Michael Jai White Workout Routine, Diet Plan & Supplements

Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC
Published by Benedict Ang, CPT, PN1-NC | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: May 10, 2024
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Michael Jai White is renowned for his martial arts skills and incredible physique, evident in his action film roles.

I’ve compiled his workout and diet plan from various interviews and his social media insights, and I'm about to share tips and tricks on how he accomplishes his impeccable physique.

His Stats

portrait image of michael jai white
  • Born: November 10, 1967
  • Height: 6’1”
  • Weight: 225 lbs

Michael Jai White is a busy actor who has featured in movies like Never Back Down 2, Mortal Kombat, Cops and Robbers, Black Dynamite 2, and numerous TV spin-off series. What I found most impressive about Michael is that he has a black belt in 7 different martial arts disciplines.

While many know Michael Jai White for his impressive physique, few are aware of the intricate martial arts techniques he incorporates into his training.

Delving deeper into his regimen, one can discover specific forms, routines, and practices that not only enhance his physical prowess but also sharpen his discipline and focus. From traditional karate katas to advanced Taekwondo kicks, Michael's martial arts foundation plays a pivotal role in his overall fitness journey.

Now, being able to maintain that level of physical fitness and muscle mass has made many people ask how he keeps up with gym work and movies at the age of 54.

Michael Jai White’s Training Principles

A man focused on gym training

I gathered a lot of information from a few interview video clips where he has specifically spoken about his workout routine.

Having watched Michael Jai White's interviews and tried his workout principles myself, I can attest to their effectiveness. The mix of martial arts and traditional exercises has not only transformed my physique but also enhanced my mental strength and discipline.

Compound Exercises

Once we get to the detailed workout, you’ll see there are many compound multi-joint exercises. The reason White does this is to target more muscle groups in less time. And there’s also scientific evidence that compound exercises help with faster muscle tissue growth, according to the Asian Journal of Sports Medicine [1].

Incorporating Michael’s compound exercises into my own routine, I’ve noticed a significant improvement in my strength and muscle definition. Each session leaves me feeling accomplished and energized.

Training Days

White hits the gym three days a week, complementing his regimen with outdoor cardio or extra sessions as needed for roles. Outdoor activities keep his training diverse and engaging.

Following White’s three-days-a-week gym routine, I’ve found a perfect balance that allows my body to rest and recover. The addition of outdoor cardio keeps every week exciting and challenging.

Action Activities

White does many martial arts-type exercises as part of his cutting workout plans, which involves a lot of training in various martial art schools. That shows in his fight scenes which would easily compete with Donnie Yen.

Embracing White’s martial arts exercises, I’ve discovered a new level of agility and coordination. Each martial art school introduces me to unique techniques that enrich my fitness journey.

If he’s not training his fighting skills, he likes to do outdoor activities to keep his body in shape and to break the boredom people often get at the gym.

“I was an insecure kid growing up in a harsh environment. Martial arts was my armour.”

- Michael Jai White

Now it’s time to bring you the details of Michael Jai White’s workout routines.


Michael Jai White's Workout Routine

Michael Jai White has a rigorous exercise plan that involves a lot of classical weight training split into three body areas.

Day 1: Chest/Shoulders/Triceps

A man working out inside a gym

The first day of White's routine emphasizes bench presses, contributing to his prominent pecs and shoulders. Opt for heavier weights to maximize muscle engagement.

  • Warm-up (15 minutes treadmill and jump rope)
  • Military bench press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Wide dumbbell bench press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Incline dumbbell press (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Standing dumbbell row or barbell row (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Weighted close-grip pull-ups (3 sets of 12 reps)
  • Standing triceps extensions (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Dips (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)

Day 2: Back/Biceps

A shirtless man working out on a gym

Head for the heavy-weight plates if you’re serious about getting a physique like White. The more you struggle with the last two repetitions, the better.

You should really feel this in your back muscles.

  • Warm-up (15 minutes elliptical)
  • Preacher curls (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Weighted wide-grip pull-ups (3 sets of 12 reps)
  • Barbell curls (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Weighted chin-ups (3 sets of 12 reps)
  • Cable rows (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)
  • Hammer curls (3 sets of 8 to 10 reps)

Day 3: Legs/Abs

A man doing a day run

This is an important muscle group to regularly cover in your workouts to avoid what I call the lollipop effect.

That’s the kind of guy who spends all his time at the gym on arms and chest workouts and then ends up with out-of-proportion skinny legs.

  • Warm-up (15 minutes treadmill)
  • Leg press (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)
  • Calf raise (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)
  • Hamstring curls (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)
  • Dumbbell lunges (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)
  • Cable ab crunch (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)
  • Hanging leg raises (3 sets of 8 to 12 reps)

Active Days And Recovery

Men resting after workout

Integrate varied activities into your routine to stay active on non-weight training days, drawing inspiration from the diverse training of track athletes.

  • Jump rope sessions for 20 to 30 minutes
  • Hiking
  • Track and field running
  • Martial art classes

The great thing about having two or three days to fill up is that you can focus on parts of your body where you think you need more muscle.

If you think your arms and chest could do with some more bulk, then just add another chest day.

“Most people say I look mean, and because I play so many tough roles and because of my size and my martial arts background, they think I am, but I'm really not.”

- Michael Jai White

Michael Jai White’s Diet Plan

plate full of salad

Beyond his rigorous workout routines, Michael Jai White's diet is a testament to his commitment to health. But what exactly fuels this martial arts legend?

Let's explore some of his favorite recipes, the nutritional science behind his meal choices, and how each ingredient contributes to his energy levels, muscle growth, and recovery.

A balanced diet is integral to maximizing the benefits of White’s workout routine. He emphasizes adapting his diet, especially during bulking phases, to align with his fitness goals.

Adopting White’s diet, I’ve experienced increased energy levels and better workout performances. The balanced meals support my training and recovery, making each day a step closer to my fitness goals.

Macro Profile

A healthy meal on a plate

The macro profile of his diet varies slightly depending on the training phase he’s in.

Here are the ranges that people can consider.

  • Carbs: 25% to 45%
  • Protein: 30% to 40%
  • Fat: 20% to 30%

Michael Jai White will boost his calorie intake from carbs during a bulking phase but also lower it down a lot when he’s cutting.

It’s not an exact science and will depend on your body, age, weight, and metabolism, which is why you may want to talk to a dietitian to get the right combination of diet and exercise routine.

With our free macro calculator, you can get all the information you need, so we recommend you try it now. If you are in the bulking phase, this calculator will give you consistent results every time you recalculate your macros as you approach your goal.

Made By: TotalShape

Meal Sizes

A high protein meat

Following White's routine requires increased caloric intake to fuel muscle growth. Adjusting meal sizes and macros is essential, especially when preparing for demanding roles.

You should use an online calculator to work out your base calorie needs based on your age, height, weight, and activity levels.

From there, you can increase or decrease your meal sizes to a bulking, cutting, or maintenance phase.

Food Quality

A full packed high protein meal

White underscores the importance of diet quality in enhancing workout outcomes. Despite a penchant for Town House crackers, he prioritizes a diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, and grass-fed red meat.

Sample Meal Plan

Healthy meal on a place and a bowl

Here is how you could support Michael Jai White’s workout routine.


  • 5 egg omelet
  • Bowl of oatmeal
  • Fresh fruit and yogurt


  • Unsalted nuts


  • 12 ounces of chicken breast
  • Sweet potato
  • Large portion of green vegetables


  • 12 ounces of steak or fish
  • Brown rice
  • Large portion of green vegetables

Eating as much and as often as Michael Jai White does isn’t for just anyone. And you certainly need to monitor your calories when you follow this program.

What Supplements Does He Take?

Different supplements on a small bowl

Supplementing your diet can enhance the results from White's workout routine, offering increased energy and reduced fatigue.

Since I started taking the supplements recommended by White, the boost in my energy and endurance is undeniable. Every workout feels more productive, and my recovery is faster than ever.


White has spoken a few times about the positive effects he’s had from branched-chain amino acids. These types of proteins play a key role in protein synthesis, and a targeted boost has been shown to help with fatigue and soreness, according to the Nutrients [2].

Whey Protein

Whether you’re training your arms, abs, or any other body part, you simply cannot afford to miss out on a large boost of protein shakes after strength training.

Ideally, follow Michael White by choosing a high-quality grass-fed whey protein over the cheapest bodybuilder supplements you can find [3].


Pre-workout is one of those supplements that not enough people use. If you’re exercising 3 to 6 days a week, then a small 5% boost in performance and reduction in fatigue can have a significant impact on your body weight and lean mass.

Fat Burner

Fat burner supplements for men tend to get a bad rap, but if you’re in a cutting phase, then they can speed up the fat loss without losing strength. Most clients I work with now fully rely on a good fat burner to get that ripped and lean appearance.


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4592763/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6212987/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22549884/
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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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