The Personal Trainer Behind Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Brad Pitt, and Channing Tatum

When it comes to getting into shape for a role, celebrities often turn to physical fitness gurus and personal trainers well-versed in healthy dieting, muscle building exercises, endurance development, and more. From donning a superhero suit without looking out of place to ripping off your shirt and exposing a defined six-pack, it helps actors to have a personal trainer in their corner, telling them what to eat and how to stay fit.

Though personal trainers are very common in the entertainment industry, who knew that four of the biggest actors of today rely on the same guy! While the man behind the sculpted Black Widow and Thor is rather modest about his profession, the trainer spoke with Bodybuilding.com and revealed a few tricks and tips.

Scarlett Johansson and Chris Hemsworth
Scarlett Johansson and Chris Hemsworth | Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic

Duffy Gaver is responsible for keeping Hollywood’s best in shape

Duffy Gaver is a 54-year-old former Navy Seal known for his no-nonsense attitude when it comes to celebrity training. However, Gaver, alongside whipping the Hollywood elite into shape, has also performed stunt work on various films. Gaver even appeared as an actor in Barry, Soldier, and The Game.

Gaver attacks his job with a very humble mindset, according to Bodybuilding.com, which is likely the reason celebrities are drawn to him, as they already suffer from enough paparazzi and media attention. They don’t need their physical fitness trainer blowing up Instagram with pictures of them straining to lift a heavy dumbbell.

Duffy Gaver explained to Bodybuilding.com that most of his work revolves around the film industry. He goes on to state that actors are, rightfully, too occupied with their actual job – the research involved in inhabiting a character, learning lines, etc – and they don’t have the time to think about what they should and shouldn’t eat. So, he comes in with the knowledge and research already completed.

Gaver thinks about the workouts and diets that will be best for the specific individual, as well as the physical look they will need to attain for a given role.

Duffy Gaver talks Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow

Gaver explained that “for Thor, the goal was size. Bigger. Bigger. Bigger.” He stated that while training Chris Hemsworth, the actor put on 20-25 pounds of muscle in about six months. Which, as anyone who works out frequently knows, requires a great deal of determination.

Discussing Hemsworth, Gaver told Bodybuilding.com that, while his workouts were intense, the size really came down to the food. He said “that was a ton of food” when referencing the muscular weight gain, as Thor had to consume a “massive amount of chicken and red meats” to reach the ideal body weight for the role, explained Duffy.

When talking about Scarlett Johansson, Duffy explained that she needed to be in shape in terms of strength, cardiovascular health, and more, to be capable of executing her demanding fight scenes. Duffy stated that with most of his clients, it comes down to how they carry themselves in a particular role; that’s what helps to guide the workout and food regimen.

What makes Duffy Gaver so special?

Duffy Gaver does not try to sell his clients products. He does not weigh them every day or look at body fat percentages, as he tells Bodybuilding.com; he simply gets his clients into shape. He makes them look and feel the part. It’s that simple.

Duffy Gaver’s attitude, straightforward and committed, is likely what keeps his old clients coming back for more and new clients knocking at his door. Duffy Gaver explains that the old routines still work; Schwarzenegger was as fit as he was for a reason, and Duffy Gaver knows how to employ all the knowledge he has gained in this profession to whip actors into shape.