Katy Perry Wants You to Have a PRISMatic Day,

We named her our Body Crush in SELF's November issue and got a chance to chat with her trainer, Armando Alarcon, who told us how the singer keeps up her stamina while belting out "Unconditionally," "Walking on Air," and, of course, all those Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh's in "Roar."


Alarcon said that Katy needs good, really loud music to get her going. And they do a lot of moves that elongate and engage the whole body. "You use your whole body everyday, so why wouldn't you workout the exact same way?" Alarcon told us.


Well put, sir!


Try this full-body toner to get Katy's sexy-strong figure (it's a go-to move):

Start in low plank position. Press up to top of push-up. Jump feet toward hands, then back. Lower to forearms for 1 rep. Do 20 reps.

Yes, we're tired just thinking about that sequence. But it's totally doable and sure must be effective. She looks amazing, don't you think?

While on the road, Katy stays in shape with a ton of cardio: elliptical, running, and jumping rope (we were totally impressed with her jumping-rope-while-on-stage abilities at the VMA's earlier this year). Try it for 15-20 minutes for a serious cardio blast -- extra points if you can belt out a new PRISM tune, too.



Andrew Garfield

Sculpting a heroic bod!
What it takes to get into superhero shape.

It takes talent to draw a perfectly chiseled superhero on the page of a comic book but imagine trying to sculpt your own body into that kind of shape.


According to The Amazing Spider-Man 2 star Andrew Garfield, fitting back into that red-and-blue Spider-Man costume was a feat nearly as reality-defying as Spider-Man swinging between skyscrapers.


"You have to have a body that looks like it’s super human, which is almost impossible to do “ and such a hassle," he grimaces.  I'm not a gym guy “ I like surfing and playing basketball, but I don’t like lifting weights."


He probably wasn’t thrilled, then, to discover that weight-lifting formed an integral part of physical trainer Armando Alarcon’s plan to overhaul Garfield’s body.


"Andrew will say that he is not a guy who likes to work out, or not a weights guy, but his physicality and his ability say otherwise," says Alarcon, a former soldier and firefighter who now helps actors condition for movie roles. So, even though he says he preferred not to, we still did a lot of it."


Alarcon demonstrating one of the exercises he used to train Garfield to achieve the physical condition he needed to play Spider-Man. “ Courtesy of Columbia Pictures, in fact, the actor gritted through a one-to-two-hour training session with Alarcon almost every day for about 10 months during the preparation and filming of The Amazing Spider-Man 2. That massive commitment of time and effort was necessary for the superhero look Garfield had to embody for the sequel “ a Spider-Man who is slightly older and stronger than the last time audiences saw him.


"He's not that small teen that he was in the first film, so to make him older, we had to mature the muscles and make them thicker and denser, while sculpting the superhero-style body: really nice wide shoulders, big thick back, and a really skinny waist," says the trainer, who previously worked on films including Thor and The Green Hornet.


Alarcon started out pursuing acting, and according to him, “the four jobs that they say give you enough time and flexibility for auditions are valet, server, bartender and personal trainer.


And that’s the one I picked, because I’ve been physical my whole life. I'm ex-military. I was a firefighter. So being a personal trainer was really easy.


So what did a typical workout look like for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 star?

We would stretch and warm up, and then move into a very heavy-weighted exercise: all multi-functional moves, so his whole body was being used.


"There were no regular exercises like a bench press or shoulder press," Alarcon says, adding that about half the workout would be lifting weights, and the other half consisted of body-weight resistance exercises. We would then move into several sets of different kinds of exercises, like a reverse lunge with overhead press or catapult. And it would go in levels: something would be semi-hard and then it would be medium, and then it would be body-weighted exercises. And then at the end, we would close out with mostly core and ab work."


But Garfield’s most intense training routines were used in preparation for the film’s punishing fight scenes.

"We created workouts that made him feel so tired and beat up that by the time he got on set, he was already in the place he needed to be.  We did it by having him just constantly lifting and moving, wearing him down mentally and physically."


Such intense physical exertion meant Garfield had to constantly fuel his body for the demands being placed on it “ to the tune of 4,000 to 5,000 calories per day. But Alarcon didn’t let the actor chow down on just anything.


"Andrew’s body doesn’t have much fat, which normally provides an immediate source of energy.


"Without fat, the body attacks muscle to create energy, and we didn’t want him to lose any muscle, so we limited him to mostly vegetables and simple lean meats.  Every once in a while, he would have pasta, and then he would tease me by eating the occasional piece of cake," Alarcon laughs.

All this was on top of the 12- to 16-hour days Garfield was logging on set.


The key to keeping the busy star motivated?

"Making it a very energetic environment, so he would get excited about training and we could get 100% out of him.

"That was probably the most difficult part, but then again, Andrew is a gift to work with."



Andrew Garfield

Garfield is naturally athletic and usually stays in good shape, but the role of Spiderman was incredibly demanding. He trained non-stop for nearly four months prior to filming in order to perform the high-flying aerial stunts and fight scenes for the film. Legendary trainer Armando Alarcon was Garfields personal trainer and he developed a very specific program progression to prepare the new Spiderman for action. The first thing they worked on was injury proofing Garfield's body. Pilates were heavily incorporated to improve both dynamic flexibility and core strength. After the flexibility and core strength goals were achieved, they began incorporating weight lifting to pack muscle on to his slender frame. The other part of the training program consisted of plyometrics and parkour. Garfield needed to be able to perform his own stunts, and the plyometrics combined with the parkour gave him the athleticism and coordination necessary to be The Amazing Spiderman.


Garfield dished on his diet and training in a Total Film Interview.


TOTAL FILM: Were you eating a special diet?

ANDREW GARFIELD: "Yeah, that was tough: a lot of bland food and existential dilemmas... with weights in my hands. It was a very confusing time in my life."


TOTAL FILM: How many hours a day did you have to work out?

ANDREW GARFIELD: "For four months prior we did¦ don't get too excited... seven hours a day, for four months, but two hours was body work and the next three or four hours was all the other stuff like the harness stuff, gymnastics, parkour training, wire work and all that, but it was like summer camp, it was like circus school. Just pure fun."

Seven hours a day? Now that's dedication.

On the training regime...


ANDREW GARFIELD: "The physical preparation was very challenging, to be sure. For six months, Armando [Alarcon, his fitness trainer] and I worked together six days a week. He pushed me harder than I thought I could be pushed; however, our work ethic is quite similar, so I tended to push myself as hard as he pushed me. He had a holistic approach that was invaluable in terms of my body confidence, health, strength and nutrition. We have become great friends."



Andrew Garfield

For Andrew Garfield, Marc Webb's approach meant he would prepare for the rigors of the role with a rigorous and intense training regimen, as health and fitness trainer Armando Alarcon oversaw Garfield's strength, agility, and core training, as well as nutritional monitoring.





Photo Credit: copyright Columbia Pictures

Emma Stone

Emma Stone is the other side to this dynamic duo playing the role of Gwen Stacy, Peter Parker's love interest. The role of Gwen is nowhere near as demanding as playing Spiderman, but that doesn't mean Emma got to take it easy. She is notoriously opposed to vigorous exercise and dieting. In fact, she couldn't even do a pushup when she landed the role. But in order to play Gwen she didn't really have a choice.


She expressed her feelings on weight lifting in an On The Red Carpet interview.

"I had a trainer during 'Spider-Man' and I discovered I have deep-seated rage when I'm holding heavy weights over my head. Whatever dormant anger I have in me, that's where it comes out. That's not the kind of working out I want to do."


Stone used the same trainer as Garfield before filming, but she followed a different program. She worked with Alarcon 3-5 days a week for around two hours a session. The bulk of her program consisted of balance and functional core movements combined with lots of push-ups and vigorous cardio circuits. Emma didn't have to train full-time like Garfield did, but it obviously worked. She's been showing off her new fit physique on red carpets all over the globe and landed herself on Maxim's Hot 100 list.

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