Two days ago I was playing soccer with a group of guys. It was nothing serious – just a fun park pick-up game.
One of the dudes in the group was in seriously good shape. He was obviously more built, more ripped and more muscular than any of the rest of us – seriously impressive looking specimen.
But when it came to actually playing the game, he was an entirely different beast.
He could awkwardly run forwards, albeit a bit more slowly than the rest of us. Worse yet, he couldn’t move side-to-side to save his life. He could barely run backwards without nearly falling over his own bulky thighs. He couldn’t jump and couldn’t stop, pivot and kick, much less lift his arms to throw in an out-of-bounds pass.
In other words, he was all “show” and no “go”. He looked like an athlete, but certainly couldn’t perform like one.
And here’s the deal: when it comes to making your body look better by toning, curving and carving a killer physique, there’s a big problem with most fitness programs – they make you look good, but in the process you lose your speed, power, mobility and athleticism.
So you suck at sports, don’t move well, and even sacrifice looking good when doing things like clubbing, dancing, or moving gracefully.
But what if you could have the best of both worlds? What if you could look like an athlete, and perform like an athlete too?
Can a workout for show muscles also give you functional go muscles and help you to become a better athlete?
The answer is yes, and in today’s article, you’ll get the best workout to not only get a better body, but also to become a better athlete.
There are a variety of different muscles and movements that all sports generally use, and these are the perfect place to start when it comes to getting a functionally athletic body that “shows and goes.”
The the most common movements that can you can replicate in a gym or exercise setting include:
Now that you know how to identify muscles and movement, and the best range of exercises to use, you can put it all together to create the best workout to build a better body and to become a better athlete, no matter which sport you’re wanted to participate in.
While creating a specific workout for every single sport is beyond the scope of this article, you can guarantee that you’ll be able to perform quite proficiently in just about any sport on the face of the planet if you can include each of the movements listed above in a few workouts a week.
For example, for a full body, three times per week workout using the exercises above, you could perform the following:
As you can see, a functional workout to build an athletic body and to improve sports performance is a bit more complex than a basic, muscle gain, bodybuilding-style workout.
But when implemented properly, a functional workout routine can not only help you run faster, jump higher, and push harder, but also keep you from getting injured and from looking silly the next time you join into a pick-up basketball game, decide you want to pick up soccer, tennis or golf, or want to hit the dance floor.
Author, ex-bodybuilder and Ironman triathlete Ben Greenfield blogs and podcasts about biohacking, muscle gain and fat loss at BenGreenfieldFitness.com. He has just written the book “Beyond Training”, which teaches you how to achieve amazing feats of physical performance without destroying your body or metabolism.
Ben Greenfield is an ex-bodybuilder, Ironman triathlete, Spartan racer, coach, speaker and author of the New York Times Bestseller “Beyond Training: Mastering Endurance, Health and Life” (http://www.BeyondTrainingBook.com).
In 2008, Ben was voted as NSCA’s Personal Trainer of the year and in 2013 was named by Greatist as one of the top 100 Most Influential People In Health And Fitness. Ben blogs and podcasts at http://www.BenGreenfieldFitness.com, and resides in Spokane, WA with his wife and twin boys.