When it comes to getting into amazing shape, most of us have been inspired by a physique we’ve seen on TV. I’ve had hundreds of requests from people asking how to get a body like Bradley Cooper, or Brad Pitt or whoever-else and all of them represent images of the ideal male physique (with a little variation for personal preference).
While many of these celebrities genuinely have impressive physiques though that represent great goals and inspiration, others aren’t really worthy of all the fuss they seem to generate. Take David Beckham for instance – millions of guys aspire to have a body like his and yet he doesn’t really have all that much muscle on him. Sure, he’s an athlete so he’s going to be pretty lean, but when it comes to the full package there are some much better examples out there.
Here then we will list the ten best male physiques in Hollywood at the moment. If you’re going to aspire to a celebrity physique, then these are the kinds of bodies you should be working towards…
10 Gerard Butler
One of the things that makes Gerard Butler such a good choice for this list, is the fact that he hasn’t always been such a specimen. There was a time when Butler was actually a tad on the flabby side and a quick Google search will bring up the images to prove it. In the film 300 however he is anything but flabby and really manages to pull off the Spartan look. In training for the film Gerard’s trainer had him pushing and throwing car tyres around and that’s what gave him such a killer mid-section and a body that looks like it could really do some damage.
9 Brad Pitt
When Brad Pitt took his top off in Fight Club, he very quickly became the envy of men across the world. Brad Pitt has that typical ‘male model’ body which shows off not just rippling muscle, but also an incredibly cut mid-section and low body fat percentage. Surprisingly though, Brad’s workout was actually made up of a fairly standard bodybuilding-style ‘split’ routine across four days where he targeted a separate muscle group on each.
8 Bruce Lee
When it comes to abs though, you can forget pretty boy Brad and instead look to Bruce Lee for the ultimate six-pack. Bruce Lee had an incredibly low body fat percentage and an insane training program that most of would be nuts to try to replicate. He loved experimenting with new training techniques and spent mostly every waking hour either bodybuilding or doing intense martial arts. While you shouldn’t attempt to mimic his training style (it may have contributed to his early death), you need look no further for a set of abs to pin to the mirror.
7 Arnold Schwarzenegger
At the other end of the spectrum is Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Austrian Oak who is built almost entirely out of solid muscle and pure mental determination. Arnie really was a sight to behold in his prime and represented the ‘Golden Age’ for bodybuilding before the competitors became grotesque. For those who are serious about packing on muscle and not interested in making the cover of Men’s Health, Arnie is the guy you should be paying attention to.
6 Ryan Reynolds
Ryan Reynolds is one of those infuriatingly successful guys. Not only has he been repeatedly voted as the sexiest guy alive and had the privilege of being married to Scarlett Johansson, but he also has the body of a God to round off the package. Don’t believe me? Watch Blade Trinity…
5 Tom Hardy
Tom Hardy has recently gained a lot of respect among gym goers for his tank-like proportions in The Dark Knight Rises. However his most impressive performance from a physique-standpoint was probably a year earlier in The Warrior where he looked like a true force of nature. To get the Tom Hardy ‘beast’ like look, you just need to focus on your traps.
4 Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson
You can see why someone with the name ‘Dwayne’ might want to start calling themselves ‘The Rock’, but with that body no one was really going to be making fun of him anyway. Of course Johnson’s body is largely a result of his WWE days, but he supplements that sport with circuit training, HIIT and lots of compound movements (like the clean and jerk). His workouts are incredibly active and I’d imagine he eats a hell of a lot of protein to fuel all that muscle.
3 Jason Statham
Jason Statham has the body of a martial artist, which is mostly because he is one. At the same time, he compliments this training with calisthenics, with HIIT and with circuits. A similar program to the Rock then, though I imagine with more focus on high repetitions rather than big weights.
2 Sylvester Stallone
Sylvester Stallone was voted as ‘body of the 80s’ which is no mean feat seeing as every other Hollywood star looked like a bodybuilder that decade. He also managed to beat Bruce Lee into the Guinness Book of Records with the lowest ever body-fat percentage (during the filming of Rocky 3) and serves as incredible inspiration today for older people who want to stay in shape. Nearing the young age of 65, Sly still looks like he could crush your head with one hand.
1 Hugh Jackman
The best body in Hollywood these days though must surely go to Hugh Jackman who has shown how incredibly dedicated he is to the roll of Wolverine by getting into comic-book like shape. He uses a lot of leg exercises to put his body into muscle building mode, and reportedly while training for X-Men Origins: Wolverine would subject himself to early-morning cold showers to get himself into an unstoppable mind-set that got him through workouts and that helped him to channel Logan’s personality on screen.