- Workout supplements are popular but won’t magically burn fat or build muscle.
- Chris Hemsworth’s personal trainer recommends instead focusing on diet and exercise.
- Good nutrition from whole foods and consistent workouts are the biggest factors in fitness, he said.
Chris Hemsworth is known for building muscle worthy of the God of Thunder in his role as Thor in the Marvel film series.
If you’re trying to bulk up like the actor, you don’t have to spend money on supplements like protein shakes to get the gains you desire, according to Luke Zocchi, Hemsworth’s longtime personal trainer and friend. He most recently trained Hemsworth for his role in “Thor: Love and Thunder.”
“Eating good food and having a calorie surplus are more important,” Zocchi told Insider in an interview coordinated by Centr, Hemsworth’s wellness app that offers 10-week programs for various skill levels based on his specific training and diet for the film.
He said the star made most of his gains through a combination of good nutrition and a rigorous workout routine.
While some supplements have benefits for fitness and fat loss, they can be expensive and unreliable amid a lack of regulation. Zocchi recommends that rather than shelling out money for pills and powders, stay consistent with a healthy diet and a focused exercise program.
Supplements offer only small benefits at best compared with diet and exercise
Zocchi said people overrelied on products like protein shakes and creatine to build muscle and burn fat.
“People think things like protein shakes and creatine make a big difference, but that’s only about 5% of the equation,” Zocchi said.
Creatine, BCAAs, and similar products can give you an edge, but only if you’ve already nailed the basics of eating well and working out consistently.
There’s also nothing magical about protein shakes, the main advantage of which is to provide concentrated nutrients to help round out your diet if you can’t get enough from whole foods.
For Hemsworth’s 4,500-calories-a-day bulking plan, that can be helpful, but it’s a small portion of his overall training and diet.
And for the average person who isn’t eating 4,500 calories daily, supplements are significantly less important than high-quality food and regular gym sessions.
“It’s dialing in the basics and sticking to the program to get results,” Zocchi said.
It can also be difficult to know what you’re getting in supplements since they don’t need to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, so products may contain fillers, unreliable doses, or ingredients not on the label.
Be realistic about expectations
Whether you’re supplementing or not, Zocchi said no approach would magically make you look like Thor. As such, it’s important to set goals that prioritize your progress rather than measuring yourself against a Hollywood star.
“Everyone’s body is different,” he said. “I do the same workouts as Chris and eat the same, and I don’t look like him.”