When A-list actors need to pack on lean muscle for a big-budget role they don’t just join a Planet Fitness and order the High Protein Bowl at Chipotle. To achieve impressive gains—usually in mere months—they train with the biggest names in fitness.
These pro trainers have physiques that rival their A-list clients. And they know exactly how to push, motivate, and inspire actors to get them in the best shape possible for their roles.
From Chris Hemsworth’s go-to fitness guru to the guy who got Michael B. Jordan in Creed fighting shape, these are the trainers behind the most elite bodies in Hollywood.
Client: Chris Hemsworth
Zocchi is more than a trainer. He authored The A-List Diet & Fitness Plan and cofounded the instant “functional coffee” brand Sipp. But he’s best-known for working with Chris Hemsworth to sculpt the actor’s Thor body. Hemsworth’s health and wellness app Centr has a 13-week program modeled after the regimen Zocchi designed for the star.
Zocchi—who appeared alongside Hemsworth in the star’s Limitless docuseries—got his mate to his biggest size yet for 2022’s Thor: Love and Thunder, for which the actor ate 4,500 calories a day. “I set a stopwatch and ran him food every two hours,” Zocchi told People. (When he returns to “normal” lift, Hemsworth switches to intermittent fasting.) In between meals, Hemsworth stuck to dead lifts, squats, hip thrusts, and other movements to bulk up.
Clients: Ryan Reynolds, Sebastian Stan
New York-based trainer Saladino has worked with Ryan Reynolds, John Krasinski, Liev Schreiber, and Sebastian Stan on their peak physical forms.
Saladino is currently getting Reynolds in shape for Deadpool 3. Makes sense, since he’s been guiding the star through beast mode workouts since the first film in the franchise.
For the first Deadpool installment, Saladino designed a circuit that involves kettlebell swings, front squats, barbell bench presses, pull-ups, and farmer’s walks, according to Muscle & Fitness. His Deadpool 2 training plan was lighter on core workouts and more focused on heavy-weight training, Saladino told Men’s Health.
Clients: Hugh Jackman, Matthew McConaughey
The Beverly Hills-based trainer has worked with the likes of Hugh Jackman, Sylvester Stallone, Matthew McConaughey, and even the Los Angeles Lakers NBA team. Peterson also designed a high-intenstiry functional workout program with David Beckham for F45, called DB45.
Peterson has shared workouts for building a superhero-worthy chest beyond bench pressing with Men’s Health, including an angle-changing fly drop set, a pre-exhaust push-up series, and a plyometric med ball push-up.
Peterson previously shared a HIIT workout with The Edge—a series of eight exercises that you cycle through for 30 minutes.
Client: Chris Pratt
A former Marine sniper and ex-Navy SEAL turned trainer, Gaver has worked alongside Chris Pratt and Channing Tatum, among others, to get in shape for a starring role.
When Pratt had to execute a jaw-dropping body transformation from his charmingly doughy Parks and Recreation persona to become Peter Quill in the Guardians of the Galaxy movies, Gaver had him perform a number of surprisingly straightforward yet effective moves, from lat pulldowns to oblique crunches to high box jumps.
Client: Michael B. Jordan
Michael B. Jordan had to seriously up his fitness game to build his boxer’s body for the Creed movies. And Corey Calliet was his main man in the gym.
To build up Jordan’s body in the latest installment Creed III, Calliet through a wide array of exercises at the actor, including bicycle crunches, lying leg raises, ab roll-outs, weighted rope crunches, and Russian twists, according to Insider. But apparently the secret weapon was fitting in short workouts whenever possible around packed filming days.
Clients: Zac Efron, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
Even pro wrestler turned action-movie icon The Rock benefits from an occasional form check.
Williamson, an ex-Marine, said the one-on-one with Johnson was “one of the most seamless experiences I’ve had. You don’t have to teach him much; he knows the human body and he knows the weights room so well.”
While Johnson’s exact routine is under lock and key, Williamson likes to incorporate bodyweight push-ups, incline hammers presses, weighted dips, and incline cable crossovers.