SGPT Interviews MMA Athlete and US Marine Robert Suter

Tell us about your background.

I was raised in Peachtree City, GA and I wrestled and played soccer in high school.

I joined the Marine Corps in 2001 (straight out of high school) as a diesel mechanic. I did 3 tours in Iraq. I stayed in [the USMC] for 8 years. I got out as a Sergeant. I began training (passively) in MMA around that time.

When training are you focused solely on fight performance, or training for life in general as well?

In 2010, I started taking MMA seriously. At that point I was focused on sport specific training. When I moved camps to Team Octopus, Jeff Perry demanded I went to strength and conditioning with Brandon Richey. That’s when I learned about functional strength training.

When looking at your strength and conditioning program did you feel you were able to fill certain gaps, or meet certain needs with a particular program?

Brandon’s program immediately filled numerous gaps, most of which I was completely unaware. I sustained numerous spinal injuries while serving. I instantly noticed strength where I lacked, and flexibility where I was previously stiff, and an alleviation of pain. My overhead press shot up, my neck pain subsided, and I drastically increased my vertical. This was the only time in my life I could actually dunk a basketball. I also noticed an ability to sustain explosive strength deep into my fight rounds.

On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being very little and 10 being the max what would you rate the influence of your strength and conditioning on your overall performance when competing?

I would give my strength and conditioning contributions a 10. There is no doubt my overall athleticism and explosive conditioning was drastically improved.

How much emphasis do you place on strength and conditioning and building athleticism to be a better fighter, or to perform for you current life needs?

I believe that anyone who wants a good standard of living, especially as they age, should take part in a strength and conditioning program. However, I would not just recommend any program, but rather a program designed by a well versed and UP TO DATE strength and conditioning coach who researches constantly to protect their students from poor technique and injury.

I came to realize that I was constantly over-training and sore on a regular basis. Brandon would politely ask me to take time to attend to recovery work, and give me in depth explanations on what would help me and how to do those things properly. He would ask about my training schedule and suggest better times and days to take classes so I could better manage my recovery with days off.

He never made blind suggestions. He would always ask me for all the information and he would talk me through his reasoning. His input paid off every time. I believe it’s also important to mention that Brandon was always attentive to me and all of his students and could head off technical (and other) issues before those issues turned into a problem.

I believe that If you want to fight today you need to cover all of your bases. A good and caring S&C coach is the best way to go about doing that.

Are you preparing for a fight now?

I’m out of the fight world now. My doctor’s insisted that because of the injuries I sustained from my service that continuing to pursue a fight career would not be wise to do.

Do you have any product recommendations (supplements, equipment, etc.) that you prefer to use to help with performance? Note: If you don’t have a recommendation I can auto-fill what my students use.

I take a supplement called D.P.O.L., Animal Packs, creatine monohydrate, and with fish and krill oil. I am 100% convinced that they all work. I tried a lot of supplements and this stack works great for me.

For me maintaining a healthy gut biome is more important than any supplement. I believe it’s important to stay away from processed foods, heavy carb diets, and wheat. I’m a big believer in maintaining a steady diet of vegetables, healthy fats, and (my preference) free ranging animal protein. All of this will do wonders for the body.

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Part of being a bada** is making sure you have a good foundation of nutrition. Here at the SGPT Underground Bunker, we supplement with Athletic Greens!

One scoop powers you up with 11 important superfoods and essential vitamins and amino acids, keeping you healthy and on track with your nutrition goals.

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QUESTION: Coach Brad—thanks for all your awesome articles and workouts. One thing that’s happening is I’m getting raw where my clothes and ruck rub. Do you have any products or ideas to help with this? Thanks.

ANSWER: Check out this article of SGPT’s top ten anti-chafing creams.

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QUESTION: Hi, Brad. My apartment gym got a Concept 2 rower and I’m really liking the workouts I get. Got any workout tips I can start using?

ANSWER: Check out this article I wrote with a ton of rowing tips.

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