New ‘Doctor Strange’ Trailer: Benedict Cumberbatch Looks Physically Strong, Exhaustive Workout Pays Off

New ‘Doctor Strange’ Trailer
Photo credit: Kevin Winter / Staff/Getty

The latest superhero film featuring Marvel Comics character Doctor Strange is scheduled for release on Nov. 4. British actor Benedict Cumberbatch plays neurosurgeon Stephen Strange, who turns to supernatural powers when his career is ended in a car accident.

Cumberbatch revealed his workout and diet for the role.

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige told Cumberbatch that the role was the toughest regime they had ever put an actor through.


Preparing for the role was tough due to long working days – up to 15 hours a day. What made it tougher was lack of sleep due to Cumberbatch’s 14-month-old son. Talking about his character, Cumberbatch told The Sun, “He goes through so much psychologically and physically, which I can testify to as an actor.”

Doctor Strange is always muscly in the cartoons, and Cumberbatch had to resemble his looks with a broader chest and ripped muscles. Cumberbatch is no stranger to dramatic body transformations. He doubled his calorie and protein shake intake and increased his workout hours for his character John Harrison in Star Trek: Into Darkness. In an interview with SFX Magazine,  he said that he ate 4,000 calories a day, and on top of that, he trained for two hours daily to become the villain.

He did a lot of training and a lot of eating for the 2013 film. For a week or two, he could do numerous workouts like handstand press-ups, feet up against the wall, lowering his head to the floor and pushing up. Apart from that, stunt rehearsals, fight choreography, swimming, a bit of running, and some Bikram yoga were also a part of his workout.

His dedication yielded fruitful results with his chest size increasing from 38 to 42 inches!


Muscle Building Workout Routine

The following set of workouts is beneficial for bulking up like Cumberbatch:

Day 1: Four sets, eight reps of each, Barbell Squat, Barbell Bench Press – Medium Grip, Standing Military Press, Pull-ups, Ab Roller, Barbell Curl

Day 2: Rest

Day 3: Five sets, five reps of each, Incline Dumbbell Press, Bent-Over Barbell Row, Barbell Deadlift, Side Lateral Raise, Hammer Curls, Standing Dumbbell Triceps Extension

Day 4: Rest

Day 5: Three sets, five reps of each, Dips – Triceps Version, Chin-Ups, Dumbbell Lunges, Double Kettlebell Push Press, Seated Calf Raise, Plate Twist

Day 6: Rest

Weight Gain Diet

The following may have been Cumberbatch’s weight gain diet.

Breakfast: One cup raw oatmeal, One cup skim milk, Half cup dried cranberries or raisins, One tablespoon flax oil. Mid-morning Snack: One cup skim milk, One large piece of fruit with natural peanut butter, One low-fat mozzarella stick

Lunch: Two cups egg salad on two whole wheat pitas, Two bananas. Afternoon Snack: One cup low-fat vanilla yogurt, One cup fat-free cottage cheese, One cup blueberries, Two tablespoon wheat germ, One tablespoon honey

Dinner: Six ounces grilled salmon, One large sweet potato, One cup cut green beans, One cup skim milk. After-Dinner Snack: Peanut butter smoothie

Vaillancourt, J., “The Top 3 Muscle Building Routines To Follow For Maximum Muscle Gains!” Bodybuilding web site, July 22, 2016;