So you Want to Look Like a Super-Hero?

Health & FitnessExercise & Meditation

  • Author Vince Delmonte
  • Published August 8, 2012
  • Word count 708

Who hasn’t wondered how guys like Chris Hemsworth, Manu Bennett or Chris Evans manage to get in such great shape for their movie roles as buff performers? Surprisingly, it’s not as hard as you may think.

Who hasn’t wondered how guys like Chris Hemsworth, Manu Bennett or Chris Evans manage to get in such great shape for their movie roles as buff performers? Surprisingly, it’s not as hard as you may think.

The key is, those guys are building for a specific appearance, as opposed to the ability that appearance implies. So Manu Bennett only needed to look like a gladiator… not have the strength and endurance to be one.

There are techniques you can use to develop the most visible characteristics to give you an eye-catching physique. They focus on the superficial aspects, with little attention to building core strength.

While actors may engage professional trainers to manage their preparation over a few months, you may not be willing to accept that expense. You can still do it for yourself, though.

Achieving the appearance you want

Basically, they all employ frequent, brief, high-intensity workouts. There isn’t much information available on their diets, but it’s safe to assume that every meal includes protein and vegetable intake, with some complex carbohydrates. If they aren’t looking for a large gain in muscle weight, they probably include a little healthy fat, such as nuts and nut butters. There are some takeaways that can apply to most of us, to improve the effectiveness:

Takeaway #1: Motivation- You need to be motivated. Whether it’s for your general health, the admiration of others or just achieving a personal goal, you need to find that motivation. Put something at stake. Put some blood in the game!

Takeaway #2: Set a deadline- Set a deadline and don’t cheat on it. If you lose a day for some reason, suck it up and make it up! Be inflexible with yourself in this regard. You’ll enjoy greater success.

Takeaway #3: Work around stress- We all have certain times of the year that are more stressful, schedule your most aggressive programs during the least stressful times.

Takeaway #4: Judge your success by YOU, not by others- The success or failure of others has nothing to do with you. Gauge your success on your results alone. Everyone is different.

Takeaway #5: Don’t rush things- Actors may have 3 to 4 months to accomplish their goals, and it’s not difficult to create the illusion of a gain of 20 pounds or so of muscle in that time, if done right. Give yourself plenty of time; if you rush it, you may not like the results.

Takeaway #6: Illusion has its place… optimize that- Focusing on the most visible muscle groups, such as the upper chest, shoulders, biceps and abs will give the illusion of a more powerful build. Often, that illusion is partly caused by a tiny waist.

Takeaway #7: Find your real leanness target- Don’t overdo it. To really make your physique noteworthy, try to achieve 10% body fat (about 15% for a woman) and maintain it. You’ll find maintaining 10% body fat isn’t really that difficult.

Takeaway #8: Achieve specific goals- Your workout regimen should involve the specific type of training involved with the look you want. A professional boxer look probably shouldn’t include highly developed calves and thighs, with a puny upper body. Identify the precise effects you want to project, and design your workouts accordingly.

Bringing it all together to achieve your goals

Actors know the look they need to project, and their training is designed to achieve it. Your training should be just as focused, to get the look you want. Don’t get sidetracked into training that doesn’t contribute directly to your goals.

Obviously, the repeated use of "appearance" and "look" imply just that. Having those six-pack abs you wanted doesn’t imply you have the core strength to take on Evander Holyfield. This sort of training contributes to your health, but it’s important to remember that the results are superficial. You may think you look like you can snatch 500 lbs but that doesn’t mean you can. Recognize the performance limitations of this type of training and avoid injuring yourself.

I am known as the skinny guy savior. A former skinny guy myself, I developed the techniques that turned me from a skinny guy to a national champion fitness model. I share my training techniques, diets and inspirations on my blog, Vince DelMonte Fitness, and on sites such as AskMen.com and Ironman Magazine.

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