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Top 10 celebrity transformations

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Luke Evans – Dracula Untold

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What he did: Evans had to get into warrior-like shape for the film. Not too bulky so he could still do the stunts, but big enough to look imposing.

How he trained: Often lots of cardio and supersets. Training had to be done quickly as Evans was fitting it in after 12-hf

What he ate: A super strict diet. No sugar, no sauces, no bread, no creams. Just natural food and lots of proteins. Even the protein shakes were diet versions. Evans also took a lot of supplements including omega 3, vegetable juices, amino acids and plenty of water.

Difficulty rating: 7

Chris Pratt – Guardians of the Galaxy

Chris pratt

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What he did: Pratt and trainer Duffy Gaver began his training plan six months before they started to shoot Guardians. He had to lose around 27kg while adding muscle and ensuring that he stayed lean so his six-pack remained prominent.

How he trained: He lifted weights four or five times a week for an hour at a time. For the first few months it was mainly traditional bodybuilding sessions to add size, targeting specific muscle groups on separate days (the actual splits changed from month to month). Towards the end he started mixing things up and adding in circuit training and P90X workouts to help get him lean. Pratt varied his cardio sessions by embarking on mountain biking, running, swimming and kickboxing.

More training tips from Chris Pratt

What he ate: A diet low in carbs and high in protein to ensure that body fat was lost while muscle was gained. 

Difficulty rating: 8

Christian Bale –  The Machinist to The Dark Knight

christian Bale

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What he did: Christian Bale had to drop from his normal weight of 82kg to the ridiculously skeletal 53kg anorexic insomniac he plays in The Machinist. He then had to jump from that to the bulky 98kg to reprise his role as Batman in The Dark Knight.

How he trained: In order to beef up after slimming down to such a scarily skinny version of himself Bale had to kick-start his metabolism, which had taken quite a battering from his intense starvation. He had to train extremely hard with intense heavy weights, plyometrics circuit training and resistance weight training. Adding in martial arts training, lunges, chin-ups, squats and high-pulls as finishers.

See the full Batman training schedule here

What he ate: When he was losing the weight, Bale went into almost total starvation eating only a can of tuna and an apple every day.

Difficulty rating: 10

Ryan Reynolds – Van Wilder to Blade Trinity

Ryan Reynolds workout

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What he did: Reynolds went from being skinny preppy college boy in Van Wilder to a rugged, ripped specimen in what seemed like a short time. He’s now well renowned for having one of the best bodies in Hollywood.

How he trained: ‘I don’t have a set routine. Sometimes my training is very cardio-centric – like when I was training for the New York City marathon a few years ago – but if I’m preparing for a film role I’ll mainly lift weights. There’s also a difference between doing aesthetic training to achieve a certain look and functional training, which I do if I’m preparing for a stunt-heavy film to help me avoid getting hurt,’ says Reynolds.

More from Ryan Reynolds's training here

What he ate: Reynolds is naturally slim, so in order to put on so much muscle he had to take on at least 4000 calories everyday, carbs included. Once the bulk had been packed on he began to trim down and lowered his calorie intake slightly, eating more protein and less carbs. 

Difficulty rating: 8

Tom Hardy – Warrior 

Tom Hardy

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What he did: Hardy had to get lean while staying bulky, and look like a fighter, not just someone that hits the gym four days a week.

How he trained: ‘I call my philosophy signaling. Throughout the day you need to send constant signals to your body, so that it adapts in the direction you point it in. It’s better to do 10 press-ups every hour than 100 in a single burst. If you do things often enough, your body adapts for the task you set it, and you evolve,’ says Hardy’s trainer Paul Munore aka Pnut. 

Check out some of Hardy’s insider training secrets here

What he ate: A lean diet of protein and vegetables, packing in over 3500 calories a day. 

Difficulty rating: 7

Chris Hemsworth – Thor

Chris Hemsworth

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What he did: Naturally, Hemsworth wouldn’t be able to get quite as big as Thor is portrayed in the comics but he had to get as close as he possible could while still staying agile enough to perform stunts.

How he trained: ‘The kettlebell routines that my trainer put me through were intense, partly because I’d never used them before but also because it’s a heavy combination of cardio and weightlifting,’ says the 30-year-old former Home & Away star. ‘Most of my training previously was geared more around cardio – mainly boxing and Muay Thai, with some elements of weights. I hadn’t experienced kettlebells, but it’s a great way to build functional strength.’

See the full Thor workout here

What he ate: ‘I basically overfeed on protein and endless amounts of chicken breast, steak, fish, vegetables and brown rice,’ says Hemsworth.

Difficulty rating: 7

Hugh Jackman – Wolverine

Hugh Jackman

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What he did: Achieve a good muscle density while remaining lean enough to pull off the X-Men standard leather jumpsuit. All at the tender age of 40.

How he trained: ‘I got Hugh to stick to the six-to-12 rep range in our mass-building phase,’ says his trainer Mike Ryan. ‘He’d do four sets, with the third usually being forced reps, where I’d help him get through the last few. Then he’d reduce the weight by 25% and go for 15-18 reps in his last set,’ says Jackman’s trainer Mike Ryan. 

See the full Wolverine workout

What he ate: Six high-protein meals a day, plenty of water and additional protein supplements.

Checkout Jackman's full meal plan

Difficulty rating: 7

Bradley Cooper – The A-Team

Bradley Cooper

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What he did: Got lean and muscular while losing enough fat to achieve a low body-fat percentage.

How he trained: Cooper spent two hours a day in the gym with a personal trainer doing lots of strength and core training. He used the ‘3-2-1 Method’—that’s three cardio circuits, two strength training circuits and one core workout, each for 10 minutes. 

What he ate: Cooper had to do away with all salt, flour and sugar. That meant no more sandwiches, one of his favourite snacks. This diet allowed him to get rid of all the stubborn bodyfat that had set up camp around his midsection.

Difficulty rating: 6

Gerard Butler – 300

Gerard Butler

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What he did: One of the most notable celebrity transformations, Butler had to work out intensely for four months to sculpt the famed Spartan warrior physique that we see in the films. 

How he trained: The 300-rep Spartan workout: 25 pull ups, 50 dead lifts with 60kg, 50 push-ups, 50 jumps on a 60cm box, 50 floor wipers, 50 single-arm clean-and-presses using a 16kg kettlebell and 25 more pull-ups (with no rest in between). For dessert, he’d engage in intense exercises like tyre flipping and gymnastics-style ring training.

What he ate: A lot and often. A diet high in protein throughout and initially high in carbs for the bulking portion of his training and then almost completely eliminating them to help reveal ‘that’ six-pack.

Difficulty rating: 9

Henry Cavill – Man of Steel and Immortals

Henry cavill

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What he did: Mark Twight, the man behind the bodies of the 300 Spartan’s was tasked with turning Cavil from average man to superhero. When the first shots of him post-transformation were leaked it almost broke the internet on a Kim Kardashian bum level.  

How he trained: Cavill had to put himself through the Gym Jones Superhero Training Plan, and it wasn’t by any means fast or easy.

What he ate: We’ve got Cavil's full meal plan from when he was training for Immortals right here.

Difficulty rating: 8

Sam Razvi wrote for Men’s Fitness UK (which predated and then shared a website with Coach) between 2011 and 2016.