Simu Liu Workout and DIET 

Born: 1989

Simu Liu was born in China and his family moved to Canada when he was 5. His parents had high expectations for young Liu and he studied hard and eared a degree in business administration in 2011. Liu worked for a short time as an accountant, but on a whim tried out to be a stuntman for Pacific Rim. His first significant role came in 2015 with Blood and Water. Also in 2015, Liu was cast in the series Kim’s Convenience, but his big break came in 2019 with the lead in Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. He has been nominated for ACTRA Awards and Canadian Screen Awards. Time magazine listed Liu on their 100 Most Influential People in 2022. His memoir When We Were Dreamers is about the hardship his parents suffered growing up during China’s Cultural Revolution. Liu has millions of followers on social media. He is 6 feet tall and weighs about 175 lbs.

Known For:

Simu Liu‘s Diet


Liu works out hard at the gym but diet is also an essential component of his ripped physique. Being the first Asian to play a lead in a Marvel film carries some extra pressure, and he gave 100% to prepping for the role. A total foodie, he completely revamped his diet, limiting his meals to a 12-hour window, focusing on , and doing carb cycling. The Marvel diet is used by many of its stars and involves alternating between low-carb and high-carb days. Foods are all nutrient-dense and include egg whites, chicken breast, fish, and green veggies. Macros are counted precisely. Water is essential for hydration.

Estimated Macros

  • Low-Medium Fat 25% 25%
  • Low-Medium Carb 25% 25%
  • High Protein 50% 50%

Diet Details


Diet Challenges

As if the Marvel diet isn’t challenging enough, things got even more complicated when filming was interrupted by the pandemic. Just as Liu thought he could take a little break from the strict regimen, he was told they were going to start.


Total Discipline

Liu got a lot of practice being disciplined growing up. He traded in his math books for lifestyle discipline and used that will power to stick to a strict diet. Even so, he loves food, and admits it was rough going.


Intermittent Fasting

The Marvel diet involves fasting a minimum of 12 hours each day. When you’re working out as hard as Liu did, that can be challenging.


Carb Cycling

Carb intake on the Marvel diet varies between 75 and 125 g per day. A low-carb day works out to an apple, 1/2 a banana and a bowl of rice at lunch. Dinner is carb-free.


Wild Treats

Liu admits to cheating more than once on the Marvel diet. But he swears he had a good reason: chili crabs with Michelle Yeoh can’t be turned down.

What to Eat




Egg whites


Peanut butter






Protein powder


Green veggies






Ground turkey


Lean meat









What to Avoid


Added sugar


Excessive carbs


Empty-calorie foods


Processed food


Junk food


Chemical ingredients


Artificial additives


Liu on his Foodie Status

I’m a big food guy.


Liu on the Marvel diet

I’m outing myself as someone who didn’t follow their “Marvel Diet” as much as they should have.


Liu on Sticking to the Strict Marvel diet during the Pandemic

As the start-up date kept getting pushed, I was like, “Okay, maybe I can loosen up a bit.” Then, all of a sudden, they said, “We’re starting again,” and I had to get back into shape.


Liu on Cheats

When you have chili crab with Michelle Yeoh on the table, you don’t say no to that.

Simu Liu‘s Workout Routine

Weekly Routine

Super-Duper Stuntman

Liu did all of his own stunts for Shang-Chi, including the crazy bus scene.

Superhero Accountant

Liu had some skills with martial arts going into the movie biz, but training to be an accountant left some gaps. He had a lot to learn to get ready to play a superhero.

Call in the Pros

Liu worked with Bart Kwan who developed a hyper-mobility based routine that helped him to bulk up while staying agile.

Daily Dose

Liu more or less lived at the gym while preparing to play Shang-Chi.

Optimize Efficiency

To save time and get him up to speed as fast as possible, Liu’s workout focused on supersets and multi-directional moves.


Also in the interest of saving time, Liu did high-intensity routines. He still spent hours at the gym.

Strength Is Essential

To play a superhero convincingly means being strong. Liu did a lot of lifting, but his trainer took care that he didn’t get too bulky.

Exercise Style


A Simu Liu Routine

Warm-up: air fan bike: 5 min
HIIT routine
Banded trap bar deadlift: 5 reps x 5 sets
superset with
Box jumps: 5 reps x 5 sets
Sled push to spring: 20 yds x 5 rounds
Rotational medicine ball slam: 5/side x 3 sets
Lat pulldown: 15 reps x 3 sets
superset with
Dumbbell lateral raise: 15 reps x 3 sets
Strength routine for upper body
Deadlifts (heavy): 5 reps x 5 sets
Kettlebell swings: 25 x 5 sets
Sled push to spring: 20 yds x 5 rounds
Incline dumbbell chest press: 12-15 reps x 4 sets
Arnold press: 12-15 reps x 4 sets
Barbell bent-over rows: 12-15 reps x 4 sets


Liu on his Pre-Marvel Physique

I had the 6-pack, but I didn’t have any of that other stuff going on.


Liu on becoming a Superhero

Obviously, learning the martial arts is a big part of my training, but the other part of being a Marvel superhero is, well, looking like a superhero.


Liu on balancing Strength & Agility

It was really important for us not to sacrifice range of motion and explosiveness because I’ve still got to be able to throw a punch at the end of the day.


Liu on Backflips

When I was 16…I thought that backflips were, like, the coolest thing. So I spent months and months of my life literally flipping onto my head. My parents were like, “What are you doing?


Liu on Fitness

The most important thing is to show up.

Simu Liu’s Supplements

Besides his protein shakes, Liu isn’t dishing on any supplements he might be taking. So, below are options that may benefit anyone following a similar diet plan.

Protein shakes

Liu does take protein shakes to stay healthy and fit.



But to build muscle while staying lean, creatine and BCAAs are musts.

nutrabio preworkout

pre workout

Long days at the gym make a pre workout a smart pick.



A multivitamin is a good idea when eating a limited diet.

green supplement

greens supplement

a greens supplement never hurts to get extra phytonutrients.


probiotics, elderberry

Supercharge your immunity with probiotics, elderberry, and NAC.

Simu Liu‘s Lifestyle

Real Life Struggles

Liu’s parents suffered under China’s Cultural Revolution. His brilliant mother was made to do hard labor in the fields. His parents managed to escape to Canada and, after washing dishes for extra money, eventually became astrospace engineers.

Sweet Memories

Liu spent the first 5 years of his life living with his grandparents in a small apartment that often did not have running water. Nonetheless, he describes that time as ‘idyllic.

Culture Clash

Liu’s parents expected total obedience from him, and assigned lots of extra homework. He says they often fought, and his parents would beat him for insubordination. He distanced himself from them when he decided to quit accounting for acting. They have since reconciled.

Flip Side

Liu says seeing Kim’s Convenience in the theater helped him see his parents’ view of life for the first time, and how much they sacrificed to try to make a better life for him.

Masked Identity

One of Liu’s part-time jobs while he was breaking into the acting biz was being Spiderman for kids parties. One rule: keep the mask on to preserve the illusion.

There’s Pain and Pain

Liu says one of the most painful experiences he’s ever undergone was waxing his body hair for the film Barbie, set to release in 2023. Liu will play one of 3 versions of Ken, the other two being played by Ryan Gosling and Ncuti Gatwa. Barbie will be played by Margot Robbie.


Liu on his Grandparents

With my grandparents, I felt completely safe. To me, that’s what home is.


Liu on himself

I am that person that’s always felt he was never enough.


Liu on his relationship with his Parents

‘It really just hit me, how much they sacrificed to come to this new country…It really made me sad for all the years that I spent resenting them.


Liu on taking Stereotypical Asian Roles

Looking back now, I wish I could slap myself in the face.


Liu on Personal Identity

Be unapologetically you. You aren’t less than anybody else.


Liu on Waxing

Waxing has been a education, to say the least. I have such a newfound admiration for the incredibly brave women who go through this on a monthly basis.


Liu on Making a Difference

Once you have the power, how are you going to use it?

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