How Donnie Yen Stays in Fantastic Shape

At 57 years old, Donnie Yen (甄子丹) is still in amazing shape. Although the six pack abs and bulging biceps won’t stay forever, the martial arts star has emphasized the importance of maintaining physical activity to stay not only young on the outside, but also in the inside.

“Age is nothing but just a number,” he said.

For his 2017 film XXX: Return of Xander Cage, Donnie went through a strict training regime to keep up with his costar Vin Diesel. While Donnie is no longer as fit as he was then, his love for martial arts and physical fitness has driven him to stay as physically fit and flexible as possible.

Donnie would go to the gym at least two times a week. To maintain his muscle mass and shape, weight training is a must. To not overexert any muscle, it is important to train to one’s capability and casually build up the weight to tolerance. Before lifting, Donnie would complete a five to ten-minute dynamic cardio warm-up. After training, Donnie would spend five to ten minutes  stretching his limbs to release the tension on his muscles. Stretching is the most important process to weight training, as it decreases the likeliness of injury. It is even more important for Donnie, who does his own stunts.

Occasionally, Donnie would engage in a heavy bag training session to challenge himself, punching and kicking a heavy bag over 10,000 times. The sessions would get quite intense, as Donnie himself had shared that he once kicked the bag up to the ceiling.

“Only those with strong willpower can train a beautiful body,” he said.

Diet is also a very important aspect to weight training. If anything, it is the most difficult process to anyone’s body-building journey.

Donnie is very strict with what he puts in his body. He avoids foods high in fats and calories, including foods that are too cold or excitant. To counter the lactic acid soreness after training, Donnie would replenish with vegetables, potatoes, apples, and other alkaline foods. He eats five meals a day: 20 percent breakfast, 10 percent snack, 30 percent breakfast, 10 percent snack, and 30 percent dinner.


This article is written by Addy for

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  1. Hot upper body. But don’t forget your glutes and leg days, Donnie! Still, he’s looking really good especially for his age. Takes a lot of discipline to achieve such a fit body.

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