Randy Couture Workout and Diet
Born in Washington state, Randall ‘The Natural’ Couture played a lot of other sports including football, soccer and skiing, but his true love was wrestling which he began in middle school. Couture won a state championship as a high school senior. He spent 6 years in the army, learned Greco-Roman wrestling and attained the rank of sergeant. Couture is a 3-time Olympic team alternate (’88, ’92, ’96). He debuted in UFC 13 in 1997 and holds 6 UFC Championship titles in different divisions. After a temporary retirement, he returned to the UFC and at age 43, he became the oldest champion in the history of the MMA. He appeared in a few films including The Expendables, reality tv shows such as Pros vs. Joes, Dancing With the Stars and Impractical Jokers, as well as Hawaii Five-O and The Unit. Couture also works as a coach for fighters and owns a chain of gyms called Xtreme Couture. He is considered to be one of the best MMA fighters of all time and was inducted into the International Sports Hall of Fame in 2012. Couture is 3x divorced and has 3 children; he lives in Las Vegas. He has hundreds of thousands of followers on social media. Couture is 6 feet 1 inch tall and weighs about 215 lbs.
Randy Couture’s Diet
Couture used diet to move down from the heavyweight to the light heavyweight division in the UFC by increasing the amount of greens he eats and decreasing his intake of animal products and refined foods as part of his alkaline diet. Acid-producing foods include animal products, dairy, processed grains and sugar. Stress also causes acidity to increase, causing health and performance to suffer, while leafy greens are highly alkaline and promote pH balance in the blood. He credits his longevity in the sport to his diet which he says has given him a lot of energy and overall makes him feel better. He eats 5 times a day, which he considers to be somewhat of a chore. He does not like to count macros or calories, and so he keeps it simple by eating whole, natural foods. He drinks water, but says he sometimes forgets while he’s training because he doesn’t get breaks.
- Low-Medium Fat 30% 30%
- Medium Carb 40% 40%
- High Protein 60% 60%
A K.I.S.S. Plan
Couture is all about simplicity. He eats whole foods and avoids the junk. He says if you make things too complicated for yourself, you’ll give up.
Couture focuses on eating ‘live’ foods, meaning leafy greens, at every meal. He drinks a lot of green smoothies made with spinach and other greens, and takes shots of wheatgrass juice.
Foods that Couture avoids include red meat, poultry, dairy products and all refined foods and sugars. Instead, he eats fish, nuts and legumes.
Couture says it’s important to drink room-temp water because cold water can cause your stomach to knot and then you’ll throw up.
One of Couture’s favorite treats is avocados and fresh veggies on yeastless toast.
Couture loves ice cream, but because he is avoiding dairy, he goes for cookies instead when he wants a treat. His advice is to accept that you will slip up. Everyone wants ice cream once in a while, just be sure get back on the wagon at the next meal.
What to Eat
Complex Carbs: oatmeal, brown rice, whole-grain pasta, etc.
What to Avoid
Couture on Healthy Eating
‘Changing your lifestyle is about finding the right diet. The right diet isn’t even a diet. It’s a lifestyle change that isn’t about restriction, but loving to eat greens and healthy things.’
Couture on Keeping it Simple
‘The harder, more cumbersome it is, the more you’re going to let yourself down.’
Couture on his Alkaline Diet
‘There was a huge difference when I changed my eating habits when I went to a high alkaline diet, more natural raw food diet…I get the muscle soreness, but I seem to recover faster and better.’
Couture on Getting his Veggies
‘I try to eat greens a lot, because they’re very alkaline. They counter the acidity that we build up from training, from stress, and everything else in our bodies.’
Couture on Carbs
‘Carbs earlier in the day: the oatmeals, the pastas, the rice, everything like that. Later in the day, the proteins, to help recover after a workout.’
Randy Couture’s Workout Routine
Phone A Friend
Couture says finding an exercise partner who shares your goals is very important to keep both of you motivated.
Couture says he focuses a lot on core exercises. He does higher reps with lighter weights.
Couture always lifts weights, but before a fight or when training for a film such as The Expendables, he follows a mixed routine that combines strength and circuit training to max out his musculature.
AM & PM Workouts
Couture does different routines at different times of the day. In the morning, he’ll do conditioning workouts, and spars in the evening.
Couture’s training schedule goes something like this: 2 days boxing/kickboxing, 2 days wrestling, grappling, MMA, and 1 day playing shark bait (tied up and have other guys gang up on you).
Couture may use a bungee cord harness, but he also practices with a partner in the ring.
Whether it’s sprints or strength routines, Couture will do his circuits in a way that mimics a fight.
As he approaches an event, Couture adds more cardio into his routine. He might use the treadmill, StairMaster or Aerodyne bike. He does not like running on asphalt.
A Randy Couture Expendables Routine
Weighted pull-ups: 10/8/6 reps x 3 sets
Medicine ball slam: 5 reps x 3 sets
Kettlebell deadlift: 8/6/4 reps x 3 sets
Mountain climbers: 10 sec x 3 sets
Kettlebell press: 10/8/6 reps x 3 sets
Medicine ball chest press: 5 reps x 3 sets
Bent-over lateral raises: 10/8 reps x 2 sets
Alternating kettlebell swings: 10/8 reps x 2 sets
Band triceps pressdown: reps to failure x 2 sets
Couture on his Exercise Routine
‘The biggest thing I learned is that…I was continually overtraining. I wasn’t allowing my body time to recover.’
Couture on Workout Partners
‘I think that you are really only as strong and good as your workout partners. They are a very, very important piece of the puzzle.’
Couture on Outdoor Training
‘I used to do a lot of public training on the track when I was younger, but it’s just too hard on the joints.’
Randy Couture’s Supplements
Couture takes testosterone because it boosts athletic performance, along with heart and sexual health.
Lean Body Mass Booster
Couture also supplements with a legal, safe anabolic accelerator that supports the production of human growth hormone (HGH).
Couture is a big fan of the live version, but even he sometimes takes a greens supplement to make sure he’s getting plenty of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other phytonutrients.
To be sure he’s meeting all of his nutritional needs, Couture will supplement with a multivitamin.
Couture avoids dairy, and he likes hemp protein because it offers the complete array of amino acids but is made from plants.
Flaxseed oil is a plant source of omega-3s, which combat inflammation and support cardiovascular health and healthy cell function.
Randy Couture’s Lifestyle
Letting Off Steam
Couture likes to do a steam room to relax, but not to cut weight.
Due to an Army clerical error, Couture got assigned to Greco-Roman wrestling rather than regular wrestling, and he made the team despite never having tried it before.
(Don’t) Walk It Off
While working out one day in October of 2019, Couture felt chest pain. When it didn’t go away, he walked to the local ER because traffic was bad. Turned out, he’d suffered a massive heart attack. Doctors inserted a stent to fix the problem, and he also has to have blood drawn regularly because it is thick and prone to build up.
Not a Pushover
Couture took on the UFC for conflict of interest between the organization and fighters over rankings, titles and revenue.
Couture on Finding his Niche
‘In some way, I felt I was never good enough until I started fighting. I was always striving to show my worth and value.’
Couture on his Heart Attack
‘Contrary to recent rumors, I have not kicked the bucket yet.’
Couture on Life
‘If losing a fight is the worst thing that’s every happened to you in your life, you’re doing pretty good.’
Couture on Success
‘I picture success and winning. The body has a physical response to mental images of winning.’
Couture on How to be a Champion
‘Learn from your mistakes, make adjustments and go out and compete again. That’s the mark of championship spirit.’