Summer is here in the New Jersey / New York City Metro area. It has been a hot one so far, since Memorial Day through this first week of June – beautiful sunny skies and temps from 80 to the low 90’s. That of course, means a lot less clothes… People are baring their bodies everywhere here, at least most people. Some folks didn’t quite achieve that “summer bod” in time for summer… but it’s never too late. In fact, our Burn the Fat summer body transformation challenge just kicked off last week with thousands of people vying for the Burn the Fat champion title, and a movie star / fitness model body before the end of the summer…

I’ve been enjoying the nice weather myself today. At the moment, I’m typing this from Muscle Maker Grill in Edgewater, sitting outside on the deck, at the water’s edge on the Hudson River, with an incredible view of the New York City skyline.

Another day at the office…
The food here is amazing… healthy stir fry with rice, carrots, green peppers, onions, mushrooms, sesame seeds and Teriyaki sauce! Mmmmmmm. If you think fat loss or bodybuidling nutrition had to taste bland, it might be time to re-think that.

Burn the Fat Friendly Teriyaki Stir Fry!
Anyway, I digress. About getting that movie star body this summer…

With the Burn the Fat Challenge having kicked off last week, the Burn The Fat Forums have been insanely busy – there have been 22,884 posts just since the challenge started. (if you missed this one, go ahead and smack yourself, and then simply mark on your calendar the next burn the fat challenge which starts in November at the

As you can imagine, I’ve been super busy reading and responding to hundreds of posts every day.

One of them really caught my attention today. One of our members posted a video of Jake Gyllenhall in the movie Prince of Persia in our motivation forum. In case you haven’t seen the flick yet, Jake got super ripped AND put on a lot of muscle for his latest role.

In our celebrity culture today, millions of people have a deep fascination with movie star physiques. Every time a star shows up on screen with a buffed bod, gossip and chat can be heard everywhwere… “How did he get so ripped?

To this day, I still hear people ask “How do I get abs like Brad Pitt in Fight Club?” or even, “Arms like Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2.”

You don’t have to go searching for the answer to those questions – I’m going to reveal it to you right now:

They busted their asses!

Most people desperately want to believe there “something else”… some other secret… a secret celebrity workout program… a magic fat burning pill… a super muscle-boosting protein shake… there’s just GOT to be some secret

But the one thing most people refuse to believe, (or perhaps, don’t want to believe), is that hard work and discipline is “the secret.”

In an article published on the Hollywood gossip site Popeater, the title reads, “Jake Gyllenhall’s abs didn’t come easy, says trainer.”

Jake himself was quoted as saying, “it was easy, I got paid for getting in shape.”

Well which is it – was it hard or easy.? Well, when you mean that it’s “easy” to work your ass off when you’re getting paid millions to work your ass off, then the “easy” part makes sense. But the getting of those abs was NOT easy at all in terms of physical effort, time invested and nutritional discipline.

Gyllenhalls’s trainer Simon Waterson is a former Royal Marine who also helped Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig for the ‘Bond’ films. Waterson said turning Gyllenhall into a beefed up warrior in just four months took a lot of mental and physical stamina; Waterson says the average person would have to be “extremely dedicated” to achieve the same results.

According to the popeater site,

“In the early morning, Gyllenhaal would put on a 20-pound flak jacket and run around a park and in the sand — simulating scenes he would be filming in Morocco for ‘Persia.’ He’d then head off to script readings and sword fight training before returning in the evening to start his second round of exercise, resistance training. The actor would eat six times a day — three meals and three snacks, each of which contained a lot of protein, electrolytes and carbohydrates.”


“He had the luxury of having me around 24/7 for almost a year and even while he was filming,” Waterson says. “I made sure he trained when he need to train. He was fed when he needed to be fed. And rested when he needed to rest. You have to bear in mind, this was an intensive four months of training. He was living an athlete’s life.”

Here’s the workout if you’re interested…

Prince of Persia Workout Routine

Morning Workout
* 1 ½ hours of cardio while wearing a 20lb weighted vest
* 10 minutes of uphill sprint interval training with ab exercises; he repeated
* this sequence 5 times and then performed a 10 minute jog and stretching

Evening Workout
* 1 hour of resistance training including cables, pull-ups, press-ups, andweighted ab exercises

In addition to his scheduled workout routines, Jake had to train for the movie aswell. He had to learn martial arts, sword fighting, horseback riding, and parkour.

Most of those people I mentioned who are interested in celebrity fitness were looking at Jake’s workout routine – the exercises, sets, reps, sequence, schedule, and so on.

I find that interesting myself, But what leaped out at me the most had nothing to do with the actual workout routine itself – I’ve seen people acheive spectacular physiques with all kinds of different workouts, from traditional bodybuilding to circuit training…

What stood out to me was the amount of time he put into his training – the sheer number of hours – and the effort that went into every hour spent.

I didn’t write this post suggesting you try to duplicate Jake’s workout routine… only to make this point…

The secret to a movie star body is the same secret to a bodybuilder, figure competitor or fitness model body… the same “secret” used by the winners of our Burn the Fat challenge… HARD WORK… and that includes putting in both the effort AND the time.

Movie star bodies aren’t built with “just minutes a day… a few days a week… despite what some internet and infomercial fitness gurus want you to believe.

With almost no exceptions, the best physiques in the world are built with long hours of training and hard, hard, hard work.

When all else seems to have failed, try THIS secret: Get in there, put in the hours and WORK at it. Work your butt off. Work harder than you ever have before… and maybe THIS will be the summer you finally achieve that body you’ve been dreaming of.

Train hard and expect success,

Tom VenutoAuthor, Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle

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