The man behind Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot’s superhero transformations breaks down how he eats and trains on an average day.
Trainer and nutritionist
Magnus Lygdback has helped stars like Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot and Mackenzie Davis get into incredible shape for movie roles, and regularly shares insights into the training and diet plans he used to help them hone their superhero bodies. In the most recent video on his YouTube channel, Lygdback breaks down his own daily routine, and how he tends to eat and work out in an average week.
Each day starts with coffee and a protein-rich breakfast, usually involving an omelet or scrambled eggs. When he’s not in the mood for eggs, he’ll eat unsweetened Greek yogurt with nuts, or a protein shake made with peanut butter and frozen berries.
When heading to the gym, Lygdback recommends asking yourself three questions—What do I like to do, what does my body need, and what do I want to master?—and finding a way to program your workout so that you’re benefiting all three areas. In his case, he likes to do strength training, he is using pilates for conditioning, and he wants to master the martial art of Brazilian jiu-jitsu.
In addition to doing pilates twice a week and jiu-jitsu training twice a week, Lygdback follows a four-day split in the gym, consisting of a legs on day one, chest, front shoulders and core on day two, back and outside shoulders on day three, and arms on day four. On the day of filming, he’s doing a leg day, starting with dead man sprints on the treadmill. "You’re activating your core more than a regular sprint," he says. "It’s also low-impact so it’s not hard on your knees or lower back at all."
He typically follows this with deadlift, leg press, leg curls, weighted walking lunges and Bulgarian split squat. He makes sure to start each workout with the big, heavy exercises, then goes more towards the isolated movements—and if he’s having any knee issues, he might switch out some of those weighted moves for bodyweight work.
He also listens to his body when it comes to how many sets and reps he does, switching up the numbers depending on the day and how much he thinks he can handle. "You’ve got to be in tune with your body, and I’ve been doing this such a long time that I know if I have it or don’t have it one day," he says.
After the session, Lygdback makes a four-egg omelet with chilis, cheese, and salsa. He ensures that he is consuming protein within a three hour window of working out (he adds that it doesn’t matter whether you do it before or after), and adds that allowing yourself enough rest is even important for recovery than the post-workout meal. "There needs to be a balance between training, nutrition, rest and recovery," he says. "Work hard, rest hard."
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