If the last that you saw of Zac Efron was when he was in High School Musical, you are in for a big shock, because he looks a LOT different now than before. The American actor is no longer the floppy-haired, teenage heartthrob. He is ripped.
The American actor is no longer the floppy-haired, teenage heartthrob. He is ripped.
To begin with, Zac was in a pretty decent shape. However, when he landed a role in the new Baywatch Movie along with Dwayne Johnson, the 28-year-old trained like a madman for the role.
Achieving the ripped condition that Zac Efron has been displaying on the set of Baywatch requires a lot of dedication, especially on the type of food that you are eating.
If you have already watched Baywatch and wondered how you can attain such an amazing physique, well, here is what the former Disney star has been eating to create such an impressive package.
He went on two nutritional phases
Zac Efron wanted to create a bigger and shredded physique. To do that, he went through two nutritional phases. The first was for him to eat as many calories as possible for muscle building, and the second was a low carb phase with an emphasis on reaching a ketogenic state to burn off all the fat that was stored in his body.
The muscle building phase
This is the diet that Zac followed throughout his muscle building phase.
1. Consume as much protein as soon as possible after working out
It is important that you eat as much protein as you can right after your workout when you are trying to build muscles. When you work out, your body burns fuels from anything that you have eaten recently, and then it breaks down the stored glycogen. Your muscles will start to use available protein to rebuild the depleted glycogen within a few hours of working out, but your body is especially good at absorbing carbs and protein for about 45 minutes after your workout.
“It all comes down to the carbohydrates and protein,” says Manuel Villacorta, R.D., a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. “They’re the two key things your body needs—and right after you work out is when your blood circulates best.”
Zac felt that if he ate nothing, his muscles growth would be seriously hampered and he might even lose muscles. By being consistent with a fast digesting protein source, he was able to give his muscles the fuel they need to get bigger.
2. Combine protein with carbs
When eaten together, carbs may help protein reach your muscles quicker, speeding the growth of your muscles. It is why Zac used a protein supplement that contains carbs. He also added whole fruits to his protein shake for extra carbs.
3. Use whey protein powder
Zac used whey protein powder and takes 25 grammes of whey directly after his workout. Low in lactose content, whey protein is considered a complete protein and contains all nine essential acids. People take whey protein to help improve muscle protein synthesis and promote the growth of lean tissue mass.
4. Stay hydrated
Being dehydrated before your workout can make you less productive during your workout. It also releases more stress hormones, while producing less testosterone. Zac made sure to get some water into his system the moment he gets up in the morning to stay hydrated before his workout.
5. Stay hungry
Growing muscles requires you to eat more calories, and that is what Zac did to grow his muscles. He ate an extra 880 calories per day by taking in more protein shakes, and also made sure that he was having at least six meals in a day, spread three hours apart.
6. Eat for more energy
When you are focused on diets to gain weight, you should not be lowering your carb intake to lose body fat. That comes later. You will need all the energy that you can get from carbs to fuel through the intense muscle building training sessions. The lower you drive down your carbohydrate levels, the more you have to rely on other fuel for energy such as your muscle building protein – you would want to keep it for mass building.
Zac kept his carbs at between 55-60% of his total caloric count to ensure that he had all the energy he needed to bring it in the gym.
The fat burning phase
Once he reached his mass goal, Zac switched over to the second phase which is the fat burning phase. The goal is to remove as much carbohydrate from his diet, and to flick the switch to a ketogenic state of fat burning for energy.
Zac limited himself to a maximum of 20 net grammes of carbohydrates a day to achieve maximum fat burn. Processed foods were eliminated. Bread and many fruits were eliminated as well.
He took fibrous carbs such as:
- Leafy vegetables
- Brussels sprouts
Zac also kept his protein levels high to ensure that he did not end up eating into his muscle stores for energy. Zac’s Phase 2 macronutrient breakdown was 70% fat, 25% protein and 5% carbohydrate.