Trainer to the stars Gunnar Peterson has whipped A-list bodies from JLo to the Rock and the Kardashians into shape. These are the 6 gym moves that he says you should do
Think of an A-lister with an insanely sculpted body and it’s likely they train with Gunnar Peterson. The acclaimed Texan personal trainer who runs his eponymous and star-studded studded gym in Beverly Hills , has been making celebrities do burpees for three decades. His clients include Jennifer Lopez (above, left, working out at Gunnar's gym with bestie Dwayne Johnson) various Jenners and Kardashians (he was the featured trainer on Khloe Kardashian's Revenge Body and is pictured above right her) as well as Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara, Kate Beckinsale Hugh Jackman – or should that be Jacked Man? – plus Rebel Wilson, who recently lost 60 pounds. He’s also worked with elite athletes across various sports, including Mike Tyson and David Beckham (below).
Now Brits can benefit from Gunnar’s fitness wisdom; he’s been appointed chief of athletics at F45 Training gyms, the UK chain which has studios across the UK, including London, Brighton and Manchester (see here to 'find an F45 gym near me.') Multiple of friends of ours here at Get The Gloss rave about these addictive 45-minute HIIT and strength training session. We're also fans of its new little sister FS8, which opened its first UK studio in London's Oxford Circus at the end of 2022 with workouts combining reformer Pilates, weights and mat exercises using weighted balls and a Pilates ring.
Gunnar has now created a bespoke workout exclusively for Get the Gloss readers to do the gym. So bookmark the below and use it as fresh inspiration. If you’ve fallen into a rut of just plonking yourself on an exercise bike at the gym and watching TV for 30 minutes, Gunnar’s programme will help you shake things up a bit and use your gym time more efficiently.
We can’t promise you JLo’s bod, but we can promise you a full-body work that’ll build strength and fire up those endorphins. Ready to feel the burn? Over to you, Gunnar…
1. Deadlifts - for everything from glutes to back strength
Gunnar says: “This is a great exercise as it works so many muscle groups - glutes, hamstrings, core, back and trapezius muscles. It is so important you do these properly to ensure best results without injury. Make sure to focus your weight onto your heels and keep the bar as close to your body as possible. Grasp the barbell with your hands at shoulder width apart and squat down. Keeping your chest up, look ahead as you lift the bar, ensuring you pull your shoulders back and down. If you’re new to deadlifts, work your way up, using lighter weights and doing more reps, say eight to ten. If you’re more advanced, go heavier and try a six to eight rep range.”
2. Jack-knife your core
Reps: 10-12. Sets: 2-3
Gunnar says: “This exercise targets abs. Start by lying on your back with your arms outstretched overhead. For best results, ensure your arms and legs are always slightly elevated off the ground throughout. Fold your arms and legs together to meet above your midriff, making sure your abs are contracting. Then slowly ease your arms and legs back to your starting position. Try 10-12 reps of this exercise and aim to complete two to three sets. Rest for 60 seconds between sets.”
3. On-the-spot sprints to get your heart rate up
45 seconds on, 15 secs off. Sets: 3
Gunnar says: “I recommend running as fast as you can for 45 seconds, followed by a 15-second break time and repeating this three times. Short sprints are an excellent way to get the heart pumping and your body going, as well as adding in that little bit of cardio to extra boost your fitness regime. These can be done outside the gym or on a treadmill.”
4. Dumbbell Squats to Twisting Press for core, glutes and arms
Beginners 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps. Intermediates 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps. Advanced do 3-4 sets of 10-15 reps.
Gunnar says: “This exercise with the added twisted press is a fantastic way to target your core muscles, in addition to working your glutes and arms. Hold your dumbbells at shoulder height with your elbows bent and palms facing each other. Lower down into a squat position and as you rise, press the weights overhead and rotate your torso to one side. Lower yourself back into a squat and repeat the twist on the opposite side. As you progress, increase the weight of the dumbbells.”
5. Bicep Curls for upper arm strength
Reps: 3 sets of 8 and build up your weight
Gunnar says: “I feel everyone should include bicep curls in their regime because they are so simple and an effective way to help build upper arm strength, working the arm muscles, while bracing your core. Hold two dumbbells by your thighs with your palms facing outwards. Use your biceps to lift the dumbbells until they are shoulder height and then lower back down and repeat. An effective way to progress with these is to hit your target reps and sets then increase the weight by a small amount next time. For example, if you do three sets of eight reps at a specific weight, increase this by 1-2kg on the following attempt and then build this up to a weight that doesn’t compromise your form.”
6. Crunches with a Ball Toss
Reps: 8-12 reps. Sets: 3
Gunnar says: “Place a yoga mat on the floor near a wall and lie down on your back. Place your feet on the floor, hip-width apart and knees bent. Contract your abs and inhale and exhale as you lift your upper body towards your knees, into a V shape, keeping your head and neck relaxed. Once you reach that V shape, throw your ball at the wall and catch it. Once you have caught the ball, slowly lower back down, keeping your core engaged. These can be done with a medicine ball, ranging from 3-8kg depending on your strength levels and can be repeated for three sets, eight to 12 reps each. They primarily work your abdominal muscles and hips.”
F45 Training for more information.