Ryan Reynolds Workout: Blade and Deadpool
The Ryan Reynolds Workout is multi-faceted. Like any actor, Ryan plays various roles, therefore he requires a different physique each time.
At 6’2″ with a naturally slim build, he’s often had to put on muscle for different films. To prepare for his role in Blade: Trinity, Ryan added 25 pounds of mostly muscle. While in his latest role as the hilarious antihero Wade Wilson in Deadpool, he added 7 pounds of muscle.
Those results showed in a big way.
Ryan has displayed an excellent physique in nearly every movie he’s been in. Furthermore, he’s remained athletic (He can do standing back flips!). You know, so he can play superheros and stuff. I find that even more impressive. There’s no point in looking good if you can’t move effectively.
In regards to the Ryan Reynolds Workout there’s a few things I’ll cover:
- The nutrition principles Ryan followed to add muscle and stay lean
- The actual workouts Ryan used to prepare for Deadpool
- The key takeaways from Ryan Reynolds workout
- What a non multi-millionaire actor can do build their physique
The Foundation of the Ryan Reynolds Workout: Nutrition
First of all, we have to go through Ryan’s Reynolds nutrition plan. Why? Because the most important part of building any physique is having a diet that sets you up for success.
Since Ryan had different physique goals for different movies, his approach varied. However, there were similarities, things that are the fundamentals of every diet. Take a look at the differences in nutrition for Ryan’s role in Blade: Trinity and Deadpool.
Blade: Trinity Nutrition
Ryan Reynolds packed on major muscle to star in Blade: Trinity. According to a Men’s Fitness article he gained 25 pounds for his role in around 3 months.
While I have my doubts about being able to put on that much muscle in only 3 months, Ryan’s physique in Blade: Trinity was undeniable.
To put on that much muscle, Reynolds ate around 3,200 calories per day to go along with working out 6-7 days per week. He ate every 2-3 hours and when asked of his physique said “I attribute my results mostly to nutrition”.
Of course, eating 3,200+ calories of junk wouldn’t help him stay lean while gaining muscle, so he used a high-protein diet with plenty of vegetables and consumed the majority of his carbohydrates post-workout.
An example day of Ryan Reynolds nutrition, from Men’s Health, is below:
2 eggs, some “good” fat like a spoon of almond butter or slice of avocado, and 1 cup of oatmeal with applesauce
Albacore tuna wrap or chicken and salad
Protein shake (whey and water), protein bar, or apple and almonds
Broiled fish or chicken, brown rice, vegetables, and salad
In addition to a strict diet, Reynolds used a few supplements:
- Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)
- Whey protein
Reynolds says “I gained a lot more muscle mass when I went on creatine” and this was the same for Bradley Cooper when he added muscle for American Muscle. Creatine has been known to improve protein synthesis, therefore aiding in muscle gain, so it makes perfect sense that Reynolds used it to help bulk up.
L-Glutamine, an essential amino acid, has also been shown to promote muscle growth.
Furthermore, conjugated linoleic acid, which can be found in foods such as beef and dairy products, helps enhance muscle growth and leads to an increase in metabolic rate.
Whey protein, one of the most commonly used supplements, also helps increase muscle growth.
A multi-vitamin can help eliminate nutritional deficiencies. This is good not only for your general health, but also, you guessed it, for gaining muscle (Indirectly though).
According to Ryan Reynolds, his nutrition in preparation for Deadpool was simple: “I’m on an exclusively full-gluten diet right now.” Of course, like he often does, he was joking. However, he did offer more insights into his nutrition: “Six days a week you have to be pretty religious with it. But one day a week you’ve got to eat whatever you want.”
This is following the very popular “cheat day” philosophy.
Furthermore, Reynolds talked about already having a grasp on what to do for his diet. He’d already gone through the strict diet for Blade: Trinity, so he probably ate very similar to that.
Foods like eggs, chicken, tuna, protein bars and shakes, brown rice, veggies, and nuts likely made up most of his Deadpool diet. Granted, he didn’t need to put on 25 pounds of muscle, so we can assume he just ate less calories overall.
Ryan Reynolds Workout Details
Blade: Trinity Workout
Remember how I mentioned Ryan Reynolds gained 25 pounds for Blade: Trinity? In 3 months? Yea, to do this it took some serious training.
Reynolds was working out 6-7 days per week for 2-3 hours per day. This was in addition to the fight training he needed to do and the 14-15 hour work days.
According to Men’s Fitness Ryan Reynolds workout routine started with around 20 minutes of core work, using some of the following exercises:
- Decline Sit Ups
- Hanging Leg Lifts
- Cable Chops
- Swiss Ball Crunches
- Decline Bench Body Bar Twists
- Ab Wheel
Reynolds worked with trainer Bobby Strom to prepare for the film. With a belief in changing workouts frequently to keep the body guessing and keep the workouts from getting stale, Strom had Reynolds use a variety of training equipment and methods:
- Heavy Upper Body Days
- Heavy Lower Body Days
- TRX Suspension Training
- BOSU Ball
- Resistance Bands
All of Ryan Reynolds workout details for Blade: Trinity aren’t known, likely because the workouts were always different, but to get in excellent shape so quickly, Reynolds likely did some of the following:
- Using exercises like the deadlift, squat, lunge, pull up, shoulder press, bench press, and row. This would work large muscle groups, build muscle, and increase his metabolism.
- Using appropriate rest times. Likely in the 45-75 second range.
- Working mostly in the 8-12 rep range, the ideal for gaining muscle mass.
In preparation of playing Wade Wilson in Deadpool, Ryan Reynolds trained for 7 months and gained 7 pounds of muscle. For this film he was under the guidance of Don Saladino, a trainer base out of New York City. Reynolds mostly trained alone, with Saladino providing workouts:
Saladino says “Ryan loves deadlifts, and he loves squats because he knows that’s how he’s going to make real gains.” He also mentioned that “Ryan’s such a hard worker. If anything, I had to scale him down. One day he came up to see me having been working out on his own and I was like, ‘Holy shit!’ He looked like a different person.”
So what were these workouts?
Men’s Journal provided some great insights into a sample week of the Ryan Reynolds Deadpool workout:
- Two circuits of 10 glute bridges, 30 seconds cats and dogs, 10 reach backs, 10 toe touches, 10 bear crawls.
Day 1: Legs
Squats: 4 sets of 7 reps (take as much rest as needed)
Stationary Lunges: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
One Legged RDL: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
One Legged Leg Press: 4 sets of 8 reps (one minute rest)
Day 2: Shoulders
Dumbbell Press: 4 sets of 10 reps (90 seconds rest)
Side Raise: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Rear Delt Raise: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Front Raise: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Day 3: Off
Day 4: Back
Sumo Deadlifts: 7 sets of 4 reps (as much rest as needed)
Pull-Ups: 4 sets of 6 reps (as much rest as needed)
One Arm Row: 5 sets of 10 (one minute rest)
Machine Row: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Day 5: Chest
Bench Press: 7 sets of 4 reps (as much rest as needed)
Incline Press: 4 sets of 6 reps (as much rest as needed)
Dumbbell Flies: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Dumbbell Pullovers: 4 sets of 15 reps (one minute rest)
Day 6: Arms
Nosebreakers: 4 sets of 8 reps (one minute rest)
Tricep Dips: 4 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Rope Pushdowns: 4 sets of 12 rep (one minute rest)
Sissy Bar Preacher Curls: 6 sets of 6 reps (one minute rest)
45° Dumbbell Curls: 3 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Hammer Curls: 3 sets of 10 reps (one minute rest)
Day 7: Off
Key Takeaways from Ryan Reynolds Workout and Nutrition
- Work your ass off. This is a given. You know this. If you want a ripped physique like Ryan Reynolds it’s going to take hard work. Accept this and get started. Furthermore, don’t let excuses hold you back: “But after she was born I would find myself training on two hours’ sleep. I think if you actually speak to somebody who knows a lot more than I do about physical training then that was probably not the best idea. For me it was kind of a psychological thing though, like I just needed to get it done: ‘If I don’t do it today, then I probably won’t do it tomorrow.’” says Reynolds.
- Be consistent. Nearly every workout program out there can get you results if you’re consistent (Except maybe a shake weight program). Are some programs more effective than others? Sure. However, having looked at way too many programs in my lifetime, I can tell you that consistency is what makes them work.
- Allow for flexibility in your program. Just because you need to be consistent doesn’t mean you can’t change your program. Things come up, this is a reality of life, being able to adjust is critical. When training for Deadpool, Reynolds was a recent father with a hectic travel schedule and because of this his workouts changed as needed.
- Adopt an active lifestyle. How do you stay fit? By making physical activity a part of your lifestyle. Reynolds says “I love being outdoors. There are forests all around and I get to hike, mountain bike… just move. I’ll even bring the baby with me, put her in a little baby carrier thing and off we go. In a weird way, it’s a great workout because you’re adding 20 lbs to your bodyweight.”
- Be patient. You’re not going to get the physique you want overnight, but that’s okay! Work towards it, focus on progressing each day, and be patient.
The Ryan Reynolds Workout vs. The Average Joe Workout
The obvious gripe is that “I can’t get a physique like Ryan Reynolds because he’s a multi-millionaire actor who can hire personal trainers and personal chefs.”
First of all, this is flawed thinking.
While you may not have the resources of a millionaire actor, you can do all of the 5 things I mentioned in the previous section.
Furthermore, you can help yourself tremendously by adding some incentives or consequences for not getting in better shape:
- Create a betting pool with 5 of your friends. Whoever loses the most body fat in a certain amount of time wins all the money.
- Agree to put $500 or $1,000 towards an anti-charity if you don’t meet a goal you set. You can use stickk.com for this.
- Sign up for a Spartan Race or Tough Mudder.
Your options are endless for getting in shape, don’t let your excuses hold you back!