Football Timeout Workouts

September 27, 2009 by  


  Rob Zulkoski – Football Timeout Workout


(Tampa Tribune)

Published: October 11, 2007

It’s the weekend, so you know the drill.

Beer? Check.

Pizza and chicken wings? Check.

Twenty hours of football? You better believe it.

If you find yourself huddled around the TV during most of your waking weekend hours, you’re not alone. But what if you want to watch your waistline while you’re watching the game?

Get moving — in your living room. For every TV timeout, you’ve got two minutes to squeeze in 20 reps of five exercises. With about 10 commercial breaks per half, that’s 2,000 reps for the game!

Don’t worry; it’s easier than it sounds. Take it from certified personal trainer Rob Zulkoski, owner of RobZFitness in Valrico. He helps clients mainly with weight loss, toning and body conditioning.

Zulkoski, 39, is a die-hard football fan. He roots for the Nebraska Cornhuskers, the University of South Florida Bulls and the Tampa Bay Bucs.

To break up the strength training, Zulkoski suggests taking a brisk walk or jog around the neighborhood during halftime. Hey, his game plan could have you burning 300 to 500 calories. That could earn you three Michelob Ultras (95 calories for a 12-ounce bottle), a slice of a supreme Pizza Hut pizza (390 calories per slice of a large hand-tossed pie) or five hot wings from KFC (350 calories).

“The important thing is you won’t miss a second of the game while hitting all your major muscle groups: the chest, legs arms and, of course, the abs,” he says.

You might want to try this workout, which Zulkoski already has some of his clients doing during weekend games.

Kick It Off

For the first half, you’ll do squats, crunches, push-ups, lateral raises and bicep curls — 20 of each — during each commercial break. All you need is a set of dumbbells.


Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a pair of dumbbells at your side. Lower your body, bending at the hips and knees as if you are going to sit in a chair. Put more weight on your heels than your toes, bringing your thighs parallel to the floor. Don’t let your knees extend beyond your toes. Return to start and repeat. Your glutes and quads will thank you.


Lie on your back with your legs bent. Plant your feet about shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms straight out in front of you with one hand on top of the other. Crunch up, reaching your hands between your knees. Return to start and repeat. Feel the burn in your abs.


Lie face-down on the floor with your hands under your shoulders and your toes planted. Straighten your arms and lift your body up, keeping your head in line with your body. Lower until your elbows are bent 90 degrees and repeat. Think about chiseling your chest.

Lateral Raises

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and a dumbbell in each hand at your sides. Raise your arms up and out to the side until they reach ear level. Return to start and repeat. Your palms should be facing down during this shoulder-sculpting move.

Bicep Curls

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, dumbbells in each hand. Curl your arms toward your chest, keeping your elbow under the shoulder and next to your body during this move. Welcome to the gun show!


“Instead of putting your hand in the nacho dish, go out for a 10- to 15-minute run,” Zulkoski suggests. A brisk walk will work, too. Take Fido if that will help motivate you.

Second Half

We’re going to mix it up a bit for the second half. You’ve still got 20 reps of each exercise: lunges, crunches, push-ups, frontal raises and tricep bench dips. You’ll hit 2,000 reps before you know it.


Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a set of dumbbells at your side. Step forward with your right leg into a lunge and return to start. Lunge forward with your left leg and return to start. Repeat for 10 reps on each side. If you want to make this more advanced, instead of alternating legs, do 10 reps on one side, then 10 reps on the other. This will rock your glutes and quads.


Lie on your back and put both hands behind your head. Bend your left leg with your left foot on the floor, and raise your right foot off the ground at a 45-degree angle. Crunch those abs. Raise your left leg on the next set.


You know this one.

Frontal Raises

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart gripping dumbbells in each hand. Start with the dumbbells in front of you, with your palms facing your body. Raise both arms to eye level, return to start and repeat. This is all about sculpting the front of your shoulders.

Tricep Bench Dips

Sit on the edge of a couch with your hands next to your hips, palms on the edge. Push your butt off the seat, straighten your arms and bring your legs out until they are slightly bent. Lower your body until your elbows are bent 90 degrees, and return to start. Keep your elbows back during this move. To make it more advanced, straighten your legs to really work your triceps.


How much could you burn while watching your favorite matchups — all from the comfort of your own living room?

A 180-pound guy who does 10 two-minute strength-training bursts during the first half would trim about 160 calories. Ditto for the second half. He would walk off about 78 calories during the 15-minute halftime, or jog away 163. That’s 398 to 483 calories gone.

A 140-pound woman on the same plan would burn 140 calories during each half of the game, as well as walk off 60 calories or jog off 127 calories during halftime. That’s anywhere from 340 to 407 calories zapped.

For more information about Rob and his personal fitness training studio at RobZFitness visit or call him at (813) 571-3700.


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