He was just right you know—tall, broad-built, yet lean—but if you want to play the character of a Navy SEAL convincingly, you’re going to have to beef up.
Bradley Cooper went from 185lb to a whopping 225lb in just 10 weeks, for his role as a lethal sniper for the Oscar-nominated movie, American Sniper. He built 40 pounds of muscle mass, and that took some serious dedication and discipline. Here’s a breakdown of his diet and fitness routine in a bid become Navy SEAL Chris Kyle.
As told to Men’s Health, Cooper says you need to detox your body before pumping it up, “For at least six weeks. It’s vital you allow your body to rid itself of toxins and keep your hormones at optimal levels. Sugar and processed foods cause your body to respond in a way that prevents proper muscle growth.”
He attributes his muscles to supplements such as whey protein. But he says one needs to make an educated decision when you down a glass of protein shake. “Some powders are made with chemicals and fillers that are difficult for your body to digest. Watch out for artificial sweeteners and go for a product that says ‘whey protein isolate’ or ‘rBGH-free’.”
After an internal detox, Bradley Cooper went all out to build up the bulk. “Super-setting exercises that target the same muscle groups, then going until you can’t do another rep ensures the recruitment of maximum muscle fiber at all times, which equals more muscle growth.”
Bradley Cooper’s trainer Jason Walsh had the actor begin his intense workout routine at 5am, and jumped straight to deadlifts and squats; this helps build the foundation for building mass. Later in the afternoon, Cooper took on muscle building exercises, which meant he trained twice a day.
To get the actor from 185 to 225 required a lot more weight lifting. Walsh focused on unilateral exercises such as Bulgarian split squats, single-leg deadlifts and Romanian deadlifts with a landmine.
All said and done, with the right look and form, it now boils down to if Cooper was able to portray the real American sniper, Chris Kyle, with integrity and conviction. Well, we’ll just have to wait until 22nd February to find out, won’t we?
Images Courtesy: WarnerBros