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6 Ways Tim McGraw Lost 40 Pounds

Tim McGraw did a complete overhaul of his diet and fitness. Here's how he stays in shape. 
FACT CHECKED BY Jeremy Horowitz

Tim McGraw is a lean mean country machine and is in the best shape of his life, but he had to revamp his entire lifestyle to get control of his health. The singer walked away from his partying ways and lost 40 pounds after his wife and fellow country singer Faith Hill gave him an ultimatum. "When things happen and you succeed beyond your wildest dreams and you're playing all these great shows and the parties are going on," McGraw told Hoda Kotb on the TODAY show, according to PEOPLE. "Then you're married and you have kids. And all of a sudden your wife looks at you and says, 'You know, you're getting a little overboard and you need to make some decisions.' It makes a big impact on you." The father of three quit drinking and started working out consistently, even on tour. From battle ropes to an ab roller, the 56-year-old shared how he stays fit on the road. Here's a closer look at McGraw's regime and what experts think. 

Battle Ropes

battle ropes for workout

McGraw has shown off his impressive outdoor gym while on tour. "This is one of my go-to workouts at home, but we use it quite a bit on the road too," he said. "It's called the bar complex and it's a combination of 10-12 exercises." After stretching, the first exercise he does is battle ropes to tone his arms and upper body. "Battle ropes are great for the upper body because they place tension on the muscles from the forearms, upper arms, shoulders and up into the back," ACE-certified personal trainer TJ Mentus, who is also a USA Weightlifting Level 1 Trainer, says. "The constant tension that it takes to rapidly move the ropes in the up and down motion as seen in the video is what helps to fatigue and build stronger and bigger upper body muscles."

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The Complex Bar


Next up is the bar complex and in the video McGraw is seen doing six reps of each move. Mentus says, "The barbell complex Tim performs involves the entire body with pressing, pulling, squats, and other movements. Complexes work a lot of muscle groups in one set and build strength and endurance at the same time as the sets can become very long."

Ab Roller


After the battle ropes and complex bar, McGraw then targets his abs with the ab roller, which according to Mentus is "one of the more difficult ab exercises," He explains, "It places a tremendous amount of tension on the core as the roller gets farther away from the body. Then the abs have to work extra hard to pull the roller back towards the body while still maintaining that deeper tension to protect the low back."

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Sled Push


To increase leg strength and muscle mass, the country singer does a sled push, which is an effective way to improve power and work out your lower body. "Sled pushing challenges the lower body and will build stronger glutes and quads as the legs and hips extend to move the sled," Mentus tells us. "These can also be used for conditioning in addition to strength building as the whole body is engaged while moving the sled which when done long enough will challenge the heart and lungs as well."

Hanging Knee Raises

fit woman doing hanging knee raises, concept of strength exercises for women to get instant abs

After the sled push, McGraw hits his abs again with hanging knee raises, which work the lower abdominals and hip flexors. "These muscles can often be challenging to target and weaker so strengthening them can help to improve imbalances in that area and help other movements," Mentus says.

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In an unconventional move that McGraw makes look easy, he takes a sledgehammer and hits a tire 20 times on each side, which works his shoulders, arms, and core. "It takes a lot of power to hit the tire hard with the hammer and then stability to control it so that the rubber does not make the hammer bounce out of your hands," Mentus emphasizes. "Those muscle groups generate the force to hit the tire and then tense up hard as it bounces off the tire. When done for longer sets it can be a good conditioning workout."

McGraw Does This Many Rounds


The variety of exercises McGraw does is an effective full-body workout and helps build strength and sculpt muscles. After he completes each move, he repeats a few times. "If we can get six rounds in, that's great," he said. "If we can get five rounds in, that's awesome." He concluded, "Most of the time it's between four to six rounds."  

Heather Newgen
Heather Newgen has two decades of experience reporting and writing about health, fitness, entertainment and travel. Heather currently freelances for several publications. Read more about Heather