In a video posted to Instagram earlier this week, an extremely sweaty Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson dished on one of his core fitness philosophies: make time to work out on Sundays.
“If you can find that time on a Sunday,” he says, “Especially on a Sunday, when most aren’t working … if you can find a way to get a little bit of work in, it inherently sharpens those tools that set you up for success. It’s doing that little bit extra, it’s doing that little more when most aren’t. Doesn’t have to be crazy hours, but it’ll give you that edge.”
The Rock has a truly astonishing Instagram audience at this point — nearly 250 million followers — and like most things he posts, the video was met with hearts, clapping-hands emojis and comments on how inspiring his message was. A bunch of famous people chimed in, too, like Michael Phelps: “For sure!!! Gotta get something in everyday!”
It’s definitely interesting to get a bit of insight into the lifestyle of arguably Hollywood’s hardest-working and most-bankable star. The Rock just turned 49, and ahead of the 2022 release of DC Comics’s Black Adam, he’s somehow in the best shape of his life. Broadly speaking, his routine is clearly working. But at the same time, that “no days off” theology is somewhat fraught — it frames wellness as a competition or race, instead of a personal pursuit, where recovery and rest are absolutely essential for avoiding injury or burnout.
To be fair, The Rock does offer this disclaimer in his video, for those who prefer to relax on Sundays: “That’s fine. We all need that break. We all need that recalibrating and resetting to prepare for the week. Sometimes we need to unplug from the busy-ass week we just had.” But The Rock’s drenched torso suggests everyone should really consider getting off the couch and consider putting in what he calls “a lil’ sweat equity.” High-profile validations from athletes like Phelps only compound that point.
Assuming you’re working out most other days of the week, there is a world where you could also “put in a little time on Sunday.” But it probably shouldn’t be a hard run or a hard lift. Anoint that day for meditation, or stretching, or “play” (whether golf, tennis, pick-up basketball or a leisurely hike). You don’t always have to be locked-in to be getting better. In fact, in the long run, those lower-stakes days off are going to help you preserve your fitness.
Look, The Rock has found a formula that works for him. That’s all we can ask for when pursuing personal fitness. The disconnect here originates from the fact that he has hundreds of millions of followers who assume he alone holds the keys to maximum performance. But going hard every day of the week, or eating one’s weight in sugar, salt and fat for a cheat meal (which he also does on Sundays, by the way, much to the chagrin of a nutritionist we spoke to), is just his routine. Balance, as always in fitness, is the better recipe for sustainability.