The Unconventional 13-Minute Workout That Helps UFC Fighter Conor McGregor Knock Out Opponents In 13 Seconds | Men's Health Magazine Australia

The Unconventional 13-Minute Workout That Helps UFC Fighter Conor McGregor Knock Out Opponents In 13 Seconds

UFC fighter Jose Aldo hadn’t lost in 10 years – until Conor McGregor knocked him out in 13 seconds with a left hook on the chin. 


How’d he do it? “Aldo is powerful, and he’s fast,” said the new champion. “But prevision beats power, and timing beats speed.”

Truth is, McGregor thinks traditional strength training is overrated. “People are so caught up in routine, doing the same thing over and over. I want to be an expert in many different things.”


That’s why he connected with the Israeli movement specialist Ido Portal, whose innovative approach borrows elements of martial arts, dance, circus, athletics, somatics, and other disciplines. McGregor says he began studying Portal’s methods on YouTube late in 2013, and eventually reached out so they could work face-to-face. 

The fighter believes the unconventional training quickly helped him become a better fighter. “I’ve learned new footwork patterns,” he says. “I’ve learned how to find a lower centre of gravity and found more angles to throw shots.”

Emphasising graceful movements may sounds hippy-dippy, but it works, says Marco Sanchez, a trainer at Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning. “Improved movement mechanics let you put your body in positions that enable you to make greater strength gains.” 

Tight muscles sap power. This daily routine, inspired by drills from McGregor’s movement guru Portal, will help you unleash your full potential.


Do the exercises as a “flow.” Start with the first move, hold it for the allotted time, and move directly to the next. Continue until you’ve flowed through the first 5 movements. Then hold the sixth move for the time prescribed. The entire round should take 13 minutes total. 

Perform 1 to 3 rounds total, or do 1 round as a warmup to your regular strength routine.You can also do 1 round on your rest days.

Related: This Man Stretched 10 Minutes a Day For a Month. Here’s What Happened


  • Breathe deeply throughout. Deep breaths help relax tight muscles.
  • Don’t worry if you can’t get into a position—just stretch as deeply as you can while maintaining good form.

1. Flexion Gapping

Kneel with your hands on the floor. Place your left ankle behind your right knee. Sit as low as you can, and move your hips side to side very slightly. Do this for time; switch legs and repeat. Time: 1 minute per side

2. Low Lunge

Put your left leg forward with your right leg stretched behind you in a lunge position. Lean forward with your right hand on the floor and left hand near your foot, your elbow pressing your left knee outward. Push your hips toward the floor, feeling the stretch in your hips. Hold for time. Switch sides and repeat. Time: 1 minute per side

3. Low Side Lunge

Assume a side lunge position with your right knee bent and left leg outstretched to your side. Lean forward and place your hands on the floor. Sink into the stretch, pushing your hips toward the floor as low as you can. Hold the position for time; then switch sides and repeat. Time: 1 minute per side

4. Deep Toe Squat

Assume a squat position with your feet close together, heels elevated slightly, and fingers on the floor for balance. Hold for time. You should feel the stretch in your hips, ankles, and lower back. Time: 1 minute

5. Hinge Hold to Deep Squat

With your legs straight, hinge at your hips and lower your torso while keeping your back straight. You’ll feel your hamstrings stretch. Hold the position for 5 seconds. Drop your butt and descend into a deep squat, with your torso as straight as possible. Hold the position for 5 seconds. Reverse the move and repeat 10 times. Spend the rest of the time in a deep squat, using your elbows to push your knees outward. Time: 4 minutes

6. Dead Hang

Hold a pullup bar using an overhand grip; flex your abs and glutes. Hang, breathing in and out deeply. You should feel the stretch in your lats.Time: 1 to 2 minutes

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