Although most of will never step in the Octagon, adopting the condition, stamina, and high-intensity training of an MMA athlete will do wonders to help you achieve your fitness goals. To show how easy it is to train like a professional mixed martial artist, we hosted a workout with UFC Bantamweight Marlon “Magic” Moraes and had him share his favorite workouts, along with his supplement routines and timing.

“I want to show everyone they all can do an MMA workout, just using their bodyweight, and that it is not complicated,” Marlon explained.

Get inspired with his workout routines below. And feel free to modify them as needed to fit your own fitness goals.

Getting Warmed Up 

“Before a workout, we always warm up, and I'm going to run you through a fairly quick warmup, just to get our blood going and get our body moving,” Marlon said. Here’s how a top UFC fighter gets his blood flowing before diving into higher intensity reps.

MMA Warm up routine

 

Forward shoulder circles

10 seconds

Backward shoulder circles

10 seconds

Cross-body shoulder stretch left

10 seconds

Cross-body shoulder stretch right

10 seconds

Cow face pose left

10 seconds

Cow face pose right

10 seconds

Wide-leg toe touch

10 seconds

Wide-leg toe touch (hold left foot)

10 seconds

Wide-leg toe touch (hold right foot)

10 seconds

Wide-Legged Forward bend

10 seconds

Invisible jump rope

20 reps

Alternating forward leg kicks

10 reps

Squat jumps

10 reps

 

Getting by with a little help from Thorne

In addition to warm-ups, Marlon incorporates Thorne’s sports performance products into his pre- and post- workouts to maximize performance and recovery.

“I'm proud to be representing Thorne and using their supplements before, during, and after a workout. The quality of my life got so much better since I started using Thorne,” Marlon said. 

“There are three that I always use that help me. I use Creatine for lean mass. I fight at 135 pounds, so the guys are fast, and I have to be lighter. So I use the Creatine to help me with my performance, my stamina, and my training daily. And I feel great since I started. Amino Complex is the post-workout . . . the taste of the lemon is amazing. And every day I can't wait for a hard workout and to have my Amino Complex right after. It helps me get all my amino acids, the recovery between training, and since I started using it, I train, I take it, and the next day I feel fully recovered.” 

“And as you all know, I live in Florida, and the Vitamin D 5,000 helps me a lot, because especially now that winter is here, I need to make sure I'm healthy, my bones are healthy, and my body is strong,” Marlon said.

(Click here to explore Thorne’s NSF Certified for Sport® line or jumpstart your fitness routine by taking a quick product quiz.)

“So, all these Thorne supplements help me a lot. And the other thing that I feel is that they all help my immune function. I don't remember the last time I was sick. My body feels 100 percent!” 


Practicing the Basics

After revving up with some warmups, it’s time to start channeling your inner fighter.

“We're going to start with a couple of techniques, but I want to remind you guys that as you fight, you always have to protect yourself,” Marlin said. “You can't fight with your hands down. So keep your hands up and your hands going to protect you from incoming punches.”

Jab

10 seconds

Cross

10 seconds

Jab + Cross

10 seconds

Jab + high knee (opposite leg)

5 reps, switch to other side

Jab, cross, then knee

5 reps

Jab, cross, switch stance, knee

5 reps

Jab, kick

5 reps

Jab, cross, switch stance, kick

5 reps

 

After tackling the basics, Marlon dives a bit deeper into technique.

“I want to go over the details with you guys – the sprawl. The sprawl is when someone tries to take you down and you want to avoid that situation. So, as you're doing a sprawl, the movement is the same movement of a burpee,” he said.

“When you do a sprawl, you put your hands on the ground and you kick your leg back and your head down. So you're standing, you sprawl, hand down, head down. So, let's do the sprawl five times.” 


Jab, cross, sprawl, and knee

5 reps

Rest

5 seconds

 

“Take a break, breathe a little bit, if you want have a sip of your Amino Complex – I’m going to have a sip of mine,” Marlon says.

Jab, knee, kick, then switch

5 reps

Jab, cross, kick, then knee

5 reps

 

Round 1: On the offensive 

“Now I'm going to put you through three rounds of workouts,” Marlon said. “This isn’t hard training, it's pretty easy, you just need a timer.”

Jab + cross

30 seconds

Sprawl, jab + cross

30 seconds

Alternating high kicks

30 seconds

Jab, cross, then kick

30 seconds

Rest

1 minute

 

Round 2: Defensive measures 

Round 2 focuses on punches, kicks, knees, and take-down defense. “By yourself you can work on the defense and the counters,” Marlon explains. 

Jab, sprawl, then knee

30 seconds

Leg kicks, right leg

30 seconds

Leg kicks, left leg

30 seconds

Jab, sprawl, knee, kick

30 seconds

Rest

1 minute

 

Round 3: Finish strong 

“Now,” Marlon says, “We’re going to finish the last round, focusing on our core, we're going to make some abs exercise with pushups, and just be sure our last round we are pushing ourselves.

Sit-ups

30 seconds

Alternating leg raises

30 second

Leg raises, both legs

30 seconds

Pushups

30 seconds

Rest

60 seconds

 “That's it for the workout. Make sure you drink your water, take your Amino Complex,” Marlon says, “And let's get stronger for the next one.”


Don’t forget recovery

Whether you’re training for an MMA match or just trying to set your personal best at the gym, recovery is a crucial part of any workout.

“What Marlon needs to recover and what his body needs, is actually the same as yours,” explains Thorne’s Director of Sports Science, Joel Totoro.

“When you do training, your body is damaging your muscles, but it's on purpose. I call it intentional trauma. Your body doesn't know you're doing it on purpose, at least for a little while. So the amino acids are the part of the protein that literally flips a switch in your muscles from breaking down to recovering. If you've gone a bit out of your comfort zone and had that next-day soreness, that’s damage done after you stopped working out but before you started the recovery window.”

“So amino acids for sure are one supplement you really need,” Joel continued. “And I'd say the other thing for sure, for everyone, is hydration. I think a lot of us walk around a bit more dehydrated than we think. I know we've all probably done one of the jug challenges and realized how much we don't drink throughout the day. Catalyte is one of the products we use a lot with active individuals. It contains the electrolytes and minerals you lose in sweat. It's matched to do that. You're putting back into your body what you’ve taken out, and a lot of times with our athletes, pre-loading what you're going to lose before you take it out.”

“So I'd say those two, I think, will take a lot of us pretty far. I'm also a big proponent of creatine, and not just for elite athletes. It's what I call a multi-vitamin for the muscle. It provides a little bit of extra energy, and we actually see it more impactful as we get older, as our bodies are naturally going to start losing some muscle. Creatine really helps there and for overall muscle health. And we're finding more and more it's also a fuel for the brain and it aids in cognition. So those are my big three for recovery,” Joel said.

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