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This is what it’s like to work-out like Mark Wahlberg for a week

Prudence Wade discovers how extremely tiring the Hollywood star’s exercise regime is.


(F45 Training/PA)

Actor Mark Wahlberg is notorious for his eyewatering daily routine.


He went viral after posting his typical daily schedule on his Instagram stories in 2018, which involved a 2:30am wake up, 3:40-5:15am workout, six slots for meals or snacks, a second workout at 4pm, cryo chamber recovery, golf time and more.


While I have no interest in getting up at half two in the morning, I’m intrigued by his fitness regime.


Wahlberg, 51, is known for his jacked physique and has made a name for himself as an action star in movies like Uncharted and the Transformers franchise. He’s also an investor in and chief brand officer for fitness empire F45 – and now, the workout chain is giving people the chance to experience what it’s like to work-out like Wahlberg.


Wahlberg was recently named chief brand officer for F45 (F45 Training/PA)

Dubbed ‘Wahlberg Week’, it’s seven different workouts designed by the actor himself and F45’s chief of athletics, Gunnar Peterson.


“Gunnar and I created these workouts to focus on every body part with specific muscle group movements,” Wahlberg said somewhat vaguely of the programme.


Peterson was able to shed a bit more light on how the exercises could benefit your body.


“The programming includes intermittent overload training, whereby a movement is repeated after each set of the entire to the tune of five to 10 reps, creating a tremendous cumulative,” he said.


I experienced this intermittent overload training immediately, as the first day’s workout – an endurance cardio-based session – required us to do between five and 10 push-ups after each of the 18 exercises.


“If you followed along, you did somewhere between 90-180 push-ups by the end of the workout in addition to the workout itself,” Peterson explained.



The workouts were hard from the outset, and did provide a good range. ‘Endurance cardio’ are two words that will strike fear into anyone’s heart, but that was followed on day two by a strength session – with heavy weights, fewer reps and longer rest times (although I daresay Wahlberg would have been ashamed at the pitiful pull-ups I was attempting).


It was fun to try different exercises I don’t have in my regular routine – but by day three, my muscles were aching. One of the biggest gripes I have with F45 is the lack of stretching – a cooldown is rarely offered. I was heading to class before work, meaning I had to rush off after – leaving barely any time for stretching (which, in all honesty, is hard to find the motivation to do on your own).


As I was planning to do all seven workouts, the delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) I started feeling by day three was concerning – and likely could’ve been reduced had I been stretching properly.


While the workouts certainly got harder after that point, as my body felt more and more fatigued, I’ve got to hand it to F45 – the variety kept me going. Day four was endurance strength and day five was a hybrid of cardio and weights, with lots of unusual exercises.


Day six – the only hour-long session in the week – was a beast, with weighted exercises alternated with pure cardio on the rower, ski erg and bike. Day seven did bring with it a certain amount of relief – I normally have one or two rest days a week, so doing seven in a row was a challenge. The final session promised a bit of recovery, and while there were a few active stretches thrown in, it was still largely weights-based.


Prudence doing an F45 class (Prudence Wade/PA)

“By week’s end, your whole body will be feeling this additional intermittent work and it will definitely get you out of any rut – physical or mental,” Peterson explained – and my muscles would have to agree by the end of the last session.


As someone who predominantly does weight-based workouts, it was a lot more cardio than I’m used to.


“Adding new stimuli is what forces the body to adapt. When it adapts, it changes. We are all constantly looking to improve and these subtle changes day in and day out, week in and week out, are what provoke improvement,” Peterson said.


However, I can’t help but think Wahlberg doesn’t get those rippling muscles from quite so much cardio – plus, his Instagram workout videos seem to mainly show him lifting heavy weights.



As the week wore on, I began to suspect this was not, in fact, particularly close to how the Hollywood actor works out. Something tells me Wahlberg doesn’t bump into random people he went to school with while training, and other questions started popping up in my head: surely Marky Mark has a proper stretching routine, otherwise he wouldn’t physically be able to battle through two tough workouts a day? And how often does he wash his hair if he’s sweating this profusely every day?


Peterson confirmed my suspicions to some extent – when asked how the programme relates to Wahlberg’s own personal routine, he said: “Mark’s programme is a standalone. He is a one of one!


“We just pulled from some splits that he used early in his career and married them with the tried and true functional F45 type of training that historically has worked very well. The result is an intense, targeted workout that will challenge even the most seasoned fitness people out there.”


So Wahlberg’s current workout routine remains something of a mystery – but not that I mind too much. Wahlberg Week was fun and challenging enough as it is – and the idea of fitting in a second daily workout like Wahlberg doesn’t hugely appeal. Plus, you won’t catch me hopping out of bed at 2:30am any time soon.

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