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When you’re looking to develop sheer, massive power, what better person to serve as your role model than Hafthor Bjornsson, currently the World’s Strongest Man? Bjornsson isn’t just remarkable in strength but in stature, standing 6 feet 9 inches tall and weighing in at 440 pounds.
Early Years for The Mountain
A formidable force, much of his size has to do with his genetics. Bjornsson’s father is 6 foot 8, his mother is also tall, and even his grandfather is 6 feet 91/2 inches tall. The tall gene runs in his family.
You may not be able to reach the height of Hafthor “The Mountain” Bjornsson, but you can learn a lot from his diet and exercise program. Plus, Bjornsson has experienced inspiring success in more than one aspect of his life.
Raised on an Icelandic farm, Bjornsson had great strength long before his stardom set in. His grandfather recalls him being solid even as a youth, back when he could hardly be called tall. Bjornsson grew up in a community where strong was the thing every boy wanted to be.
Even today he finds his cave of a gym, a basement in Reykjavik, to be the best, most muscle-challenging place to get in a workout.
Yet interestingly, his athletic career started with basketball, playing as a center during his senior year. During the 2005 season, Bjornsson played 10 games before it was discovered that he was playing on a broken leg, a clear example of his sky-high pain threshold.
Still, many recognize Bjornsson not as an athlete but as one of the stars on The Game of Thrones.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine did find that resistance exercises increase a person’s pain threshold. This means that Bjornsson’s love of lifting has helped him out in more ways than one.
And it means there’s hope for those who look at his high tolerance and mind-blowing feats of strength only to feel they could never take the punishment. Let’s take a look, therefore, at the diet and exercise program they’d have to attain to for being more like Hafthor Bjornsson:
What Hafthor Bjornsson Eats
In short, Bjornsson eats a lot. He eats eight full meals a day, totaling a whopping 10,000 calories. But it’s all good, literally.
His diet is full of supplements, lean protein, vegetables, and quite a bit of whole grains – no junk. He fuels up before and after his workouts, which he may well need to do because, as you can probably imagine, Bjornsson’s workouts are tough.
Indeed, eating like a professional bodybuilder is likely to make the average person fat, even if they work out regularly.
The increased calorie count, as well as the heightened eating frequency, can backfire, undermining goal accomplishment.
For Bjornsson, he starts each day with a dose of glutamine, BCAAs, and some almonds.
About 40 minutes later, he’s eating again, taking in eight eggs, some oats, and strawberries, blueberries, and avocado.
Then it’s 400 grams each of lean beef and sweet potatoes, along with a healthy serving of leafy greens.
He follows this with another dose of BCAAs and glutamine.
From there it’s chicken, and potatoes with greens and fruit. He blends up a smoothie made of sweet potatoes, bananas, frozen berries, peanut butter, almonds, Kellogg’s Rice Krispies, and glutamine.
After this, more BCAAs and glutamine along with some Vitargo. It’s back to eating for Bjornsson again, this time three hours later, with 60 grams of protein and two bananas.
The next meal is 500 grams each of beef and potatoes with more greens.
In the evening, it’s 500 grams each of salmon and sweet potatoes.
His final meal for the day, which he takes in the very late hours, is six raw eggs or casein protein, and almonds, peanut butter, and avocado. You may also want to note that Bjornsson drinks a lot of juice and water.
This made us tired just writing all that he eats – crazy!
Hafthor Bjornsson’s Workout Routine
His max bench press is 539 pounds and he can squat up to 980 pounds. Actually, experts have found mid-range to be the best number of reps for creating muscle mass. For the sake of variety, they recommend cycling in both high and low rep routines. Bjornsson’s routine follows suit.
The core of his workout remains the same throughout the weeks. He lifts every day except for Tuesdays and Thursdays.
He performs the same moves each week for each day.
On Mondays, for example, his list of exercises features, squats, military presses, power cleans, chin-ups, and bent over rows. He does 3 sets of 10 reps the first week, 5 sets of 5 the second week, and 3 sets of 3 on week 3.
Skipping Tuesdays. Wednesday is deadlifts, 30 minutes of conditioning, and push presses.
On Friday is speed deadlifts, front squats, bench presses, and core and upper body resistance exercises, two moves of each.
His Saturday and Sunday workouts are all about Strongman Event practice moves.
Why You Should Be More Like Hafthor Bjornsson
One key takeaway anyone into fitness can get from Bjornsson’s diet and exercise program is that his nutritional habits are made to match his routine. He consumes a lot of healthy food so that he can do a lot of hefty lifting. He gets ripped without starving and fuels his demanding workouts without overeating. The perfect balance of his program gives him the amazing results that have made him a champ and even a film star.
For most, it will be a while before they get to lifting weights quite as Bjornsson does, but following his example and making gradual gains can get them there. Soon they’ll start seeing the life-changing mass and strength that can bring a person to stardom.
Lost on where to start with your exercise program? Check out Aaptiv – the #1 Audio Fitness Plan – this link will get you 30 days free!
If you are looking for some exercise routines to help you become more like The Mountain you can check these out:
- Stretching and Lifting – Basement Series
- 100 Deadlifts Workout and More – Basement Series
- Proper Deadlift Form – Tips, Tricks, and Things to Watch