Beyond the Ordinary: Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece's Innovative Workouts

Posted on February 22, 2024

Beyond the Ordinary: Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece's Innovative Workouts


Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece are renowned fitness icons recognized for their athletic achievements and commitment to maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle. They are both over 50 years old and are not showing signs of slowing down soon.


Laird Hamilton put his name on the global map with his fearless approach to riding massive waves. He is a legendary surfer known for pushing the boundaries of the sport. Hamilton showcases his diverse athletic pursuits, including surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, hydrofoil boarding, and other water-related activities on his official website. His wife, Gabby Reece, transitioned from being a former professional beach volleyball player and model into a multifaceted career as a fitness expert, author, and motivational expert. On her official website, she provides insights into her fitness philosophy, nutrition tips, and overall wellness strategies. You can also see her active lifestyle and dedication to staying fit and healthy on her Instagram account.


Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece


Both Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece are considered longevity experts. Their dedication to clean nutritional habits, embracing new challenges, and incorporating diverse and inventive workout routines demonstrate that age is not a barrier to pursuing and maintaining a high fitness level. They serve as role models for those who wish to maintain a vibrant and active lifestyle well into the years.


This article takes a closer look at the power couple's approach to staying active and the nutrition that keeps them fueled. We get insights about what motivates them and the strategies that have made them successful in their fitness pursuits.


The Foundation: Traditional Workouts

Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece prioritize a holistic health and longevity approach. They emphasize foundational workouts, including strength training, cardiovascular exercise, and flexibility. As a married midlife couple with three kids and managing a clothing and beverage brand, they must carve out time to stay fit. They recommend five lifestyle strategies that can help you get leaner, stronger, and healthier amidst the hustle and bustle of life. 


  • Make fitness an automatic part of your routine so that you don't have the option of skipping it. Hamilton compares it to brushing your teeth. Once you practice brushing your teeth daily, you'll hardly wake up and think twice about whether to brush. Hamilton and Reece advise you to make exercise a scheduled, structured, and predetermined part of each day to ensure you stay on track.
  • Give yourself a six-week window in which you commit without expectations. Whatever you commit to, whether walking daily or doing resistance training weekly, just ride it out for four to six weeks to see how adaptable your body is when you stay the course. Getting into fitness with high expectations can be discouraging, which makes it difficult for you to commit. 
  • Identify ways to manage stress throughout the day so that you can get even more from your exercise and diet efforts. Unmanaged stress can stall or reverse the effects of eating well and exercise.
  • Always remember how it feels after you go through with an exercise. Hamilton says that you will hardly ever regret doing something active as opposed to if you skipped the chance.
  • Hamilton emphasizes the need to find balance and not push too hard in any direction. An overall wellness strategy includes sleep, nutrition, stress management, and regular doctor checkups.


Foundational Workouts Recommended by Laird and Gabby


  • Strength Training

Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece acknowledge the importance of strength training in maintaining overall health and functionality. Strength training helps build and tone muscles, contributing to bone density and joint health. The duo incorporates resistance exercises such as weightlifting and bodyweight movements into their workout routines to enhance physical resilience and counteract the natural decline in muscle mass accompanying aging.


  • Cardiovascular Exercise

Cardio exercises play an essential role in heart health and overall fitness. Hamilton and Reece include cardiovascular workouts to enhance endurance and maintain cardiovascular health. The duo is inclined to activities like swimming, surfing, and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to add variety and fun to their fitness routines.


  • Flexibility

Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece embrace flexibility in their fitness. Flexibility contributes to improved mobility, reduced risk of injuries, and overall functional fitness. They demonstrate their commitment to flexibility through practices like yoga and stretching exercises.


Hamilton and Reece advocate for a well-rounded fitness approach that combines strength training, cardiovascular exercise, and flexibility. Dedication to these foundational workouts reflects their commitment to overall health and longevity. It also inspires people of all ages to pursue a balanced and sustainable fitness regimen.


Riding the Wave: Surf-Inspired Workouts

Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece incorporate surf-inspired elements into their fitness routines by embracing water-based exercises and dynamic movements. This involves pool workouts, underwater workouts, breath work, and balance training. The surf-inspired elements create a diverse and effective routine that mirrors the dynamic challenges of surfing and eventually contributes to improved strength, endurance, and overall fitness in a manner inspired by the legendary Laird Hamilton.


Laird developed XPT's Extreme Pool Training to train during his off-season. The training was designed to help him prepare for being held underwater after wiping out on a giant wave, but it has, over time, developed into much more. The surf-inspired workout is not just about being underwater but more about your ability to move through the water more efficiently, confidently, and effortlessly. It involves breath-holding exercises, underwater weights, and dynamic movements in the water. Combining strength training, cardiovascular exercise, and breath work creates a comprehensive, surf-specific training approach.


In the distinctive surf-inspired radical underwater workout routine, Hamilton capitalizes on the resistance and buoyancy of water to create a challenging yet low-impact environment. He employs routines like the reptile crawl and the ammo carry to manipulate your essential human ability to adapt to stress and push your physical and mental limits, ramping up your performance.


Unconventional Strength: Laird's Innovative Approaches

Hamilton's commitment to innovation and efficiency shines through in his pursuit of unconventional yet effective strength training. His exercises encompass many methods, from beach workouts that utilize the natural environment to quick, high-intensity routines that use special equipment. The legendary surfer emphasizes functional strength and ensures that the body is conditioned for real-life challenges. Some of his creative approaches to staying active include:


  • In his beach workouts, Hamilton uses the natural environment for resistance training with sand sprints, beachside lunges, and surfboard resistance drills. 
  • He also introduces quick five-minute high-intensity workouts that provide a time-efficient yet intense approach to building strength. 
  • Hamilton further shows his commitment to innovative workouts by incorporating unconventional movements like lateral jumps and rotational exercises to challenge the body in new ways. He also uses alternative equipment and tools like the Indo Board, battle ropes, and the WaterRower to enhance his approach.


Total Body Wellness: Gabby Reece's Approach

Gabby Reece embraces a holistic approach to fitness and well-being. She emphasizes physical strength, balance, mobility, and overall health. Reece advocates for a holistic approach that factors in physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Her perspective extends beyond traditional fitness routines to enlighten people on the importance of a balanced and sustainable lifestyle for overall health and happiness


  • She shares her go-to fitness tips, highlighting the importance of balance, mobility, and flexibility. Reece suggests including yoga and Pilates into your workout routines to improve flexibility and mobility, fostering a well-rounded and functional fitness foundation.
  • Gabby Reece also sheds light on her approach to achieving and maintaining strong abdominal muscles. Beyond the aesthetics, abs are essential for core strength for overall health and functionality. According to her, all different aspects of fitness are interconnected and thus require a rounded approach that includes strength training, cardiovascular exercise, and mobility work. Her workout routine incorporates a variety of exercises ranging from weightlifting to surfacing to showcase this. 
  • Reece also acknowledges the importance of rest and recovery. Don't overdo it; you need to give your muscles and body a chance to recover because that is just as important as exercise. 


The Power of Creativity: Unique Workouts from Laird and Gabby

Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece infuse creativity into their workout routines through diverse modalities, unconventional equipment, and unique training environments. This dynamic and innovative approach keeps their workouts exciting and contributes to their fitness routines' overall effectiveness.


Hamilton believes that minor tweaks to your exercises can make a big difference to the results. You don't have to invest in expensive equipment or completely turn around your routine for maximum effectiveness. By creatively adjusting or adding a few elements, you can kick away monotony and challenge your body in new ways. His creative workouts include the use of unconventional equipment, underwater workouts, quick, high-intensity workouts, and extreme performance training (XPT). Reece's fitness creativity includes functional movement patterns, mind-body connection, and surfing as a dynamic element.


Blending Fitness into Their Relationship

Hamilton and Reece lead by example, demonstrating the importance of an active lifestyle and clean nutritional routines to their kids. Despite both having careers in the fitness industry, the couple never works out together, except during pool or breathing exercises. They are, however, accountable to each other and always work together on ideas and information. Both have developed unique workout programs, with Reece's program involving high-intensity circuit training that combines multiple facets and Hamilton's program, including underwater workouts and breathing exercises.


Both Hamilton and Reece pay as much attention to nutrition as they do to fitness. They try to limit their food choices as close to the source as possible. They eat whole, real food with their kids and are inclined to the Paleo-style diet. They have all developed a habit of taking smoothies in the morning, as it is an easier way to get nutritional benefits they might miss out on during the day. The smoothies contain greens, proteins, minerals, and enzymes. The couple also makes a point of having dinners at home to bond and spend time together as a family.


Balancing Act: Laird and Gabby's Take on Recovery and Relaxation

Recovery is critical in fitness. Hamilton acknowledges the intensity of his workouts and the role of proper recovery to prevent injuries, optimize performance, and sustain longevity in his athletic pursuits. Reece also recognizes recovery as a vital component that aligns with her holistic approach to health and well-being. Both athletes agree on the importance of allowing the body to recover and rejuvenate to facilitate muscle repair and growth and optimize performance.


Some favorite relaxation and recovery techniques for Hamilton include:


  • Hydrotherapy involves alternating between hot and cold water exposure. This is thought to help enhance circulation, reduce inflammation, and soothe muscles.
  • Incorporating functional movement patterns and stretching into the recovery routine to maintain flexibility, reduce muscle stiffness, prevent injury, and improve performance.
  • Mindful breathing techniques and meditation.
  • Engaging in active recovery with low-intensity exercise promotes blood flow and minimizes muscle soreness.

Reece's approach to recovery includes:


  • Yoga and Pilates for physical and mental recovery. These practices help improve flexibility, core strength, and mindfulness.
  • Hydrotherapy and cold plunges.
  • Deep breathing and relaxation exercises help reduce stress, enhance mental recovery, and support overall well-being.
  • Massage and bodywork to release tension, improve circulation, and alleviate muscle soreness.

Laid and Gabby's Favorite Products

Both Hamilton and Reece express a preference for whole foods and plant-based options. Being athletes, they focus on nutrient-dense foods to ensure that they receive all the essential vitamins and minerals. Reece has been open about enjoying occasional treats, emphasizing the importance of having a balanced attitude toward food and recognizing that occasional indulgences can be part of a healthy lifestyle. Their brand, Laird Superfoods, evidences their commitment to clean nutrition. 


Hamilton avoids excessive consumption of processed foods, sugars, and refined carbohydrates, and some of his favorite products from Lairds Superfoods provide healthier substitutes. Reece is also mindful of her nutrient sources. Some of her favorite Laird Superfoods products fulfill her diverse and nutrient-rich demands.



Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece are a dynamic power couple. They are both in great shape, maintain clean nutritional habits, and succeed in their fields. But to reach the height of their success, they had to establish what reflected their personalities and what they enjoyed doing as individuals. The lesson from this is that everyone should identify what works for them in staying active, as it will be easier to sustain the habit. Hamilton and Reece also highlight the importance of extending yourself grace and learning to maximize the little opportunity available to do something good for your body. Their age is also a great motivator that, with consistency, our bodies can make outstanding physical achievements.

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