grind

Kanye West’s Trainer Don-A-Matrix on How to Stay Fit on Your Grind

The man behind Hollywood's most sculpted bodies

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Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Wellness Your Way Festival

Fitness guru to the stars Don Brooks, aka Don-A-Matrix, is used to working with clients in a time crunch, from professional athletes to entertainers like Josh Duhamel, will.i.am, the Kardashians and Kanye West. Which is why his namesake training method, modeled to resemble a sports game format, is set up to get the most out of a training sesh in the least amount of time. But you don’t need to be one of his A-list private clients or even pop into his LA studio to reap the benefits of Don’s expert advice (or routines, thanks to his on-demand videos). Whether you’ve got back to back meetings, or are spending the summer traveling, he’s got the pro-tips for staying fit during your hustle. If Yeezy can find the time to work out, so can you.

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What workouts does Kanye typically do with you?

 

Brooks: With Kanye, we focus primarily on workouts that help him burn fat and tone up. Our workouts are intense and controlled—similar to my Don-A-Matrix signature workout method. For Kanye, I like to mix it up with exercises that incorporate resistance bands and Bosu balls to allow for increased versatility in the workouts.

 

You work with a lot of celebs with busy schedules. What’s your advice on managing to fit in workouts?

 

Brooks: For a lot of the celebrities and entertainers I work with, it’s all about being flexible and finding the time in your day to make it work. There are definitely days when I’m heading to Kardashian house or gym at 4, 5, or 6 in the morning—just to be sure they can get their workout in early before the day gets crazy for them. Be flexible and prepared when it’s showtime is key for me.

 

How about working out while traveling for work?

 

Brooks: I get this question a lot because so many celebrities and regular clients I have are constantly traveling and on the move. It may seem daunting sometimes to work out while traveling, but it’s all about being prepared, having the ability to carve some time out of your day and just going for it. Before you travel, ask yourself: What do I need to be comfortable for a quick workout? Check out some local gyms and fitness centers if there’s not one in your hotel. Many of the workouts I use can be transferred anywhere.

 

What are your packing essentials to make sure you can always get in a sweat sesh while traveling?

 

Brooks: Comfort and preparation are key, especially if you know you’re going to be working out on the road. I make sure to have my favorite workout gear always, and a resistance band that I use often in my workouts. I also, if I can, bring a BODYARMOR LYTE with me wherever I go. It has potassium-packed electrolytes, coconut water and vitamins and is low-cal/low-sugar so it’s great for fueling my workouts and helping me recover faster.

 

How would you recommend motivating yourself in the face of jetlag?

 

Brooks: Just stay with it. There are going to be times when you want to relax, not workout, give up, whatever it might be—especially when you’re traveling—but try not to. It’s important to keep going and push through it. That feeling of accomplishment is very rewarding once you’re finished.

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