Although professional wrestling is not as hard as his other sports, he enjoys entertaining fans, and does get injured. He has the bone chips to prove it.
Q: Why do you keep fit?
A: For wrestling, we're supposed to be in good shape all the time, be very strong, have good cardio. So all my exercises are cardio and lifting weights, and I have to be flexible. I stretch a lot. I have a lifetime in athletics so this is normal.
Q: What's your workout routine?
A: Often I exercise twice a day. In the morning, I run on the beach one hour, or ride my bike 1 1/2 hours. Sometimes I swim 30 minutes in the ocean. The worst part is the jellyfish!
Nighttime is the gym and cardio again. I lift at Crunch. For power I dead-lift, bench-press, squat, jerk. I'm not super-heavyweight. My best bench press is 550 [pounds] and my best squat is 750. I like to work out with the kettlebell, Russian style. Good for conditioning and functional muscles. One exercise combines everything.
Two or three times a week I also go to a boxing gym and wrestle.
Q: How do you train for pro wrestling in South Florida?
A: With a boxing trainer for 1 1/2 hours at Moti Horenstein's Mixed Martial Arts [in North Miami Beach]. When I was with WWE, I was in training camp for almost two years. I now need to just keep in good shape and condition. Before going to Japan, I increase training.
Q: Seriously, how tough is pro wrestling?
A: Still you can get injured. You slam, get hit, and it's a hard schedule. You travel five, six days a week. You can drive over a thousand miles [between matches].
Q: Why did you switch to wrestling?
A: I have acted in a few movies and wanted to combine that with sports. Professional wrestling is sports entertainment in front of a crowd in an arena.
Q: What injuries have you sustained?
A: I used to have hamstring, knee, elbow problems, bone chips. But basically you have to stretch all the time to protect yourself. I got bone chips from hitting the pole and landing on the ring.
Q: Does your family keep fit?
A: Yes, my girlfriend [Maria Smirnova] bikes, and we go to the gym together. It helps me a lot. She keeps a very healthy lifestyle.
Q: What's your typical daily diet?
A: I change it a little bit. On the road, sometimes it's hard to eat clean. When I come back, I try to eat at a high-protein level. Usually eat lots of carbs in the morning: oatmeal, rice … Afternoon, I shut down carbs and eat more protein like fish, chicken. I eat five or six meals a day, every two or three hours.
Q: What do you drink?
A: A lot of water. Morning, orange juice. Sometimes red wine for social life.
Q: Do you take any vitamins or sports nutrition products?
A: Lots of fish oil for joints, multi-vitamins, and different types of complexes for protein.