Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson recently described the process of getting into shape for the DC movie Black Adam as the“hardest physical undertaking” of his career to date, and has shared the diet and “giant” workouts he used to cut fat and build even more muscle for the role of the superpowered antihero. In a new video on his YouTube channel, fitness influencer Aseel Soueid, who has previously taken on the exercise and diet regimes of strongman-turned-boxer Hafthor Bjornsson, wrestler Roman Reigns, and former Navy SEAL David Goggins, tries Johnson’s Black Adam workout for himself.
“This routine is going to be no joke,” he says. “Lots of supersets here, super high intensity, very high volume, and I’m very scared.”
Soueid starts by hitting his chest with a giant superset comprising the incline machine chest press and machine chest fly, performed for 8 to 10 reps a total of 4 times. Next, he targets his triceps with some E-Z bar overhead extensions, immediately supersetted into close-grip pushups, done for 4 sets of 10 to 12.
“I completely forgot how hard basic exercises can be when you superset them with weight training,” he says. “Those close-hand pushups are absolutely no joke. Just remember, don’t flare out your elbows… that destroys your joints and your wrists.”
The next triceps superset consists of a straight bar reverse grip pushdown and rope pushdown, done for 4 sets of 12 to 15. This is followed by 4 sets of “savage” bodyweight dips, performed to failure.
Moving on to back, Soueid does 4 sets of 8 to 10 reps on the barbell row. On the last 4 reps of each set, he holds the barbell in the upper position for 2 seconds before lowering, just like Johnson does in his workouts. “It will definitely cause more time under tension,” says Soueid, “and you’ll get that mind-muscle connection a little bit more.” He then does 4 sets of 10 to 12 lat pulldowns using a MAG bar—”There is so much volume in this workout routine, it’s ridiculous!”—and 4 sets of 10 to 12 dumbbell rows.
For shoulders, Soueid performs 4 sets of 10 to 12 on the dumbbell shoulder press, 4 sets of 10 to 12 E-Z bar front raises, and 4 sets of 10 to 12 dumbbell lateral raises with a side to side hold. “Lots of volume means you have to decrease the weight a little bit,” he says. “You can’t have it all.” He finishes off the shoulder portion of the workout with face pulls, supersetted into seated dumbbell shrugs, for 4 sets of 10 to 12 reps.
“It absolutely kicked my ass,” he says at the end of the workout. “To be honest, this is not sustainable to do on a daily basis for the average person. And more importantly, you don’t have to train this way to effectively build muscle… Just keep your exercises super simple, focus on getting stronger with them, make sure you’re eating right, and you’re going to be just fine.”
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