Train Like a Boxer Starting Today
From Mike Tyson to Rocky, we all have a respectful appreciation for boxers and especially their level of fitness. Do you want to train like a boxer and start building muscle while shredding fat? This Muay Thai boxer stops by to help us out!
Want to train like a boxer?
Boxers have an incredible physique. When they enter the ring, entire crowds are star-struck, envious, and thrown into a state of disbelief.
“That guy’s gotta be photoshopped?!? No one can be that ripped.”
Rub your eyes and do a double-take – that sh*t’s real. Not many sports or workouts can sculpt the body the way boxing does. And there’s a good reason. Fighters dedicate their entire life to their craft. They eat, sleep and breathe boxing and practically live at the gym.
Or do they?
What if there was a way of developing the athletic build and stamina of a boxer without enduring punishing sparring sessions and spending every waking hour at the gym?
If you’re up for the challenge, here are seven exercises to get fighting fit that anyone can do from the comfort of their home.
Heavy Bag Workout
Working the heavy bag is an insane HIIT and strength conditioning workout rolled into one.
With the correct technique, punching engages the arm, shoulder, back, and core muscles (improve that core strength). And if you remain sprightly on your feet – ducking in and out of range – you’ll also work the calves, glutes, and quads. Practically every muscle in the body is utilized.
But a whole body workout isn’t the only benefit, as smashing the bag is a lot of fun, and not to mention a great stress reliever.
Anyone that says they enjoy doing burpees is a liar. They’re instruments of torture that cause your lungs to scream and your calves and thighs to beg for mercy.
However, there’s a reason so many fighters choose to endure the punishment. Burpees improve stamina and endurance like no other exercise, while also shredding calories and building lean, functional muscle.
As much as I hate to admit it, burpees are awesome, and they should be included in your workout whether or not you’re fight training.
Jumping rope is synonymous with boxing, and no boxing workout would be complete without a couple of rounds on the old jump rope.
“What, you mean skipping? Isn’t that for little girls???”
Hell no. There’s nothing more manly than jumping rope – if you do it like a boxer anyway.
Besides improving your balance and coordination, jumping rope also builds the fast-twitch muscles in the calves that are essential for quick footwork. And without being able to move in and out of striking range quickly, you’ll never land a punch.
Traditional gym exercises like bicep curls and the bench press tend to build “useless” muscle for boxing. Explosive exercises and plyometric training build functional muscle that is far better suited to the sport.
Explosive pushups mimic the motion of punching, but the added resistance will make your arms bulge in all the right places and pack power into your punches.
If you’re feeling particularly energetic, try a clap, or even a double clap, as you leap off the ground.
I have a love-hate relationship with sit-ups. I love the results they produce, but I hate doing them. For me, there’s no pain like stomach pain brought on by crunches.
However, boxers must be able to take a punch to the gut and keep on fighting. The only way you’ll stand a chance of this, is with a rock-solid core.
If you want invincible, wash-board abs, aim for 100 sit-ups in each workout, making sure to do plenty of variations.
Rising at 5:00 am to pound the pavement is how serious boxers start their day. Roadwork (or running) is an essential part of boxing training as it builds the stamina necessary to go round after round.
Unlike jogging, which is performed at a steady, relaxed pace, roadwork aims to shock the heart and lungs with sprinting and uphill running – mimicking the short, high-intensity bursts of energy required in the ring.
Even if you’re not running in the wee hours of the morning, make sure you include plenty of roadwork sessions if you want that lean and athletic fighter’s body.
So let me get this straight; you throw punches at the air while bobbing and weaving as if you’re fighting an imaginary opponent?
Yep, that’s pretty much it. As ridiculous as it sounds, shadowboxing will dramatically improve your boxing skills. Seriously, it’s on par with sparring.
It’s a good warmup for the heavy bag, and you can adjust the intensity of the exercise by shadowboxing fast or slow. Keep your technique on point by shadowboxing in front of a full-length mirror.
Wrap-Up: Continuing Your Training
The best thing about all these exercises is that none of them require you to sign up to be someone’s punching bag, splash out on expensive equipment, or spend hours slogging away at some dingy, backstreet boxing gym.
So do you want to train like a boxer?
You can take control of your training, enjoy a fun workout, and learn self-defense, without ever having to leave home.
If you’re ready for the challenge, the next step is to devise your own killer workout by picking a few exercises from the above list.