Scott Adkins is an English martial arts movie star and a stunt double. You know that crazy final battle in X-Men Origins: Wolverine — the one between Wolverine, Sabertooth, and Deadpool? Adkins did all the fighting instead of Ryan Reynolds. He is also the man behind the famous Yuri Boyka character.
Yuri Boyka is a fictional character from the Undisputed movie franchise. The first Undisputed movie came out in 2002 and starred Wesley Snipes and Ving Rhames. Some would say that it was very loosely based on Mike Tyson’s time in prison.
The movie didn’t go anywhere. It made some quick cash and was quickly forgotten. Four years later, a straight-to-DVD sequel was made, with none of the original cast members returning. It starred Scott Adkins as the new bad guy, Yuri Boyka, and Michael Jai White as Ving Rhames’ character, George Chambers.
Adkins’ portrayal of Yuri Boyka, along with his badass fighting style, awesome facial hair and a bitchin’ soundtrack, made the movie a pre-workout for the eyes. A sequel following Adkins’ character soon followed and just recently the long anticipated forth movie in the series arrived. So for that occasion, we’ll take a look at what it takes to become Boyka!
Scott Adkins’ Yuri Boyka Workout And Diet
Scott is a simple dude, he trains five to six days a week and mixes weightlifting with some cardio. Nothing fancy here, just plain old hard work mixed with blood, sweat, and tears — tears of his enemies, that is.
His typical routine consists of doing an upper/lower body split routine three times a week mixed in with some conditioning work. So for instance, if you did upper body work on Monday, you will be doing it again on Friday. Yep, you only need to be hitting legs once per week. Awesome, right?
Upper Body Routine
1. Bench Press
Yes, we are starting with the bench press. Everything in life should start with the bench press and every argument should be settled by how much a person can bench. Scott does three sets of 10 reps.
Cable, dumbbell, or barbell. Your choice really, but since you will be training your upper body twice a week, try alternating between these three variations. Set and rep number is the same as above; three sets, 10 reps.
3. Overhead Press
Alternate between dumbbell and barbell variations to shock your muscles and don’t let them adjust easily to your workout. Do this for two sets of ten reps.
Scott does wide grip pull-ups for two sets of 12 reps. If you have trouble reaching that number, do as many as you can or try upping your number with resistance bands or pull-up machines.
5. Dumbbell Triceps Extension
You will do this laying or sitting. Again, try alternating to add variety to your workout. Do this for two sets of 12 reps.
6. Bicep Curls
Time for some curls! Yet again, since you are doing this workout twice a week, it’s not a bad idea to change things up between dumbbell and barbell curls. You will be doing two sets for 15 reps. Since you will be going into a high rep range, don’t curl with your ego, use lighter weights.
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Lower Body Routine
1. Front Squat
Front squats are not only good for your legs, but also for your core. You need to have a stable center if you wish to bring the weight back up. You can change it up each week with front and back squats. Do four sets of 10 reps.
One of the basic compound exercises and a great lower back and leg exercise. You will do four sets of 10 reps. If you want to add intensity to your deadlift routine, try different variations. There’s stiff leg deadlift, sumo stance deadlift and the famous “touch and go” method, where you do a single set in continuous motion with the weight just touching the ground.
3. Dumbbell Walking Lunges
Grab a pair of dumbbells and start lunging forwards. Do two sets with 12 reps. One rep is complete when you repeat this with both legs.
4. Calf Raises
Seated or standing, it’s your choice really, but alternating between the two is always the best choice. Do three sets of each for 20 reps.
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Do these exercises one after other with minimal rest for three to four rounds, depending on your overall fitness and conditioning. Since Scott is a martial arts movie star and Yuri Boyka is a fighter, naturally his workout routine included lots of heavy bag hitting, mitt work, and sparring. So, if your gym has a heavy bag and some boxing gloves, include that into your conditioning part of the workout.
Burpees With Kettlebell Swings
Do a regular burpee but after you jumped up to a standing position, grab a moderately heavy kettlebell and do a single swing. That was one rep, now try doing 15 of these.
Now that you finished doing your burpees from hell, time for some jump rope. Do a regular version of this for 30 seconds in one go.
Now that you’ve finished the burpees and jump rope, time to do some mountain climbers. Get into a push-up position and start raising your knees towards your chest in an alternating fashion.
First off, Adkins is naturally a very jacked dude. Years of doing martial arts made him a muscle-bound, ass kicking machine. His weight fluctuates depending on what kind of character is he playing. If he’s a larger than life dude like Yuri Boyka, then he beefs up a bit. If he’s playing a henchman type role, he tones down a bit.
There’s not a lot of information about his precise nutritional intake but in an interview with men’s fitness, he did drop some knowledge on shedding the “off season” pounds:
I find it hard in Thailand and China and places like that—there’s a lot of rice and noodles and things of that sort, so my diet sometimes sucks a bit in those parts of the world. But generally I find that if I cut out carbs from after lunch and I’m just having vegetables and some protein for the rest of the day, the weight just drops off me. It’s as simple as that. I’ll get up, I’ll pretty much eat what I want for breakfast, I have a healthy sandwich, and meat and vegetables for dinner.
So there you have it, straight from the man himself. Focus on high protein intake and cycle your carbs. Start hot and heavy in the morning then start toning it down for every other meal. Aim for six meals a day that are high in protein and has “good carbs” in them. Also, be sure to stock up on supplements; lots of BCAA’s, protein powder and creatine.
Check out a part of Scott Adkins’ preparation the last time he had to prepare for the role of Yuri Boyka.