If you think being an actor is a walk in the park, here’s something that’s going to immediately change your tune. When Zach Braff was preparing for Garden State, the actor choked down a mind-blowing 12,000 calories a day so he could get into shape for his role as a depressed struggling actor who returns home to New Jersey to attend his mother’s funeral.
Wow. Talk about serious dedication to your craft!
So how did he do it? Starting at 4 a.m. every day, Zach would begin his serious carb-and-protein-loading regimen with eight whole eggs and 14 egg whites, all washed down with a double scoop of whey protein mixed with whole cream in order to ingest the calories necessary to play the role of the emotionally damaged Andrew Largeman in the off-kilter 2004 rom-com.
After loading up on calories, Braff would hit the gym where he’d run a full mile with a tire around his neck and then do 10 sets of squats in order to get his body into peak physical condition to portray a disaffected post-adolescent who processes his emotions through melodic indie rock. For lunch he’d guzzle 10 cans of tuna, a 24-ounce rib eye, and five raw potatoes. Then it was back to the gym for an upper-body workout that would leave Arnold in tears, followed by eating two entire boiled chickens, skin and all, and another eight whole eggs. By the end of the day, Zach would had pounded down more than 12,000 calories and hit the gym for a total of fives hours and was ready to fully embody the soft-spoken character that makes Garden State such a memorable film!
It was an insanely intense dietary regimen that would test the fortitude of even a professional body builder, but Braff was so committed to his role as a neurotic twentysomething navigating a tense relationship with his father and processing the recent death of his mother that he was more than willing to undergo the physical strain.
Did all of Zach’s hard work pay off? Well, watch the scene in Garden State where his character finally realizes that he’s in love with his friend Samantha and kisses her in an airport and you be the judge! There’s a reason that the Rock and Sylvester Stallone have used the Garden State diet to get into shape for roles, and it’s because the results that Braff achieved have become stuff of Hollywood legend.
Still think actors have it easy? Didn’t think so.