Working Class Fitness LogoWe all know that one of the most important physical characteristics a fighter (or just the regular guy who wants to be in fighting shape) needs is great cardio.  But having great cardio by itself isn’t enough – a fighter doesn’t need to just be able to having a good heart and set of lungs.  He needs to be strong, fast, and generally just do a lot of work – while having good cardio at the same time.

There’s a big difference between being in shape enough to go do roadwork and even do hard sprints, and sparring, grappling, or hitting the bag for several rounds.  The harder work taxes much more than just a fighter’s wind.

Plus we know that a fighter needs speed and explosiveness.  And speed and explosiveness are rooted in first being strong.  In other words… work that’s done in the gym.

So how can we combine all this to build the type of conditioning a fighter can really use?

An easy way is to simply add smaller, “active-rest” exercises during your strength workouts.

An “active rest” exercise is one that keeps you moving and working, yet is not so difficult that you’re not able to still rest and recover from whatever the “real” work (for lack of a better term) is in your workout that day.

There are two types of “active rest” exercises I like to use: moderate effort, more explosive exercises for low to moderate reps, and very easy exercises for slightly longer time periods.

Examples of the former might be box jumps onto shorter boxes, bench jumps, burpees, or possibly even explosive pushups (depending on your strength levels).  These would be done for 6-10 reps.

Examples of the latter would be jumping jacks, shuffle splits, seal jacks, or even rope skipping.  You could do these for 30-50 reps or simply just 30 seconds.

You would pick one set of each, and do them directly after your sets in a strength workout.  So say you were doing bench press and rows.  You’d do a set of bench, followed up by (for example) bench jumps x 8 reps and jumping jacks x 40 reps. Repeat for all your sets of bench press.  Then after a set of rows, you might do burpees x 8 reps and rope skipping for 30 seconds.  Repeat for all your sets of rows.

What this allows you to do is focus primarily on your strength workout yet add a ton of extra work to the workout as a whole.  This makes you do a lot of excess conditioning, getting you breathing hard and your heart pumping while focusing on your strength work.  The “active-rest” exercises in and of themselves are never that tough in an individual set, but it’s the cumulative volume and fatigue that will build your overall capacity.

Try this out on your next workout and see how it goes.

- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – -

Before you go to the gym again, you owe it to yourself to find out what kind of MMA workout pro fighters, boxers, recreational MMAists, or just the “regular guy” who wants to be in shape like his favorite fighter *should* be doing.  (HINT – it’s not the crap you see in the magazines.)  To discover the truth, hit up Wiggy at or on Facebook at

(Physical exercise can sometimes lead to injury. and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or fitness advice. Please consult a physician before starting any exercise program, and never substitute the information on this site for any professional medical advice or treatment you may receive or the assistance of a fitness professional.)

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Daniel Cormier Needs Jon Jones to Make Career Complete (Video)

  • 23 days ago

UFC champion Daniel Cormier has accomplished much in his career, but needs banished former champion Jon Jones to return to make his career complete. read news >>

MMA Quick Quote: Reebok fight kit make UFC look like a cult

  • 23 days ago

"I couldn't imagine myself just all Reebok'd out. I haven't worn Reebok since the old-school hardcore days back in like high school. Reebok is not my thing. And like I said, just looking around, ever read news >>

Urijah Faber: Conor McGregor in a suit and tie is like 'a poser wearing Tapout'

  • 24 days ago

LOS ANGELES -- Conor McGregor and Urijah Faber make a study in contrasts in many ways as opposing coaches on the current season of The Ultimate Fighter. Their taste in style is perhaps the most visib read news >>

Cris Cyborg Dropping to 140 Pounds in Attempt to Get to Ronda Rousey

  • 24 days ago

In an attempt to eventually get to Ronda Rousey, Cris Cyborg will attempt to make 140 pounds for her next Invicta FC fight. read news >>

Bellator's Emanuel Newton: Reebok kits make UFC fighters look like they're 'part of a cult'

  • 24 days ago

Emanuel Newton is happy to be in Bellator. And that extends all the way down to his preference of attire. Starting in July, UFC fighters have had to wear Reebok for their walkouts, fights and during read news >>

Holly Holm: Facing Ronda Rousey sooner 'can be a lot better' than waiting four months

  • 25 days ago

Holly Holm spent about four hours working on the logistics of her training camp and travel schedule with her coaches, husband and manager two weeks ago. Holm's team was trying to figure out the best read news >>

Andrei Arlovski Expects to Make UFC Return As Early as December

  • 25 days ago

At first he was facing a six-month suspension for injury, but Andrei Arlovski is apparently ready to go in half the time. read news >>

Nick Diaz's attorney could make motion for Nevada deputy attorney general to remove himself from case

  • 26 days ago

Proceedings could get messy at Nick Diaz's disciplinary hearing with the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) on Monday. Diaz's attorney Lucas Middlebrook told MMA Fighting that he could make a motion fo read news >>

Mayweather's retirement bout: UFC champs, fighters & MMA personalities weigh in

  • 27 days ago

UFC champions, fighters and MMA's top personalities weigh in on Floyd Mayweather's retirement fight. They make predictions and discuss where they feel "Money" sits in boxing's all-time P4P rankings. read news >>

UFC 191 salaries: Three fighters make more than Demetrious Johnson

  • 28 days ago

Despite being one of the most dominant champions in the UFC, Demetrious Johnson wasn't the top-paid fighter on the UFC 191 card. There has been a lot of talk about Demetrious Johnson's lack of appeal read news >>