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Fix Your Attitude First
Statham’s workout begins before he walks through a gym’s front door. “I’m a firm believer in attitude,” he says. “Some people just don’t have that desire, and they need a good kick in the ass. Look, you’ve come to train here, let’s fucking train!
Your body’s like a piece of dynamite. You can tap it with a pencil all day, but you’ll never make itexplode. Or you can hit it once with a hammer, bang! Get serious, do 40 hard minutes, not an hour-and-a-half of nonsense. It’s so much more rewarding.”
Pound Your Core
Statham’s buddy once dared him to do a marathon. He completed it in 3:51 (with virtually no distance training beforehand), and as a return dare, he challenged his pal to do the same abs workout Statham did back in his diving days. “We used to do 500 sit-up variations every day. Pike-up with straight leg lifts and you’ll strengthen your hip flexors, as well as your upper and lower abs.” He notes with agrin that this workout made his friend “spew up”.
Hone a Skill As You Sweat
Statham is a monster fan of mixed martial arts – the grappling and striking you see in an Ultimate Fighting tournament. This training defines his “learn a skill” workout philosophy.
A typical workout: “Shadowboxing to warm up the back and shoulders,” he says. Lunging and stretching for the legs. Next, five three minute rounds punching and kicking pads, then hitting the heavy bag for three rounds, and doing a session on the speed bag.
Use Your Own Body Weight
For explosiveness and reflexes, Statham has always used plyometrics. A fast, hard circuit requiresno equipment. “I’ll jump rope, then do squat thrusts, burpees [squat thrusts in which you leap instead ofstanding up], star jumps [from a crouch, jump up and spread your arms and legs into a star, and come back down into a crouch], pushups, tuck jumps [jump, lift legs, tuck], step-ups.”
**The key is explosive execution:**
“If I’m doing a push-up, I go down slowly and, bang, push up.”
Have a Portable Workout
Even if Statham has only 20 minutes, he pulls no-gear, no-cost workouts from the manual in his head. One favourite came from his friend Bas Rutten, the mixed martial- arts champion. “He uses punching combinations,” Statham says. “He’ll call out ‘one’ – a left. Then ‘one, two’ – a left, a right. Or ‘three’ – a left, a right and a left hook. You can do that in a hotel room, anywhere.” All you need is to bludgeon your excuses into a senseless heap. Just like Statham would.