"I Don’t Ever Want to Be In That Good a Shape", Zac Efron Says About His Ripped Baywatch Body

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"I Don’t Ever Want to Be In That Good a Shape", Zac Efron Says About His Ripped Baywatch Body
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For his role starring alongside Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson in 2017's Baywatch, Zac Efron embraced a life of hitting gruelling workouts twice daily and going "virtually carb-free" to create a physique that, even four years later, continues to redefine the archetypal Hollywood transformation.

Efron's lean, wiry and muscular beach body — along with DJ's gargantuan size — was one of the film's hottest talking points, from the title's pre-production to the ensuing press junkets. Now no stranger to altering his physical appearance for a role, Efron has since recognised that, for regular guys, a physique like his in Baywatch is anything but a realistic goal.

The actor – whose most recent screen credits include the Ted Bundy film Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile and the Netflix docuseries Down to Earth – has since repeatedly spoken publicly on how he "nearly lost his mind" due to the intense diet and workout plan that were involved in achieving those kinds of results.

“That [2017] was actually a really important time to do Baywatch, because I realised that when I was done with that movie, I don’t ever want to be in that good a shape again," he said on First We Feast's popular Hot Ones show back in 2020.

"Really, it’s like, it was so hard. You’re working with no wiggle-room. You’ve got water under your skin which you’re worrying about making your six-pack into a four-pack."

He's not being hyperbolic. Water retention in your body is a completely natural process, helping keep your skin, muscles and organs healthy. But, just as Hugh Jackman did for Wolverine, Henry Cavill for The Witcher and Efron for Baywatch, water retention can be manipulated before a shirtless scene to make an actor appear leaner and considerably more shredded.

It's not without it's dangers, though — in 1992, Mohammed Benaziza, a pro bodybuilder, died after competing in a contest in Europe from a heart failure caused by severe dehydration.

"It’s just stupid. It’s not real. I’m happy that it worked and that it got me through it. I may do it again if it was something worthwhile, but I would wait until it gets to that," Efron continued in the Hot Ones interview, with some sage parting advice for any guy looking to adjust his priorities. "Take care of your heart, take care of your brain. You’re good."

Discussing his roid-free rig in a previous interview with Ellen, Efron remarked “That’s too big... for guys, that’s unrealistic. I’m telling you. I got very big and buff for that movie, but I don’t want people to think that’s the best way to be. Like, be your size… I don’t want to glamorise this."

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