Workout Routines

EXOS Trainers Are Redefining Fitness

These tainers believe that the needs of the athlete and the desk jockey aren’t that different.

by
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Duration 30 min
Exercises 9
Equipment Yes

What is performance? 

It’s a question that seems fairly straightforward, but answers can vary wildly depending on whom you ask. Ask a powerlifter. Then a marathon runner. Or, perhaps, an elite computer programmer. You’d get three very different answers, and all three would be right.

It’s thinking like this that influences the team at EXOS. 

EXOS, a worldwide set of more than 400 training facilities (12 of which are open to the public, the rest are military and corporate facilities), caters to everyone from pro football players looking to shave time off their 40 to businesspeople hoping to gain an edge and applies the same training and nutrition framework to each. 

“Performance is different for everyone, but if you look at it from a benefits standpoint, the notion tends to click a little bit easier,” says Joel Totoro, nutrition solution manager at EXOS. 

With that in mind, EXOS takes the training principles it applies to pro athletes and pares them down for its other clients as appropriate. Pros move through a workout that consists of eight distinct phases: soft-tissue work (called pillar prep), a traditional warmup (think dynamic stretches), plyometrics, sport-specific fitness development, rotary power (medicine ball work), strength and power (weightlifting), energy-systems work (conditioning), and regeneration. 

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Nick Winkelman, EXOS’ director of movement and education, says general population clients will run through pillar prep, movement prep, rotary power development, strength and power development, and regeneration. The three phases they skip (movement skill development, sport-specific fitness, and energy systems) more directly correlate to on-field production and won’t necessarily provide added benefit. Reinforcing healthy movement patterns, however, provides a ton of benefits.

“When people go to the gym, they’re trying to lose body fat, look better, and be healthier,” Winkelman says. “Those are all valuable reasons. But one of the things we’re trying to do with our general population clients is get them to understand that movement from a value-proposition perspective does so much more than that.”

Increased performance is generally easy to spot—a few more pounds on your bench, for example. If you’re trying to communicate the benefits of training and eating for performance to a group of financial analysts, the benefits might be less obvious. To illustrate the point, Totoro compares a businessperson crisscrossing the country to the life of a linebacker. 

“At the end of the game, the athlete is dehydrated, has an electrolyte imbalance, his joints hurt, and if it’s a night game, he’s amped, so sleep is a problem,” Totoro says. “Similarly, at the end of a cross-country flight, you have a businessperson sitting in a pressurized cabin, they’ve got major electrolyte deficiencies, joint pains, and their internal clock is thrown off by time zones. They’re for different reasons, but the issues are the same—and their careers depend on their performance after they land.”

Below, EXOS provided a single strength workout built for the general population but designed to address the basic needs of athletes. 

Strength Circuit 1 Repeat 3x, 90-120 sec rest

Exercise 1A

Alternating Dumbbell Bench Press You'll need: Bench, Dumbbells How to
Alternating Dumbbell Bench Press thumbnail
-- sets
8 reps
-- rest

Exercise 1B

Single-Leg Romanian Deadlift with Dumbbell You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Single-Leg Romanian Deadlift with Dumbbell thumbnail
-- sets
8 reps
-- rest
*Hold dumbbell in each hand.

Exercise 1C

Front Squat to Overhead Press
exercise image placeholder
-- sets
-- reps
120 sec rest

Strength Superset Repeat 2x, 60 sec rest

Exercise 1A

Standing Cable Lift
exercise image placeholder
-- sets
8 reps
-- rest

Exercise 1B

Split-Stance Hammer Curl to Press You'll need: Dumbbells How to
Split-Stance Hammer Curl to Press thumbnail
-- sets
8 reps
60 sec rest
*Perform as a reverse woodchopper, going diagonally upward across your body.

Strength Circuit II Repeat 2x, 90-120 sec rest

Exercise 1A

Lateral Hip Bridge
exercise image placeholder
-- sets
10 reps
-- rest
*Set up in a plank position, roll onto your forearm and stack your feet. Extend hips to ceiling for one rep.

Exercise 1B

Dumbbell Lateral Slide Squat
exercise image placeholder
-- sets
8 (each side) reps
-- rest
*Hold a pair of dumbbells at shoulders. Squat low while sliding one foot out to the side.

Exercise 1C

Single-Leg Single-Arm Dumbbell Row
exercise image placeholder
-- sets
8 (each side) reps
90 sec rest
*Perform a dumbbell row from a standing position, with one leg behind you.
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