It says a lot that Chris Hemsworth didn't need a muscle suit to play a Norse god, relying instead on his own brawny physique. The Thor actor has built himself a body that's fit and functional, as proved by his regular surfing and adventuring videos.
How has he done this? With regular workouts like this challenging full-body routine that uses just a couple of resistance bands.
The 40-year-old Centr fitness app founder posted the routine to his Instagram recently—you can watch the video below then give it a go at home, when you next have 15 minutes.
How to do Chris Hemsworth's full-body resistance band workout
- Banded squats x10
- Banded curls x10
- Banded prisoner squats x10
- Banded push-up into spider climber x10
- Banded snap jumps x10
- Banded fire hydrants x10
- Russian twist x10
- Scissor kick x10
Complete three rounds of the exercises listed above, resting as little as possible between them. If you're new to any of these moves, watch Hemsworth's video below for a quick demonstration of each one.
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Benefits of this workout
This is an example of high-intensity resistance training or HIRT—a known-favorite of Hemsworth's.
It combines the low-rest/high effort format of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) with the strength and muscle-building benefits of resistance training, delivering the advantages of both exercise styles in one time-efficient session.
The circuit format will deliver cardio perks, challenging the endurance of your heart, lungs and muscles. Meanwhile the banded elements add resistance to your movements, helping you develop strength.
This routine works a wide range of muscles too. Banded squats strengthen your legs, curls hit the biceps in your arms, push-ups work your chest, shoulders and triceps, and several of the exercises are designed to develop your various core muscles.
Why is strength training important?
Strength training causes micro tears in your muscle fibers which—if you're fueling your body correctly with adequate amounts of protein—your body will repair, so that they're bigger and stronger than before.
Stronger muscles can support and stabilize your body more effectively, improve your mobility and make your joints more robust, leaving you less at risk from injuries.
This is particularly handy for runners and those who play other recreational sports, enabling them to improve their running economy, generate more power and avoid unwanted pains and niggles.
Another thing people often overlook is using strength training exercises for weight loss. Any exercise session will raise your heart rate, leading to elevated calorie burn, but building muscle has longer-term impacts.
Muscle is a metabolically active tissue, requiring energy to maintain. So, the more you have, the more calories you will burn at rest, boosting your metabolism and helping you achieve a calorie deficit—the common denominator for weight loss.
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Harry Bullmore is a Fitness Writer for Fit&Well and its sister site Coach, covering accessible home workouts, strength training session, and yoga routines. He joined the team from Hearst, where he reviewed products for Men's Health, Women's Health, and Runner's World. He is passionate about the physical and mental benefits of exercise, and splits his time between weightlifting, CrossFit, and gymnastics, which he does to build strength, boost his wellbeing, and have fun.
Harry is a NCTJ-qualified journalist, and has written for Vice, Learning Disability Today, and The Argus, where he was a crime, politics, and sports reporter for several UK regional and national newspapers.
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