It’s no secret that wrestler-turned-Hollywood icon The Rock is a poster child for working out. But there’s no black magic behind Dwayne Johnson’s regime and awesome physique. Anyone can pull it off – with the right know-how, self-discipline and basic fitness, that is. Just ask entrepreneur Mark Webster.
In this age of heightened awareness about how to look after ourselves and our bodies, people go to incredible lengths to maintain their fitness levels and get in shape. Indeed, whether it’s through an intense workout regime or the latest fad diet, there are many roads to the same hoped-for destination.
No matter what anyone tells you, though, there are really no shortcuts to feeling and looking your best. And while losing weight may be simple on paper – just consume fewer calories than you expend – toning and building muscle is an entirely different ball game. Bulking up successfully requires intense dedication, in fact – and that’s exactly what Mark Webster needed to emulate Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s workout regime.
Entrepreneur Webster is now 39 years old and resides in New York City with his wife and four-year-old daughter. He had sold his first venture, an experience booking service, to Groupon; his current business, however, involves creating voice applications to work with home assistants such as Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
Clearly, then, Webster naturally possesses his fair share of passion and dedication. After all, getting a business off the ground is no mean feat. And he was also no stranger to the gym, either. Indeed, as Webster would tell website Business Insider, impending fatherhood had motivated him to go on to improve his physical fitness.
Two years of the same workout routine, though, left Webster understandably bored. And when the businessman found that he was lacking the motivation necessary to push himself, he realized he needed a new challenge. That, in turn, meant a new exercise regime, so he opted to turn to a man arguably representing the pinnacle of human fitness.
Yes, Webster looked to Dwayne Johnson for inspiration. After all, it’s not only massive muscles that the movie star boasts, but the strength and determination to maintain that incredible physique day after day. And not many of us have the willpower to wake up before dawn, hitting the gym before we’ve even had time to rub the sleep from our eyes.
Having been inspired by Johnson’s self-discipline, then, Webster began researching exactly what he needed to do to replicate the megastar’s success. Helpfully, the former wrestler had shared his diet and the basics of his workout routine with exercise website Muscle & Fitness. And when Webster paired that information with details garnered from Johnson’s prolific Instagram account, he had everything he needed for his new journey.
It was obvious from the off that Webster would need to be just as dedicated as Johnson in order to succeed. After all, his typical day would involve waking up at 5:00 a.m., hitting the gym six days a week – resting only on Sundays – and eating a whopping 5,000 calories a day. That’s a lot of time and effort to put in, but Webster was clearly confident he could do it. So, in February 2016 he gave it a go.
With his alarm set for 5:00 a.m., Webster was in the gym by 5:40 a.m., starting his day off with 50 minutes of cardiovascular exercises. Afterwards, he consumed his first of two breakfasts while still at the gym – a dish of cod, eggs and oatmeal. Then, it was up to an hour and a half training different muscle groups each day, before heading home for meal number two.
That refueling included more steamed cod, but this time with sweet potato and vegetables. Then, by 9:30 a.m., Webster was ready to head to work – despite already cramming in what seems like half a day for everyone else. He took further meals of cod, chicken, rice and vegetables with him to eat throughout his time on the job.
Webster’s fifth meal of the day finally offered some variety, however, consisting as it did of steak, baked potato and a spinach salad. But after arriving home for a family dinner, he was back on the fish. His seventh – and final – meal at 9:00 p.m. was an omelet with mushrooms, onions and peppers, washed down with a tablespoon of fish oil.
Then, before Webster turned in for the evening, he would down a protein drink. He aimed to be in bed by 10:00 p.m. each night, affording him seven hours of sleep. However, as is often the case when we try to regulate our sleeping pattern, he often overshot and ended up under the covers at around 10:30 p.m. instead.
All in all, then, it was quite the grueling regime. But Webster told Business Insider that the most difficult part wasn’t eating the meals or committing to the workout routine; instead, it was preparing all that food. Indeed, he had apparently had to set up an assembly line of plastic containers in order to prep his portions of fish, chicken and rice.
Unsurprisingly, all that food didn’t come cheap, either. And so while Johnson can afford to splash out regularly on a movie star’s salary, the rest of us would probably find it difficult to keep up. After all, it ended up costing Webster more than $1,200 on food for just himself over the course of the 30 days. “I eat two and a half pounds of cod daily and that costs $7 a pound,” he said at the time. “It adds up pretty quickly.”
Furthermore, while such an aggressive change in diet and exercise routine may seem like the kind of thing that could damage the body, it’s actually perfectly fine – at least, according to Dr. David Katz. Dr. Katz told Business Insider in 2016, “[That sort of regime is] intense — but that can be a good thing… If the calorie intake is high-quality fuel for high-level exertion, I don’t see a problem with it.”
Like the rest of us, though, Webster was probably interested to hear what Johnson himself had to say about the entrepreneur’s endeavors. And yes, the star did indeed weigh in on Webster’s undertaking via his Twitter account. At first, though, the one-time pro wrestler was skeptical, writing, “Uh oh. This kinda only works if you train 2xs a day, work 14hrs on set and are half Samoan/half Black. And cuss.”
But when it transpired that Webster had in fact managed to stick to the routine, Johnson seemed to be impressed. Indeed, the actor would go on to tweet, “Tip my hat to this guy.” And the Fast and Furious franchise star was particularly approving of Webster’s reasons for his workout. In short, the dad had explained to ESPN’s FiveThirtyEight website that he had intended to imitate Johnson’s work ethic rather than to acquire a similar physique.
In the months following his intense 30-day regime, however, Webster scaled things back slightly. Instead of modeling his routines on Johnson’s most rigorous workouts, he adopted another of the movie star’s slightly less strenuous routines. Nevertheless, it still involved five gym visits per week and five daily meals.
So, while Johnson’s typical training plan may appear daunting, it’s clear that it isn’t totally inimitable – just exhausting and expensive. After all, Webster managed to pull it off for a month – and the results of his incredible transformation speak for themselves.