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Joel Kinnaman Workout Routine

Hanna Walther Author Profile



What does Joel Kinnaman’s workout routine look like?

Joel Kinnaman is a Swedish-American actor who is most known for his roles in the Netflix TV series The Killing, Suicide Squad, Altered Carbon, RoboCop, and many more.

Kinnaman trained extremely hard for his role as Rick Flag in Suicide Squad and as Elias Ryker in Altered Carbon. These two acting jobs required him to be at the top of his fitness game, with more muscle mass and stamina than he’d ever had before.

Fans around the world have wondered what Kinnaman does in the gym to build sculpted abs, killer arms, and toned shoulders.

While this post does not contain Joel Kinnaman’s exact routine, it is a compilation of research we’ve done, his social commentary, and information from experts in the industry.


Current Stats 

  • Height:‎ 6’2″
  • Weight: 170 Pounds
  • Age: 43 Years Old
  • Birthday: November 25, 1979
  • Accolades: 2012 Saturn Award Nominee, 2011 Guldbagge Award Winner for Best Actor, 2021 Pena de Prata Nominee


Workout Principles

While training for his role as Takeshi Kovacs and Elias Ryker in Altered Carbon, he had eight months to train and get his body prepared.

Kinnaman was in the gym every day, lifting weights, building muscle, and using different kinds of strength training to get into the best shape of his life.

Having always had a naturally lean physique, Kinnaman was able to push himself physically so he could successfully perform his own stunts once Altered Carbon started shooting.

It was a personal goal of his to do his own stunts for the first time.


Joel Kinnaman’s Workout Routine

The Joel Kinnaman workout routine consists of six days of training and an active recovery day, where he performs yoga and stretching to protect his muscles from injury or strain.

Whether Joel is preparing for a role as a mercenary soldier or a squad leader, his fitness routine requires serious commitment and proper training. He tries to avoid doing the same workout during the week to keep things interesting.

Kinnaman enjoys lifting weights, high-intensity cardio, and Brazilian jiu jitsu training. He works with trainers when necessary but also enjoys working out solo to clear his head.

Here is Joel Kinnaman’s workout routine:


Monday – Chest & Triceps

On Monday, Joel Kinnaman performs a chest and triceps burner to sculpt those upper body muscles he is known for.

  1. Bench press (3 sets, 10 reps)
  2. Incline bench press (3 sets, 10 reps)
  3. Dumbbell chest fly (3 sets, 10 reps)
  4. Dips (3 sets, 10 reps)
  5. Tricep kickback (3 sets, 10 reps)
  6. Tricep pushdown (3 sets, 10 reps)
  7. Close grip bench press (3 sets, 10 reps)

Repeat exercises until failure.


Tuesday – Strength Training & Mixed Martial Arts

On Tuesday, Joel completes his first strength training workout of the week and pairs it with MMA-style training.


Warm Up

  1. 5 minutes on the rowing machine
  2. 10 minutes riding the elliptical or walking on the treadmill


Strength Training Circuit

  1. Alternating dumbbell bench press (4 sets, 12 reps)
  2. Incline dumbbell fly (4 sets, 12 reps)
  3. Barbell curl (4 sets, 12 reps)
  4. Alternating dumbbell curl (4 sets, 12 reps)

Repeat these exercises until failure.

Joel Kinnaman also uses Tuesday to work on his mixed martial arts skills through Brazilian jiu jitsu.

He enjoys MMA-style fighting because it helps improve his flexibility and balance as he performs his own stunts in various acting roles.


Wednesday – Back & Biceps

Wednesday calls for a back and biceps program in the Joel Kinnaman workout. For many of his acting roles, Joel has to look super-jacked, and a huge back and biceps help achieve that look.

  1. Deadlift (3 sets, 10 reps)
  2. Lat pulldowns (3 sets, 10 reps)
  3. Dumbbell rows (3 sets, 10 reps)
  4. Pull ups (3 sets, 10 reps)
  5. Dumbbell curls (3 sets, 10 reps)
  6. Hammer curls (3 sets, 10 reps)
  7. Preacher curls (3 sets, 10 reps)


Thursday – Legs & Shoulders

Thursday is a legs and shoulders exercise day in the Joel Kinnaman workout routine.

Here are a few of the exercises he may perform to sculpt jacked shoulders and powerful leg muscles:

  1. Back squat (3 sets, 10 reps)
  2. Squat (3 sets, 10 reps)
  3. Leg press (3 sets, 10 reps)
  4. Weighted lunges (3 sets, 10 reps)
  5. Clean and squats (3 sets, 10 reps)
  6. Military press (3 sets, 10 reps)
  7. Shoulder raises (3 sets, 10 reps)
  8. Shoulder flys (3 sets, 10 reps)

Repeat sets til failure.


Friday – Cardio

Cardio is an important part of the Joel Kinnaman workout routine. Cardio helps to burn fat, increase heart rate, and improve endurance for actors in action films and TV series.

On Friday, Kinnaman goes for a long run on the treadmill or rides the exercise bike to prepare for any film or show with grueling scenes that require stamina on screen.


Saturday – Mixed Martial Arts

On Saturday, Kinnaman may perform the same workout involving strength training and martial arts. He finds jiu jitsu to be both fun and challenging for his body and his mind and tries to do it at least twice a week.


Sunday – Rest

Kinnaman takes a rest day on Sunday to do some yoga and let his muscles prepare for the week of workouts ahead.


Joel Kinnaman’s Diet 

Paired with the Joel Kinnaman workout routine is a clean diet plan that is filled with lean meat, vegetables, and whole grains.

In the Joel Kinnaman diet plan, he focuses on fueling his body for training and eats every three to five hours, depending on his workout schedule each week.

Joel Kinnaman rarely has any cheat meals or junk food but enjoys dark chocolate after dinner to satisfy his sweet tooth and to treat himself.

Here is the breakdown on Joel Kinnaman’s diet:


1. Breakfast

  • Oatmeal
  • Coffee
  • Veggie omelet
  • Fruit salad


2. Morning Snack

  • Protein shake
  • Yogurt and berries


3. Lunch

  • Grilled chicken
  • Brown rice
  • Sauteed veggies


4. Dinner

  • Grilled chicken or fish
  • Brown rice
  • Kale salad
  • Brocolli



Joel Kinnaman has mentioned he uses protein to build muscle for any upcoming acting role.

Here are a few other supplements he may use to stay in shape, put on weight, and maintain his overall fitness level.



Joel Kinnaman’s workout routine and diet plan are not for the faint of heart.

Whether he’s training to look ripped for Altered Carbon or to play the iconic Rick Flag in Suicide Squad, Joel Kinnaman is an extremely focused individual, and it shows in his impressive physical stature.

As an action film and TV star, he certainly looks the part. We look forward to seeing what role he takes on next; whatever it is, there’s no doubt he’ll be looking massively jacked. 

What do you think about Joel Kinnaman’s workout routine and diet? Leave a comment below.

Hanna has been a fitness fanatic for most of her life. She grew up on the soccer field and volleyball court and credits those sports with her determination, passion for fitness, and leadership off the field. She is currently studying to become a personal trainer and hopes to begin coaching in 2022.

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