David Harbour's Workout Routine, Diet Plan & Supplements

Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Published by Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: January 3, 2024
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The Hellboy superhero is JACKED. I know that many may think it’s impossible to achieve this physique, but I did the homework, and I say — yes, it’s possible. Harbour follows some insane workout routines.

I spent days going over his interviews and social media to find out how he keeps himself in great shape.

Take note; he doesn’t deny himself cheating on meals, so keep reading to find out how you can do it, too!

His Stats

  • Age: 48
  • Height: 6’ 3”
  • Weight: 215 lbs
  • Waist: 34”
  • Chest: 42”


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by David Harbour (@dkharbour)

Harbour’s Workout Routine with Celebrity Trainer Don Saladino

Harbour and Saladino (who also train Ryan Reynolds) routinely mix circuit styled and higher intensity weight and fat-loss routine with the typical bodybuilding style routine and movements.

In my own training, I've found mixing different styles, much like Harbour and Saladino, to be incredibly effective. It keeps the body guessing and the mind engaged. I remember when I first incorporated circuit training into my routine; the initial weeks were challenging, but the results were undeniable.

Monday: Barbell Bench Press and Circuit

man doing bench press in a gym, and a close up image of a man's legs doing lunges


  • Stretch
  • Jog 800m


  • Barbell Bench Press — five sets of 10,8,5,3 and 3 reps
  • Tricep Overhead Extension (Dumbbell) — three sets of ten reps
  • Incline Chest Flys (Dumbbell) — three sets of ten reps
  • Weight Dips — three sets — failure


  • Push-Ups — three sets of 25 reps
  • Lunges — three sets of 20 reps
  • V-Ups — three sets of 15 reps
  • Burpees — three sets of ten reps

Tuesday: Squats and Circuit

man doing a leg pres, and another man doing box jumps


  • Stretch
  • Jog 800m


  • Back Squats — five sets of 10,8,5,3 and 3 reps
  • Weighted Step Ups — three sets of ten reps
  • Weighted Calf Raises — three sets of ten reps
  • Leg Press — three sets of 12 reps


  • Air Squats — three sets of 25 reps
  • Dips — three sets of 20 reps
  • V-Ups — three sets of 15 reps
  • Box Jumps — three sets of 10 reps

Wednesday: Military Press and Circuit

man doing push ups indoors, and another man doing weight lifting outdoors


  • Stretch
  • Jog 800m


  • Military Press (Barbell) — five sets of 10, 8, 5, 3, and 3 reps
  • Barbell Shrugs — three sets of ten reps
  • Arnold Press — three sets of ten reps
  • Front Shoulder Raises (Dumbbell) — three sets of 15 reps


  • Ball Slams — three sets of 25 reps
  • Push-Ups — three sets of 20 reps
  • Sit-Ups — three sets of 15 reps
  • Pistol Squats — three sets of 10 reps

Thursday: Deadlifts and Circuit

man doing dumbbell rows in a gym, and another shirtless man doing weight lifting


  • Stretch
  • Jog 800m


  • Deadlift — five sets of 10,8,5,3 and 3 reps
  • Dumbbell Rows — three sets of ten reps
  • Lateral Pulldowns — three sets of ten reps
  • Face Pulls — three sets of ten reps


  • Ring Rows — three sets of 25 reps
  • Jump Squats — three sets of 20 reps
  • Second Reverse Superman — three sets of 15 reps
  • Pull-Ups — three sets of 10 reps

Friday: Getting Ripped with Bear Crawls and Medicine Ball Slam

David Harbour in his Hell Boy costume and a man working out using medicine ball

This Golden Globe nominee is most famous for his Hellboy shape, and here’s how the Stranger Things star made it happen:

Warm-Up Routine

David Harbour’s Hellboy workout routine included repeating the warm-up twice with minimal rest between the exercises.

  • Forward Bound — one set of three to five jumps
  • Bear Crawl — one set of five crawls on each arm
  • Medicine Ball Slam — one set of five reps
  • Lateral Bound — one set of three to five jumps on each side
  • Lateral Bear Crawl — one set of five crawls in each direction
  • Pivoting Medicine Ball Slam — one set of three to five slams per side

Hellboy Suit Up Circuit

Harbour’s circuit is all weighted carries, so if you want to try it, you'll need a set of kettlebells or dumbbells.

The first few rounds are composed of overhead moves, so you should be extra careful with the weight. Try walking for 25 yards for each position and switch arms for each that has you holding the weights in offset positions.

  • Double Overhead Carry
  • Single Overhead Carry
  • Overhead Rack Carry
  • Overhead Down Carry
  • Double Rack Carry
  • Single Rack Carry
  • Rack Down Carry
  • Double Farmer's Walk
  • Single Suitcase Carry

His Workout Principles

man with big biceps giving a thumbs up

David Harbour's workout routines include hitting the gym four times a week.

When preparing for his Hellboy role, Harbour trained intensely for nine weeks.

His trainer focused on athleticism and functional movement, and we all saw the results.

Reflecting on my own fitness journey, I resonate with Harbour's principle of training four times a week. It strikes the perfect balance between pushing hard and allowing for recovery.

During a particularly intense eight-week program I followed, focusing on functional movements not only built my strength but also enhanced my day-to-day agility and performance.

Here’s what he said on getting in shape fast:

“If you want to get in shape and get strong, there are these things called “sleds.” You take a weighted sled, and you just push it across the floor, and then you drag it back. And basically, if you do that for 20 minutes a day, you’ll look like Arnold Schwarzenegger.”

Harbour's Injury Prevention and Recovery Techniques

Injury prevention and recovery are crucial aspects of any fitness regimen, especially for those undertaking significant physical transformations like actor David Harbour. His journey to getting fit for roles in "Stranger Things" and "Hellboy" in his forties highlights the importance of these techniques.

These are Harbour's key strategies for injury prevention:

  • Warm-up and cool-down routines: A proper warm-up prepares the body for the stress of exercise, reducing the risk of injury. This can include light cardio and dynamic stretching to increase blood flow and improve range of motion. Similarly, cooling down with gentle stretching helps in muscle recovery and reduces stiffness.
  • Incorporating functional training: Functional training involves exercises that train your muscles to work together, simulating common movements you might do at home or work. Harbour believes this type of training not only improves overall body strength but also enhances coordination and balance.
  • Focus on form and technique: This might mean reducing the weight you lift or slowing down the exercise to ensure that each movement is performed correctly and safely.
  • Regular stretching and flexibility work: Incorporating regular stretching and flexibility exercises can significantly reduce the risk of muscle strains and joint injuries. Practices like yoga or Pilates can be particularly beneficial in improving flexibility and core strength.
  • Cross-training and rest days: Engaging in different types of workouts (cross-training) can prevent overuse injuries that occur from doing the same type of exercise repeatedly. Additionally, scheduling rest days is crucial for allowing muscles to recover and repair.
  • Listening to your body: Paying attention to what your body tells you is perhaps the most critical aspect of injury prevention. If Harbour feels pain or discomfort beyond normal muscle fatigue, it's a sign to stop and rest.

David Harbour’s Diet Plan

plate with omelet, and a salad in a bowl

Harbour has always been a big guy. Though he wasn’t overweight, he had a bit of a dad bod before he started training for his iconic Hellboy role. While he went from chubby to ripped, he didn’t lose any weight or change his diet too much.

While his diet isn’t the cleanest, he can afford to eat more than most of us because of his insane workout routines.

Here’s What David Harbour Eats in a Day

  • Breakfast: fruit and protein shake
  • Lunch: omelet, bacon, vegetables
  • Snack: protein shake
  • Dinner: chicken, salad

Harbour Eats:

  • Everything in moderation
  • Meat
  • Vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Fruit
  • Burgers (in moderation)
  • Fries (in moderation)
  • Candy (in moderation)
  • Soda (in moderation)
  • Whatever helps him get through the day

Harbour Avoids:

  • Overeating
  • Things that slow him down
  • Junk food (in moderation)
  • Processed foods (in moderation)
  • Chemicals
  • Artificial ingredients

Nutrition Principles

man smiling holding a salad bowl and a thumbs up

When it comes to eating, Harbour is all about maintaining a balance.

He’s not the cleanest eater and doesn't deny himself sugar and junk food. Instead, he eats everything, but in moderation.

I've always believed in the power of balance in nutrition, much like Harbour. In my experience, being too restrictive can lead to burnout and cravings.

By allowing myself the occasional treat, in moderation, I've been able to maintain a healthy diet without feeling deprived. It's all about finding that sweet spot where you can enjoy food while still nourishing your body.

What Supplements Does David Harbour Use?

Harbour uses BCAAs, whey protein, and vitamins to maintain his physique. According to an article on Healthline, BCAAs increase muscle growth while decreasing muscle soreness [1].

Moreover, a study published on the PubMed website says they also reduce workout fatigue [2] and prevent muscle wasting.

On the other hand, whey protein reduces muscle inflammation, and vitamins provide the necessary nutrients athletes need.

Other workout routines:


  1. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-bcaa
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17004850/
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About The Author

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
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

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