What do you do when you’re cast in a movie with Channing Tatum and Matthew McConaughey? Well, after a round of high fives with your pals, you take stock and realize that these guys are in crazy shape, and the film, Magic Mike, is about working in a strip club, so you know you’ve got to get yourself in mental and physical condition.
The mental aspect wasn’t hard for Adam Rodriguez. The CSI: Miami star was a DJ at a strip joint at the tender age of 16. "There was a club my friends and I used to go to, and they weren’t too diligent about checking IDs. I loved music, had my own DJ setup and a ton of records, and they needed a DJ, so I started working there,” explains the 37-year-old actor. “I guess they just assumed I was 18. It was kind of a dump, but my friends all thought [my job] was cool as hell.”
With his head fully wrapped around the project, Rodriguez had to get his body on target. “I just knew [the rest of the cast] was going to show up ready to kill, and I didn’t want to be the weak link,” he explains. “I had only six weeks to prepare, and honestly, I was like, ‘Am I going to have to do a cycle of steroids?’” He didn’t. instead, he hooked up with longtime trainer Tito Raymond and got under the bar with some heavy weights.
He was working out six days a week, with an extra two hours of cardio each day to ensure leanness. “I went to [nutritionist] Adam Friedman for a meal plan,” he says. “The whole system was based on maintaining an even blood sugar level so my body used fat for energy.” It worked. “I was benching 275 for five, maxing out my squats at like 350, 375. I felt great,” he says. Rodriguez cut down to 180 pounds with five percent body fat and became stronger than ever.