Glow is back! Us Weekly spoke to celebrity trainer Jason Walsh, who is responsible for getting Alison Brie strong and confident for her lead role in the ring for the ’80s-inspired series.
Brie, who plays Ruth Wilder on Glow, which stands for Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, has been training with Walsh for six years. The fitness pro, who also trains Emily Blunt (and introduced the pair!), tells Us that the 34-year-old actress became even more dedicated to her sessions once she locked in the role of Zoya the Destroyer, her wrestling alter ego on the Netflix series. “It was a completely different mentality where she came in and started doing four to five days a week of strength training,” Walsh tells Us exclusively, adding she sometimes came in for an a.m. and p.m. session in the same day in the lead-up to filming.
The main focus of their workouts is strength training, but they always start with a sequence of moves that will prep her body. “She comes in and we do a lot of low-end band work to get the hips warmed up. We do hip thrusts. We will activate muscle and warm the joints up,” he says. The trainer also has Brie perform dynamic moves: “We do a lot of mobility stuff and stretches as we’re moving through these warm-up drills — she might do sled pushes or drags.”
Next, they get into heavy lifting — literally. “From there we move into our primary work — she’ll do deadlifts on a trap bar, we might do squats one day, too. There are so many different variations of those kind of lifts. She likes those big lifts that are kind of taboo for women or used to be, anyway,” he reveals. Then they move into what Walsh deems their secondary workout: pull-ups and presses, such as chest presses, to complete their 60-minute sessions.
Although Brie shows off a sculpted body in high-cut wrestling getups on the show, now in its second season, Walsh says fashion was never the motivation behind her body transformation. “We didn’t go in saying, ‘How are we going to make her look great in a leotard?’ We went into it going: ‘How can we keep this girl healthy and safe so she can do some of these stunts,’” the pro tells Us.
And their approach out of the ring has warranted the results they wanted: “She was so strong and so into stunts that she does almost all — if not all — of her own,” Walsh says. “I wanted her to be an athlete and athletic and be able to take a hit and get up and walk it off.”
The actress often posts her superintense sweat sessions with Walsh on Instagram. “Trying out these one-arm pull-ups again today…still getting the hang of it but thought it deserved a spot in my actual feed,” Brie captioned a June 2018 image as she is about to execute the move.
Walsh notes that there’s no quick fix to building muscle and mastering perfect form. “It takes a long time for people to develop this kind of strength and these kinds of moves,” he says. “Don’t think for a second that she just got strong over a couple months. This took her a while,” the Rise Nation and Rise Movement founder says.
Her hard work has paid off. “It’s so great to see her come in and have her head held high and so happy,” Walsh tells Us. “She has such a good heart, she’s such a good person, she’s got a positive attitude and it all comes together. It’s all part of the total package of being a strong female.”
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