Hollywood has a way of buffing up A-list actors for a high budget film. Just think of Henry Cavill in Man Of Steel, Ben Affleck as Batman, or Zac Efron in Baywatch. Even 45-year old Dwayne Johnson in Baywatch looked absolutely ripped and ready for a Mr. Olympia competition.
Are these stars that jacked up when not filming? Who knows…
You can add Chris Hemsworth to the list. Obviously, his role as Thor requires him to look like the living incarnation of a Greek god statue.
Naturally, one wonders the type of exercise regimen his personal trainer puts him through…
What exactly does the Chris Hemsworth Thor Ragnarok workout routine look like? And more importantly, are the results replicable for the average Joe? That is, can you achieve a Thor body without a personal trainer and without limitless access to expensive supplements?
Chris Hemsworth’s Training Routine
Hemsworth’s personal trainer for the Thor movies was Michael Knight, who heads Arts of Strength, a Michigan-based personal training service. According to Knight, Hemsworth’s training was split into two phases: a bodybuilding and fat-burning phase.
In essence, it’s a typical bodybuilding diet where you pack on as much muscle as possible (also gaining a bit body fat in the process) and then transitioning to a fat loss phase.
Hemsworth went through kettlebell routines consisting of heavy weights and low repetitions. For previous movies, the actor’s training was more cardio-based, consisting of lots of boxing and muay thai training.
The Chris Hemsworth training routine was a rigorous one, consisting of 60 to 90-minutes of heavy resistance training five days a week. This is on top of his 12-hour filming schedule.
Fortunately, you don’t have to train exactly like Chris Hemsworth to look like the man himself. The Kinobody method will allow you to achieve this superhero look while still being able to live a life outside of the gym.
The Kinobody Muscle Building Workout For Thor
With Kinobody training, you’ll be strength training three times a week on non-consecutive days.
This is the ideal approach for both muscle and central nervous system recovery. The training regimens are simple and generally goes as follows:
- Stick to four to six exercises per workout
- Do three sets per exercise; reduce the weight about 10% for the second set and another 10% for the third. This is known as reverse pyramid training.
- Rest three minutes per set
- Stick to the same exercises for four to six weeks before switching them up. We don’t buy into the whole muscle confusion theory.
- Occasionally, you may incorporate rest-pause training. Each set includes a normal set, a brief 10 to 15-second rest, and 3 to 4 more mini-sets with the same weight. This is ideal for reaching muscle hypertrophy and packing on a little extra size for the Thor look.
- For maximum muscle gains, it’s a matter of getting stronger week after week on your key lifts.
A Sample Thor Workout Routine:
WORKOUT A – UPPERBODY (CHEST EMPHASIS)
- Incline Barbell Bench Press: 3 sets RPT (2-3 mins rest between sets)
- Seated Cable Rows: 3 sets 6-10 reps, same weight all sets (2-3 mins rest between sets)
- Flat DB Bench Press: 3 sets RPT (2-3 mins rest between sets)
- Barbell Curls: 3 sets x 6-8 reps (2 minutes rest between sets)
- Skull Crushers: 3 sets x 8-12 reps (2 minutes rest between sets)
- DB Lateral Raises: Rest Pause 12-15 + 5 5 5 5 (15-20 second rest between sets)
WORKOUT B – LEGS AND ABS
- Barbell Squats: 3 sets RPT (3 mins rest)
- Romanian Deadlifts: 3 sets x 8-10 reps (2 mins rest)
- Leg Extensions: 3 sets x 10-15 reps (90 seconds rest)
- Calf Raises: 3 sets x 10-15 reps (60 seconds rest)
- Hanging Leg Raises (feet to bar): 4 sets x 10-12 reps (60-90 seconds rest)
- Abs Wheel Roll outs: 4 sets x 10-15 reps (60-90 seconds rest)
WORKOUT C – UPPERBODY (SHOULDER & ARM EMPHASIS)
- Standing Barbell Press: 3 sets RPT (2-3 mins rest between sets)
- Weighted Pull Ups: 3 sets RPT (4,5,6 reps) (2-3 mins rest between sets)
- Incline DB Chest Flyes Rest Pause 12-15 + 5 5 5 5 (15-20 second rest between sets)
- Incline DB Curls: 3 sets x 6-8 reps (2 minutes rest between sets)
- Cable Triceps Push Downs: 3 sets x 8-12 reps (1 minute rest between sets)
- One Arm Cable Lateral Raises: Rest Pause 12-15 + 5 5 5 5 (15-20 second rest between sets)
Phase Two: The Fat Loss Phase
If you follow the Kinobody workout and diet, then you should put on solid muscle mass without fat gain around your waistline.
As for Hemsworth, he put on a good amount of muscle following his trainer’s plan. However, he has acquired more of a stalky NFL-esque physique rather than the cut and lean look. Chris then moves onto phase two to shed any fat he gained in the process.
Knight puts the actor through an intense circuit training consisting of low volume training, similar to those that you see strongmen and powerlifters do. All of the circuit training consists of 20 to 30-seconds of intense exercise with short 10-second rests between sets.
Fat Loss Workout
In lieu of circuit training, we recommend a weight loss program the Kinobody way. This method doesn’t involve slaving away on a treadmill, so that’s especially good news if you abhor cardio.
Like the muscle building program, you still only train three days a week, but with some light exercises on your off day. This may include a simple 40 to 60-minute brisk walk.
What About the Chris Hemsworth Diet Strategy?
Exercise is only one half of a muscle building and fat loss plan. What does the inside of Hemsworth’s fridge look like? Surely, his pantry isn’t stuffed with Oreo cookies, processed meats, and white bread.
According to Hemsworth, he was eating every two hours. He also said he consumed a lot of clean protein, vegetables, and limited carbs. He also drank four to five liters of water a day.
For muscle gain, you need to consume more than your body burns. We don’t know what Hemsworth’s daily diet is exactly like, but he likely burns a lot of calories considering he’s filming a lot of action scenes 12 to 14-hours a day.
The actor is also a fairly large man, standing at 6’3. This is just a guesstimate, but he’s probably consuming anywhere from 4,000 to 5,000 calories a day if he’s following a typical bulking up diet. Fortunately, for the rest of us non-deities, you likely don’t have to consume that much.
In this case, I’d recommend lean bulking. I just shot a quick video that talks about how to do a perfect lean bulk easily without adding much fat in the process.
A great starting place to figure how many calories you need to eat to put on muscle with minimal fat gain is by taking your current bodyweight and multiplying it by the number 15.
This will give you a good estimate of your maintenance calories. Then, simply add 200-400 calories each day and monitor your waist and bodyweight each week. If the scale weight is going up more than 2 pounds per week, there is a good chance you’re putting on too much body fat.
It’s also not necessary to eat every three hours, much less every two hours like Hemsworth was doing.
We also recommend intermittent fasting, which you can easily do by skipping breakfast. Make lunch your first meal, followed by dinner and a light snack in between the two meals or after dinner.
Finally, if you’re wondering about protein, keep it between .8 to 1-gram for every pound of bodyweight.
Is the Chris Hemsworth Workout and Diet Plan Realistic?
As with most actors, the training regimen they do is often temporary and in preparation for a film. They don’t stick to the routine year-round, and their physique fluctuates as well. Even at his peak, Hemsworth didn’t look super-ripped. He has a bit more of a burly husky type of look with semi-visible abs, decent-sized arms, and some vascularity.
The Kinobody workout and diet programs are designed for long-term and consistent use. Who has the time to train six to seven hours a week and eat every two hours?
Our Final Take (And The Better Way To Do It)
You watch movies like Thor and see Chris Hemsworth’s physique – and then you look at what it took him to get that physique and realize it’s not sustainable.
The problem is… It CAN be sustainable to achieve this kind of physique, but you have to implement the strategies that help you do it in an enjoyable way.
This is exactly why I developed the Kinobody Fitness Programs… Where actors usually only maintain their physiques while filming, I’ve developed a strategy I share in my programs where you can achieve and maintain that slim, muscular “Hollywood physique” year-round while actually enjoying the process.
If you’re looking for a full workout and diet plan to build a body similar to Chris Hemsworth, then I suggest starting with the Kinobody Superhero Bulking Program. With this dual pyramid training system, you will develop a rock-hard physique. Expect to gain up to 5 to 10-pounds – all of it solid muscle.
If you’re unsure where to start for your exact situation, you can use my free Physique Builder Tool where I will tell you exact how and where to start to build the body you want. Click here to check it out – and remember that you CAN build the body of a superhero (and keep it year-round).