Ben Affleck Works Out “The Town”
Ben Affleck’s new turn in The Town takes the bank robbery, combines it with a pursuing FBI agent, and gives Affleck a chance to show off his hard work at the gym. It’s not everyday that “Thin Ben” shows off a ripped physique, but robbing banks is no easy task.
Daredevil was only the beginning, but you may recall that Affleck is married to Jennifer Garner so you figure she’s kicking him as he goes out the door.
The fascination this time seems to be with his abs, and we’re going to focus on that today. Plus, we’re going to talk about the changes in Ben’s Daredevil and The Town routines.
It’s interesting to see how times, roles, and circumstances change the way people approach their routines. Working out isn’t something you’ll do exactly the same for the next 20 years. Hell, it may change in 20 days.
Daredevil Uses Sticks, But Not Stones
The 2004 role of Daredevil required Affleck to fight off villains in a single sequence. Honestly, what kind of superhero are you if you can’t dispatch 20 angry dudes in 60 seconds flat?
For the role Affleck had to learn many “stick” martial arts routines, and those stunts figured into his workouts. In fact, the stunts themselves are quite a workout.
You can take just about any basic technique from martial arts and transform it into something that will burn calories, work your core, and substitute for “boring cardio”.
Eskrima is a Filipino system of defensive martial arts that offers stick drill, hand drills, and kicks. Take a couple of each and you have a killer martial arts circuit to get yourself going.
Grab a stick, broom handle, anything that you’ll enjoy wielding like a sword, and grasp it with both hands on one end. The San Miguel strikes down from your shoulder and across your body.
Doing this exercise with a long stick means you have to have your feet shoulder-width apart so you have leverage. Strike down from your right shoulder to your left side. Then strike down from your left shoulder to your right side. Alternate for 40 total reps.
The Live Hand
The Live Hand is the weaponless hand that can defend and strike. In this case you don’t even need your fun little weapon to work yourself out.
First, complete a forehand strike that moves straight in front of you. Alternating hands you can complete 50-60 reps with each hand before you are fatigued.
Take your weapon in hand and get your feet shoulder-width apart. You can do these exercises with a partner, but they have to be willing to block you. If not, that’s ok.
Strike in all four corners: upper right, upper left, lower left, and lower right. Each swing of the weapon should have as much force as possible, but you have to use your leverage to get a burn in your core.
Complete 20 cycles of strikes before stopping.
Take these three moves and make them into a circuit. Leave the live hand in the middle so you get a break from the stick in the middle of the circuit.
If you work the circuit hard you should be able to complete it 3-5 times before you’re really hurting.
Say Hello to Your Abs
As I said in the opening, it’s all about Ben’s abs in The Town. I know he seems like “Thin Ben”, but he does do an extraordinary amount of work on his body for these difficult roles.
Forget the fighting, now Ben just has to look good when he gets on set. Instead of playing around with a martial arts choreographer for a few months he can just work his core like a madman.
This is a similar circuit-style workout that allows you to isolate certain exercises or run them together into a circuit. If you’re isolating the exercises then it’s a good idea to take just a couple per day.
If you’re doing the full circuit, you want to make sure you’re doing the it enough times that you are really hurting at the end. Don’t let yourself off easy. If you’re trying to get big then you don’t necessarily need my help, but you can sure have more fun working out this way.
Don’t try to be like Ben Affleck. Just imagine how quickly movie stars have to get in shape. Now imagine the rapid transformation you can get with just a few exercises.
Sit on the edge of a chair, or use a captain’s chair, with your legs together. Use the arms of the chair for leverage or grasp the seat of the chair so you don’t fall down.
You need to be suspended in order for this exercise to work. Raise yourself slightly off the seat, slowly extend your legs and relax. Complete at least two sets of 10-15 reps.
Lay down on your back with your hands behind your head. Cross your ankles and raise your legs straight up in the air.
Now you are ready to complete your crunches. Squeeze your abs as you raise your head towards your knees and relax back down to the floor. Complete at least two sets of 10-15 reps.
The Long Arm of the Crunch
Lay down on your back and grasp your left wrist with your right hand. Extend your arms behind your head and place your feet flat on the floor.
Squeeze your abs and raise your shoulder blades off the floor. Keeping your arms extended changes your weight distribution and keeps the exercise challenging. Complete at least two sets of 10-15 reps each.
This set of three exercises makes a nice circuit that you can slam over and over. This could very nice for you if you have an obsessive personality. In fact, killing this circuit multiple times could be a good way to warm yourself up or finish off a good workout.
Combining the ab exercises with the martial arts stick technique is a good way to change up an entire day’s routine. Never mind that it’s fun as well.
Don’t look at it as a gimmick. If this kind of work can get “Thin Ben” ready for Daredevil and The Town then it can surely get you ready to meet your latest goal.