Hugh Jackman wasn’t playing games this year when he got in shape for the box office smash hit, Wolverine. Jackman was jacked, and had obviously been busting his butt in the gym. But he didn’t just hit the gym and start performing random exercises. Hugh’s trainer designed a routine that was inspiring and effective.
The Hugh Jackman Cycle. Jackman’s routine consisted of a 6 week macro cycle, which included 3 weeks of muscle mass training followed by 3 weeks of strength training. Here are the basic principles used:
Mass Training. Hugh Jackman’s trainer had him performing slower, controlled tempo reps, generally at a 2 seconds up (concentric phase), and 3-4 seconds down (eccentric phase). Initially, Jackman had to back off the poundages to adapt to this training style. But eventually his strength came back.
Strength Training. No tempo training during these three weeks. Hugh Jackman had one goal…lift as much weight as possible. The primary training priciple was lift big, rest for long periods of time, and lift big again. As filming began Hugh was cranking out 315 on the bench press for reps.
Jackman continued this specific training cycle for 5 months prior to filming Wolverine. In total, Hugh trained hard for a year to achieve his new physique.
The Wolverine Mindset. Hugh Jackman’s secret training technique was the Wolverine mindset. During training, Hugh would scream and howl like a Wolverine, getting himself into character and mentally becoming Wolverine.
The Wolverine Diet. Hugh’s diet plan wasn’t rocket science. It was good, old fashioned bulking. Hugh ate 1,000 extra calories per day. Simple. Effective. As one can imagine, Jackman and his trainer kept a journal of all food intake.