When it comes to redefining the composition of your body — both for performance and aesthetic purposes — exercise selection is key.
“My programming isn’t a cookie-cutter template,” says Gabe. “I integrate unconventional exercises that not only will transform the appearance of your body, but more importantly, how it performs."
Here are five exercises you’ll see throughout the 30-day RECOMP’D workout program, and why Coach Gabe programmed them in.
1. Isometric Split Squat
In a lot of programs you’ll see forward and reverse lunges on lower-body days — which is a good base — but Coach Gabe likes to level that up a bit.
“The split squat with isometric hold is a true test of muscular endurance and stability, because not only are you challenging each side of the body on its own, but your core is also active the entire time as you attempt to stay upright,” he explains.
You’ll perform the isometric split squat on WHEELS days of the program.
2. Half Kneeling Single-Arm Overhead Press
The standard for most pushing days of programs is an overhead press with both arms. What Coach Gabe likes about the kneeling single-arm overhead press is that it clearly exposes any strength differences from one side of the body versus the other.
“When most people do double-arm presses, their core isn’t really doing much and a lot of other accessory muscles step in to help with the movement when there’s an imbalance,” he says.
The kneeling single-arm overhead press forces the core and each shoulder to work on its own.
You’ll perform strict single-arm overhead presses on THROW days of the program.
3. Upright Row
According to Coach Gabe, the upright row is another multi-purpose exercise for developing strong, unbreakable shoulders.
“There are three main heads of the deltoid and the upright row hits them all,” he says.
You’ll perform upright rows on HEAVE days of the program.
4. Two-Kettlebell Racked Squat
The back squat is one hell of an exercise for building serious lower-body strength, however, a lot of people jump into them too quickly with poor mechanics, says Coach Gabe. One of the biggest issues he sees is people “losing tension in the core” while performing them. The solution is to integrate kettlebell or dumbbell front squats.
“Holding the kettlebell or dumbbell in front forces the core to stay active, it keeps your spine normal and upright, allowing you to reach parallel without losing tension,” he explains.
You’ll perform kettlebell racked squats on both WHEELS and MOTOR days of the program.
5. Lateral Bound
Coach Gabe likes to call this one an “injury-resistance exercise” because it strengthens just about every muscle in the lower body.
“The lateral bound is a very dynamic plyometric exercise that challenges and improves strength and stability of each leg,” he says. “This one is crucial for keeping your lower body free of injury."
You’ll perform lateral bounds on MOTOR days of the program.