Playing Marvel’s superhero is serious business. And that’s why Chris Hemsworth had to follow this phenomenal fitness routine to not only fit the part, but to be able to handle these tough action scenes as well.
While most mere mortals might not be able to train like him, one can keep track of meal plans, workout schedules and stay healthy. We’ve got a hold on some of the tips we found and think that you can draw inspiration from it to train like Thor. So what exactly does Thor do?
Well, the Hollywood ‘action-star’ fitness regime is pretty punishing but what this actor-trained duo did was simplify it a bit. It isn’tbeyond one’s grasp either and it didn’tinvolve any insane workouts – just some serious diet changes, fun activities that Chris liked doing and exercises that were mainly about intensity, consistency and could be done withthe right amount of dedication.
Based on what Luke Zocchi, Chris’ personal trainer had said- here’s a quick look at the fitness plans Chris followed and how they changed across each of the Avengers movies.
Chris Hemsworth Exercises and Activities at a Glance
Chris hails from Melbourne and loves surfing. So he catches a few waves when he can. When training in Thailand, Chris did a lot of sprinting as he can cover shorter distances quickly but isn’t so great at longer distances. So, in place of morning runs, he did afew smaller ones and supplemented that with surfing or a few games of soccer with Zocchi.
Each bodyweight session began with a low impact warm-up exercise called bear crawling. This is where you crawl on hands and feet while using just your toes to balance your body. It’s tougher than you think!
The actual bodyweight exercise began soon after these crawls, which we’ll describe later. Chris has to keep up his physique even while shooting on set and during promotional tours too, by doing rounds of squats and burpees. But these had to be done in his hotel rooms, using some equipment he broughtalong with him, as local gyms didn’t have all the stuff he required.
For the Avengers films, he had to change things up a bit, starting with 50 minutes of heavy lifting.Zocchi advises against exceeding this limit as the body can’t really handle the stress. Zocchi had developed a special push-pull plan where, where Chris rotated between his chest and biceps, primarily so that he fitted his costume well.
Otherwise, he just looked flat in it – you can see the difference yourself in the first and the third Thor films.
So this routine included cable slides, incline press, flat bench press, dips and dumbbells that focused on legs, triceps, and back.
Chris Hemsworth Workout Split to Build Muscle
The Workout Split of Chris Hemsworth is a great combination of Bodyweight and Machine exercise, which will help to gain mass a lot faster if you hit proper macros every day.
Take One to Three minutes of rest between sets to recover properly.
Monday: Chest and Back
- Pullups: The classic exercise to strengthen you back muscles and make your body ready to lift more weight. Do this for 5 sets with 15, 12, 10, 10, 8 repetition. You can also do weighted pull-ups for more intensity with drop sets.
- Barbell Bench Press: Another classic way to hit those chest muscles and build strength for your upper body. Do this for 6 sets with 12, 10, 10, 8, 8, 6 You can also use drop sets to increase the intensity level.
- Hammer strength machine rows: 4 sets with 12 repetitions each set.
- Incline dumbbell bench press: the perfect exercise to hit the upper chest. 4 sets with 12 repetitions each set.
- Pushups: 4 sets and 12 repetitions.
- Bent Over Row: Bent Over Row is considered one of the best back muscle building exercises and the best part is you can do it anywhere if you have a pair of dumbbell. 4 sets and 12 repetitions.
The Variations of Squat, Dead lift and hamstring curl will be followed for ‘leg day’
- Back squat or Barbell Squat: 5 sets of 10, 8, 8, 6, 4 repetition
- Walking Lunges with Dumbbell: 4 sets of 20 reps, 10 reps each leg.
- Leg Press: Here again you can use drop sets to increase the level of intensity, do leg press for 4 sets with 12 reps if you are not using drop sets.
- Leg Extension: 4 Sets and 20 Reps
- Standing calf raise: 2 Sets 25 Reps
- Dead lift with barbell: 3 sets 12 reps.
Wednesday: Rest Day
Rest Day is very Important to recover the muscle tissue for muscle growth, make sure you don’t over exercise and rest properly to see benefit quickly.
Thursday: Abs and Arms
- Reverse Crunch: A great exercise to hit the core muscle. Do it for 120 Seconds and you will feel your core burning.
- Hanging Leg Raise: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Sit Up: 4 sets of 15 reps
- Plank: 120 Seconds
- Barbell biceps curl: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Rope pressdown: 3 sets of 15 reps
- Skull crusher: One of the best exercises to hit triceps muscle. Do this for 4 sets with 12 repetitions.
- Bar preacher curl: 3 sets with 10 reps.
- Military press: 5 Sets with 15, 12, 10, 10, 8 repetition
- lateral raise: 3 sets of 15 reps
- front raise: 3 sets of 15 reps
- Dumbbell rear delt flyes: 3 sets of 15 reps
Saturday and Sunday:
- Rest Day with low intensity cardiovascular activity.
Detailed Diet Plan of Chris Hemsworth
Chris isn’t really a big guy, so to bulk up and be able to do these exercises; Zocchi suggested six meals every day. Here’s a quick look at why these foods mattered.
Chicken –The best source of lean protein that lets you bulk up without excess weight gain.
Fish –This is not only filled with protein but Omega 3 Fatty acids too.
Egg whites- Chris had to bodybuilding and egg whites are the secret of some of the best of them.
Brown rice – Believe it or not, but carbs aren’t bad for you! Just as long as you stick with whole grains.
Quinoa – Free of gluten and has all of 9 essential amino acids. High fiber, and rich in magnesium, iron, potassium, vitamins, phosphorous, calcium and vitamin e.
Sweet potato –Good for fiber and host of other good stuff like minerals, iron, vitamins b and c, calcium. In particular, was a natural antioxidant called beta carotene.
Vegetables –Mostly stuff like asparagus, beetroot, broccoli, mushroom, leafy greens and anything exotic you can think of.
Bananas –they aid digestion and boost the heart with a dose of potassium
Whey shakes –Have these carefully as they are could give you the runs, so it’s better if you mixed in some veggies or fruits as you like.
As you can see, Chris’ diet was meant to boost muscle but it only helped when it was planned out, as eating too much or too little of any food was a bad idea.
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Breakfast included three boiled eggs, steaks and 100 grams of blueberries daily for two months. During filming, he ate a small portion of heavy protein, green veggies with brown rice every two to three hours.
With that he had two protein shakes with banana, peanut butter, and water.
Avengers: Infinity War
Zocchi introduced a big diet change – the vegan one. Here, Chris didn’t have any animal meat. He lost a little bit of weight but made it up by eating more foods servings: things like quinoa, beans, etc. Note, if you intend on using this plan for yourself, you might not be able to break down all this meat, you could try the vegan or vegetarian alternative instead.
Before shooting began, he loaded on lean, healthier protein options like fish, chicken breast served with veggies, sweet potatoes, and brown rice. We’re pretty sure that if you pair this food with functional training, you’re going to see some awesome results. Try it now.
Here Chris balanced out protein intake by mixing upthe vegan protein and animal protein. Mornings were all about green shakes, low glycaemic fruits, seeds and nuts, sea salt and healthy fats. He alternated this with a burrito wrap made using three eggs with tomato salsa.
When it came to grains, steamed rice is his favorite but sometimes he swapped it out for potatoes, oats, rice crackers and multigrain bread. Lunch was tuna sashimi salad, complete with avocado, leafy greens, half cup sushi rice, walnuts. And finally, dinner was grilled lamb chops, with roasted carrots, grilled zucchini, and cauliflower mash.
The Thor workout plan is heavy on the full body and free weights exercises. At the same time, there was functional training to enhance balance and skills coupled with a good diet. You need an hour of focused muscle building and reducing downtime between sets.