Last week, we matched biceps with The Expendables‘ Dolph Lundgren during some hand-to-hand combat training — click here to see the video. During this mildly terrifying experience, we also asked Dolph to share his tips for maintaining a perfect life balance. Read on for his top five life hacks.
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To the casual movie-goer, Dolph Lundgren might resemble little more than a B-grade Schwarzenegger (or even worse; a B-grade Van Damme.) However, there’s actually more to this indomitable man-mountain than first meets the eye — which is really saying something.
Prior to embarking on a Hollywood acting career, Lundgren studied chemistry at several universities around the world, culminating in a master’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Sydney. He can also speak seven languages and holds a 3rd dan black belt in Kyokushin Karate. In other words, he’s not just an action movie bimboid and could probably out-brain the lot of us in addition to kicking our arse.
Below are five fitness philosophies that Dolph tries to live by — from remembering to switch off his phone once in a while to the importance of regular exercise and meditation. Follow these tips to be more like Dolph!
#1 Everyone can make room for exercise: so stop making excuses!
“As an actor, I’m very busy. I travel a lot and often get jet-lagged. But I still find time to exercise. I try to plan a day ahead. For instance, yesterday I trained hard because I knew I wouldn’t be doing anything strenuous today. [Note: Apparently, combat training with Lifehacker doesn’t qualify.] Also, because I put the extra work in yesterday, I could chill out and sleep in a little bit without feeling guilty.
“The key is to make time however you can. If you’re busy like me, exercise in the mornings: get up a half hour earlier to work out. When you’re used to that, get up an hour earlier. If you spend an extra hour out of 24 keeping your body in shape you’ll be healthier and it will be worth it. In the long run, you will be more relaxed and have more energy.”
#2 Vary your regime
“Tomorrow I’ll probably go to the gym and do some weights. Usually I’ll vary it up: one day I’ll do weights strength training for structure. Then the next day I’ll do cardio; I’ll run or swim or go hiking or do karate.”
#3 Develop brain AND brawn power
“I’ve always studied and worked out at the same time; mental and physical. When I was a student at Sydney University doing chemical engineering, I’d go home and work out then study straight after. It’s something you have to get used to.”
#4 Switch off!
“I think today’s society is flawed. We’re occupied with computers and mobile phones, always trying to catch up and stay in touch with everything. But if you slow down a little bit and take time think about it, you’ll realise that life doesn’t run away from you. You’re already in it, every second of the day and being healthy should be a big part of it. So, I always try to strike that balance. Life is there to enjoy.”
#5 Meditation: not for pussies
“One thing I’m doing now is meditating. Somebody suggested I try meditation around a year ago and I said “Ah, forget it, that’s not for me. Bunch of pussies do that shit!” But now I’m realising it was for me and it’s become really important to me.
“I started about a year ago doing five minutes a day. Now I do up to an hour every day. It’s really been great for me. I think you’ve got to escape from this crazy world one way or another. Whether it’s your ego, or questioning whether you have enough, or that there’s more out there, or jealousy of other people; these are all egotistical emotions inside you that you can get rid of by meditating. This allows you to go out into the world fresh each day.”