat Bench Press

Flat Bench Press

The Bench Press is the core upper body routine at the center of most workouts. The Flat Bench Press, or “Bench Press” for short, is the core of any upper body workout. Although it is mainly a chest exercise, the flat bench press works multiple body parts. It is important to have good posture throughout the lift. Keep your back straight, not arched, as you perform the flat bench press.

  • Main Muscle Group: Chest
  • Secondary Muscles: Shoulders, Triceps
  • Exercise Type: Strength /Push Exercise
  • Equipment: Barbell or Dumbbell or Kettlebell
  • Experience Level: Beginner

To do the exercise:

  1. Set your feet firmly under the bench
  2. Squeeze your shoulder blades as you lower the weight down.
  3. Lower the weight until the barbell or dumbbells are and inch from your chest.
  4. Explode the weight upwards and extend the weight until your shoulders are locked out.

It’s important to keep your chest up and shoulders back as seen in the video below:

Flat Bench Press

The bench press is used in a wide array of upper body workouts. Celebrities and athletes who use the bench press exercise include the following:

  1. The Rock, aka Dwayne Johnson workout does dumbbell bench press in a pyramid routine. In a pyramid routine, you go up in weight and down in reps each week. The Rock does 2 variations: (both arm) dumbbell bench press, and (alternating arm) dumbbell bench press.
  2. Chris Hemsworth workout used this exercise for the Thor movie.
  3. Jason Momoa workout used the bench press as part of the AR-7 routine he used for Conan the Barbarian and Game of Thrones.
  4. Albert Pujols workout utilizes the dumbbell version of the exercise. Baseball players use dumbbells to make sure their arms are equal strength and for the added stretch and flexibility.
  5. Brad Pitt used a Nautilus Machine version to work his chest for Fight Club. This allowed him to perform more reps quickly, while allowing the machine to work his pecs harder.
  6. The Aaron Rodgers Workout and the Drew Brees Workout both incorporate Kettlebell Bench Press. This means that you use kettlebells instead of a traditional barbell. Kettlebell Bench Presses improve the emphasis on joint strength and flexibility that a quarterback needs. Hold the Kettlebells over your chest, with your palms facing out. Perform the traditional Flat Bench Press, only with kettlebells.
  7. The Jessica Alba Workout uses the Dumbbell Bench Press exercise, mixed in with cardio circuits, as part of her 40-minute 3-2-1 workouts.
  8. The Mario Lopez workout uses the Dumbbell Bench Press when he is short on time. He likes the fact that it is a compound exercise that works a ton of different muscles all at once.
  9. The Jennifer Garner uses the Dumbbell Chest Press version. Her celebrity trainer, Valerie Waters, likes to put her on a Stability ball. This way, Jennifer Garner works her abs while also working her chest muscles.
  10. The Jay-Z workout, and the Beyonce workout, both use the bench press exercise. Marco Borges, their trainer, has them do the Resistance-ball chest press. In this modification, you work your hip and knee joints. This way, you’re working your legs and core, while doing the chest press.

Marco Borges, the Jay-Z and Beyonce workout trainer, says when doing the resistance ball chest press:

Place your back on the resistance ball, your legs bent, feet on the ground. Slowly press the dumbbells over your chest until your elbows are almost locked. For better balance, keep your back straight and pull in your abs.

power moves marco borges trainer

Dumbbell Bench Press

The Dumbbell Bench Press is the variation where you use dumbbells. The advantage to using dumbbells is that you can’t favor one arm. Typically, your dominant arm will do more work when you use a barbell. Push your hands together, as you come up, so you work your inner chest.

It is very good to use if you have an injury. You can twist your elbows or wrists if you have an injury, and you want to avoid an When doing the dumbbell bench press, pick a weight that you’re sure you’re going to be in control of.

Here is a video illustration proper technique for the Dumbbell Bench Press:

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Jason Momoa Workout & Diet: A Leaner, Meaner Conan the Barbarian

Jason Momoa in Conan the Barbarian

Jason Momoa Workout

Jason Momoa, 32-years old, and best known as Khal Drogo from Game of Thrones, Ronon Dex in Stargate Atlantis, and starring as the new Conan the Barbarian, Momoa has to workout hard to get in shape.  With all his muscular roles, you would think the Jason Momoa workout is something he has been perfecting for a long time. Clearly by looking at his physique, Jason Momoa must work out all the time, but the truth is that Momoa says:

Before the season starts, what I try to do is climb, get in shape, and ride a bike. Once we start rolling, everything dissipates so by the end of the year, I am all ugh. Until they come in and say, “Um, you are supposed to be the bulk of the show!” Then I would go to the gym.

Jason Momoa in Conan the BarbarianThis may sound strange to someone who has seen him lately, or what you would expect from someone cast to play a role like Conan.  Images of people like Arnold Schwarzenegger come to mind, not a Hawaiian surfer. But the character that he was going to play resembled a leaner, meaner Conan the Barbarian. Still, Jason Momoa had to workout hard in order to gain 25 pounds of muscle needed to fit the role.

Conan the BarbarianSo, how does a Hawaiian native get bulked fast? Especially someone who lists rock climbing, surfing, and skateboarding as his top 3 sports. Momoa resorted to something called Accelerated Results, or AR-7 workout. His personal trainer for Conan the Barbarian, Eric Laciste, says that:

He had an athletic frame, but he needed to pack on 25 pounds of muscle in a month and a half—without getting injured. A lot of people thought we couldn’t do it.

Conan the BarbarianAccelerated Results (Ar 7) was the key to Jason Momoa’s workout because, as the name implies, it gets you in shape fast. You can up to 2-3 workouts per day, and focus on 7,6,5 sets of each lift. Start by getting a series of workouts together then do 7 sets of of 7 reps, rest for 7 seconds between each set. Then do 6 sets of of 6 reps, and rest for 6 seconds between each set. Then do 5 sets of of 5 reps, and rest for 5 seconds between each set.

Rest 1-2 minutes, then move on to the next round. This workout is contrary to most weightlifting concepts because the routine utilizes heavy reps, low weight, and insufficient rest. It’s great because the soreness that you usually reach toward the end of your workout comes much faster. Therefore, you spend more time “feeling the burn” and pushing yourself toward muscle failure.

To get in shape for Conan the Barbarian and Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones, the Jason Momoa workout focuses on these exercises:

Jason Momoa Chest Workout: AR 7 Monday Routine

The Jason Momoa Chest Workout: AR 7 Monday Routine:

Do 3 rounds (also called a circuit), with 1-2 minutes of rest in between each round.

  • 1st round 7 sets of 7 reps, with 7 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 2nd round 6 sets of 6 reps, with 6 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 3rd round 5 sets of 5 reps, with 5 seconds rest of each exercise

Jason Momoa Back Workout: AR 7 Tuesday Routine

The Jason Momoa Back Workout: AR 7 Tuesday Routine

Do 3 rounds of each exercise, with 1-2 minutes of rest in between each round.

  • 1st round 7 sets of 7 reps, with 7 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 2nd round 6 sets of 6 reps, with 6 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 3rd round 5 sets of 5 reps, with 5 seconds rest of each exercise

Jason Momoa Leg Workout: AR7 Wednesday Routine

The Jason Momoa Leg Workout: AR7 Wednesday Routine:

Do 3 rounds of each exercise, with 1-2 minutes of rest in between each round.

  • 1st round 7 sets of 7 reps, with 7 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 2nd round 6 sets of 6 reps, with 6 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 3rd round 5 sets of 5 reps, with 5 seconds rest of each exercise

Jason Momoa Core Workout: AR7 Thursday Routine

The Jason Momoa Core Workout: AR7 Thursday Routine:

conan workout jason momoa accelerated results 7Do 3 rounds of each exercise, with 1-2 minutes of rest in between each round.

  • 1st round 7 sets of 7 reps, with 7 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 2nd round 6 sets of 6 reps, with 6 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 3rd round 5 sets of 5 reps, with 5 seconds rest of each exercise

Jason Momoa Arm Workout: AR7 Friday Routine

The Jason Momoa Arm Workout: AR7 Friday Routine:

Do 3 rounds (or circuits), with 1-2 minutes of rest in between each round.

  • 1st round 7 sets of 7 reps, with 7 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 2nd round 6 sets of 6 reps, with 6 seconds rest of each exercise
  • 3rd round 5 sets of 5 reps, with 5 seconds rest of each exercise

After each workout, Jason Momoa would hit the treadmill. He says you have to hit it hard to get in the best shape. That was required of Momoa, when playing roles like Conan the Barbarian and Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones.

The craziest part about Accelerated Results (AR7) workouts is that you’re constantly moving from one exercise to the next. This may be tough to go in a crowded gym. The alternative would be to do each exercise, then move to the next. Only do it this way if you have to, as it is not what Accelerated Results (AR7) is all about.

This workout for Conan the Barbarian / Khal Drogo of Game of Thrones fame, seems easy at first. But, your muscles really start burning once you get deep into the 2nd circuit. Try it out, and you will see! Jason Momoa started out by doing a workout for each body a day. But, after the first few weeks, he was adding multiple workouts per day. When it was time to play Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones, Jason Momoa was doing 3 of the above workouts per day!

khal drogo game of thrones arms

Jason Momoa Diet

The Jason Momoa workout for Conan the Barbarian depended on a very strict, but crucial, diet.  Momoa’s diet for Conan the Barbarian training was protein intensive, and included eating a boiled chicken breast every 2 hours (up to 8 chickens/256 grams of protein a day). Jason Momoa told Men’s Health:

You need to eat big and lift big. But I prefer to eat as much lean meat and green veggies as possible and save the calories for Guinness. It keeps you sane. I love carbs but denial is good training for the mind. After finishing a one-month cleanse, I had a giant bowl of pasta and I swear it was like heroin.

Momoa also resorted to peanut butter when he needed energy. He cautions that this is an extreme way to eat, because he needed results fast. Getting into Conan the Barbarian shape was tough, but he says similar results can be achieved through eating a clean diet.

jason momoa workout conan the barbarianFor Conan the Barbarian, Jason Momoa says:

I wanted Conan to be like a big cat. I wanted to be strong but agile. They hunt and they eat. That’s why they’re big.

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Diana Taurasi Workout: Always Shooting

Diana Tuarasi Workout

Diana Taurasi Workout: Always Shooting

Winner of 3 NCAA titles, 2 Olympic Gold Medals, and 2 WNBA titles, the Diana Taurasi workout is about always shooting, no matter where you are. She performs well in games because of all the practice time, shooting, that she puts in. She loves being under pressure, as it is her time to shine. When not shooting the basketball, Taurasi also likes to play tennis as an alternative to her regular workouts.

Although some consider Diana Taurasi, or Dee, to be the Kobe of the WNBA, others find her to be very unique in playstyle. Whether it is during a Diana Taurasi workout, or in a real game, she admits that the only thing she is ever guilty of, is taking too many jump shots.

Diana Taurasi showed off another side when she posed for ‘ESPN The Magazine’ Body Issue. Taurasi took some time off from her shooting on the court, to do some risque shooting off the court.  The publicity from the event has been positive, and she has gained more endorsements as a result. She is one of the few female athletes to have her own shoe, and has many new ads including deals with Gatorade, the milk industry campaigns, and most recently Dove. Posing for the ESPN Body Issue was fun for Taurasi, who didn’t need a special workout to get in shape for the cover. Although she first said that was something she would love to do again, she now admits its probably something she won’t think about for awhile.  Maybe when she is lying on a beach, at 50 Taurasi says, she’ll uncover the magazine and remember what she used to look like when she was younger and working out.

The Diana Taurasi workout is pretty straightforward, as a basketball sharpshooter is going to spend most of their time working out by taking shots. She doesn’t care too much about her diet, is a meat eater, and frequently tries new things. A typical day, in the Diana Taurasi is a routine that looks like this:

  • She gets up around 8AM
  • Drinks coffee and is on the road by 9 AM
  • Taped up and ready to shoot by 9:45
  • Takes over 1000 shots a day
  • One hour of cardio around 1PM
  • Weight lifting in the afternoon

Diana Tuarasi Workout

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Aaron Rodgers Workout: Todd Durkin’s Help

aaron rodgers workout

Aaron Rodgers Workout

The Aaron Rodgers workout is the brainchild of fitness coach Todd Durkin in San Diego, CA. Durkin is famous for the Impact Workout, making famous quarterbacks including Aaron Rodgers puke, and the “Do or Do not, There is No Try” slogan posted throughout his gym. Todd Durkin is quickly becoming known as the quarterback guru, that many NFL quarterbacks, including Aaron Rodgers, are flocking to as seen in this video below:

Rodgers chose Todd Durkin because Durkin is known for developing quarterback’s foot quickness, which is so important for quarterbacks as they don’t get hit if their feet are fast enough.  Throughout the season, you may notice announcers talk about how fleet of foot Aaron Rodgers has become.  He was not born that way, it took a lot of work. Todd Durkin is the one to thank for making Aaron Rodgers workout focused on footwork and core body exercises.

aaron rodgers workout

Aaron Rodgers Workout Routine

Dynamic Warmup

Each day, you want to start with a dynamic warmup. Todd Durkin says that:

A warmup should not be easy. Don’t think that 5 minutes on a treadmill is enough.

Instead, Todd Durkin uses these warmups:

Monday Workout = Upper Body

aaron rodgers quaterback

Tuesday = Lower Body

  • Barbell Squat
  • Kettlebell Straight-Leg Deadlifts
  • Kettlebell Single-Leg RDL
  • Superband Split Squat
  • Hamstring Curls
  • Leg Extensions
  • Superband Lateral Walks
  • TRX Sled Drags
  • Bosu Ball Bulgarian Lunge Hop

aaron rodgers legsWednesday = Abs & TRX Workout

TRX Quarterback Workout:

Ab exercises:

  • Hover Plank
  • Side Plank
  • Split Squat Superband Rotations
  • Superband Chops
  • Bicycle Crunches
  • Oblique Crunches

aaron rodgers absThursday Workout = Upper Body

aaron rodgers workoutFriday Workout = Lower Body

  • Barbell Squat
  • Kettlebell Straight-Leg Deadlifts
  • Kettlebell Single-Leg RDL
  • Superband Split Squat
  • Hamstring Curls
  • Leg Extensions
  • Superband Lateral Walks
  • TRX Sled Drags
  • Bosu Ball Bulgarian Lunge Hop

aaron rodgers quarterback workoutSaturday Workout = Abs & TRX Workout

TRX Quarterback Workout:

Ab exercises:

  • Hover Plank
  • Side Plank
  • Split Squat Superband Rotations
  • Superband Chops
  • Bicycle Crunches
  • Oblique Crunches

Although Aaron Rodgers workout may help him develop the traditional “mirror muscles” that we all notice quickly, Durkin puts a unique focus on the back side of his muscles, especially the shoulder muscles for quarterbacks. There is also an added emphasis on the core for the Aaron Rodgers workout, to generate strength and power.  It is shown that sixty percent of a quarterbacks throwing motion is based on how strong their core muscles are.

To get more details on Aaron Rodger’s workouts with Todd Durkin, check out Durkin’s how-to guide:
tood durkin workout

Interested in learning more? Get the The Impact Body Plan: Build New Muscle, Flatten Your Belly (on Amazon).

In order to develop a strong core, the Aaron Rodgers workout uses a lot of resistance training, kettle bells, super-bands, and BOSU equipment. A routine chock full of resistance training also allows Aaron Rodgers to focus on both sides of his shoulder. The front side of the shoulder is the easiest to workout, but the backside needs eccentric movements to get a full workout.  Eccentric routines involve a movement that is as hard to in one direction, as it is to move in the opposing direction. The Aaron Rodgers workout also uses yoga and Pilates to develop the core muscle group that quarterbacks in particular, and all athletes in general, rely on for burst movements.

Most importantly, Aaron Rodgers workout during the off-season includes his brother, Jordan, who is also a quarterback. They seem to take the tension out of working out, simply by being together. It’s important to stick to trainer Todd Durkin’s advice:

Tempo can make the difference between adding more muscle and losing fat, and seeing no changes at all. Focus on limiting your rest to only 30 to 60 seconds, even when you’re using heavier weights. The result: You’ll develop your body like never before.

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Looking for more Celebrity Workouts For Men? Get The Best Male Workouts Here!

Interested in learning more about Aaron Rodgers quarterback workout? Get his trainer’s book, The Impact Body Plan: Build New Muscle, Flatten Your Belly (on Amazon).

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Albert Pujols Workout: Swinging Big

Albert Pujols Workout

The Albert Pujols workout is focused on developing a strong core, quick reflexes, flexibility, and power. Jose Alberto Pujols Alacantara, or Albert Pujols as he is known in the baseball world, won the National League Rookie of the Year award in 2001, and has been elected as an All-Star nine times.

Voted the most feared hitter by big league managers in 2008, and voted NL MVP in 2005, 2008, and 2009, Albert Pujols is obviously doing something right. Recently, Pujols signed a $240 million contract with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. He still has a lot of motivation to perform, as he gets $3 million for 3,000 hits, and $7 million for a record 763rd home run. The 10 year contract is as follows:
2012: $12 million; 2013: $16 million
2014: $23 million; 2015: $24 million
2016: $25 million; 2017: $26 million
2018: $27 million; 2019: $28 million
2020: $29 million; 2021: $30 million

Albert Pujols
Albert Pujols Workout

The Albert Pujols Workout has 3 rules:

1. One big goal is easier to achieve than five small ones. (His goal was a world series championship)

2. A strong core keeps you in any game longer than big biceps will. (Which is why he spends much more time on core and conditioning)

3. A mixture of flexibility and a few extra pounds equals power. (Mass and acceleration are the key)

Albert Pujols Workout Routine:

The most striking thing about the Albert Pujols workout is that he uses a ton of triceps exercises. Obviously, he is trying to crush the baseball every attempt. He wants to get every last ounce of strength out of his triceps, so that when he extends on his swing, it carries the baseball further. Albert Pujols uses the following, throughout his workout below:

  1. Cable Triceps Pressdowns
  2. Rope Pressdowns
  3. Single-Arm Triceps Pressdowns
  4. Wide-Grip Triceps Pressdowns
  5. Speed Triceps Pressdowns
  6. Single-Arm Rope Pressdowns
Albert Pujols Workout
Triceps Key To Albert Pujols’ Swing

MONDAY MORNING WORKOUT (CHEST, BICEPS, BACK)

Strength Workout:

Cardio Training (30 minutes):
Albert does “ones” on the treadmill, where he alternates one-minute of high speed running, with 30 seconds to a minute of rest.

Baseball Training:
Albert hits for 60-80 minutes, throws for 10 minutes, and takes 80-100 ground balls.

MONDAY AFTERNOON WORKOUT

Strength Training:

  • Smith Machine Shrug
  • Dumbbell Shrug
  • Medicine-Ball Crunch
  • Jump Rope

TUESDAY MORNING WORKOUT (BACK, TRICEPS, FOREARMS)

Strength Workout:

Cardio Training: (30 minutes)
Albert Pujols uses an elliptical machine, going 15 minutes forward and 15 minutes backward to train his glutes, hamstrings, and quads.

Baseball Training:
Albert hits for 60-80 minutes, throws for 10 minutes, and takes 80-100 ground balls.

TUESDAY AFTERNOON WORKOUT

Strength Workout:

  • Reverse Curl
  • Barbell Wrist Curl
  • Barbell Squeeze
  • Exercise-Ball Back Extension
  • Weighted Three-Step Shuffle

WEDNESDAY MORNING WORKOUT (LEGS, SHOULDERS)

Strength Workout:

  • Leg Press
  • Smith Machine Squat
  • Single-Leg Press
  • Dumbbell Romanian Deadlift
  • Hip Adduction
  • Standing Calf Raise

Cardio Training:
Albert Pujols alternates one-minute sprints with 30 seconds of rest on the treadmill for 30 minutes.

Baseball Training:
Albert hits for 60-80 minutes.

WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON WORKOUT

Strength Workout:

  • Seated Front Dumbbell Raise
  • Lateral Raise
  • Bent-Over Lateral Raise
  • Medicine-Ball Rotation

THURSDAY MORNING WORKOUT (CHEST, BICEPS, TRAPS)

Strength Workout:

Cardio Training:
Albert Pujols performs 30 minutes on the elliptical machine, 15 minutes forward and 15 minutes backward.

Baseball Training:
Albert Pujols hits for 60-80 minutes, throws for 10 minutes, and takes 80-100 ground balls.

THURSDAY AFTERNOON WORKOUT

Strength Workout:

  • Smith Machine Shrug
  • Decline Crunch with Medicine-Ball Throw
  • Agility Floor Ladder

FRIDAY MORNING WORKOUT

Strength Training Workout:

Cardio Training:
Pujols jogs 15-20 minutes at six-7 miles per hour.

SATURDAY MORNING WORKOUT

Strength Workout:

Baseball Training:
Albert Pujols hits for 60-80 minutes, throws for 10 minutes, and takes 80-100 ground balls.

SATURDAY AFTERNOON WORKOUT

Strength Training Workout:

  • Front Dumbbell Raise
  • Lateral Raise
  • Bent-Over Lateral Raise
  • Dumbbell External Rotation
  • Seated Medicine-Ball Rotation
  • Jump Rope

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Troy Polamalu Workout: Faster Not Bigger Makes Him Best

Troy Polamalu Workout

Troy Polamalu Workout

The Troy Polamalu workout is a series of iso-kinetic movements meant to mirror the athletic movements that one is going to repeat on the field. Injured as a Junior in college at USC, Troy Polamalu looked to Marv Marinovich and his iso-kinetic training in San Juan Capistrano, California.

While most workouts look at lifting weight to get bigger, the Marinovich philosophy is that bigger means you are going to likely move slower. Marinovich says that after working with NFL and college players of different shapes and sizes, he found that when it comes to muscles, “Bigger is not better, it’s slower.”

Hired by Al Davis to be one of the NFL’s first strength and conditioning coaches, the former offensive guard, Marv Marinovich, is famous for saying:

“The best weightlifters were the worst athletes.”

The goal of the Troy Polamalu workout is to eliminate free weights, and instead focus on getting muscles to move faster.  Getting muscles to fire faster and have more fluidity on the field, translates to faster play and notably bigger hits.  In a world where the common notion is that, the bigger you are and more weight you can push, the better you must be, the Troy Polamalu workout defies all sense.  Still, the Troy Polamalu workout excels in the new idea that being faster and more agile is better than being strong and slow. Marinovich has trained many athletes, including Tyson Chandler, Steve Finley, and Jason Giambi, and UFC fighter BJ Penn.

The Troy Polamalu workout is hard to do yourself because most of the lifts come from machines tailored to specific sports and movements.  Still, you can look for exercises and explosive lifts that mimic your sport.  Some high schools and colleges are adding explosive life machines to mimic football and basketball athletic moves. What is easy, is that anyone can perform the Troy Polamalu workout if they can find the athletic lifts that are right for them. What is difficult, is finding those machines tailored to perform the athletic lifts you want to do on the field. Still, many explosive movements don’t require too much equipment, and can be done on the field.

Troy Polamalu WorkoutRejecting the use of free weights, Polamalu instead uses:

  • medicine balls
  • heavy shoes
  • wobble board
  • single-grip hand ball
  • nothing heavier than a 20 lb. weight

Here’s more of what goes on at the Marv Marinovich training center:

People may have a hard time believing Polamalu doesn’t need heavy weigh training, but Marinovich and Polamalu agree that training super-slow with heavy lifts like bench press don’t translate well into the real world. You are never going to lift as slowly on the field, as you do when you bench press. The quick-fiber muscles of pressing a receiver are better gained through fast, explosive arm movements like we see in the Troy Polamalu workout, rather than the super slow ones of traditional systems.

Re-injured in 2007, Polamalu asked coach Mike Tomlin if he could go back to the Marinovich gym and skip training camp. Tomlin and the Steelers agreed to Polamlu’s alternative training plans, and Polamalu was able to work through a knee injury and return to caliber shape in 2008.

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Matt Kemp Workout: There is No Off-Season

matt kemp workout

Matt Kemp Workout

Matt Kemp, 27, center-fielder with the Los Angeles Dodgers, got a $160 million contract extension in the off-season.  The Matt Kemp workout was vital to his turnaround, because Kemp likes to say that there is no off-season, meaning he trains very hard when not playing baseball.

The baseball deal Matt Kemp got was huge, in sharp contrast to where he was a year before, when he wasn’t even sure if the Dodgers wanted to keep him. Nothing was certain for Kemp, who fell into a slump, and was starting to doubt himself:

“People were saying I wasn’t going to be the player they thought,” Kemp says. “I expected more of myself. “All season I was unable to fall into a groove. That led to inconsistency,” “When you think positive, good things happen. But that year, I had trouble channeling my negative energy into something positive. I needed to figure myself out.”

To figure himself out, and make the needed changes, the Matt Kemp workout became a combination of fitness and diet. Kemp enlisted Trainer Garrett Shinoskie, who made sure his diet was high in good carbs and low in protein on high impact days, and low in carbs and high in protein on recovery days. He joined the Zone Gym in Scottsdale, AZ, his hometown.

In regard to the Matt Kemp workout, he trains hard in order to not get hurt during the 162 game season, while staying flexible and agile. Matt Kemp says:

 “I do a lot of core stuff with the medicine ball. My strength and conditioning coach takes me through the workout — obliques, upper abs, lower abs, and some back exercises. My best advice is to make sure that you don’t try to do too much and overwork your abs. Make sure you’re doing it right or you can hurt something. And good posture is important, too.”

matt kemp workout

On days of upper-body strength training, Matt Kemp’s workout varies his routine a lot but sticks to:

“A lot of push-ups and pull-ups with my trainer. Those are pretty important and make you pretty strong because you’re not using weights. You’re using your body weight and that’s the biggest thing for baseball players, especially. Playing baseball, you don’t want to have too much of a big upper body. You want to keep your flexibility.”

Matt Kemp Workouts are typically like this:

Monday = Arms

  • Seated rear-delt press
  • Dumbbell lateral raise
  • Dumbbell front raise
  • Cable triceps press
  • Standing machine dip

Tuesday = Legs

  • Single-leg extension
  • Single-leg press
  • Double leg extension
  • Barbell squat
  • Machine hamstring curl
  • Abductor machine
  • Walking lunge

Wednesday = Core/Conditioning

  • One-Arm Dumbbell Suitcase Deadlifts
  • Pallof Press
  • Walking Lunge with Twist
  • Wind sprints
  • Stadiums
  • Up-hill Treadmill

Thursday = Torso

  • Reaching Crunch on Ball
  • Jackknife Ab Crunches
  • Reverse Ab Crunches
  • Side Crunches on Ball
  • Medicine Ball Torso Rotations
  • Medicine Ball Ab Crunches

Friday = Power

  • One-Arm Dumbbell Suitcase Deadlifts
  • Power Clean and Jerk
  • Barbell Deadlifts

Saturday = Core/Conditioning

  • Pallof Press
  • Walking Lunge with Twist
  • Wind sprints
  • Stadiums
  • Up-hill Treadmill

Each day has different dietary guidelines based on that day’s workload. Matt Kemp workouts are also grounded in a focus on conditioning.  He likes to do a lot of sprints, stadiums and treadmills. When he does stadiums, he likes to change it up by using his hands to go up the stairs, while someone holds his feet.  Kemp says that setting the treadmill to ‘uphill’ is what gets him cut and in shape.

When it comes to success, his workouts involve many factors, but the most important aspect of the Matt Kemp Workout is:

“To take it seriously. If it’s something you want to do and be successful at, working out is a big part of our everyday lives. It keeps you healthy and prevents injuries. Have a routine. Eating breakfast is really important, too.”

matt kemp workout biceps

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Candace Parker Workout: Finding Ways to Get Better

Candace Parker Workout

Candace Parker Workout

The Candace Parker workout is about always finding ways to get better, and focuses on core strength, lower body exercise, and explosive jumping techniques. Candace Parker, the first woman to dunk in the NCAA, and first player to win the WNBA MVP and Rookie of the Year award, in the same season, takes her job on and off the court very seriously. It’s a great workout for any female basketball player that needs a pro workout.

The 6’4″ forward is known for being able to move well for her height and size, which she attributes to her workout routine.

Candace Parker’s workout goals are to find ways to get faster, stronger, but also more flexible.  She finds that flexibility is the key to preventing injury.  Parker has found that stretching before workouts helps her muscles heal much faster. Core and lower body workouts further help her to make quick movements she does on the court, while helping to box out opponents as well. Being able to move well for her height and size are important motivations to always get better in the gym. Besides gym workouts, she also believes in picking basketball drills that she needs to improve on, and developing those in the off-season, as well.

Candace Parker WorkoutShe attributes her earliest success in sports to her time playing soccer. She was able to get comfortable in her body that way, while getting foot speed and quickness. Her initial dream was to be an Olympian soccer player. She was motivated to play basketball after seeing the success of her older brothers. From there, she started playing a lot of pick up games, where she was the only female.

In terms of Candace Parker’s diet, she adheres to the motto “You are what you eat.” At first she didn’t care or notice, but now notices differences in shooting, between when she has optimal nutrition and when she doesn’t. Candace Parker’s workout routine is also firmly grounded in the FILO strategy: “First one in, last one out.”

The Candace Parker workout is about taking as many things from the gym, that she can, and translating them into actions on the court. Candace Parker’s typical routine looks like this:

Candace Parker Leg Workout

  • Box Jumps (2 sets of 20)
  • Single-Leg Box Jumps (2 sets of 20)
  • Drop Lunges
  • Traditional Squats
  • Ankle band resistance training
  • Ladders

Candace Parker Core Workout

  • Hip Bridge Leg Exercise
  • Plate Ab Crunches
  • Cone Twists
  • Medicine Ball Twists
  • Medicine Ball Chops

Below is an example of a Drop Squat, one of Candace Parker’s core exercises:

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