Article Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

4 Workout Tips From Pittsburgh Steelers All-Pro Antonio Brown

Sep. 5, 2018 Men's Health

It’s not easy trying to pack on the muscle you want. It means working out when you barely have the time, avoiding injuries, and maintaining focus and intensity when you’d rather take it easy.

Pittsburgh Steelers All-Pro Antonio Brown’s secret for doing it: Never relax. It’s how he went from sixth-round draft pick to six-time Pro Bowler, and he doesn’t slow down in the off-season. “You don’t build yourself up and come into the season and drop off,” Brown, 30, says. No, you train hard all year round. Follow Brown’s advice and you’ll find a way, too.

1) Master the basics.

Brown focused his off-season training on three key body parts: “my glutes, my shoulders, and my core.” Each plays a key role in helping the body generate speed. Brown does 3- to 5-rep sets of bench presses once a week, and he squats all the time—although not the way you might think. “For the most part, I squatted lighter weight, a lot of reps, did a lot of endurance training,” he says. “Aim for 20 reps a set.” That will improve your squat technique and rev your heart rate more than you’d expect.

2) Crush your core.

A strong core cushions your ribs against the blows that come from defensive players. Brown knows that well, which is why he’ll do 1,000 reps of ab movements daily. But that doesn’t mean hours of situps. Brown does a variety of ab movements, like V-ups, hanging leg lifts, oblique situps, and plank shoulder-taps. “Don’t worry about what they are,” he says. “Just mix it up, get it in.”

3) Baby your shoulders.

Brown’s go-to shoulder routine isn’t about size or a badass military press; it’s about joint-bulletproofing and endurance. “We call it 5-5-5’s,” he says. Grab a pair of light dumbbells, stand up, and then do 5 reps of lateral raises, raising the weights straight out to your sides. Next, bend at the waist and do 5 reps of “Y” raises, keeping your elbows straight and raising the weights in front of you, thumbs pointing up. Finish with 5 “T” raises, staying bent over and raising the weights out to your sides. “Do 3 to 4 sets,” Brown says. “Just go nonstop.”

4) Stretch your legs.

Bad news: To move all over the field like AB, you’ve got to just run. (Worse news: You’ll also have to run to pass our NFL conditioning test below.) The best receiver in football won’t shrug off a 5-mile run every few days. “I’ll go running for distance consistently,” he says. “That stuff keeps me healthy.”

Read More on Men's Health

Gene Upshaw Player Assistance Trust Fund

Apply Today

All Resources

Tell Me More

How to Ease Back into Exercise Safely After a Long Break

You won't perform at the same level they once did.

Read More

Will You Need a Booster Shot of the COVID-19 Vaccine?

Could an annual shot be required in the future?

Read More

15 natural ways to lower your blood pressure

Make sure you're regularly getting a physical or a health check.

Read More

Black people in rural areas continue to experience health disparities

Comparisons come from rates in diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke.

Read More

9 Early Warning Signs of Potential Emotional Abuse

As feelings develop in new relationships, warning signs begin to blur.

Read More

"How Do I Start Therapy?"

Finding the therapy which is right for us.

Read More

Keep Brainstorming—Your Best Ideas Are Still to Come

The common (and mistaken) belief that we generate our best ideas early can actually squash creativity.

Read More

What Does It Mean to Be "In Debt?"

Is your debt keeping you from living the life you want?

Read More