How Alan Ritchson Gained 30 Pounds of Muscle in 8 Months for Reacher

How did Alan Ritchson get so huge for Reacher?


Alan Ritchson is an actor who is best known for playing Jack Reacher, a former military policeman turned vigilante, in the Prime Video series Reacher. The show is based on the bestselling novels by Lee Child, which describe Reacher as “extremely tall” and “extremely broad”, with a muscular build, blue eyes, and dark blonde hair.

Ritchson, who is 6’4" and naturally athletic, had to undergo a massive physical transformation to match the character’s description. He reportedly gained 30 pounds of muscle in just eight months before filming the first season of Reacher, which premiered in December 2022. He achieved this feat by following a strict diet and workout regimen, which he shared on his Instagram account.


According to Ritchson, he consumed about 6,000 calories a day, mostly from smoothies and proteins. He even had an assistant who was solely responsible for bringing him food every two hours. He also built a full-sized gym in his home during the COVID-19 pandemic and trained five days a week, focusing on different muscle groups daily. He did a variety of exercises, such as bench presses, squats, deadlifts, pull-ups, curls, and dips, using heavy weights and low repetitions.

However, Ritchson’s impressive transformation came at a cost. He revealed in an interview with Men’s Health UK that he “ravaged” his body and suffered from several injuries and hormonal imbalances as a result of bulking up too fast. He had to undergo surgery to repair a broken acromioclavicular joint in his shoulder, which connects the shoulder to the collar bone. He also had low levels of testosterone, which affected his mood, energy, and recovery.

To prepare for the second season of Reacher, which is set to premiere on December 15, 2023, Ritchson decided to take a different approach. He opted for testosterone therapy, which is a medical treatment that involves supplementing the body with synthetic testosterone to restore normal levels. Ritchson said that testosterone therapy helped him heal faster, feel better, and gain an additional five pounds of muscle, taking his body weight to 240 pounds.


Ritchson explained that he chose testosterone therapy as a long-term solution, as he wants to play Reacher for 15 years and avoid having to undergo surgery after every season. He also said that he is a big advocate of testosterone therapy for men in their forties or above, as it can have many benefits, such as improving mood, libido, strength, and bone density.

Ritchson’s dedication to his role as Reacher has earned him praise from fans and critics alike, who have applauded his performance and his resemblance to the character from the books. He has also received support from Lee Child, the author of the Reacher novels, who said that Ritchson is “the real deal”. Ritchson has expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to play Reacher and his passion for the character, saying he is “honored” and “obsessed” with him.


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