Chris Hemsworth’s “Upper Body Burner” Is a Perfect Workout for Spring

The five-move circuit easily slots into a workday afternoon

Chris Hemsworth holding dumbbells.
The Australian is the best in the game at providing approachable, actionable regimens.

Chris Hemsworth’s schedule isn’t getting any easier over the next couple of years.

The 38-year-old actor’s playing a villain in the Mad Max sequel Furiosa, will portray Hulk Hogan in a just-announced biopic, has been traveling the world with National Geographic for a Disney+ show called Limitless and continues to helm Centr, one of our favorite health and fitness subscription apps.

For some of his action roles, Hemsworth has to get into a specific sort of shape. While training for the latest Extraction movie, he prioritized agility and speed, looking to develop the “cut” of a soldier. In order to play a WWE icon, he’s going to have to double down on sheer brawn.

If the Australian retired from acting tomorrow, though, it’s clear that that wouldn’t be the end of his fitness journey. He’d still lift, kickbox, surf and eat clean. In an age where most actors cram regimens into a six-week span for one job, then quit cold turkey, Hemsworth has shifted the paradigm, emphasizing well-being as an approachable and actionable lifestyle choice.

It’s a nice change of pace for those of us on the outside of the business, looking to add some muscle or cut some belly fat while balancing our far less glamorous jobs. Hemsworth has made a habit of posting circuit workouts to Instagram, most of which require little time commitment or equipment, and can easily be slotted into a workday afternoon. His latest is a “functional upper body burner.”

Here’s the workout in full:

  • 40 reps on the battle ropes
  • 10 reps of ball slams
  • 10 reps of tricep push-ups (using the medicine ball)
  • 10 reps of reverse lunge curls
  • 10 reps of sit-thrus (to either side)

Repeat the entire circuit 10 times, with one minute of rest in between each round. Quick math — assuming the circuit takes about three to five minutes each time, this circuit should clock in right around a half hour. Add a light warmup (jogging, arm circles, jump rope… it’s entirely up to you), and some gentle, post-workout stretching, and you’re looking at less than a hour, all told.

While this workout does primarily target the upper body, notice how full-body these exercises are. Hitting the battle ropes is going to build muscle up top while engaging the core and the glutes (and burning lots of calories), while reverse lunge curls activate pretty much every relevant muscle group in the body.

Aside from sit-thrus, which are a notoriously difficult mat exercise, everything here is self-explanatory. Refer to Hemsworth’s Instagram post above for clarity on how to perform specific moves. If you’re completely gassed after two or three rounds, remember not to overdo it. As egalitarian as Hemsworth and his team may make these circuits, he’s still one of the fittest guys on the planet. There is no shame in working up to the full 10 rounds, or taking your time, for instance, in between each ball slam.

To find more workouts like this, check out Centr here.

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