Who?

Mat Fraser is perhaps the most dominant athlete in Crossfit. Crossfit is a high intensity form of fitness that combines elements of gymnastics, weight lifting, cardio and endurance training that is designed to optimize a person’s physical ability. Crossfit’s boom in popularity over the past decade has it popping up everywhere, and now it has expanded to the point where people at the highest level of physical fitness train to compete in the Crossfit games —  the ultimate test of fitness.

mat fraser

image via si.com

What?

Over a span of five days, athletes who have qualified to be there will fight through 15 events. The athletes are kept in the dark about what type of events until the day of, to claim the title of fittest on earth — a title that Mat has now claimed two years in a row. In his debut Crossfit games in 2014, Mat stood in second place on the podium in addition to earning the title of Rookie of the Year. Even so, none of this seemed to satisfy him. He has long been outspoken about his hatred of “second place” and was never satisfied with less than first. After second place finishes in both the 2014 and 2015 games, Mat came back with fire, stronger than ever, dominating the competition field to snag the title in 2016 and then to defend it in 2017, making a somehow even more spectacular display of strength to again be named the fittest man on earth.

How?

The 27-year-old Vermont native was born to Canadian Olympic figure skater parents and has been active from almost day one. He instantly took to the barbell and competed as a junior Olympic weightlifting champion until he retired from weightlifting and began Crossfit in 2012. Crossfit seemed a natural fit for Mat since it’s a facet of fitness designed to push a person to their absolute limits, and Mat has always set goals of turning his weaknesses into strengths.

Think you can workout like the fittest person on earth? Here are Mat’s five essential exercises:

(Via http://vtsports.com/mat-frasers-5-essential-moves/)

The squat: Perhaps one of the most basic and essential movements out there, we can’t overlook the squat. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, back up nice and straight and core tight. Sit back with your hamstrings keeping your weight back in your heels until your thighs are parallel to the floor while keeping your knees over your toes. Try four rounds of 20 reps.

The burpee: People love to hate the burpee, but it’s a great full body exercise we can’t leave out. Start standing, then place your hands on the floor by your feet and jump your feet back behind you until you come into a plank position with shoulders over wrists and core tight. Bend your elbows and bring your chest down in a push-up. Return to the plank and jump your legs back up to your hands. Then straighten up to sanding, finishing the movement with a vertical jump. Go for four sets of 10 reps.

The deadlift: Stand at the barbell with your feet shoulder-width apart, then send your hips backward as you bend down until your shins are just touching the barbell and your hands can grip the bar. Look a few feet in front of you, breathe in and send your hips forward while straightening the legs to come to standing. Try four sets of 8 reps.

The push-up: Place your hands shoulder-width apart in a plank position. Keeping your neck in line with your torso and your back straight, lower your chest to almost touching the ground, then push yourself back up to the starting position. Got for four rounds of 12.

The pull-up: Grab the bar in a grip that is comfortable for you. Keep your shoulders down, your lats engaged and pull yourself up until your eyes are level with the bar. Then slowly lower yourself and repeat. Try for four rounds of 10 reps.

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