Chris Hemsworth's Thor Workout Routine, Diet & Supplements

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: January 22, 2024
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As a personal trainer, Chris Hemsworth is one of the marvel superstars I admire a lot. His body transformation motivates most of my clients to have a toned body like his.

Chris has openly admitted to being a workout enthusiast, which has left many people curious about his workout routines. Luckily, Chris Hemsworth openly discusses his exercises, his diet, and the supplements he takes.

So, I spent a day with the team researching interviews and his social media profiles to see how he's achieved that physique.

The Chris Hemsworth Body Transformation

Chris started his career in Australia on a popular TV show called Home and Away.

As a surfer dude on the show, he was always slim and well-built, but nothing even remotely resembling his ripped appearance today.

And it wasn’t until around 2010 that he went through a significant body transformation.

That was all in preparation for the first Thor movie, which is why so many people refer to his Thor workout.

In some interviews from 2011, Hemsworth mentions that he put on between 20 and 30 pounds of muscle mass. That would explain why he looks so imposing in the movie.

youtube

Chris Hemsworth’s Workout Approach

working out

To gain all the muscle weight, Chris Hemsworth had to focus a lot of attention on heavy weightlifting, which was very alien to him.

While he was no stranger to the gym, he mainly focused on staying fit and slim. Chris did have good muscle definition, but to play Thor, he needed a lot more lean mass.

That meant spending a lot less time on cardio machines and seriously reducing the reps he was doing.

Depending on how close he is to shooting a new movie, he’ll spend either 5 or 6 days a week in the gym. 

Sample Workout Routine

We analyzed dozens of interviews, YouTube clips, and social media posts to figure out what a typical week would look like for Chris. As you’ll soon see, this workout plan is the real deal.

Monday - Chest, and Abs

chest press

Each of these exercises will be 3 sets with a maximum of 10 reps. What Chris would also tend to do is gradually overload his muscles by increasing the weight for each set and going down from 10 to 7 to 5 reps.

As a personal trainer, I can say from experience that this is an effective approach.

Chest:

  • Dumbbell flys
  • Barbell bench press
  • Chest press
  • Weighted chest dips
  • Cable Flys

Abs:

I wouldn’t focus on reps here, but rather take Mohammad Ali’s approach and only start counting when it starts to hurt.

  • Plank warm-up
  • Crunches
  • Leg Raises
  • Scissor kicks
  • Oblique crunches

Tuesday - Back and Shoulders

Weighted Dips

There is a lot of evidence that this form of compound exercise can help you bulk up faster as it seems to increase the amount of natural growth hormone and testosterone production.

  • Weighted pull-ups (15 reps or more)
  • Chin-ups (15 reps or more)
  • Weighted dips
  • Lateral raises
  • Bent over rows
  • Lat pulldown
  • Shrugs

Wednesday - Legs

Deadlifts

The focus here is entirely on the legs, and before you think that this might be an easy day, let me say that these are all 5 sets of 10 reps declining to 5 reps.

  • Squats
  • Leg curls
  • Leg extensions
  • Deadlifts
  • Standing calf raises

Thursday - Arms and Abs

Chin ups

Here’s a heavy focus on the glory muscles, and again, go for 5 sets of a maximum of 10 reps. That means going for those big dumbbells.

  • Bicep curls
  • Hammer curls
  • Standing triceps extensions
  • Triceps cable pulldown
  • Chin-ups
  • Barbell press

Abs:

  • Plank warm-up
  • Crunches 
  • Leg Raises
  • Scissor kicks
  • Oblique crunches

Friday - HIIT or Cardio

Depending on whether he’s in a bulking or cutting phase, this day will either be a 90-minute high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or a cardio session to burn off some body fat.

He’s also done some martial arts training like Muay Thai, which helps him prepare for fight scenes in movies.

“You have to keep shocking your body in different ways for it to want to evolve, and the variety is key because it keeps you mentally stimulated.”

- Chris Hemsworth

Saturday - Legs, Arms, and Abs

Squats

This routine provides a mix of upper body, legs, and abs for a bit more muscle confusion and compound effects before you head for a well-deserved rest.

What you’d do is pick 4 of the previous day’s exercises for each body part to give you a bit of a full-body routine.

Sunday - Rest

Chris Hemsworth takes his rest and recovery seriously, and one day a week is designated to wind down. He would still go for a few walks and even do a bit of a stretching routine.

These things can help a lot when it comes to increasing blood flow and ultimately repairing and building up new muscle tissue.

What Does His Diet Plan Include?

healthy living

Chris Hemsworth's diet plan includes whole grains, vegetables, fruits, protein, meats (chicken and beef), and salmon.

We’ll focus on the so-called Thor diet, which aims to bulk up muscle and reduce body fat through cutting phases.

And to aim for the body of the god of thunder, you’ll need to get your macros absolutely right. It will also involve eating 6 times a day to keep those nutrients coming.

Breakfast

  • Large bowl of oatmeal
  • Fresh fruit salad with lots of berries
  • Large glass of milk
  • Protein shake
  • Cup of coffee

Post-Workout Energy

  • Post-workout protein shake
  • 1 cup of unsalted mixed nuts
  • 6 oz of chicken breast or turkey

Midday Snack

  • Turkey or beef jerky

Lunch

  • 2 to 3 chicken breasts
  • 1 cup of brown rice
  • 1 to 2 cups of beans
  • Large bowl of mixed vegetables

Afternoon Snack

  • Brown bread
  • 4 scrambled eggs
  • Topped with cottage cheese

Dinner

  • Double portion of salmon
  • Large portion of vegetables
  • Sweet potato

What you should notice here is that this diet is heavily focused on protein and healthy fats. Chris does get some carb boosts, but it’s important to make sure that those are complex carbs.

Sugary carbs get into your body fast and will cause blood glucose spikes. While they might feel like you have loads of energy, they’re also followed by sudden energy crashes.

Other celebrity physiques:

What Supplements Does He Use?

supplements

Chris Hemsworth uses supplements such as pre-workout, whey protein, BCAAs, and vitamins and minerals to supercharge his workout efforts.

1. Pre-Workout

In order to push himself another 5% or 10% further, Chris would make sure he took a pre-workout supplement. It might not seem like much, but from my own experience, if you add up the effects of working 5% harder in each training session, then you’ll get one step closer to a true Thor workout.

2. Whey Protein

You can see in the meal plan above that he takes a few protein shakes throughout the day. Keeping that steady supply of amino acids should help muscles recover faster, and whey protein has the ideal amino acid profile for muscle protein synthesis [1].

3. BCAAs

These fancy amino acids play a key role in workout performance and recovery. Some bodybuilders like taking them halfway through a training session to help power through it and get an early kick start for muscle recovery, according to a study in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition [2].

4. Vitamins and Minerals

Taking multivitamins is something that a lot of bodybuilders underestimate. But micronutrients play a key role in workout recovery times. Getting a boost from a supplement at the end of the day is one of the best ways to prepare for the next day’s workout.

Check out the best multivitamins for athletes.

Did He Make Role-Specific Training Adjustments?

Chris Hemsworth tailors his workout routines to fit his diverse roles.

For Thor, he focuses on bulking up, emphasizing heavy weightlifting and high-protein diets.

In contrast, for "Rush," he slimmed down, incorporating more cardio and circuit training. "Extraction" required a balance, maintaining muscle mass while enhancing agility and endurance.

These adjustments highlight his commitment to authentically portraying each character, adapting his fitness regime to meet the physical demands of each role.

FAQs

How Does Hemsworth Adjust His Diet During Training?

Hemsworth's diet is high in protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs. During bulking phases, he increases calorie intake, while for cutting phases, he reduces calories and focuses on fat-burning foods.

Is Hemsworth's Routine Suitable for Beginners?

No, Hemsworth's routine is not suitable for beginners because it is designed for advanced fitness levels, involving intense weightlifting and high-intensity exercises that may be too challenging for those just starting out.


References:

  1. https://www.encyclopedia.com/sports/sports-fitness-recreation-and-leisure-magazines/muscle-protein-synthesis
  2. https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12970-017-0184-9
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About The Author

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC is an ex-National Soccer player turned MMA and Kickboxing champion, with ACE CPT and PN1-NC certifications. His advice is rooted in education and experience, ensuring that readers receive scientific and battle-tested insights. His mission is to empower his clients and readers to realize their potential and become the best versions of themselves.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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