Muscle Sport Magazine

Michael Gurnow – “The Thor Challenge” Results

Courtesy of Michael Gunrow

In October 2016, bestselling author Michael Gurnow was shopping for a Halloween costume when his wife—recalling that his students had nicknamed him “Thor” due to his beard and long, curly hair—suggested he go as the Norse god that year.  Being the stereotypically scrawny, pencil-pushing dweeb, Gurnow felt as if he couldn’t do the costume justice, so over the course of the next 12 months, he set out to match the physique of Chris Hemsworth, which meant he’d need to gain 45 lbs. of raw muscle and drop his body fat by 30%.

Little did he know at the time that, in order to complete the Herculean task, he’d have to live the life of a professional bodybuilder.

Michael charted his weekly progress by way of a blog, which he dubbed “The Thor Challenge,” and—with his vintage humor—guides his audience through the trials and tribulations of learning to lift and the keys to nutrition, as revealed through his meticulous research and one-on-one interviews with Jay Cutler (who tweeted about The Thor Challenge), Kai Greene (who selected The Thor Challenge as one of the most inspiring stories of the 2017 Arnold Sports Festival), Dallas McCarver, and Lee Priest (who gave The Thor Challenge a huge thumbs-up).

By October 31, 2017, 468 gym-hours and 1,675 meals later, Michael completed The Thor Challenge:  He’d successfully packed on 45 lbs. of muscle, dropped to 10% body fat, added 4 ½ inches to his biceps, and doubled his bench press.  He could deadlift more than the average Navy SEAL, do the maximum number of pull-ups required of U.S. Marines, and met the minimum bench requirement for NFL prospects.



Without any previous name recognition in the community, The Thor Challenge garnered over 1,000 followers, including IFBB pros, on Instagram and was advertised on Facebook and Twitter.

See Michael’s amazing transformation yourself; check out the Official Thor Challenge Blog.

Michael Gurnow is the author of The Edward Snowden Affair and Nature’s Housekeeper

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