Kick-Ass follows New York teenager Dave Lizewski’s painful attempts to become a masked vigilante. Though Lizewski isn’t the most ripped hero on the block, when Aaron Taylor-Johnson took on the role he still needed to get in shape to convince audiences he would be able to beat anyone in a street brawl.

In Kick-Ass 2, Lizewski is back with more skills and more muscle. Below is the kind of workout Taylor-Johnson would have done to bulk up for the role, created by personal trainer Matt Hodges. Follow this programme for eight weeks to see a noticeable difference to your physique.

Warm-up

To be done as a circuit before each workout without resting. Before starting, perform a foam roll on all your major muscles.

Leg swing
Sets 2 Reps 20 each side
Walking knee to chest tuck
Sets 2 Reps 20 each side
Bodyweight reverse lunge
Sets 2 Reps 10 each side
Bodyweight squat
Sets 2 Reps 15

Days 1 and 4 – strength building

Follow the tempo 41X1 – four seconds to lower, pause for one second, lift explosively and pause for one second. Rest for two minutes after each set. Each week add 2.5kg to the weight you are lifting.

Rack pull
Sets 6 Reps 4-6
Barbell push press
Sets 6 Reps 4-6
Zercher squat
Sets 6 Reps 4-6
Chin-up
Sets 6 Reps 4-6

Day 2 – conditioning

Complete one set of both exercises in the supersets without resting. Rest for the allotted time, then repeat until you have completed three sets of each move and move on to the next superset.

Superset 1 Hang clean
Reps 10-12
Burpee
Reps 15
Rest 30sec
Superset 2 Sprawl to pull-up
Reps 20
Renegade row
10 each side
Rest 40sec
Superset 3 Medicine ball slam
Reps 20
Russian twist
Reps 10 each side
Rest 45sec
Superset 4 Hammer and tyre smash
Reps 20
Battle ropes
Time 60sec
Rest 60sec

Day 3 – cardio

Use this day for a cardio session to relax the central nervous system. Whether you do steady-state or interval training, keep it to under 20 minutes.

Day 5 – bodyweight conditioning

Complete one set of both exercises in the supersets without resting. Rest for the allotted time, then repeat until you have completed four sets of each move and move on to the next superset.
Superset 1 Pull-up
Reps 6-8
Dragon flag
Reps 5
Rest 60sec
Superset 2 Wide-grip press-up
Reps 20
Hanging leg raise
Time 60sec
Rest 60sec
Superset 3 Inverted row
Reps 15
Mountain climber
Time 60sec
Rest 60sec
Superset 4 Dip
Reps 12
Alligator walk
Reps 8 each side
Rest 60sec

Day 6 and 7 – rest

For more about personal trainer Matt Hodges visit mphfitness.com or get in touch with him at [email protected]

Want comprehensive form guides to over 250 exercises? Get the Total Training Guide