Tom Cruise Top Gun “Maverick” Diet and Workout – How to Do It

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Hi everyone, Chris here with a unique take on Tom Cruise’s diet and workout, and how he got in such great shape for Top Gun Maverick.

Bottom Line: When it comes to burning fat quickly, a much more effective, healthy, and sustainable approach is to do a “fat loss boost” for 10 to 14 days max. You can lose up to 14 pounds of fat without sacrificing muscle. Learn more about “fat loss boosting” here. Want to build muscle like Hollywood stars? This is the muscle-building program I recommend.

Tom Cruise, born July 3, 1962, in Syracuse, NY (yes, he was 59 in Maverick!), has established himself as one of the most powerful and bankable Hollywood actors of all time. His now legendary 40-year film career includes many epic roles and memorable performances, notably that of Lieutenant Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in the 1986 blockbuster “Top Gun”.

With the release of Top Gun: Maverick, one thing that’s catching a lot of peoples attention is Cruise’s physique… ripped with muscle lean muscle at 59, looking arguably better than he did in the first Top Gun movie!

Looking at him today, you may not think that he ever followed specific dietary and fitness advice. After all, he’s not particularly big or tall and probably wouldn’t make the cut as a prototypical action hero today.

However, thanks to personal motivation, ambition, and a great support network, Tom Cruise has pushed limits to outlast and outperform practically all of his showbiz contemporaries from the 1980s and 1990s.  His preparation for “Top Gun: Maverick” is no exception.

With that said, let’s take a look at Tom Cruise’s diet and workout that gave him the body for Maverick.

Tom Cruise Diet: Would It Make Sense for You?

Tom Cruise’s long-standing friendship with global superstar and former English footballer David Beckham has led to speculation that it was “Becks” who encouraged Cruise to follow a protein-dominate, carbohydrate-reduced, 1,200 calories a day diet while preparing for the Top Gun sequel. 

At first glance, the diet appears quite reasonable despite the inherent caloric restrictions. Cruise’s diet preparing for Top Gun Maverick included:

  • Protein sources: Grilled chicken breast, salmon, legumes, pulses, egg whites, whey protein.
  • Carbohydrates: Rice
  • Healthy Fats: Nuts, avocados.
  • Vitamins, Minerals: Green vegetables, berries.  Multivitamins.
  • Supplementation: Magnesium, Omega-3 supplements (e.g., cod liver oil), joint support supplements (e.g., Glucosamine sulfate, turmeric capsules).

However, Cruise often eschews the standard three-meal routine in favor of up to 15 “mini-snacks” spread throughout the day. This level of daily snacking can be problematic for people who lead typical “9 to 5” lifestyles, especially when family life, employment, and social activities dictate when and how much you can eat.

I don’t know a lot of regular people struggle to get 3 meals in a day… can you imagine trying to get 15 “mini-snacks” a day in?

Such a limited caloric intake is risky for regular folks, especially in the context of stressful family lives, full social calendars, and other demands on our time.  

Can Tom Cruise’s Maverick Workout Take You to the Next Level?

The secret of Tom Cruise’s success lies in his willingness to combine traditional gym workouts (three days a week), various outdoor activities and sports (two days a week), and active rest days (two days a week, typically Saturdays and Sundays). 

Let’s have a look at Tom Cruise’s Workout.

Gym Exercises Breakdown – every other day:

  • Day 1: Triceps, Shoulders, Chest (e.g., Bench Press, Shoulder Press, Triceps Pulldown).
  • Day 2: Biceps, Back, Trapezius Muscles (e.g., Deadlift, Hammer Curls, Barbell and/or Cable Shrugs).
  • Day 3: Abdominal Muscles, Legs (e.g., Ab circuit, Leg press, Squats, Weighted Lunges).

Typically, 3 sets of 10 repetitions with 8-10 exercises each day. 30-45 seconds rest between sets and exercises. Ensure that the exercise sequence you follow doesn’t overfatigue specific parts of your body.

Start off with a 10-minute cardio warm-up (e.g., treadmill walking, stair machine, elliptical bike, etc.). Conclude your workout with some light stretching and flexibility moves.

Other Activities:

Tom Cruise is known to enjoy the outdoors, and has indulged in a variety of sports to maintain his reflexes and flexibility, train underused muscles, and most of all.

Choose from one of the following: canoeing/kayaking, caving, Parkour, fencing, rock-climbing, hiking, etc.  Ideally, these workouts should be at least an hour.  For weight loss, early morning on an empty stomach is recommended, but getting the work in whenever feasible is the top priority.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has always been a favorite of mine for fat loss (and muscle building!), and Tom Cruise seems to agree. So, if modest to extreme sports are out of the question, visit your nearest park and set up a HIIT sprinting circuit for yourself. Combine all-out sprints, rest periods, and intermediate sprints over your desired time frame.

After a solid five days of activity, don’t forget to round out the week with low-intensity sports, walking, or bicycling. Precision sports like bowling, darts, and archery can offer you different challenges and perspectives.  

The Bottom Line on Tom Cruise’s Maverick Diet and Workout

Listen, I commend Tom Cruise for pushing himself to the limit throughout his Hall of Fame career. The current buzz around Top Gun: Maverick – 36 years after the original movie – is largely due to his personal stature, aura, and commitment to physical and spiritual health.

Regarding Cruise’s diet, like most “celebrity workouts”, I’m hesitant to recommend a caloric deficient diet to the extent that Cruise used to get in shape for this role. I am also wary of a program that relies too heavily on supplements at the expense of nutrient-rich food.

Note: When it comes to burning fat quickly, a much more effective, healthy, and sustainable approach is to do a “fat loss boost” for 10 to 14 days max. You can lose up to 14 pounds of fat without sacrificing muscle. Learn more about “fat loss boosting” here.

But when it comes to the workout, I’m more enthusiastic. It’s flexible enough to be customized or scaled-down and remain effective for most people. For example, hitting the gym twice weekly instead of three times can still get you important strength and cardiovascular gains. Likewise, if you cannot take time off during midweek, but are committed to regular weekend outdoor activities.

Though Cruise’s workout isn’t as unsustainable and demanding as other celebrity workouts, it’s still not as good as Rusty Moore’s Visual Impact Muscle Building program.

Chris Cannon’s Conclusion on the Tom Cruise Maverick Diet and Workout

Understandably, most people can’t live the so-called “celebrity” lifestyle required to support or justify dedicated workout schedules and borderline extreme dieting like a Tom Cruise.

Here at Free Muscle-Building Tips, we’ll continue to promote sound health and fitness solutions that everyone can benefit from. We will also continue to remind readers about the downside of the celebrity diet/workout industry.

  • Celebrity diets and workouts aren’t meant for most people, as they tend to require hours a day in the gym, and diet patterns that are too complex and expensive (celebrity workouts are a “full-time job”).
  • Most celebrity workouts and diets that hit the newsstands in glossy magazines aren’t sustainable in the long term. They’re not healthy, not sustainable, and even actors like Cruise only stick with them for a limited time.

The best programs are the ones that you can do consistently with minimal time, are healthy, and won’t break the bank.


1. Men’s Health. (2022, May 20).  How Tom Cruise Maintains His Youthful Looks at 59, and How You Can Too.  Retrieved May 25, 2022, from

2. Saini, V.  (2021, September 19).  Tom Cruise’s Workout and Diet Plan.  Fitness Volt. Retrieved May 25, 2022, from

3. Celeb Workout. (2021, July 26).  Tom Cruise Workout And Diet | Train Like a Celebrity | Celeb Workout [Video].  YouTube.  Retrieved May 25, 2022 from