Fitness Tips From Upton's Trainer

By Jacque Wilson, CNN

updated 7:15 AM EST, Sat February 16, 2013


  • Fitness trainer David Kirsch started working with Kate Upton in August
  • Upton did a strict cardio and sculpting boot camp, Kirsch says
  • Bikini model also followed Kirsch’s ABCs: no alcohol, bread or processed carbs

(CNN) — OK, we can admit it. Even though Kate Upton spent six days in Antarctica [1]posing in minimal clothing in below-freezing temperatures — which she says led to hypothermia and frostbite — we’re jealous.

Why? Um, because we don’t look like that in a bikini.

Upton is the first model to be picked to do back-to-back covers for Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition since Tyra Banks appeared for the second time in 1997. And you only have to look at the photos to figure out why.

Fitness trainer David Kirsch[2] started working with Upton in August to prepare for the December photo shoot. We reached out to ask him about her exercise regimen, the biggest mistakes he sees clients make at the gym and why a strong mind is just as important as a strong body.

CNN: What was Upton’s training schedule like?

David Kirsch is a wellness expert and celebrity fitness trainer.

David Kirsch: The idea was to step up the intensity and duration of the workouts, making it a strict cardio and sculpting boot camp that entailed body weights and resistance bands, sprinting and calisthenics, shadow- and kickboxing.

At the beginning, we worked out seven days a week, twice a day. Then we brought it down to five to six days a week for one hour a day.

CNN: Was there a specific area she needed or wanted to tone?

Kirsch: Kate has beautiful, feminine curves, and I didn’t want her to lose a crazy amount of weight. The goal was to lengthen and tone her thighs and inner thighs, and keep her butt perky.

It wasn’t about dramatically changing her body; I didn’t want to do that. Just tighten, tone, lengthen.

CNN: What was the most difficult thing for Upton? What was the easiest?

Kirsch: Most difficult for her was the sprinting — getting up to a sprint was challenging. And the easiest was the boxing and kickboxing, mostly because she loved kicking my ass!

CNN: Do you have a training motto or No. 1 rule for your clients?

Kirsch: My training philosophy is sound mind, sound body. That is my No. 1 rule. That and follow my ABCs: no alcohol, bread or processed carbs.

CNN: What is the biggest obstacle people face in getting to the gym?

Kirsch: I think the biggest obstacle for most people is that they don’t think they have the time to work out. But if you follow my advice and do my express workouts, or break your exercise into 10- to 15-minute increments throughout the day, you’ll find that you have plenty of time to exercise in small doses.

CNN: What is the most common mistake you see people make while working out?

Kirsch: They don’t subscribe to my mind-body philosophy of training; they’re not doing the correct exercise for their body type, or they’re distracted, socializing, using PDAs instead of focusing and visualizing.

CNN: Give our readers the ultimate piece of advice — something you’ve learned over the years that they might not know.

Kirsch: The mind is more powerful than any muscle in our body. With our mind focused, we can will ourselves to unbelievable greatness.

We don’t imagine we’ll be posing on the cover of Sports Illustrated anytime soon, but maybe with Kirsch’s tips we won’t be as afraid to shed our cover-ups come summer. Share your favorite workout or nutrition advice on Twitter with the hashtag #getfit[3].


  1. ^ six days in Antarctica (www.cnn.com)
  2. ^ David Kirsch (twitter.com)
  3. ^ #getfit (twitter.com)

Original Story Here


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  1. Reply

    Anyone Know Some Good Fitness Tips? I’m really bad at running, and I would like to loose a few pounds, so I was wondering if anyone could give me some simple fitness tips? Just a simple fitness regime, please.

      • HealthNut
      • February 19, 2013

      Avoid elevators and escalators,,
      climb stairs,, walk long distances every single day.
      hour of cardio at your target heart rate every day.
      stretch properly afterwards or you wont want to come back tomorrow which blows the whole plan.

      good luck

    • Isy
    • February 19, 2013

    I Want To Lose A Few Kilos But Not A Heap, Dieting And Fitness Tips..? I weigh 58 kilos, and I don’t really want to lose too much weight, maybe 5 or 6 kilos, but I mostly just want to tone up. Do you know any dieting/fitness tips? I’m going to the gym 5 times a week, and on the days I’m not there I’m going for a run. Any tips on what to spend my time on at the gym? Thank you x

      • HealthNut
      • February 19, 2013

      Dear Isy,

      One thing you need to understand is that you have to work hard if you want to change the shape of your body. That means a balance of medium-high intensity cardio exercise along with challenging strength training workouts.

      For weight loss, you’ll need to get about 5 cardio workouts each week at a medium-high intensity for at least 30 minutes. If you’re a beginner, it’s best to start slow and work your way up but, if you’re in good condition and have no restrictions, challenging yourself with harder workouts is the best way to burn more calories. Interval training is a good choice because studies show you continue to burn calories even after you’ve stopped exercising.

      In addition to your cardio workouts, you’ll need to lift weights for all your muscle groups at least 2 non-consecutive days a week. And, by lifting weights, that means using enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps. For example, if you’re doing 12 bicep curls, you need to use enough weight that you can only do 12 bicep curls and not one more. Most people don’t lift enough weight to really challenge their muscles.

      What you need to engage in is a well balanced all rounded diet with considerable physical exertion over a prolonged time period. Food can be broken down into 5 major groups. These groups are carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals and water. The body needs varying amounts of these types of food so that the adequate amount of nutrients is supplied to the body. A well-balanced diet does not mean an equal amount of each type of food, as our body requires more of some nutrients than others.

      Each type of food plays a significant role in our body but excesses or deficiencies of certain types of food can also harm the body and produce a negative impact on our health.

      It is very important that we know how much of each type of food we are supposed to consume and that we eat in a sensible way. This means eating regular meals at “least” three times a day and drinking plenty of water, but what I would suggest is breaking it down to 5 smaller meals a day and having your last solid meal before 6pm after that you are only allowed to have pure low fat milk a mug or two would be a good idea to cut down on excessive cravings.

      Hope this answers your question.

  2. Reply

    How Can I Increase My Metabolic Rate? Which exercise/fitness tips can you give me to increase my metabolic rate? Also if you can explain the science behind it, I would appreciate it.

      • HealthNut
      • February 19, 2013

      -Eat breakfast. You metabolism is slow in the morning becasue you have been fasting all night. Eating breakfast revs it up.
      -Eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day. Same principal, when you go to long without eating your metabolism slows. Eat something at least every 3 hours.
      -Build muscle through resistance training. The more muscle you have the higher your metabolic rate because muscle is active tissue and burns calories even at rest.
      -Drink lots and lots of water. Being sufficiently hydrated makes you body carry out its metabolic processes more effiecintly.

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