An exercise scientist critiqued Henry Cavill’s Hollywood workout and it wasn’t great.
Who is this exercise scientist? Dr Mike Israetel, PhD in Sport Physiology and co-founder of Renaissance Periodization, is a well-respected professor in the bodybuilding community. He doesn’t only talk about workouts and fitness tips, he often dives deep into health and nutrition.
As it is accustomed to him, he likes to poke fun and make jokes throughout the video. And this time he was taking a closer look at Henry Cavill’s workout. Which one? Well, we have to say it is one that we covered here at BOXROX previously.
Exercise Scientist Critiques Henry Cavill’s Hollywood Workout
The first exercise critiqued is the Romanian deadlift to put the glutes and hamstrings under tension. Although is a great exercise for it, Israetel says there are other movements such as leg curls and lunges that could do just as much hypertrophy without fatiguing the muscle so much so you could work out more often.
Followed is the hyperextension, two back-to-back hamstring exercises. “Some redundancy here, but whatever,” Israetel says, complementing that this movement will reduce your general injury risk if you are a stunt person.
Cavill says he uses a cable machine to train his obliques because he needs to use a real weighted sword during some fight scenes. Israetel says it’s better to use a dumbbell for this, to progressively train against gravity. “Using a cable machine with this baffles the fucking imagination,” he says.
There are more exercises that Israetel talks about, but in the end, he gives a 7 out of 10 score. “The detraction points are from the needless complexity and sometimes just downright poor exercise choice with the whole static hold situation.”
See the full video below.
How Many Times a Week Should You Work Out?
So, how many times a week should you work out? As expected the answer is not simply a straight-up number. That is because people are looking for different outcomes when working out and that, alone, can already differ the answer for one person and the other.
The more you train, the more your muscle grows. That is true, to a certain extent. However, there is something called junk volume training in which once you hit a certain point, the more you lift the worse it gets for hypertrophy.
So, in the end, it is all about training volume. If you have time to train 5, 6, or even 7 days a week, you can split your workout into specific muscle groups – chest and back one day, leg another day, and shoulder, arm and abs the next day, take a day off, and repeat. If you can only train three times a week, with a day of rest in between each of them, then train your entire body during every session.
However, if you can only train once a week, you will still get some results, but they will be far inferior compared to people who train three times per week according to different studies.
In one particular study, participants performed the exact same amount of training. One group did the entire thing in one giant session, while the other group performed the movements divided into three days – the latter group saw an increase in lean body mass by 8% while the 1x a week group gained 1% of lean body mass.
If you go to the gym three times a week, but each day you train only one different specific muscle group, you are actually training each muscle group only once a week, which is less than optimal for muscle growth.
Working out more often, between 4 and 7 times a week, can provide additional benefits in terms of recovery if structured correctly. You can go to the gym every day, as long as you leave 48-72 hours of rest to recover from your last workout. This is where the bro split mentality comes from, where you can focus a training session entirely on one muscle and hit the gym the next day because you are training a different part of your body that is well-rested.
You can also try out different ways to divide your workout. It can be an upper-lower body training routine, bro split, or full-body workout. It depends on how much time you have available, just make sure you are hitting the same muscle group more than once a week to get results faster.
So, how many times a week should you work out? At least 3, if you want to see faster results. Depends on how much time you have and, from there, you can choose what kind of workout routine best works for you.
- Forearm workouts: Anastase Maragos / Unsplash