Tom Hardy workout: How actor gained 30lb of muscle fast for Batman’s Bane – what he did

Tom Hardy workout: How actor gained 30lb of muscle fast for Batman’s Bane – what he did


Tom Hardy is arguably one of Britain’s most well known actors, having starred in huge blockbuster films and TV programmes over the course of his successful career. And what adds to his talent is his ability to transform his body to suit whatever character he is playing.

His most prominent transformation that is still being talked about today is his appearance as Bane in 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises.

The actor managed to gain over 30lb (two stone) for the role as Batman’s arch-nemesis.

But how did he bulk up in a short space of time?

He is said to have used a range of body weight exercises to build muscle on his chest, arms and shoulders.

Hardy hit a four-round circuit, going from 10 reps in the first round, to seven, to five, then to three.

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According to Men’s Health, the workout is as follows:

The square: 10, seven, five, three reps

Position hands so they’re ‘square’ with the shoulders.

Keep elbows tucked in, moving alongside the torso to detonate the triceps.

The rectangle: 10, seven, five, three reps

Set hands wide apart, so that a rectangle is formed by the chest, arms and the floor

The eagle: 10, seven, five, three reps

Set hands wide apart and spread fingers while lowering the body and turn them outwards.

The kong: 10, seven, five, three reps

Assume a press-up position on the knuckles, with arms kept at shoulder-width.

Lower chest to the floor, letting the elbows bend back like a grasshopper’s legs.

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While this workout alongside a food-laden diet did the trick for Hardy, he admitted previously that he was actually “overweight”, weighing in at a hefty 14 stone (90kg) during filming.

But the transformation is not one that will be forgotten lightly, especially by the actor himself.

He said at the time: “If you really study the photographs [of Bane], I was really overweight, actually.

“I ate a lot and I wasn’t much heavier than I am now, but I just ate more pizza.

“They shoot from low to make you look big.”

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“It was alright when I was younger, but I think as you get into your 40s you have to be more mindful of the rapid training, packing on a lot of weight and getting physical, and then not having enough time to keep training because you’re busy filming, so your body is swimming in two different directions at the same time.

“I haven’t damaged my body, but I’m certainly a bit achier than I used to be! I certainly have joints that click that probably shouldn’t click.”

He added: “And carrying my children is a little bit harder than it used to be – but don’t tell them.”





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