One common word tossed around is someone having “Hollywood Fitness“…but what exactly is it? Whether fair or not, actors sometimes have a reputation for being more style than substance, however, there is no denying that many girls consider them to have the best bodies. Let us look at just what qualifies as celebrity fitness.

Justin Timberlake shirtless in Alpha Dog

A fine example of Hollywood fitness: Justin Timberlake in Alpha Dog, with low body fat and good muscle tone

For one, celebrities almost universally have lean builds. The majority show six pack abs, which means that the guys keep their body fat level around 10% or lower. For most men, this is the max amount of fat that still shows the abs, and some prefer the even sharper look that being at a body fat of 8% gives. Meanwhile, a guy considered of average weight has a body fat more in the 18 to 22% range.

Now, part of what makes Hollywood fitness so appealing is that getting your body fat down to around 10% does much more than just make your abs visible. Slimming down pulls fat from all over the body, including on the face. This is part of why Hollywood leading men tend to look so handsome: they have such a low body fat that all of their face’s angular features come out. If you take Brad Pitt in his prime and have him put on 20lbs from eating brownies, even his face would not look so great when it was much more rounded.

So at a minimum, a Hollywood fit actor has that low body fat and leanness. What about the actual “fit” part of this? There have been a number of studies done on what makes for an attractive male body, and one common finding is that women appreciate a guy with muscle…but not too much muscle. They would rather see a build like Justin Timberlake in Alpha Dog or Brad Pitt in Fight Club than a bulky body builder.

What distinguishes those guys looks–and what most male actors maintain–is a build with visible toned muscle but no excess bulk. For an example, compare an old school wrestler like Hulk Hogan to a more recent example like Mickey Rourke starring in, well, The Wrestler. Hogan showed more of a bulky look, with big muscles but little tone. Though Rourke definitely packed on some lean mass, he also went for some serious tone. Most people would see Rourke as much closer to Hollywood fit than Hogan.

Hulk Hogan in his glory days

Not to knock the champion here, but this is an example of too much bulk for Hollywood fitness

At the same time, you do not necessarily want even as much muscle as Rourke put on for his character. Better role models include Ryan Kwanten or Alexander Skarsgard, both of whom have solid muscles but more of a toned rather than bulky look.

Fortunately, getting that much muscle is in the reach of most guys, regardless of genetics. Men who are true hard-gainers (the type who was always lanky and has a hard time putting on mass) may have some difficulty getting the build, but nowhere near the challenge they would face if they were trying to be body builders.

Achieving Hollywood fitness for most men comes down to getting their body fat to a quite low level–no more than 10%–and combining it with some solid toned muscle. For most guys, this means following some kind of high-protein diet for leaning up while preserving muscle, as well as following workout programs with good compound exercises (squats, deadlifts, pull-ups), with a number of high-rep workouts for extra toning.

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