The Exercises Alison Brie Did to Train for "GLOW" Season 2
This lady wrestler is seriously strong—these insane moves prove it.
The wrestling in GLOW may be staged, but star Alison Brie's badass wrestling moves-and the muscles that make them happen-could not be more real.
The star has been working with trainer Jason Walsh, the founder of Rise Nation (an LA-based workout studio with classes on a vertical-and brutal-climbing machine called the VersaCimber), for about seven years now. When he was training her for the first season of GLOW, "the focus was to make her strong but also for injury prevention," Walsh said to Shape. "She went into it not knowing she was going to be doing a lot of her own stunts. Going into the second season, though, she was so jazzed about going in and doing all of them herself. That was her goal."
How, exactly, do you train to jump off the top ropes of a wrestling ring, flip over, and smash onto another human-all without actually hurting them or yourself? Turns out, it's pretty freaking grueling. (Walsh also trained Emma Stone to be Billie Jean King in Battle of the Sexes.)
Brie had previously mastered the strength training basics in her sessions with Walsh, so training for season two was all about upping the ante. That included things like 200-pound deadlifts, heavy hip thrusts, front squats, weighted bear crawl sled drags, and weighted pull-ups (because regular pull-ups aren't already hard enough). "We would start with a 10-pound weight vest and work up to a 20-pound weight vest, then a kettlebell around the waist," said Walsh. (Or, in her Instagram video below, she's balancing a medicine ball on her knees.)
Then there's the ultimate fitness test of character: A 10-round EMOM circuit of weighted Bulgarian split squats.
"It was actually the first time I've ever seen her cry-it makes a lot of people want to cry," said Walsh. Here's the gist: You set a timer for 10 minutes, and every time it hits a minute mark, you do 10 reps of Bulgarian split squats on each leg. "The next minute, you start again no matter what," explains Walsh. "So, the faster you do them, the more time you have to rest, but the more energy you expend, so it's an odd feeling."
Brie shared unfiltered videos of her training along the way that show just how brutal their sessions were-including the below video of a set of 80-pound split squats and weighted bear crawl sled drags. "You can see the pain on my face!!" she wrote. (Julianne Hough has been training hard for a role, too.)
Not only did strength training score her the totally believable physique of a female wrestler, but it also scored her some more body confidence. "She's the most comfortable in her body that I've ever seen her," said Walsh. "She's really proud of where she's at, very comfortable and confident-more so than ever before. It comes from being proud of what she's been able to accomplish and what's in the mirror." (Maybe that's why there are so many seriously strong celebrities who love to lift heavy.)