How Jason Momoa Grew Into His Signature Muscleman Appearance

Jason Momoa is a man-mountain: 6 foot 4 inches of mostly muscle. The Aquaman</em star weighs in at 238 pounds, and very little of that is fat, as anyone who has studied his sculpted physique (including a chest that measures 50 inches) can attest. But Momoa didn’t always rock those 19-inch guns. As a younger man, he cut a more svelte figure, and it all grew out of a kid who looked very different.

Nowadays, Momoa stays in great shape with an intense exercise routine. He’s not a late riser, up at dawn to start working out. The Aquaman star prefers cardio, and you’ll often see him climbing rocks. This helps him keep trim because scaling a hill is harder if you’re carrying any extra weight. And of course, weightlifting has piled on the muscle for which Momoa is famous.

However, Momoa had not even lifted a weight until he had to get into shape for Conan the Barbarian, which came out in 2011. He hoped this would be the movie that made him a star, but it wasn’t to be. However, his next role certainly did get him noticed, and the ripped body didn’t go to waste as he played Khal Drogo in epic TV fantasy series Game of Thrones.

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To get the role of Khal Drogo, Momoa had made a tape of himself doing the New Zealanders’ haka. And although he’s not a Maori, his Polynesian heritage as a Hawaiian has given him his distinctive look. That appearance had as a young man scored him work as a model before TV roles in Baywatch Hawaii and Stargate: Atlantis established him as a rising star.

It’s doubtful that anyone saw in the junior Momoa the glowering hunk of Game of Thrones and Aquaman. He was a typical small boy, with the kind of cheeks a grandma pinches and a few pounds of puppy fat. However, just like a butterfly emerging from the pupa, by his late teens he’d caught the eye of fashion gurus Takeo Kobayashi and Eric Chandler, and the rest is history (and several thousand workouts).

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