A simple question to consider is this: what gain is there from studying celebrity fitness? For one thing, many famous people are considered little more than pretty figureheads by common people. For another, you can also claim that they have experts to keep them in shape at all times anyway.

My counter is that while many celebrities do indeed have personal traininers–and equally importantly, personal nutritionists–they still have to be the ones to do the work and get the body to show off. If Ryan Kwanten or Jude Law really wanted to drink themselves into a beer belly, do you think that personal chef can stop them? While the actors have people giving them good advice and guidance, it is still up to them to put in the work and actually get in shape.

For another, even if you consider many celebrities vapid you have to acknowledge that much thought and effort goes into their images. Those images only work if the underlying actor or singer is an attractive person to begin with, so it’s critical that they stay in that great shape to be worthy of their constructed image.

So, I consider celebrity fitness well worth studying. While many of the rich and famous arrive at the same place in terms of body fat and a nice ripped physique, they came from many backgrounds. Some were heavy or thick in their youths and got thin later on. Some are naturally lanky types that can only put on muscle with serious training. The fact that by and large they all get to the same place just means that there is a lesson for every body type to be found in studying them.

Ryan Kwanten shirtless: a real athlete?
Hint: those muscles don’t make themselves

Knowing that, let’s consider what value can be found in looking at the training programs of celebrities. In order to get the extremely low body fat that most of them show, you need the right kind of disciplined diet. This means eating moderate-to-high protein with an acceptable but not excessive load of carbs and fat. This rules out the typical American diet, and while many of us don’t have to go as far as they do, we definitely need to watch and restrict our diets to stay in good stead.

The next element worth examining and learning from is the different ways in which they train. Oftentimes, famous people need to get in a certain shape fast. That goes as much as looking like the skinny guy to appearing more like a meathead. This exposes them to a variety of different training types, some of which they love and others that they hate.

One example is the Mickey Rourke workout from when he was training for The Wrestler. He spent six months intensely bulking up, adding an ungodly amount of muscle to transform himself into the beast that you saw on the screen. This took massive commitment, especially given Rourke was pushing 50 at the time. Still, he followed an exhaustive program, and got the body to show for it. I’ll write more about his training later on.

While many people mistakenly consider celebrity fitness to be trivial, I believe there is much to be learned from it. I will be writing about various celebrity’s workouts going forward, such as the Jude Law workout from last week. Next up, I’m thinking either Ryan Kwanten or Alexander Skarsgard from True Blood…

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