We all remember the Rocky movies, don’t we? The iconic and lovable boxer that Stallone played in the Rocky series went on to capture the hearts of an entire generation – and the one after it – and probably the one after too – and along with that, I’m sure Stallone’s physique in the movies is something we’ve all noticed.
If you’ve been a follower of the franchise, you’ll see that Stallone was at his most impressively “ripped” – yet muscled as well – while making the Rocky III/IV movies.
Like a toned, lithe, strong jungle cat – and after watching this guy defeat seemingly invincible opponents in the ring (think Mr T, or “Ivan Drago”), would you believe it if I told you that he felt anything but strong in real life?
But it’s true, my friend. According to John Crenna, who played “Colonel Trautman” in the “Rambo” series …
He would train in the morning before we arrived to work, do long shoots with the crew, go for runs along the beach while the rest of the cast were taking a time out, and often go back to the gym again after dark.
And that is but the tip of the iceberg. Stallone would spar up to 20 rounds in the ring while doing the Rocky movies – lift weights regularly – follow a strict bodybuilding routine – and his diet, you ask?
Well, during a certain period in his life he lived on nothing but burnt toast daily – and not a lot of it at that either – this while working out to the extreme AND acting and directing in movies, and doing everything else a movie star has to!
In Sly’s own words –
During that period, I only ate very small portions of oatmeal cookies made with brown rice, a couple of scoops of tuna fish, and about 25 cups of coffee per day,”
In fact, Stallone felt so light headed and dizzy during the day on this sort of a routine that he even resorted to doing handstands while filming Rocky III – just to get the blood flowing back into his head!
Now, why do I mention all this here?
Well, first, because Stallone was a huge, huge proponent of doing exactly what I did to get “ripped” – which was to workout HARD, HARD, HARD – on an EMPTY stomach – contrary to what all the pundits say.
I’ve often been called crazy as well on my 5th climb up the hill in hot, humid weather – but guess what – that sort of thing is what gets the weight off – and KEEPS it off, my friend.
And that was in addition to my bodyweight stuff – but here’s the point I’m trying to make.
My diet certainly wasn’t as strict through the rest of the day as Stallone’s was – not near!
I’d eat what I wanted AFTER my workout – and I’d do another lighter workout in the evening where I wouldn’t go all out – but again, I wouldn’t watch what I ate for dinner after that.
Stallone at a certain point got down to a freakish 2.9% body fat percentage – and while he looked great on the outside, by his own admission, he was UNHEALTHY on the inside – and he’s made NO bones about the fact that he wouldnt advise anyone to train the way he did when getting in shape for the aforementioned movies.
None of this takes anything away from the mans accomplishments, of course.
If there was one person that embodies the “rags to riches” story in modern cinema, it is Stallone – and yet – coupled with the numerous injuries Stallone sustained in the weight room (at one point he even dropped a 220lb weight on himself!) – he’s put his body through a heck of a lot to be honest.
And yet, despite the boxer he played in the movie – his actual training was anything BUT like a boxer’s (except the sparring).
It was bodybuilding training – training which Stallone himself has admitted was NOT the best way to train – and you can see this, of course, when you compare say a “Mr T”‘s physique to Rocky’s in the movie.
The former looks every bit a pro boxer (he boxed in real life) – and the latter looks GREAT – but how many boxers have we seen with that look? Not many, I’d say …
So, point of this entire post?
Well, it’s this – taking things to an extreme is never good my friend
YES, you should workout hard – daily – and do so on am empty stomach for best results.
But NO, you should NOT push your body beyond a certain point after the workout.
You get enough food – and you do NOT let your body fat drop down to crazy levels – or even aspire to let it get that way!
Let’s face it – you could have all the abs you wanted, for instance, but what good would it do if you felt weak and dizzy throughout the day despite how you looked on the exterior?
In a nutshell, it boils down to this – train hard – get enough nutrition – and don’t worry about “body fat levels” – or getting “ripped” – or any of that nonsense.
It’ll all come in time.
Worry about being HEALTHY from the INSIDE OUT, my friend. The rest will all follow in due course – quicker than you thought possible!
And that, my friend is that today. I’ve been saying I’ll write about not taking things to an extreme for a while now, and I finally did it – so – I’m out now – and I’ll be working out soon as well.
Join me if you can!
P.S. – In terms of “abs”, here are some exercises that will get you those sleek abs you so want – https://0excusesfitness.com/corrugated-core/