If you hover in the 10% body-fat range, you’re in prime position to show off a lean look with visible abs. But getting a fitness model–esque physique requires an extra level of precision, which is why we asked trainer Don Saladino, owner of Drive 495 gym in New York City, to outline the strategies he used to get Ryan Reynolds into superhero shape for Deadpool and its upcoming 2018 sequel. Try these for a week, and on Day 7 check out your superlean look.
1. Water load
Flush your system with water, then taper your consumption slowly to produce a drier look that highlights your abs. Drink up:
Days 1-3: 3 gallons
Day 4: 2.5 gallons
Day 5: 1.75 gallons
Day 6: 0.75 gallon
Day 7: 16 ounces—sip it throughout the day to keep you sane.
Stay the course until you snap the pic.
2. Fight the bloat
“You have to cut out all dairy, gluten, and legumes,” Saladino advises. Foods like these contain allergens, which will cause you to bloat and retain water—not a good move when you’re trying to make sure your abs are popping at the end of a week.
3. Get a massage
When you’re stressed, cortisol—a hormone produced by the adrenal gland that spikes in high-stress situations—can impede your ability to burn fat. Saladino suggests meditation, sleeping seven to nine hours, and a sports massage to improve circulation, put you in a good mood, and keep your hormones in check.
4. Time your carbs
“Save your carbs for after your workout and before bed,” says Saladino. “Stick with veggies and lean protein in the a.m. so your blood sugar doesn’t spike, which stops your body from using fat for fuel.” Consume most of your carbs post-workout so they’re put to use, and then another 20 to 30 grams at night for a better quality night’s rest.
5. Cut the fat
“A lot of people are talking about high-fat diets nowadays, which are fine. But if you want to get extra lean, extra fat isn’t going to help,” says Saladino. Fat packs nine calories per gram, so eat only grilled chicken and white fish (cod, halibut) as your fat sources during this week.