Miguel Cabrera’s Triple Crown Workout

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Miguel Cabrera’s Triple Crown Workout

I think by the time this post is up Miguel Cabrera would have secured winning the first triple crown in the major leagues since 1967 when Carl Yastrzemski did it for the Boston Red Sox.  I was curious to see if there was any information on Miguel Cabrera’s workout routine that could be found on the internet that I could share with you.  I didn’t find much, but like always I’ll add my two cents worth of what he could or should be doing.

First let’s talk about the accomplishment Cabrera did.  The triple crown is having a share of the lead or leading your league in homeruns, runs batted in, and batting average.  It has only been done something like 15 times in baseball history by 9 different players.  A pretty rare accomplishment.  You usually see someone hit for power and can lead in the homer and RBI category, but usually not disciplined enough to hit for average.

All Miguel Cabrera has done since entering the league is be a hitting machine.

The guy’s a big dude, standing at 6′ 4″ and 240 pounds.  He entered the majors at age 20 and his average year is 180 hits, 32 homers, 112 RBI, and batting .318.  So after 10 years he has 1802 hits, 321 homers, and 1123 RBI.  We were wondering what Albert Pujols was going to do the second half of his career, well this guy could be even more interesting.

What I found on his workout routine was geared for him to shed pounds.  He has had the propensity to creep up on the scale.  He’s been lucky throughout his career and not received any real major injuries.  With the exception of his rookie year, he has missed at most 4 games in any one season.

In 2008 before he was traded to the Detroit Tigers, Cabrera hired a personal trainer to help his weight loss and also get him to understand about eating and taking care of his body.  This was probably the smartest decision he could have made.  He didn’t have a history of injuries before 2008, so why wait until you get injured to learn how to take care of your body.  Be preemptive and do it now while you are young.  Develop your body into something special when you are at your physical peak, plus it will help reduce the chances of injury as he starts to get older and possibly less lucky with the injury bug.  If he does get injured, after working out for several years, his body should be able to bounce back quicker.

And with his natural baseball talent, adding a workout routine and getting healthier will make him very, very, dangerous.

Cabrera hired personal trainer, Sean O’Brien, owner of Perfect Competition near Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  O’Brien wouldn’t give away anything specific as to what he did with Cabrera (like this is top secret government files we’re talking here), but he said that they did a combination of speed work, agility drills, conditioning, and strength training.  Wow, a shocker.  I would have never figured out it consisted of those items.

What was especially key though, was explaining to Cabrera why this was important.  Teaching him how to eat better was also an eye-opener.  Young athletes are like the general population, most don’t understand about exercise and nutrition because their bodies are so young and responding to anything in a positive way.  We assume because he is a professional athlete that he does the perfect workout routine and eats perfect all the time.  I’ve trained enough athletes to know that isn’t necessarily the case.  So learning this was vitally important to Cabrera.

Since we really don’t know what he did to lose the pounds, I will make some guesses.  The conditioning was utilized to help burn calories, not so much to get him into game shape, until he got closer to spring training.  Early on probably 20-30 minutes on a cardio machine and as the season approached switching to interval training.  Changing his diet around contributed even more to the calories getting burnt and losing the fat.  Combine that with the strength training that enhanced his power, but also developed the lean muscle to really speed up his metabolism and he was good to go.

I’m assuming the strength training workout was a total body workout, with an emphasis on developing balance.  Baseball players usually bat and throw primarily with one side.  This side becomes way more dominant than the other side.  Thus, you are susceptible to more injuries.  Doing core work and balance work to equal out the two sides is a top priority.  Finally, I’m guessing the speed and agility work was used primarily to enhance the quickness on defense.  He was never a speedster on the basepaths, so his immediate surrounding quickness is more important.

If this guy stays healthy, I think we will be looking at potentially a hall of famer if not one of the all-time hitting greats.  The guy is a machine and is 29 this year.  He has the chance to obtain monster numbers.  As long as he continues to eat right, stay in shape, and avoid the legal issues he has had in the past, he’ll be setting himself up very favorably.

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  1. Radhi Muhammad October 26, 2012 at 2:22 am - Reply

    Hello,

    This is Radhi Muhammad, Miguel Cabrera’s personal trainer since fall of 2009 when he fired Sean O’Brien. There are a lot of aspects that go into his off-season and in-season training program. All of it revolves around complex sets and strength-power exercises. It is one hour of speed and agilities with one hour of work out programs that are fit to his biomechanical evaluation at the end of every season. He is a great athlete with an awesome work ethic.

    Radhi Muhammad CSCS, ACSM C-PT
    CEO/Head trainer of 4.40 Fitness & Athlete Development

    • Adam Kessler October 26, 2012 at 11:07 am - Reply

      @Radhi – Thanks a lot for commenting on the post. You must be on pins and needles after the Tigers dropped two in San Fran. Hopefully, they can turn it around in Detroit. If at any point, you would like to do a guest post or interview for my site, please don’t hesitate to ask.

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