Alan Ritchson is an American actor, model, singer, director, songwriter and producer. He is best known for portraying Jack Reacher in the Amazon Prime series ‘Reacher’. Over the last two decade, Ritchson has worked in several television shows and movies, carving a niche for himself in the entertainment industry. This article explores his biography, training routine, diet as well as statistics.
Alan Michael Ritchson (Actor)
Alan Ritchson Statistics
|Full Name: Alan Michael Ritchson (Actor)
|235 lbs (106 kg)||6’2” (187.9 cm)||41 years|
|Date of Birth||Place of Birth||Nationality|
|November 28, 1982||Grand Forks, North Dakota, USA||American|
Alan Ritchson Biography
Alan Michael Ritchson was born on November 28, 1982 in Grand Forks, North Dakota to Vickie and David Ritchson. His mother used to be a high school teacher while father retired from the U.S. Air Force as the chief master sergeant. Alan is the second of three boys born to the couple.
When he was a child, Alan Ritchson’s family shifted to Rantoul, Illinois and settled in Niceville, Florida by the time he was 10 years old. Ritchson obtained the Associate of Arts degree from the Okaloosa Walton Community College in 2003.
Alan Ritchson started the showbiz career through modelling and appeared in several catalogues, Abercrombie & Fitch being the most notable.
Ritchson grabbed people’s attention on the third season of American Idol, mainly because of the striptease that he wooed judge Paula Abdul with. The 40-year-old appeared in television series Smallville in a recurring role and did some small roles in Head Case and CSI: Miami.
Alan Ritchson has appeared in several movies like Hunger Games and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He worked as a director, co-writer and producer for the movie Dark Web: Cicada 3301.
The most notable role of the American actor’s career came in 2020 when he was cast as the lead character Jack Reacher in the Amazon Prime series. In 2022, he became a part of the cast for Fast X.
Alan Ritchson Workout
Jack Reacher is Alan Ritchson’s most iconic character and he worked extremely hard to fit perfectly into the role. Ritchson focused a lot on weight training and cardio to get the necessary body composition and the muscle mass. His transformation for the role has been well documented and it is also the most significant part of his fitness training. So let’s check out how he turned into the best version of himself.
Ritchson engaged in different training methods like bodyweight and weight training among others to gain nearly 35 lbs of lean muscle mass over the period of eight months. But doing something solely for the perceived benefits is not always the best practice. Because if you are doing it as a chore, chances are that you are not even trying to progress.
Love for training
Alan Ritchson absolutely loves indulging in heavy exercises and engaging in activities that help gain functional strength, muscle mass, and an overall comprehensive skill set that helps him look like Jack Reacher and enables him to perform all the stunts and action. He believes in the power of consistent efforts and told thebarbell.com in an interview:
“There is no substitute for hard work; no powders, no goos, no fancy shoes will get you where you want to go without it. If you want to lose weight or lean out, put out more than you take in and make your heart beat harder than it did yesterday. It’s that simple. Doesn’t matter how you get there. If you’re trying to bulk or add strength, put more strain on your muscles than you did yesterday. It doesn’t matter how you get there.”
To get ready for the role, Alan Ritchson built a gym in his house and dedicated the entirety of eight months to get the right body composition. Training, eating and recovering was the sole focus of his life during the time. Ritchson told Men’s Health in an interview:
“It was a full time job trying to eat enough to bulk up for this role.”
Alan Ritchman’s ‘Jack Reacher’ workout looked like this:
Monday – Lower Body
Alan Ritchson begins the training week with an intense lower body workout. He does not lean heavily towards one muscle or the other. Instead, he ensures to get a balanced training session in which he focuses on all the lower body muscles like quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calves.
The training session typically consisted of:
|Deadlifts||3||12 to 15|
|Sumo Squats||3||12 to 15|
|Hack Squats||3||12 to 15|
|Walking Lunges||3||12 to 15|
|Leg Extensions||3||12 to 15|
|Lying Leg Curls||3||12 to 15|
Tuesday – Cardio
Long distance trail running is Alan Ritchson’s favorite form of cardio. He goes for a five to seven mile run every Tuesday to build strength, improve cardiovascular health and destress. Additionally, cardio sessions between intense weight training sessions enables him to add variety to the routine as well.
On days where he cannot go outdoors, the 40-year-old runs on a treadmill. Running has tremendous health benefits other than those mentioned above and Ritchson is not the one to pass them up.
Wednesday – Chest and Back
Wednesday is a hectic and intense training session where Alan Ritchson combines the antagonistic upper body muscle groups. While the anterior muscles – pectorals – are responsible for pushing, the posterior – back muscles – are essential for pulling. Ritchson tackles several compound and isolation movements to work these muscles. He includes free weights, machines as well as bodyweight exercises for building these muscles.
The workout includes:
|Cable Chest Flyes||4||12|
|Bent Over Barbell Rows||4||12|
|Seated Cable Rows||4||12|
Thursday – Arms and Abs
Arms are one of the most important muscles in showbiz as they are also the ones that are the most visible. They respond best to moderate weights and high training volume. To increase the training intensity, Ritchson combines arms training with abs workout.
The arms and abs workout consists of following exercises:
|Cable Triceps Pushdowns||4||20|
|Overhead Cable Triceps Extensions||4||20|
|EZ Bar Curls||4||20|
|Sit ups||4||15 to 20|
|Press-Ups||4||15 to 20|
|Bicycle Crunches||4||15 to 20|
|Russian Twists||4||15 to 20|
|Plank||4||Hold for 30 secs|
Alan Ritchson’s tall frame is perfectly capped with a pair of boulder shoulders. Once again, Ritchson does not focus only on the mirror muscles like anterior and lateral deltoids. Instead, he focuses on developing all three heads equally and includes posterior deltoid exercises in the shoulder training session as well.
The shoulder training routine is composed of:
|Dumbbell Shoulder Press||4||15|
|Dumbbell Lateral Raises||4||15|
|Cable Front Raises||4||15|
|Barbell Upright Rows||4||15|
|Dumbbell Rear Lateral Raises||4||15|
Saturday – Chest and Back
The ‘Reacher’ star revisits chest and back training for the second time in the week on Saturday.
The training session includes:
|Push-Ups||4||15 to 20|
|Pull-Ups||4||15 to 20|
|Bench Press||4||15 to 20|
|Cable Chest Flyes||4||15 to 20|
|Dips||4||15 to 20|
|Lat Pulldowns||4||15 to 20|
|Bent Over Barbell Rows||4||15 to 20|
|Seated Cable Rows||4||15 to 20|
Sunday – Rest Day
Rest is an important aspect of building a strong physique. The body needs time to recuperate and recover from the stress of intense training. Like most people, Alan Ritchson takes Sunday off.
Alan Ritchson may have looked phenomenal as Jack Reacher. But his transformation wasn’t the case where he got off the couch and built a formidable physique. Ritchson had a solid foundation to build on. Before starting with all the weight training and other training methods, the American actor relied heavily on five basic bodyweight exercises to maintain a toned and muscular body.
“These five are the core foundation for my routine, and it’s been that way for decades and they’ve served me well. With these exercises, you can still hypertrophy and put on size and you’re doing it in a safe and comfortable way.”
These five exercises include:
To summarize, these five bodyweight movements provide an excellent full body workout and help build muscle as well as functional strength. While dips and push-ups work the upper body pushing muscles like chest, triceps and shoulders, pull-ups are a great back and builder. Sprints obviously improve lower body and cardiovascular strength. Meanwhile, sit-ups do wonders for core strength.
Combining these exercises in different training methods like supersets or adding resistance by incorporating the more advanced variations can bring miraculous results without having to spend a lot of money on equipment, gear and gym.
“Bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, and dips can add plenty of size if you don’t have access to a gym. All you really need is you and the discipline to push,“ Ritchson said.
Alan Ritchson’s 30-minute bodyweight training routine
Alan Ritchson prefers combining these exercises in a 30-minute AMRAP (as many reps as possible) routine and that is how he maintained the impressive physique before taking the more structured path for ‘Reacher’.
“For 20 years all I’ve ever done is this routine where I will run to whatever park is near me and I do press-ups, pull-ups, dips and sit-ups and then I sprint in between and then I run home,” Ritchson says.
The 30-minute AMRAP workout looks like this:
- Pull-Ups – 5 reps
- Dips – 10 reps
- Press-Ups – 15 reps
- Sit-Ups – 20 reps
- 200 meter Sprint
The circuit has to be repeated as many times as possible for the duration you decide based on your fitness level. Ritchson did this for 30 minutes straight years after year and the results are in front of us.
Alan Ritchson Diet
Alan Ritchson maintains a lean and muscular physique all year round. It is next to impossible to build a physique like that with training alone and following a strict diet is overwhelmingly more important than any other aspect. Ritchson follows a 450–calorie per day diet plan to sustain muscle mass and includes a minimum of 300 grams protein in his diet.
When he is trying to build more muscle, the 40-year-old eats small meals spaced out throughout the day to make sure he gains more calories than he burns. However, the caloric intake changes depending upon the goal.
He relies solely on nutrient-rich natural whole foods like rice, meat, eggs, vegetables and fruits. The diet is balanced in terms of macronutrient intake and includes healthy amounts of protein, carbohydrates and fats.
While bulking to play Jack Reacher, Alan Ritchson ate seven small meals throughout the day. This helped him regulate blood sugar levels and maintain energy. It is nearly impossible for a busy individual to stick to a stringent diet like this on his own for eight full months without falling off the wagon.
Therefore, Alan Ritchson was assigned an assistant to help him with meal prep and dietary requirements.
Typically, a full day of eating in Alan Ritchson’s diet looks like this:
- Avocado Toast
- Scrambled Eggs
- Chicken Sausage
- Protein Shake
- Grilled chicken breast
- Brown rice
- Grilled chicken breast
- Brown rice
- Protein Shake
- Grilled salmon
- Brown rice
- Grilled veggies
While Ritchson would want to take all of his nutrition from the natural food sources, supplementation is a must in today’s fast world where it can be difficult to get everything without some external help. Alan Ritchson compliments his diet with some effective supplements that include:
- Whey Protein
- Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAA)
- Creatine Monohydrate
Cheat meals and indulgence
Alan Ritchson likes to enjoy a little bit as well. Unlike a lot of celebrities that demonize eating for fun, Ritchson indulges in his favorite foods every now and then. However, it solely depends upon the phase of his fitness journey. While cutting, Ritchson has no room for cheat meals and indulgent foods. When he is bulking up and has to gain weight, the 40-year-old does not mind adding cheat meals to up the caloric intake.
However, he follows the 80-20 principle where 80 percent of calories come from a clean and whole food diet while 20 percent comes from cheat meals.
Alan Ritchson does not subscribe to the idea of following a singular path to achieve the desired physique. He gives equal importance to a variety of training methods like weight training, cardio and calisthenics to benefit from the unique advantages they offer. The only thing he does not waver from, however, is the commitment to fitness and healthy living.