Frank Grillo's Workout Routine, Diet Plan & Supplements

Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Published by Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: May 13, 2024
FACT CHECKED by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
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Frank Grillo's career began with a year on Wall Street before he made a significant shift into acting. As a personal trainer, I found his transformation and ability to maintain a fit physique in his 50s incredibly intriguing and inspiring.

How exactly does he keep an impressive physique and age-defying energy?

Our team spent a few months going through interviews, social media posts, and fitness training information that Frank has shared over the years.

Read on and find out if Frank Grillo's workout routine and diet is the key to elevating your own fitness journey.

Frank Grillo Stats

Portrait image of Frank Grillo
  • Born: June 8, 1965
  • Height: 5'10"
  • Weight: 170 lbs

Grillo shows off his muscles in Captain America: Civil War and as an MMA coach in the movie Warrior. And there's no mistaking him for anything other than a tough guy.

What's also interesting is his diet approach that is based on Paleo and mainly avoids simple carbs.

Let's take a look at his training plan first, though.

Frank's Workout Routines

Grillo grew up in New York City, and at the age of 10, his parents bought him a set of weights.

So he's not a stranger to working the weights, and that shows in his workout plan.

Monday: Upper Body

shirtless man lifting weights in a gym

For Grillo, it's an early morning trip to Fortune Gym in Hollywood to bring on the burn.

  • Dumbbell biceps curls (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Lateral raises (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Bench press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Lat pulldowns (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Triceps kickbacks (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Military press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Weighted pull-ups (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)

Tuesday: Cardio And Martial Arts

Grillo has a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and spends a lot of time training in martial arts.

On this day, he also dedicates time to controlling his BMI with some work on cardio machines, including ellipticals and rowers.

Wednesday: Core And Abs

Man doing core and abs workout

You just need to look at Frank's photoshoot pictures for Men's Health magazine to see that he must spend a lot of time on abs training.

  • Side plank hip dips (3 sets of 15 to 20 reps)
  • Hanging leg raises (3 sets of 15 to 20 reps)
  • Crunches (3 sets to failure)
  • Bicycle kicks (3 sets to failure)
  • Planks (3 sets to failure)
  • Burpees (3 sets to failure)

Thursday: Boxing

Men's Health magazine had some great action shots of Grillo in the ring, and he dedicates at least one day to get the gloves on.

  • Three rounds of varying speed and steps shadow boxing
  • 30 minutes on an aqua bag or heavy bag

Friday: Lower Body

man using a leg press machine in the gym

Today is time for working those legs.

  • Squats (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Deadlifts (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Leg extensions (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Leg press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Leg curls (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Calf raises (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)

Saturday/Sunday: Rest

You'll need these days but try to remain active and go for some walks and hikes. The more you can keep your muscles loose, the better they will recover.

Frank Grillo's Training Principles

In my experience as a trainer, I've always emphasized the importance of maximum intensity workouts, much like Frank Grillo. I recall a time when I pushed my limits in a similar routine and ended up with jelly arms and legs, just like Frank describes. It's a clear sign of a workout that challenges every muscle fiber.

What you'll notice above is a strong focus on mixing in compound exercises that target multiple muscle groups. A study from the National Institute of Health (NIH) has shown that this is a good approach to achieving more muscle mass [1].

And with boxing and cardio, he manages to keep his BMI down for that ripped Men's Health-worthy physique.

Frank's Diet Plan

breakfast plate

Here is what a typical day will look like for Frank Grillo. You'll need to adjust portion sizes to your calorie needs, but it should give you an idea of what you need.

  • Breakfast: 4 scrambled eggs, whole-grain toast, mixed fruit, and greek yogurt
  • Snack: Cup of unsalted nuts, a protein shake
  • Lunch: Fresh fish or chicken, a large portion of steamed vegetables, mixed salad of leafy greens and olive oil
  • Snack: A protein bar or shake
  • Dinner: A large portion of red meat, sweet potato fries, mixed vegetables, and salad

Frank Grillo's Diet Principles

From my personal journey with the paleo diet, I can relate to Frank's approach. Cutting out sugar and simple carbs made a significant difference in my energy levels and body composition. Like Frank, I also allow myself the occasional indulgence, especially when it comes to family dinners.

Having grown up in NY, he's a pizza fanatic, and sometimes that's washed down with soft drinks. But it's a rare occasion.

He also doesn't count calories but rather focuses on eating clean food that he freshly prepared. Grillo hasn't avoided fat as a macro and generally prefers high protein and fat content on his meal plan.

Frank's Supplements

variety of Supplements

Grillo aims to get all his nutrients from food, and as a paleo follower, he's not a big fan of supplements. But there are two things he'll rely on for the results he's achieved.

Whey Protein Powder

According to NIH whey powder is a complete protein, which means it delivers all the amino acids your body needs for recovery and muscle building [2]. With such a stringent fitness routine, it's going to be an essential part of the plan.

Pre-Workout Supplement

Grillo carefully plans every part of his fitness and workout plan. Whether it's for a gym session or a few rounds of boxing, a pre-workout supplement should provide the endurance to push that bit further.

Nutritional Supplements vs. Whole Foods

As we already know, Grillo preferes to get his nutrients from foods. Relying on whole foods in a fitness diet is generally more effective and nutritionally sound than depending on supplements alone.

Whole foods offer a spectrum of essential nutrients, fiber, and phytochemicals, promoting overall health and proper digestion.

While supplements can address specific deficiencies, they lack the synergistic benefits of the complex compounds found in whole foods. Moreover, excessive reliance on supplements may lead to imbalances and potential health risks.

A balanced approach that prioritizes nutrient-dense whole foods ensures a comprehensive and sustainable nutritional foundation for fitness goals, supporting long-term health and performance.


How Do I Create a Custom Workout and Diet Plan?

You create a custom workout and diet paln by identifying your goals, plan your workouts, create a schedule, detrmine your diet, create a meal plan, and reevaluate your goals.

Can You Get Ripped On OMAD?

No. You cannot get ripped on OMAD. Although the OMAD diet may aid in weight reduction, it is certainly not designed for lifting weights or building muscle. Pro-OMAD publications make a concerted effort to explain why muscle loss is not inevitable while on the diet. But neither is either muscular growth nor muscle increase desirable.


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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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