The @Gunnar Workout

Several people have asked what my @Gunnar workout is.

@Gunnar (Gunnar Peterson) is a US Personal Trainer. This is an adapted version of the workout he gave to Hugh Jackman, prior to the X-Men movie, to turn him into Wolverine. I started it in the run up to the Charity Bike Ride last year and loved it so much I’ve stuck with it.

It takes about 75mins and is performed without any rest between reps or sets. It is one continuous workout.

Remember: Success requires positive, determined action!

SuperSet  One
(12 reps of each exercise then move on to the next; complete 4 circuits)

Squat – Olympic bar with 1 plate each side
Step Ups  – 2x8kg Dumbells stepping up on to a Bench
Laying Medicine Ball Chops – 8kg Medicine Ball
Dumbbell Single-Arm Row – 17.5kg Dumbells
Crunches – 20
Step Ups – 15 steps per leg

Active Recovery – 2 minutes on Airdyne bike

SuperSet  Two
(12 reps of each exercise then move on to the next; complete 3 circuits)

Gorilla Pullups
Standing Jump and Reach
Fat Bar Curls
Jump Rope (skipping) – 1 min

Active Recovery – 2 minutes on treadmill – incline at 2%, speed at 8kph

SuperSet  Three
(12 reps of each exercise then move on to the next; complete 3 circuits)

Standing Cable Fly
Standing Cable Press
Standing Cable Bicep Curls
Wood Chops
Shoulder Press (30kg)

Active Recovery – 2 minutes boxing, heavy bag

3 sets of sprint interval training – each set being 8×20 second max speed sprints with 10 seconds rest between.

5 mins intensive Abdominals – mixture of upper, lower, core & obliques.

I do the above 3 times per week, alternate days with a triple superset chest workout plus cardio on the days in between.

Over the 7 weeks leading up to the Charity Bike Ride, the workout took my body fat from 15.7% to 10.4%; with muscle mass increasing by 6kg.




Summer 2014 UPDATE…

Did the workout again for two months…. Same impactGary Chaplin Body Fat:

8 Comments on “The @Gunnar Workout”

  1. Great workout and great acheivement to get through that in 75 mins. Love the zero-rest approach, real hard hit to the body.

    Have you tried the Spartan workout?

    Couple of questions on yours.

    Do you feel you get an all body workout over the course of the week?
    Was the work designed for the Bike Ride and with fitness as the aim?
    What sort of gym do you go to in order to facilitate the workout?
    What is a Wood Chop?

    Thanks again for sharing, great workout. I’m definitely going to try it.



    • Thanks Andy.

      Yes I have tried the Spartan workout. I did it for 6 months prior to doing this one. Liked it, but it was a bit too short; I got it down to around 20-25 mins and wanted more.

      On your questions.
      Yes – it is light on chest, hence my ‘off day’ workout, but aside from that gives me a full hit.
      Being candid, it was more designed (or rather adopted) for aesthetics but in the knowledge that it would strengthen my legs for the ride, and help with fitness (especially the sprint training).
      I go to a small independant gym with a very good selection of free weights and cables (plus CV kit and machines). Secret is, I’m there first thing in the monring when it first opens so it is less busy. you don’t need a lot of space for each station, and most is free weight or body weight so not reliant on machines being free.
      Using a medcine ball, lift from left ankle to as high and far right as you can manage, then back (x12) – like a axe chop. Then repeat on the other side.

      Thanks again for your comments, hope I’ve answered your questions.

  2. Thanks for sharing. Tried the workout last night, had to give up before the final set. Great workout though, I totally understimated how hard it would be. Have woken up this morning struggling to move. Good find – I’ll be back.

    Thanks again


    • I had the same ‘morning after feeling’ after my first attempt. I genuinely thought I had swine flu.

      Secret is to stretch REALLY well. Every muscle group has had a battering, but as they say, No Pain, No Gain.

      Good luck with round two.

  3. Gym workouts are all well and good, but give me the outdoors any day. Pair of running shoes and a bike. I need nothing else to keep me fit. Why waste money in a gym?

    • Steve

      Everyone responds to different things, and everyone needs to change their approach constantly. Gym workouts, and in particular this one does things to the body that running and cycling simply cannot. If fitness is your only goal, then Bike/Running will more than suffice. If however you want more (aesthetic, strength, power, etc) then resistance is the way to go.

      I do a lot of cycling (see this page for more details). I have also done a lot of running, upto half marathons – but neither give me the all round benefit I crave that 5 session per week in the gym gives me.

      Can’t beat the fresh air though!

  4. Thanks for sharing that. I followed your bike ride build up as well as post ride events and achievements (great acolade to with the Theo Paphitis award BTW) so have found it interesting to see the training that beyond the time on the bike. looks asnincredible regime.

    Is the workout suitable for women? and if not, which bits could be changed?

    Thanks again and congratulations again.


    • Thanks Sarah, really appreciate the comments.

      The build up to the ride was more down to 100s of miles in the saddle rather than this workout, but it got me in all round good shape, stamina up, stength up and most importantly, energy up. Energy is probably the biggest thing this workout gives me – masses of energy for the rest of the day.

      As for suitability for women, I’m not an expert. There is no reason why not….but it is a muscle building excercise. My legs, shoulder, arms and chest have all built considerably – I don’t know many women that would want that. I suspect there would be better options (or perhaps high rep/lower weight sets), but some aspects would be great – the high jumps, the medicine ball work and the CV & Abs work are all great things to incorporate with perhaps a body weight routine. I’d see someone brighter than me though to get better guidance.

      Good luck.


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