Coach Lo’s Offseason Football Workouts

Coach Lo’s Offseason Football Workouts

“Champions are made in the offseason.” A quote that’s as timeless as it is true. The best athletes, teams, and coaches know that to stay at the top of their game, they need to continuously put in the work. One of the coaches who’s always preached this mantra is Coach Steven Lo. Coach Lo is the Offensive Coordinator, Quarterback Coach, and Director of Strength and Conditioning for the 2019 National Championship football team at St. John Bosco High School. To help you prepare for your next season, Coach Lo has shared a weekly plan for your entire offseason that can help you enhance your skills and excel at your specific position.

Outlined below are two workouts that can help you increase your speed or up your power and strength. It’s recommended that if you’re a wide receiver, running back, defensive back, linebacker, or tight end, you focus on the speed workout, and, if you’re a lineman on either side of the ball, the power workout is geared towards you. Depending on your position, you may need to adjust the amount of weight or reps, but Coach Lo’s guidelines well help you establish a good starting point.


Speed Workout (WR|RB|DB|LB|TE)

Outlined below is Coach Lo’s seven-week speed program – designed to boost your straight-line and lateral speed, and improve your quickness on cuts and change of direction. As mentioned before, these workouts provide the basic guidelines, and depending on your offseason goals of adding mass and strength along with speed, you can adjust the amount of weight or reps. For example, linebackers, tight ends, and power backs should focus on gradually adding more weight during lifts than other positions in order to maintain a strong base. During the first week, it’s also recommended that you run through the workout with little or no weight in order to gauge how your body responds.

Recommended Speed Workout Gear for Lifting: Nike Romaleos 4, Harbinger Big Grip Pro Lifting Straps, Harbinger Cotton Lifting Straps, adidas Powerlift 4.

Recommended Speed Workout Gear for Running: Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 37, Nike Dri-FIT Featherlight Cap, Nike Spark Cushioned Crew Run Socks, Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit.

Monday (Lower Body Lift + Linear Acceleration)

  1. Activation
    1. Glute Bridges (3 x 10)
  2. Lift
    1. Weeks 1-4
      1. Work to build strength
      2. Start with 5 reps each set
      3. Each week add weight and take away 1 rep each set
      4. Back Squats (4 x 1-5)
      5. Glute Ham Raises (4 x 5)
      6. Barbell Bulgarian Split Squats (4 x 5 each leg)
    2. Weeks 5-7
      1. Keep weights lighter and move as explosively as possible
      2. Depth Jumps (4 x 5)
      3. Barbell Bulgarian Split Squats (4 x 4 each leg)
      4. Glute Ham Raises (4 x 5)
  3. Core
    1. Planks (3 x 1 min)
  4. Run – Linear Acceleration
    1. Get Up Starts (10 reps @ 10 yards)
    2. Low Hurdle Wickets (5 reps @ 20 yards w/ 10 yard build up)

Tuesday (Upper Body Lift + Change of Direction)

  1. Activation
    1. Wall Slides (3 x 10)
  2. Lift
    1. Start with 5 reps each set
    2. Each week add weight and take away 1 rep each set
    3. Repeat the cycle after you finish
    4. Bench Press (4 x 1-5)
    5. Pull Ups (4 x 5-8)
    6. DB Row (4 x 5-8 each arm)
    7. DB Incline Bench (4 x 5)
  3. Core
    1. Side Planks (1 x 1 min each side)
  4. Run – Change of Direction
    1. Cone Drills – Star Drill
      1. Instructions
        1. 10 yard x 10 yard box with cones every 5 yards
        2. Start in the middle at the bottom of the box
        3. Sprint into the middle of the box and transition to finish at each cone
          1. Sprint – Finish straight ahead
          2. Sprint – 45 degree break to left front corner cone
          3. Sprint – 90 degree break to left middle cone
          4. Sprint – 45 degree break to the left back cone
          5. Sprint – 180 degree to the start cone
          6. Repeat all reps to the right side
      2. Sets and Reps
        1. 1st round start first 5 yards into the box with a sprint
        2. 2nd round start first 5 yards into the box with a back pedal
Star Drill

Wednesday (Lower Body Lift + Skill Day)

  1. Activation
    1. Band Walks (3 x 10 forward, backward, left, right)
  2. Lift
    1. Weeks 1-4
      1. Work to build strength
      2. Power Clean (4 x 5) Weights at a level to focus on fast bar speed
      3. Single Leg Romanian Deadlift (4 x 5 each)
      4. Box Step-Ups (4 x 5 each)
    2. Weeks 5-7
      1. Work to build power and explosive speed
      2. Lateral Bounds (4 x 5 each leg)
      3. Lunge Jumps (4 x 5 each leg)
      4. Power Clean (4 x 3)
      5. Kettlebell Swings (4 x 10)
  3. Core
    1. Lying Leg Lifts (3 x 15 each)
  4. Skill Day – Route Running or DB Work

Thursday (Skill Day)

  1. QB|WR Timing, drills, 1 on 1, 7 on 7

Friday (Upper Body Lift)

  1. Lift
    1. Incline Bench (4 x 5)
    2. Bent Over Row (4 x 5)
    3. Curls (3 x 10)
    4. Tricep Extension (3 x 10)
    5. Shoulder Raises (3 x 10)

Saturday – 7 on 7 Tourney or practice

Sunday – Active Recovery | Rest Day

  1. Dynamic Warm Up (5-10 min)
  2. Yoga (15 min)
    1. Pigeon Stretch
    2. Downward Dog
    3. Cobra Stretch
    4. Sumo Squat
    5. Kneeling Lunge
    6. Trunk Twists
    7. Lying Hamstring Stretch

Power Workout (OL|DT|DE)

If you’re looking to build up your power and strength in the trenches, Coach Lo has also outlined a workout focused on increasing your muscle mass and explosiveness off the line. Below you’ll find another seven-week program designed for linemen on both sides of the ball.

Recommended Power Workout Gear for Lifting: Nike Romaleos 4, Harbinger Pro Training Gloves, Harbinger 5” Foam Core Belt, Nike Metcon 5.

Recommended Power Workout Gear for Running: adidas Ultraboost 20, Gatorade 32 oz. Contour Squeeze Bottle, Nike Dri-FIT Head Tie 3.0, Under Armour Hovr Sonic 3.

Monday (Lower Body Lift + Linear Acceleration)

  1. Activation
    1. Glute Bridges (3 x 10)
  2. Lift
    1. Weeks 1-4
      1. Work to build strength
      2. Start with 5 reps each set
      3. Each week add weight and take away a rep each set
      4. Back Squats (4 x 1-5)
      5. Glute Ham Raises (4 x 5)
      6. Bulgarian Split Squats (4 x 5 each leg)
    2. Weeks 5-7
      1. Back Squat (4 x 1-5 reps)
        1. Complex with Depth Jump (4 x 5)
      2. Glute Ham Raises (4 x 5)
      3. Walking Lunges (4 x 5 each leg)
  3. Core
    1. Planks (3 x 1 min)
  4. Run – Linear Acceleration
    1. Get Up Starts (10 reps @ 10 yards)
    2. Position Stance and Starts (10 reps @ 10 yards)

Tuesday (Upper Body Lift + Change of Direction)

  1. Activation
    1. Wall Slides (3 x 10)
  2. Lift
    1. Start with 5 reps each set
    2. Each week add weight and take away a rep each set
    3. Repeat the cycle after you finish
    4. Bench Press (4 x 1-5)
    5. Pull Ups (4 x 5-8)
    6. DB Row (4 x 5-8 each arm)
    7. DB Incline Bench (4 x 5)
  3. Core
    1. Side Planks (1 x 1 min each side)
  4. Run – Change of Direction
    1. Cone Drills – Star Drill
      1. Instructions
        1. 10 yard x 10 yard box with cones every 5 yards
        2. Start at the middle at the bottom of the box
        3. Sprint into the middle of the box and transition to finish at each cone
          1. Sprint – Finish straight ahead
          2. Sprint – 45 degree break to left front corner cone
          3. Sprint – 90 degree break to left middle cone
          4. Sprint – 45 degree break to the left back cone
          5. Sprint – 180 degree to the start cone
          6. Repeat all reps to the right side
      2. Sets and Reps
        1. 1st round start first 5 yards into the box with a sprint
        2. 2nd round start first 5 yards into the box with a shuffle
Star Drill

Wednesday (Skill Day)

  1. OL | DL Drill work

Thursday (Lower Body Lift + Agility Day)

  1. Activation
    1. Band Walks (3 x 10 forward, backward, left, right)
  2. Lift
    1. Weeks 1-4
      1. Work to build strength
      2. Power Clean (4 x 5) Weights at a level to focus on fast bar speed
      3. Romanian Deadlift (4 x 5)
      4. Box Step Ups (4 x 5 each)
    2. Weeks 5-7
      1. Work to build power and explosive speed
      2. Lateral Bounds (4 x 5 each leg)
      3. Lunge Jumps (4 x 5 each leg)
      4. Power Clean (4 x 3)
      5. Kettlebell Swings (4 x 10)
      6. Box Step Ups (4 x 5 each)
  3. Core
    1. Lying Leg Lifts (3 x 15 each)
  4. Agility
    1. 4 Corners
      1. 5 yard x 5 yard box with 4 tall cones at the corners
      2. Stand in the middle of the box
      3. Partner points to 1 of the 4 cones
      4. Touch the corresponding cone and return to the middle for the next direction
      5. 3-5 commands per set
      6. 10 reps

Friday (Upper Body Lift + Skill Day)

  1. Lift
    1. Incline Bench (4 x 5)
    2. DB Bench Press (4 x 5)
    3. Bent Over Row (4 x 5)
    4. Curls (3 x 10)
    5. Tricep Extension (3 x 10)
    6. Shoulder Raises (3 x 10)
  2. Skill Work – OL | DL drill work

Saturday – 7 on 7 Tourney or practice

Sunday – Active Recovery | Rest Day

  1. Dynamic Warm Up (5-10 min)
  2. Yoga (15 min)
    1. Pigeon Stretch
    2. Downward Dog
    3. Cobra Stretch
    4. Sumo Squat
    5. Kneeling Lunge
    6. Trunk Twists
    7. Lying Hamstring Stretch

Looking for more from Coach Lo? Check out his tips for a successful recovery after a tough workout here!

6 Summer Speed Training Tips: Get Faster All Season Long

6 Summer Speed Training Tips: Get Faster All Season Long

No matter what sport you play or how hard you train, you can never be too fast. And, when it comes to adding speed, there’s no better time to separate yourself from the pack, literally, than the summer. Putting in the extra work on agility drills and speed workouts now will give you that added burst you need to dominate your upcoming fall sport season. So, let’s get right to it — here are some handy speed training tips that are sure to help you leave your peers in the dust:

 1. Perfect Your Technique

Let’s make something clear … before you start doing cool workouts you need to master your technique. Having the proper running form is the essential first step in any speed training regimen. When starting a new drill, take it at a slower pace, focusing closely on proper technique, before taking it up a notch.

2. Add In Some Resistance Training

Incorporating additional resistance, like parachutes, into your speed workouts is the perfect way to gain some speed. Your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves will all put in some extra work and your top speed will start to rise.

Athlete speed training by running up hill.

3. Run For The Hills

Uphill repeats are a great way to improve in a variety of areas. As you push upward, you’ll work all sorts of muscles — from your lower legs to your hip flexors to your back, and the added incline also forces you to use the correct running form.

4. Make Some Time For Plyometrics

Plyometric exercises are all about exerting a maximum amount of force in a short burst of time. Standing long jumps, box jumps, and forward bounds are some of the best ways to upgrade your explosiveness and burst.

Athlete doing box jumps to increase her speed.

5. Fuel Up The Right Way

Proper nutrition and hydration are just as important as any of the steps listed above. Before a speed workout, make sure you have a carbohydrate-rich snack. During the workout, don’t forgot to stay hydrated. And afterwards, rehydrate your body while also consuming a healthy snack within the first 30 minutes. These steps are essential if you want to get the most out of every workout.

6. Don’t Forget To Recover

When you really push yourself, be sure to give yourself an easier workout the next day. When you feel exhausted post-workout, consider getting a good night of sleep. When your body is feeling strained or sore, think about getting a massage or trying yoga. You need to give your body time to build back up and get stronger.

Four Reasons Donte Jackson Is So Fast

Four Reasons Donte Jackson Is So Fast

4.32 seconds.

When rookie corner Donte Jackson posted that crazy 40-yard dash time this March during football’s biggest scouting event, he put the football world on notice. He tied for the fastest time out of all 2018 prospects and made it clear that he was going to enter the pros as one of the fastest players around. His head-turning speed helped him get drafted in the second round by Carolina, where he’ll be expected to contribute early and often.

Donte Jackson 1

But before that opening kick September 9 against Dallas, let’s break down how Donte has become so dangerously fast.

His Track Background

Football isn’t the only sport Donte excels at — at LSU, he was a gold medalist in the 4×100 relay at the SEC Outdoor Track & Field Championships. His experience sprinting shows up big-time on the gridiron, where his acceleration, quickness, and explosiveness are second to none.

His Training Regimen

Donte Jackson Featured

Speed isn’t something Donte has always had, it’s something he constantly works on. “Some of the workouts I use to help me get faster are sled pulls and hurdles,” Donte said. “I like to do a lot of core work as well, to help me not only run fast, but be able to for a long time.”

His Mindset

Being the fastest player on the field isn’t just a physical challenge, it’s about having the ultimate mindset too. “(Carolina) is getting someone who is always going to fight and compete,” Donte said. “In the weight room, in the locker room, in the training room — no matter where I am — I’m  always going to be preparing and getting ready to go out there and play.”

His Gear

Donte Jackson 2

The lightest cleats for the fastest player — for Donte, lacing up in adidas adiZero 5-Star cleats was an easy decision. “As a corner, I need something light and something that I can stick into the ground and get in and out of my breaks,” he explained. “That’s why I love adiZero.”

 


So, this fall, make sure to keep an eye out for #26 on defense for Carolina. He may only be a rookie, but with his speed and competitiveness, it won’t be long before he races ahead of his peers.

The Secret Behind Boris Berian’s Speed

The Secret Behind Boris Berian’s Speed

Boris Berian Story 2

Every pro runner dreams of being one of the greats — of leaving their permanent mark on the record books and taking home hardware. But while every runner shares these dreams, only the very best can make it happen.

What does it really take to be the best? Talent isn’t enough. Elite coaching isn’t enough. The strictest training isn’t enough. There has to be something else – something powerful that drives you.

You have to believe. Believe that running is what you were put on this earth to do. Believe that this is your destiny. And you have to hold on to that belief no matter how many obstacles life throws in your path.

Boris Berian has this belief. And when he found himself working at a fast food restaurant without a team or a coach and training alone after his shifts, it was all he had to hold onto.

Boris Berian Story 1

“I didn’t have anybody pushing me, anybody giving me positive energy,” Boris said. “It was all just discipline from myself. I had workouts that I had saved from college, so I based my training on that and did everything on my own.”

As an athlete who thrives on seeing positive energy and positive progress, Boris found this harsh reality difficult to accept.

“I didn’t know for sure what I could do, so sometimes I was thinking ‘what if I can’t get myself to that level? What if this was all just a waste of time?’ Some days were really tough like that, but I told myself I still have to try. I can’t just give up.”

Stuck in an impossible situation, Boris refused to accept that his career was over. Running was it for him, and he couldn’t walk away.

Boris Berian Featured

“I had a feeling deep in my gut,” Boris said. “I couldn’t give up running just yet. All through high school, my coaches got me to a pretty good level and it completely surprised me. My first year in college, I had another huge breakout, and knowing what I could do if I really pushed myself…I kept on holding onto that.”

The crazy thing about belief? It’s contagious. The coaches of Big Bear Track Club, based in California, had noticed Boris’ collegiate career and were curious where the 800m phenom had been hiding. So they came calling.

“It was a huge relief,” Boris said. “Back then, I didn’t know there were as many running groups as there are. That’s why I never really reached out to anyone. So when there was a coach and team that were interested in me, I was really excited and really relieved.”

For Boris, being back on a team instantly returned joy to the sport he loved.

Workout of the Month: Speed Ladder Drills

Workout of the Month: Speed Ladder Drills

January Workout of the Month

You can have all of the speed in the world, but if you can’t cut, pivot, stop, or change directions on a dime, that speed won’t do you any good.

This is why as an athlete, continuously working to improve your agility, coordination, and balance is key. That is where speed ladders come in. And thanks to our partners at Stack.com, we have come up with four agility speed ladder drills to help you take your game to the next level.

For optimum performance, these drills should be done together after a dynamic warm-up one to two days a week.

Lateral Shuffle

Stand with the ladder to your left. Shuffle laterally through ladder, placing one foot in each box so that both feet are never in the same box at the same time. Repeat in opposite direction.

Lateral Change-of-Direction Shuffle

Stand with the ladder to your left. Using the same technique described above, shuffle to your left for two boxes, then step towards start for one box. Continue this pattern through entire ladder. Repeat in opposite direction. When you feel you’ve mastered the technique, try varying the number of boxes you shuffle.

Quarter Turns

Stand facing the ladder with your left foot in the first box and right foot to the right of that same box. Hop and rotate 90 degrees counterclockwise, so your right foot is in second box and left foot is still in the first box. Hop back to the starting stance, only now your left foot should be in the second box with your right foot outside. Continue this pattern through the entire ladder, then repeat in the opposite direction.

Quarter Turn T-Drill

Stand facing the ladder with your left foot in the first box and right foot to the right of the box. Hop and rotate 90 degrees clockwise, so your right foot is in the first box and left foot is in second box. Hop back to the starting stance, with your left foot now in the second box and right foot outside of second box. Continue pattern through entire ladder, and repeat in opposite direction. For an additional challenge, hold a medicine ball throughout the drill.


For more workout tips, check out last month’s Workout of the Month post that covered kneeling exercises.