HOW BY­RON MANN LOOKS THIS GOOD AT 51

BY­RON MANN, LAST SEEN IN THE HOL­LY­WOOD BLOCK­BUSTER SKY­SCRAPER, AND NET­FLIX’S AL­TERED CAR­BON, SHARES HOW HE’S MADE MOSTLY THE RIGHT LIFE DE­CI­SIONS, AND MAIN­TAINED A SIX-PACK BODY IN THE PROCESS.

Men's Health (Singapore) - - ON THE COVER -

The Hong Kong star who broke into Hol­ly­wood shares what it takes to get this ripped de­spite hit­ting his fifties.

SSome back­ground- de­spite a long list of film and TV show cred­its on his IMDB page, the truth is By­ron’s des­tiny wasn’t sup­posed to be an ac­tor. His fa­ther was a den­tist, his mother a nurse, his elder brother a doc­tor, and his sec­ond brother went to busi­ness school. Pretty much the stereo­typ­i­cal Asian suc­cess story- and By­ron was meant to join the club as the fam­ily lawyer.

He played the role well at the start, go­ing to law school and man­ag­ing to snag a great in­tern­ship at a law firm in Hong Kong. But that’s when the story be­gan to change, he re­veals to Men’s Health.

“Usu­ally at the end of the in­tern­ship, my boss would give an ap­praisal of how we did, and it’s usu­ally pretty pos­i­tive, and as se­nior part­ner he’d give some kind of con­fir­ma­tion that we were on the right track”, the 51-year old shares.

“But my talk with him shocked me- he told me to my face that the law wasn’t right for me,” By­ron laughs, adding, “so I asked why, and he said I was late ev­ery morn­ing and look­ing at my watch at 5pm wait­ing to go off ev­ery day!” So now he had a real prob­lem- what to do next? At 22, the only thing he re­mem­bered re­ally en­joy­ing was act­ing in high school for some school per­for­mance. By­ron piv­oted- he had two years left of law school but got full on into act­ing, and man­aged to score gigs, even get­ting into his first movie. “I couldn’t be­lieve peo­ple would pay me for act- I was en­joy­ing it so much!”

Once he forged his path into act­ing, there was no turn­ing back. “In fact I threw my hat over the fence- I didn’t even have a backup plan,” he re­veals. “But you know the say­ing- if you find a job you love you’ll never work an­other day in life- it’s that spirit that helped me get the where I am to­day!” And he’s cer­tainly got­ten far, most re­cently

I COULDN’T BE­LIEVE PEO­PLE WOULD PAY ME FOR ACT- I WAS EN­JOY­ING IT SO MUCH!”

scor­ing big Hol­ly­wood roles in movies like Sky­scraper, which boasted Dwayne John­son- The Rock him­self- in the lead.

One of the key rea­sons for By­ron’s suc­cess is how he’s carved a niche in ac­tion-firms. In case you didn’t know, he played Ryu in the fa­mous (or in­fa­mous) Street Fighter movie in 1994 along­side Jean Claude Van Damme’s Guile, and also played a cru­cial char­ac­ter in the comic-book-turned-TV se­ries Ar­row. Most re­cently, he was seen strut­ting his bod in a Net­flix se­ries called Al­tered Car­bon. How did he build a physique this ripped in his 50’s?

“Now I’ve al­ways been fit, but this show might be the phys­i­cally tough­est role I’ve ever taken on,” he says. “It’s a sci­ence-fic­tion se­ries- half the show my shirt is off, and they were re­ally spe­cific about how ripped I’d have to be for the role. I had two dif­fer­ent train­ers- one helped with gain­ing mus­cle, which meant carb load­ing on a dif­fer­ent level. Ev­ery three hours I was hav­ing a meal,” the star ex­claims.

And the sac­ri­fice wasn’t ex­actly easy for By­ron, who ad­mits: “I had to cut out any­thing with sugar- muffins, bread, rice, noo­dles- and you know how hard that is for us Asians!” He’d have red rice and brown rice in­stead, and hours-long work­out ses­sions with burpees, skip­ping rope, pull-ups and chin-ups. “We used free-weights a lot- the aim was to burn fat and get shred­ded at the same time. Nor­mally folks take months to do this, but I had seven weeks to get it done!”

At the end of ev­ery day he was pretty much crawl­ing back into bed. Sup­ple­ments helped, he re­veals, say­ing:”

I’d take BCAAs and pro­tein sup­ple­ments, but still the pain was real. But at least I’ve been there done that. Left to my nat­u­ral self, I’d hang out at cof­fee shops and just eat ter­ri­bly, but the sac­ri­fice was worth it. “

He also re­vealed his diet pro­tip- be­tween drink­ing or­ange juice and sim­ply eat­ing an or­ange, al­ways opt for the lat­ter. “Or­ange juice is full of sugar, while an or­ange has just the right amount you should take, and fi­bre as well!” Over the course of the Al­tered Car­bon shoot, By­ron de­vel­oped a “sugar-radar”- and it made all the dif­fer­ence in build­ing the body he needed for the role. “In fact, for guys, most of the paunch and belly comes from sugar in food, drink, or al­co­hol! Cut that out and you lose the spare tyre­within two weeks, my waist be­came slim­mer and tighter!” By­ron also shared what he missed most dur­ing his di­et­blue­berry muffins. “God, I love those- it’s what I missed most. On the day when Al­tered Car­bon wrapped, I went straight to the bak­ery, bought a big-ass blue­berry muf­fin and shoved it into my mouth!”

Go­ing by how he looks, this Mann’s cer­tainly earned it!

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