The octagon is a take-no-prisoners space that calls for agility, endurance and, above all, full-body power. This interval-style workout from Jake “The Celtic Kid” Matthews caters to these demands, building supreme functional strength. “I think the more movement and the more muscle groups you can involve in the one exercise, the better results you’re going to get,” says trainer and father Mick Matthews. “You’ve got to teach your muscle groups to work together.”
Complete this circuit once, resting for 60 seconds between each exercise.
Frog leaps into overhead slam (repeat for two minutes)
Mark out a 15-metre track. Holding a medicine ball against your chest, drop into a deep squat then drive into a vertical leap. Land and drop straight into the next jump. After travelling 15m, turn, take two steps and overhead slam the ball into the ground. Continue for 15m.
Kettlebell snatch (five reps on each arm, rest for 10 seconds; repeat for two minutes)
Place a kettlebell on the floor in front of you. Sit into a squat and grab the kettlebell with your right hand. Drive upward, hoisting the ’bell to chest height. Dip under the ’bell and “catch” it at shoulder height, then drive it straight up over your head.
Medicine-ball vertical throw into squats (five reps, rest for 10 seconds; repeat for two minutes)
Stand with a medicine ball against your chest, your feet shoulder-width apart. Drive the ball upward, throwing it against a wall as high as possible. Catch the ball and drop into a deep squat. Drive out of the squat and straight into the next throw.
Single-leg step-up into lunge (five reps on each leg, rest for 10 seconds; repeat for two minutes)
Place a knee- to thigh-high box in front of you. Step onto the box with your right leg and drive your left leg to your chest. Lower yourself, placing your left foot back on the ground. Step back with your right foot and drop into a lunge. That’s one rep.
Single-arm kettlebell swing (repeat for two minutes)
Stand with a kettlebell in front of your toes. Sit into a squat, grab the ’bell with your right hand and swing it back between your legs. Drive your hips forward, lifting the ’bell to chest height. Swap hands with the ’bell in front of your chest and repeat.
Three-point dumbbell move (repeat for two minutes)
Stand with a light dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your back straight and your elbows tucked in, do a biceps curl, then drive the dumbells up into shoulder press, then lower the dumbells into a triceps press. That’s one rep.
Pullovers (10 reps, rest for 10 seconds; repeat for two minutes)
Lying on a decline bench, hold a weight plate above your stomach. Drive the weight up until it’s above your eyes, then lower the weight behind your head. Keeping your arms straight, pull the plate back to your stomach.
Weighted sledge push (three reps of 15m, rest for 10 seconds; repeat for two minutes)
Set out a 15m track. Grab the handles of a weighted sledge and drop into a “scrummaging” position where your knees are bent 90°, your back parallel to the floor. Drive the sledge 15m as fast as possible. If you don’t have access to a sledge, do a bear crawl instead.