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Workout like an NFL Star

Published: 9/10/15

Football players are known for their great physiques, which many fans likely attribute to their expensive personal trainers and the focused training that helps to pack on extra pounds of muscle in the off-season. However, many of the exercise activities that these stars use to help them get in proper athletic shape can be emulated at home and in the gym without the need for an expensive personal trainer. Here is a sample of exercises and diet techniques that professional football players have implemented in their careers that you can use as a guide:


Much of an athlete’s conditioning is based on strict compliance with an exercise routine that is focused on strength and resistance training.

Resisted Knee

Running backs sometimes use the resisted knee exercise to improve their sprint times and the length of their stride. In addition to speed, running backs must also have a certain amount of resistance to run through opponents. This exercise consists of lifting your legs to your chest one at a time and alternating movements. At the same time, a spotter applies resistance with a band from behind you. A set for this exercise consists of four, 15 to 20 yard sprints.

Uphill Ladder

Offensive players sometimes use this exercise to help strengthen their muscles for a long return. To complete this activity, simply run up the rungs of the ladder, hitting each rung twice with your feet on your way up.


Bounding consists of bounding from one leg to the next while trying to make as much ground as possible. This exercise helps your muscles work together.


This activity can be completed by athletes who need to be more flexible in order to quickly change directions. However, lunges can also work to increase your core strength and back strength. They are completed by stepping to the left with your left foot while lowering your hips into a lateral lunge. Then, force your hip back to the original position. Repeat the same on the right side. Add to the intensity by holding a kettlebell in both hands and then position them in front of you.  

Bench Press

Linebackers use a variety of bench press exercises to help strengthen their muscles. This may be done by using dumbbells that you hold near your chest and then lift straight up until you fully extend your arms.

Push Ups

The push up is a popular exercise for a number of reasons, including its ability to strengthen an athlete’s arms for throwing the ball and making it through a wall of massive linemen. Some football players add to this strenuous exercise by creating additional resistance. For example, some pro football players will position heavy chains across their lower backs and then complete as many repetitions as possible.

Russian Twist

In order to increase arm strength, throw the ball further, and fortify resistance to violent hits, some quarterbacks perform a Russian twist exercise. This consists of sitting on the ground with bent knees. Hold a ball at your chest and then rotate left. You should be touching the ball to the floor. Then, rotate to the right and touch the ball back to the floor. Repeat as many times as needed.


Many professional athletes use specific diets that help them increase their muscle mass while still maintaining weight. However, they also tend to have more resources than the typical individual, such as nutritionists and private doctors. But there are still several tricks that you can steal and incorporate into your own meal plan.

Load Up on Protein

Include plenty of lean protein in your diet, such as lean cuts of red meat, chicken, turkey and eggs. Protein helps to build lean muscle mass. These foods should comprise about one-third of your diet. Start the day with a protein, such as having turkey sausage and egg whites for breakfast. Other lean options include lean beef, chicken, beans and soy. You need to have protein before and after a workout for maximum effectiveness. Keep away from eating too much fat by abstaining from junk food.

Eat Plenty of Fruits and Vegetables

Another third of your diet should include fruits and vegetables.

Eat Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates help your body to absorb protein. However, stick to healthier options like whole-grain bread, enriched pasta, or brown rice. They also help give you energy during your workout.

Get a Consultation

The number of calories that you need on a daily basis isn’t a fixed amount. Instead, it is based on your age, muscle mass, weight and activity level, so consult with a healthcare professional before you get started with any new regimen.

Also, consider consulting a trainer at a Chuze location near you. He or she can customize a workout routine that is based on your particular training needs.