Fitness Secrets To Train Like Your Favourite Superheroes

Training methods inspired by your favourite characters.

Have you ever wanted to train like a superhero?

Superheroes come in all shapes and sizes and each one possesses their own unique set of abilities: super strength, super speed and flight – just to name a few. We admire these characters from a young age, and as we get older we start to develop our own powers – they may not be in the superhuman bracket (yet) but there’s no harm in trying.

Here are a few training methods inspired by today’s superhero characters.

Arrow – Stephen Amell

Stephen Amell, star of the CW hit TV show Arrow. The guy moves like a superhero onscreen and offscreen. Watching him train, you might believe he really is the hooded vigilante who leaps on and off moving semi-trailer trucks and scales tall sections of scaffolding in the show’s fictional crime-ridden city. He soars, dives, climbs, flips, and runs his way through the gym. And like Arrow, Amell makes it look easy.

– Jill Fanslau (

Spiderman – Tom Holland

Tom Holland is the most recent actor to portray the famous web-slinger in a live action film (after Tobey Maguire & Andrew Garfield), and he’s delivered by bringing the character to life in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. His training includes various upper body exercises and lots of flips – check out his insta posts!

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@chrishemsworth and @bobbydazzler84 beat that!

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Here he challenges Chris Hemsworth and his stunt-double Bobby Hanton after he does a trampoline flip perfectly after being shown by his stunt co-ordinator.

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He looks like a real wall-crawler with these controlled pull-ups, showing both upper-body and core strength.

Batman – Ben Affleck

Here we see Ben Affleck as Batman preparing to face off against Henry Cavill’s Superman by doing sled pushes, hammer slams, tire-pulls and weighted pull-ups.

Related: The 50 Fittest Action Heroes And The Rules They Use To Maintain Movie Muscle

Deadpool – Ryan Reynolds

Okay, so he’s not your typical superhero, But Ryan Reynold’s Deadpool still has an impressive physique and displays incredible feats of fitness throughout the movies. His trainer, Don Saladino explains how the actor does his own stunts and had to prepare his body to do so. The Deadpool workout includes kettlebell swings, squats and bench presses.

Captain Marvel – Brie Larson

Brie Larson got super strong and super fit to play Carol Danvers, one of the universe’s most powerful heroes, in Captain Marvel. Her trainer Jason Walsh worked with her for months to achieve her fitness goals. Jason explains the techniques and training Brie used to get ready for her role. – Men’s Health (Youtube)

Related: The Four-Move Workout That Marvel Superheroes Use To Get Movie-Ready

Aquaman – Jason Momoa

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Jason Momoa has been a fitness inspiration for years now, from Baywatch to Game of Thrones and now Aquaman. The Men’s Health Cover Guy enjoys his rock climbing, showing impressive full-body strength.

Here’s how you can get fit enough to hold Neptune’s trident.


Bench Press Triset (5 rounds)

Incline bench press – 6 Reps

Standing dumbbell press – 12 Reps

Pushups – 24 Reps (Too easy? Do the pushups with your arms on rings instead)

Cable Crossover – 6 Heavy Reps, 12 Medium Reps, 18 Light Reps


Do each move in this sequence back-to-back-to-back. Rest 2-3 minutes between each round. Do 5 rounds. (Add one plate to the sled for each set).

Sled Push – 20 meters

Sled Pull – 20 meters

Seated Quad Extension – 6 Heavy, 12 Medium, 18 Light

Dumbbell Walking Lunge – 40 Meters

Bodyweight Bulgarian Split Squat – 10 Reps

– Mark Twight (

Thor – Chris Hemsworth

After bulking up for the role, Chris Hemsworth was too big for his Thor costume. So he ate less and did metabolic circuits to burn kilojoules without sacrificing muscle. A few weeks later, he was the right size – and still looked big. You too can focus on muscle definition, not just size, with this Thor-inspired workout from strength and conditioning coach Eric Cressey.

Perform this circuit, rest 60 seconds and repeat three more times.

Sledgehammer Slam – Stand about 30cm from a tyre, knees slightly bent. Rotate your upper back slightly to the right and raise a sledge above your right side. (Don’t rotate your hips.) Brace your abs and swing the hammer down; aim for the tyre’s inside edge. Do all reps and switch sides. Do 8 reps each side.

Lateral Hop – Stand with your chest up and hips back. Dip your knees slightly; explosively hop off your left leg and move horizontally to your right. Land on your right foot and “stick” the landing so your body stops moving. Pause, then immediately hop back off your right leg, landing on your left. Do 8 reps each side.

T Push-Up – Assume a push-up position with your hands on hex dumbbells. Lower your body to the floor and as you push yourself back up, rotate the right side of your body upwards as you pull the right dumbbell towards your torso. Now straighten your arm so the dumbbell is above your right shoulder. Lower the dumbbell and repeat on your left side. Do 8 reps each side.

Mountain Climber – Assume a push-up position, making sure your arms are straight. Lift your right foot off the floor and slowly raise your knee as close to your chest as you can. Touch the floor with your right foot. Return to the starting position. Repeat with your left leg. That’s one rep.  Do 15 reps each leg.

Chris Hemsworth is this month’s cover guy. For more of his fitness and diet secrets, be sure to get your copy of Men’s Health. Available in stores now.


Men's Health South Africa - March 2019

R 48


Related: Jump Like A Superhero With This Beastmode Workout

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