“The movie will be released on Valentine’s Day 2015. Good timing. A lot of people will get laid that day. Hopefully me, too.”
That was Max Martini last year during the filming of “Fifty Shades of Grey,” the sure-to-be blockbuster movie that he is casted in as Jason Taylor, the bodyguard of Christian Grey. The film is based on the best-selling novel of the same name and EL James’s tome brought bondage into the soccer mom mainstream.
“The book sold 90 million copies,” Martini, 45, added. “I think that it is going to be a gargantuan hit and has a really small cast, maybe five or six actors in the entire film.”
The veteran actor who has made the rounds in major motion pictures that include Captain Phillips, Pacific Rim and Saving Private Ryan realizes that the types of roles that he lands often come with being in top shape.
“I started playing tough guys,” he recalls. “Soldiers, cops, killers…killers are big. If someone needed to die on screen, they usually call me. But I have to stay fit to play these characters. If I show up looking like a couch potato, they aren’t going to let me protect Christian Grey. I’d be thumbin’ a ride home from the back gate of the studio.”
So to avoid hitchhiking, Martini tries to adhere to a workout routine that covers six days of the week. This is not always conducive to when he is on location shooting, but the native New Yorker manages to squeeze something in, even when he gets off the set later in the evening.
“The first thing that I do is look for a hotel that’s near a gym,” explains Martini. “The bodybuilding gyms, lifting gyms. So when I have free time (during a shoot), it’s the gym, grocery store and hotel. I have all of this mapped out before I fly there.”
When he is home in California, Martini works with Eric “The Trainer” Fleischman and they usually stick to a routine that will hit two body parts a day. “When you get to the gym, Eric will look at you and adjusts the schedule according to what he sees,” Martini says. “But by the end of the week, we will have hit everything. We don’t really have a set schedule and it’s a lot of balancing.”
They will do a variety of routines that includes high rep days and other days where they will go up in reps (from 12 to six) and down in weight. And when it comes to abs, Martini will perform a lot of added resistance movements instead of just using his own bodyweight. Weighted crunches with plates is one exercise that he does frequently, as is different medicine ball movements.
When it comes to cardio, Martini prefers to use boxing as his main fat burning exercise. Sparring, heavy bag, speed bag and mitt work are all part of what he does a minimum of once a week.
Having the luxury of craft services, it would be easy to eat whatever is in front of him. But Martini doesn’t take the easy way out and will ask the caterers on the set to make him something health conscious such as “egg whites, one yolk, little to no grease, no bread…they’ll hold everything and make it (just the right way) for you.”
Back home, Martini eats an even cleaner diet with a lot of protein sources like chicken, turkey, lean meats and fish, being sure to eat every two-and-a-half-to-three hours. Heavy on the salads and steamed vegetables and no carbs after 12 noon. “It’s really just smart eating,” he concludes.
Enjoy the movie.
Photos courtesy of Max Martini