Friday, July 30, 2021
The Best Muscle Workouts


A Very Honest Review Of Chris Hemsworth’s Centr Workout App

When you come for the king you’d better not miss. But what about when you set your sights on Thor?…

By admint10m , in Arms , at July 20, 2021

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When you come for the king you’d better not miss. But what about when you set your sights on Thor?

That’s what I set out to discover last month, as I set myself the challenge of completing an entire week of Chris Hemsworth’s workouts – a body bashing of every direction, meant to be completed over seven days – in one night.

Inspired by this David Goggins rant, which convinced me I had to do something crazy, I headed over to Mr Hemsworth’s Instagram account hoping to find some exercises I could mimic.

As luck would have it, Mr Hemsworth had recently revealed the answer to my most burning question – how does he get so huge?

“I’ve had a lot of questions about my prep and training for Thor over the years,” Mr Hemsworth wrote on Instagram on June the 14th.

“This time round I was fortunate enough to have a solid period at home to try a multitude of nutritional and training methods, to build the strongest version of myself and the character yet.”

“From that I decided to design a fully guided program on how I achieved those results. Eat, train, sleep repeat! With our Centr Power program.”

“It launches June 21st @centrfit sign up now for your free trial 7 day trial at Centr.com… link in bio.”

What could I do but click? I hit the bio and soon found myself credit cards deep into Google Play.

I downloaded the app and headed to the gym. I smashed my way through day one – Pumped Pecs & Triceps – before being dealt the devastating news that despite my gym being a 24-hour place, due to a problem with the sign-in machine, it would be shutting at 9pm.

Hoping no Norse god was looking down at me in disgust, I fled home and decided to try again the next day.

The next day rolled around. I waited until 8pm and got to work.

The routine is designed to be done over the course of seven days (with one rest day) and is as follows:

  • Pumped Pecs & Triceps
  • Legs of a Legend
  • Functional: Dynamic mobility
  • Full throttle back & biceps
  • Total body balance
  • Functional: Recovery activation

Watch everything I learned from doing all these workouts in the space of 24 hours.

Pumped Pecs & Triceps

Warm-up

  • Push-ups – 10 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm alternating bench press, 25% strength – 10 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm alternating bench press, 50% strength – 8 reps

Round One

  • Dumbbell single-arm alternating bench press – 6 reps
  • Elevated push-ups – 10 reps
  • Dumbell single arm alternating bench press – 6 reps
  • Elevated push-ups – 10 reps
  • Dumbell single arm alternating bench press – 6 reps
  • Elevated push-ups – 10 reps

Round Two

  • Dumbbell incline bench press (30 degrees) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell incline flys – 10 reps
  • Dumbbell incline bench press (30 degrees) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell incline flys – 10 reps
  • Dumbbell incline bench press (30 degrees) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell incline flys – 10 reps

Round Three

We don’t want to give everything away, so download the app to find out!

I have no photos of this workout as I was too embarrassed to film myself lifting incredibly puny weights in a room of buff people, at rush hour, at a popular city gym.

On the plus side, I enjoyed the variety of doing different types of chest exercises, as someone who typically doesn’t go to the gym, or who – when I do go to the gym – does stock standard bench press for my chest and nothing else.

I also found I was screwed either way when it came to passing for a gym regular. If you pick dumbbells you can handle (which for me would have been about 6kg) it makes it obvious you are a weakling.

However, if you pick dumbells more in line with what you think you should be able to lift, which for me was 10kg, you will soon find yourself – literally – even more red-faced.

Legs Of A Legend

Warm-Up

  • Barbell front squat 25% – 12 reps
  • Barbell front squat 50% – 10 reps
  • Barbell front squat 75% – 8 reps

Round One

  • Barbell front squat – 10 reps
  • Barbell front squat – 10 reps
  • Barbell front squat – 10 reps

Round Two

  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (left) – 6 reps
  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (right) – 6 reps
  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (left) – 6 reps
  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (right) – 6 reps
  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (left) – 6 reps
  • Barbell single-leg hip thrust (right) – 6 reps

Round Three

  • Alternating dumbbell forward lunge – 8 reps
  • Alternating dumbbell forward lunge – 8 reps
  • Alternating dumbbell forward lunge – 8 reps

Round Four

We don’t want to give everything away, so download the app to find out!

During this work out I learned a few key lessons. The first of which is that I have poor squatting technique. I’ve always known that I arch my back too much and don’t engage my core enough, but have never been able to fix it. However, speaking to Fitness First Newtown personal trainer Sam Jenkins I realised that to fix this problem I had to understand the root cause.

The problem was that I had taken to heart the advice that you must never let your knees go over your toes in a squat – despite the fact that I rarely lift anything much heavier than 40 kilos.

Once I fixed this it had a knock-on effect of improving my overall technique greatly.

I also learned some great new exercises for getting a quality leg workout. As someone who has never done front squats before, I really noticed the difference in how much more they work your quads.

Functional: Dynamic Mobility

 

  • Ice skater – with a ground tap
  • Plank wave
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Plank to pyramid
  • Bear crawl

Complete all of the above for 30 seconds apiece. Rinse and repeat for 3 sets.

All I learned during this one was how awkward I look doing ‘ice skaters.’

Full Throttle Back & Biceps

Warm-Up

  • Wide grip deadlift (bar only) – 15 reps
  • Wide grip deadlift 25% – 12 reps
  • Wide-grip deadlift 50% – 10 reps

Round One

  • Wide grip deadlift – 6 reps
  • Wide grip deadlift – 6 reps
  • Wide grip deadlift – 6 reps
  • Wide grip deadlift – 6 reps

Round Two

  • Assisted pull-ups – 12 reps
  • Assisted pull-ups – 12 reps
  • Assisted pull-ups – 12 reps
  • Assisted pull-ups – 12 reps

Round Three

  • Dumbbell single-arm row (left) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm row (right) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm row (left) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm row (right) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm row (left) – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell single-arm row (right) – 8 reps

Round Four

We don’t want to give everything away, so download the app to find out!

I struggled with this one. Having done the killer Pumped Pecs & Triceps the night before (and with all the sore muscles that came with it), it was all I could do to get through it.

I’d like to say I pushed through solely on will power but in reality, I just kept switching to lighter and lighter weights.

The combination of underhand-grip lat pulldowns and dumbbell hammer curls also left me feeling like my veins might explode out of my arms. Lactic acid for days. Thor here I come.

Mr Jenkins also gave me a useful piece of pull up advice, which is to imagine you are doing a shrug at the beginning of the motion.

Total Body Balance

Who wore it better?

Warm-up

  • Barbell military press, bar only – 15 reps
  • Barbell military press, 25% – 10 reps
  • Barbell military press, 50% – 10 reps

Round One

  • Barbell military press – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell lateral raise – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell rear raise – 8 reps
  • Barbell military press – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell lateral raise – 8 reps
  • Dumbbell rear raise – 8 reps

Round Two

  • Bodyweight squat – 10 reps

Round Three

We don’t want to give everything away, so download the app to find out!

By this point, it was about 10pm and I had been in the gym since 8pm. I was flagging but pushed through via the aid of Very Light Weights.

Bonus Section

Treadmill sprints

  • Sprint on the treadmill for 1 minute with the speed as high as you can handle, and the incline on 3
  • Sprint on the treadmill for 1 minute with the speed as high as you can handle, and the incline on 3
  • Sprint on the treadmill for 1 minute with the speed as high as you can handle, and the incline on 3

Boxing

  • Box for a minute
  • Box for a minute
  • Box for a minute

Sled Pushes

  • Push the sled 5 metres
  • Push the sled 5 metres
  • Push the sled 5 metres

 

These three were not on Chris Hemsworth’s workout app (or at least not the week I was following).

But I threw them in to make up for the fact I hadn’t done Pumped Pecs & Triceps in the same day (even if it was in the same 24 hours), and because I felt like – despite working out for two hours – I was yet to get a real cardio kick.

It certainly woke me up – and I even got my heart rate up to 196 (my average heart rate was 102) – as measured by my Suunto 7 Titanium watch.

Image: DMARGE

Functional: Recovery Activation

Round One

  • Bear crawl spin
  • Jump lunges
  • Push-up jump pike
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Reverse lunge jumping high knee

Round Two

  • Bear crawl spin
  • Jump lunges
  • Push up jump pike
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Reverse lunge jumping high knee

Round Three

  • Bear crawl spin
  • Jump lunges
  • Push up jump pike
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Reverse lunge jumping high knee

Round Four

  • Bear crawl spin
  • Jump lunges
  • Push up jump pike
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Reverse lunge jumping high knee

Round Five

  • Bear crawl spin
  • Jump lunges
  • Push up jump pike
  • Wide to narrow squat jumps
  • Reverse lunge jumping high knee

This one just about finished me off. After massacring myself with cardio in the previous workout I felt very ungainly during most of these exercises, pushing through the bear crawl spins feeling like a wounded animal.

Final Thoughts

If your priorities are technique, health, fitness, gains or life balance, don’t try and do an entire week of Chris Hemsworth’s workouts in 24 hours.

However, if you are feeling like: “F*ck the mundanity of life” (and lets be honest, who hasn’t been there on a Tuesday) and are looking for something extraordinary to do, then it will provide you with that ego boost – and routine circuit breaker – you have been craving.

Though your body will ache, you will have an inner glow (or at least I did) for the next few days. A sort of smug – I’m better than the rest of you schmucks who only do normal workouts – feeling.

So: is the ego boost that comes with doing a stupidly long workout worth the physical risks of injury (or simply sacrificing the amount of gains you would have got if you had done it as you are supposed to)? That’s up to you to decide.

In terms of the app, the fact that I had to keep checking it at the beginning killed my vibe a little bit, as usually I prefer to just listen to music and get into the zone (when doing my own workouts). The variety of new exercises this app got me to do made up for this though, as I have now committed them to memory and can do them in my ‘flow state’ workouts.

RELATED: The Seven Day Fitness Bender That Changed My Opinion Of F45 Forever

I would also imagine that as the weeks progress (if you continue with Hemsworth’s multi-week program, of which I simply did week one), you would get used to what each instruction means and it would become much smoother. I experienced this with the exercises this program got me to repeat, like the ‘wide to narrow squat jumps’.

In my case, as soon as lockdown ends, I am planning on signing back up to the Centr app and continuing the program as I found it very useful.

More than anything, as someone who usually does bicep curls, bench press, squats, pull-ups and dips on the rare occasion I do go to the gym, and little else, trying Hemsworth’s workouts was a welcome breath of fresh air which I will continue as soon as gyms open up again (days after I completed this workout Sydney went into lockdown). I definitely found myself sore in places I don’t usually find myself sore. If that’s not a good sign I don’t know what is.

Ultimate conclusion? If you do it properly (which I plan on doing) I would imagine it would be very beneficial. So stay tuned for that.

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