Even though the movie premiered 35 years ago today, Rocky’s iconic physique is still viewed as a force to be reckoned with.
Sylvester Stallone was the definition of shredded in Rocky III. Even though the movie premiered 35 years ago today, Rocky’s iconic physique is still viewed as a force to be reckoned with. But while Stallone looked healthy on the outside, he admitted in a recent Instagram post that he put his body through a lot to get there by following a dangerously unhealthy diet.
While filming the movie, his “meals” consisted of “very small portions of oatmeal cookies made with brown rice and up to 25 cups of coffee a day with honey and a couple of scoops of tuna fish,” Stallone wrote.
There are more than a few things wrong with the regimen: the lack of food in general, no fruits or vegetables, and excessive intake of caffeine. Stallone admits he would get so lightheaded and exhausted while filming boxing rounds that he’d go to a corner and literally do a handstand to get blood flowing back into his head.
In fact, the diet was so strict that Stallone’s body fat dipped to 2.9 percent—similar to a bodybuilder’s level. That can quickly become a problem: Research suggests that body fat that low can actually decrease your heart rate and testosterone levels and cause a slew of other health problems.
While Stallone now admits it wasn’t the smartest move, he doesn’t necessarily regret it: “I may have looked pretty good on the outside but inside it was very dangerous thing to do,” he wrote in the caption. “But I wanted the movie to be about change. How people have to adapt to different challenges because if they don’t they will be conquered. I will always believe the adaptation is the key to survival and that’s what this story was all about.”