Chris Hogan didn’t start out as an obvious champion. He played both football and lacrosse at college but when he tried to make it on a professional level, luck just wasn’t on his side.
He joined the NFL as an undrafted free agent in 2011 and went on to be signed by the San Francisco 49ers, the New York Giants and then the Miami Dolphins, but was released by each team before the regular season. In 2012, he became a member of the Buffalo Bills’ practice squad and began appearing in regular season games.
Success was finally rewarded in March 2016, when Chris, a restricted free agent, signed a three-year offer sheet with the New England Patriots, one of the most successful teams in NFL history. With Chris on their side, the Patriots became the first team to reach nine Super Bowls in the 2016–17 playoffs and faced the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI, resulting in their fifth Super Bowl victory.
Chris, now 28 and an MHP athlete, reveals the secrets behind his training, nutrition and what his first year with the Patriots has been like.
What is your training schedule?
I do my offseason workouts at Freak Strength, a performance training gym located in Oakland, New Jersey, with movement specialist, Mike Guadango. He is definitely the best trainer I have ever had; he’s young and is constantly learning about training and ways to make us better every year.
My fitness goal is to be in the best possible condition to play the entire football season at a high level, so I’ll make it out to the gym about six times a week. Monday, Wednesday and Friday are my leg and sprint days while Tuesday and Thursdays are my upper body days. I give myself one day of rest.
What’s your go-to workout?
First I foam roll my lower body then I move into some banded stretches, hip flexors, glutes and hamstrings.
After that I begin my warm-up starts on the ground with some leg raises, front and side. I do glute activation, lunge series, A skips, B skips and running As.
Afterwards I do some tempo work, which includes 5x side shuffles, 5x back pedals, 5x forward sprints or tredsled sprints, all with abs and med ball throws in between.
Then I move to sprints and intense running before eccentric split squats, hip thrusts and some box jumps.
How important is nutrition to you?
Most of my meals are prepared and delivered by Eat Clean Bro, a New Jersey-based meal prep company which makes food that is both really delicious and fits my health needs.
I also use supplements as part of my daily nutrition regimen and always take my MHP Reckless™ pre-workout and MHP Super Premium Whey+ Protein post workout. They are essential in my diet to get the necessary protein, energy, and branch chains I need for workouts and recovery.
What has it been like since you joined the New England Patriots?
A lot has changed for me since I signed to the team. It has truly been a dream come true. Working alongside some of the best players out there and true professionals has been a great experience, to say the least.
There were a lot of setbacks before I joined the Patriots, but I knew I had the talent and motivation to compete at the highest level against the best. Plus, I had a great support system around me who kept reminding me of this; I had a goal in mind and a dream and there was nothing that was going to get in my way of achieving that.
Images Credit – Jim Rogash/Getty Images North America
What’s been the greatest challenge?
The greatest challenge throughout the season is staying focused and keeping all my priorities in line. I consider myself a family man, but my wife and I live apart from each other during the season because she’s in her residency as a podiatric surgeon.
It’s tough at times but we support each other 100% and are always there for one another. We just had twins this offseason, so being away from them this year will be another challenge but I know we will make it work!
What’s been the high point of your career so far?
Winning the Super Bowl was definitely my career highlight. Sharing that experience with my teammates and family was unforgettable; it is the best feeling in the world to achieve a goal that you worked so hard for.
A close contender to the Super Bowl would have to be the AFC championship game in New England. To have a record game for myself, with most of my family and friends there to watch, was amazing.