Jason Momoa is a formidable figure in Hollywood. Best known for his glorious beard and iconic roles as Khal Drogo in “Game of Thrones” and Aquaman in the DC Universe, Momoa’s impressive physique has left audiences in awe.
But it’s not just good genetics that have shaped him into a cinematic powerhouse. It’s his unwavering commitment to hard workouts.
In this article, we’ll embark on a journey to uncover the secrets behind Jason Momoa’s workout routine, offering an exclusive glimpse into the grueling training and dietary choices that have helped him become a symbol of strength and power. So, if you’re ready to learn the blueprint of a titan, join us as we delve into the world of Momoa’s fitness routine and nutritional strategy.
Table of Contents:
- Who is Jason Momoa?
- What is the Jason Momoa Training Split?
- Jason Momoa Workout Routine
- Jason Momoa’s Diet Plan
- How to Train Like Jason Momoa
Who is Jason Momoa?
Jason Momoa is an actor, producer, and model known for his distinctive appearance and roles in various popular films and television series. Born on August 1, 1979, in Honolulu, Hawaii, he has a diverse background that includes Native Hawaiian ancestry on his father’s side and German, Irish, and Native American heritage on his mother’s side.
Momoa’s journey into acting began with his early interest in modeling, eventually leading him to a role on the television show “Baywatch Hawaii” and a guest appearance on “North Shore.” However, his big break came when he was cast as Khal Drogo in the critically acclaimed HBO series “Game of Thrones,” a major role that showcased his formidable physical presence and acting abilities. This marked a significant turning point in his career, making him a household name among fans of the show.
Following his success on “Game of Thrones,” Jason Momoa expanded his acting career. He gained worldwide recognition when he took on the role of Aquaman. He made his debut as Aquaman in the film “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and continued to portray the character in “Justice League” and the standalone “Aquaman” film. The latter became a major box office success, solidifying Momoa’s status as a leading man in the world of superhero films.
What is the Jason Momoa Training Split?
At 6’4 and 235 pounds, Jason Momoa follows a traditional bodybuilding 5-day training split where he hits each muscle group once per week.
Here is the weight training routine Jason and his trainer Stuart Walton put together.
- Monday: Chest
- Tuesday: Back
- Wednesday: Legs
- Thursday: Functional and Core
- Friday: Shoulders and Arms
- Saturday and Sunday: Off
However, the work in the gym is only half of the Jason Momoa workout routine. Although you would never guess it, in an interview with Men’s Health, Momoa admits he doesn’t enjoy lifting weights.
To him, it’s just a means to an end. If all he did was lift in the gym, he would get bored of training pretty quickly. To keep things interesting, Jason leans into his love of lifestyle sports. He routinely adds mountain biking, surfing, skateboarding, and rock climbing into his weekly routine. The best thing about these activities is being outdoors while doing them.
A study from 2022 discovered that exercising outside in nature improves your mental well-being and energy compared to exercising indoors1. With how much time most of us spend inside, any time we can take our workouts outside, we need to take advantage.
The Jason Momoa AR-7 Workout Routine
Anytime you discuss a Jason Momoa workout routine, it needs to start with a description of AR-7, which stands for Accelerated Results 7, a training routine that flies in the face of how people traditionally lift to build muscle mass. Instead of heavy weights and long rest periods for maximum performance, AR-7 requires the exact opposite. With an AR-7-inspired routine, you use less weight with practically no rest, and you’ll still build muscle mass.
Here is how it works: You start by performing 7 sets of 7 reps with 7 seconds between each set. Then, you rest a minute or two before performing 6 sets of 6 reps with 6 seconds between each set. From there, you rest another one to two minutes before jumping into the last round. This time, you perform 5 sets of 5 reps with only 5 seconds of rest. At this point, those five seconds are only a couple of deep breaths. You barely even have time to count.
The key is selecting the correct weight. You have to start lighter than you think to get the programmed reps in. When rest periods are that short, fatigue builds up in the muscles quickly.
Monday: Chest Day
One thing that stands out about Jason’s chest day workout is the simplicity of exercise selection. You won’t find fancy machines or exercises, just good old-fashioned iron and bodyweight movements.
The first movement of the day is the classic barbell bench press. However, unlike how most people approach the bench, Jason doesn’t care how much weight he can lift.
Next up is another barbell classic, the barbell incline bench press. Putting the bench at an incline shifts the focus to the upper pecs. After three rounds of AR-7 training on the incline barbell press, he switches to a pair of dumbbells for more incline work.
Jason finishes his chest workout with two bodyweight movements. The first is a pushup, performing 100 reps before moving on to dips. Dips are one of Momoa’s favorite exercises. To hit the chest, he leans forward while performing the movement to emphasize the chest more than the triceps.
Perform each exercise except for push-ups using the AR-7 style.
- Barbell Bench Press
- Incline Barbell Bench Press
- Incline Dumbbell Press
- Push ups
- Chest Focused Dips
Tuesday: Back Day
Jason Momoa’s back day workout is as simple as it gets. Similar to his chest workout, there is no fluff in Jason’s back day either.
The workout starts with three variations of pullups and chin-ups. First up is a wide grip pullup with an overhand grip (palms facing away from you). Next is a chin-up with an underhand grip (palms facing toward you). The chin-up is great because the underhand grip shifts extra emphasis on the biceps, making it an underrated arm movement in addition to building your back. Before moving away from the pullup bar, finish with close-grip pullups with an overhand grip.
By this point, your lats should be on fire. The back workout ends with a seated cable row followed by a barbell row.
Perform each exercise using the AR-7 style.
- Wide Grip Pull up
- Underhand Chin-up
- Close Grip Pull up
- Seated Pulley Row
- Barbell Row
Wednesday: Leg Day
Wednesday is leg day. Jason’s leg day starts with 100 reps of bodyweight squats. Air squats are surprisingly challenging, especially when you do a ton of volume like Momoa.
After 100 reps of air squats, his lower body is warmed up and ready for more. The second movement is arguably the best hamstring-building exercise, the stiff leg deadlift. The stiff leg deadlift shifts almost all the tension onto your posterior chain, primarily the lower back, and hamstrings. To avoid injury, keep your back straight while getting a good stretch at the bottom.
The third exercise is a barbell back squat. The combination of stiff leg deadlifts and barbell squats is a one-two punch that delivers excellent lower-body results.
To help stay “functional” for action movie roles, Jason concludes his lower body workout with some jump squats.
Perform each exercise except for air squats using the AR-7 style.
- Air Squats
- Stiff Leg Deadlift
- Barbell Back Squat
- Jump Squat
Thursday: Functional and Core Day
Thursday is a lighter day, but don’t mistake that for being easy. The Thursday training session is a functional full-body routine.
The day starts with medicine ball slams. Jason performs these as explosively as possible while following the AR-7 short rest period protocol. The second movement is one of Jason’s favorites, the kettlebell swing. Jason loves kettlebells because he can take them traveling, use them outside, and do a wide range of unconventional movements.
After kettlebell swings, he does burpees and leapfrogs. The leapfrog is a unique movement you might not have heard of before. To perform the leapfrog, start standing with feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down, then explosively jump forward, swinging your arms for momentum. While in mid-air, extend your legs and reach your arms forward. Land softly in a squat position and immediately spring forward into the next leapfrog, maintaining a fluid motion.
The session ends with a few forty-yard all-out sprints.
Perform each exercise using the AR-7 style.
- Medicine Ball Slam
- Kettlebell Swing
- Sprints (40 yards)
Friday: Shoulders and Arms Day
The last workout of the week is a shoulders and arms routine. Having big shoulders and arms is a prerequisite for a physique like Aquaman.
Friday’s exercise routine is all about building muscle and looking jacked. The training session starts with a barbell overhead press. The barbell OHP is a classic shoulder builder. Next up is dips. Unlike on Monday, when Jason leans forward to focus on the chest, this time, he stays upright to keep the tension on the triceps. He follows dips up with diamond pushups.
To do a diamond pushup, bring your hands close together, forming a diamond with your thumbs and index fingers. The lift ends with dumbbell curls and dumbbell triceps extensions. He sometimes throws some band work into the routine as well.
Perform each exercise using the AR-7 style.
- Barbell Military Press
- Triceps Focused Dips
- Diamond Push ups
- Dumbbell Curls
- Dumbbell Triceps Extensions
Jason Momoa Diet Plan
Before we dig into the Jason Momoa aquaman diet, it’s important to point out that he struggles with eating healthy, just like you. Getting abs is a challenge regardless of whether you are a movie star, athlete, or weekend warrior. Getting lean requires discipline and dedication. That said, Jason has a few tricks to stay strict on his diet.
One, since fat loss is all about calories in versus calories out, he saves calories for his favorite beverage – beer. Yes, you read that right. While dieting for Aquaman, Momoa drank beer nearly every day! His favorite post-workout drink is Guinness beer. In addition, after filming a movie and show, has been known to indulge, We’re not even talking cheat days here – the star will have cheat months coming off strict eating!
Now, I don’t necessarily recommend drinking beer every day or partaking in cheat months, although, hey, it works for Jason. But I suggest allowing room in your diet to eat items you enjoy. A diet doesn’t have to be limited to meat and veggies to be effective.
If you build your diet around 80-90% high protein protein low fat foots, complex carbs, veggies, and healthy fats, you have room for a few treats.
Here is Jason Momoa’s muscle building diet plan.
Meal #1 (Pre-Workout)
2 slices whole-grain bread
Meal #2 (Post-Workout)
8 oz tuna steaks
10 oz sirloin steak
8 oz chicken breast
The total daily calories and macronutrients Momoa ate are broken down as follows:
- Calories: 2445
- Protein: 200g
- Carbohydrates: 175g
- Fat: 105g
Keep in mind that his actual calorie content would be a little bit higher than this due to alcohol consumption. Alcohol contains seven calories per gram. Jason eats fewer carbs to account for the beer.
How to Train Like Jason Momoa
If you want to train like Jason, you have two options. Option one is following the training routine outlined above word for word. Option two is using his three main principles and incorporating them into your current routine.
Principle #1: Short Rest Periods
One of the calling cards of Jason Momoa’s workout plan is the short rest periods. Using short rest periods is a way to increase the amount of work you get done in a short period. Plus, the limited muscles rest is a different stimulus than most of us are used to.
Incorporate one exercise per session where you take less than ten seconds of rest between sets. Or, even better, use the AR-7 system for one movement.
Principle #2: Stick to the Basic Exercises
With the amount of fitness information available today, it’s easy to get lost in the details. One of the most confusing details surrounds exercise selection to build muscle. The truth is, your body doesn’t care what types of exercises you do.
They all work—barbells, dumbbells, machines, cables, band work, body weight, etc. Tension is tension. That said, it’s hard to beat the basics. Build each training session around barbell movements and compound lifts. The bench press, squat, overhead barbell press, stiff leg deadlift, and barbell row are Jason’s favorites.
Principle #3: Get Outside and Play
One area of fitness that often needs to be emphasized more is enjoyment. Be bold and take your fitness outside. It doesn’t need to be structured; play like you did as a kid.
Lifestyle sports like rock climbing, surfing, mountain biking, and skateboarding are fun ways to sneak more activity into your day.
Here are a few common questions and answers about Jason Momoa we didn’t cover yet.
Did Jason Momoa play football?
Although his physique certainly looks like it, no, Jason Momoa did not play American football. He did, however, play soccer in high school.
What does Jason Momoa eat for breakfast?
For breakfast, Jason loves peanut butter and honey sandwiches with fruit. However, he sometimes includes protein powder, too, because breakfast is a pre workout meal.
What is the 7 by 7 workout plan?
The 7 by 7 routine is Jason Momoa’s AR-7 system that starts with 7 sets of 7 reps with 7 seconds of rest between each set.
How much weight can Jason Momoa lift?
Contrary to popular belief, Jason Momoa doesn’t train heavily like a powerlifter. Instead, he prefers to go lighter with minimal rest periods. That said, at over 235 lbs, he could still throw some heavy iron around if he wanted to.
Does Jason Momoa like to work out?
No, Jason Momoa does not like lifting weights, but he does it anyway.
What does Jason Momoa do for cardio?
Jason Momoa does treadmill sprints, hill sprints, skateboarding, surfing, and boxing for cardio. He also loves to take his mountain bike out on the trails.
The Jason Momoa Workout Routine: Final Takeaways
Jason Momoa’s workout and diet plan is a shining example of dedication and hard work. His journey from a budding actor to a renowned superhero icon showcases the power of commitment to your craft.
Whether you’re inspired by his on-screen roles or seek a healthier lifestyle, Momoa’s routine offers valuable lessons. As we’ve delved into his fitness and nutrition plan, remember that achieving a strong and healthy body is an attainable goal for anyone willing to put in the effort. All that is left for you to do is get started!
Interested in learning about another celebrity’s training regimen? Check out the Chris Hemsworth Workout Routine!
Some photos courtesy of Jason Momoa’s Instagram
Wicks, C., Barton, J., Orbell, S., & Andrews, L. (2022). Psychological benefits of outdoor physical activity in natural versus urban environments: A systematic review and meta‐analysis of experimental studies. Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being,