Moving to Los Angeles, California, was a big step for Philly Wenderoth. It was the first time the 26-year-old actor felt completely independent, with all of the attendant responsibilities that brings. But when it came to his health, he brought with him some bad habits from college. “I found myself just grabbing quick unhealthy food and only making it to the gym one or two times a week,” he says.
He started gaining weight. He felt lazy and unproductive; even while living in the mecca for actors, he struggled to motivate himself. By the time he turned 25, he’d topped 225 pounds.
“Feeling like crap all the time finally got to me,” he says. He discovered Rough Around the Edges, a workout series on the all-in-one fitness and nutrition platform Openfit, taught by six Hollywood stuntwomen. Via streaming video, they guided him through six 30-minute high-intensity workouts (including MMA, kickboxing, dance, and core work) every week for 70 days. Every morning at 7:30 AM he logged in with his instructor-led group. “The accountability of others expecting me to be at the workouts was the most motivating factor for me,” he says.
He also revamped his diet based on an OpenFit nutrition plan, aiming for 2400-2699 calories a day spread over three meals. Dividing his food into four main groups (fruits and vegetables, proteins, fats, and other carbs), he had a macro breakdown of 40 percent carbs, 30 percent protein, and 30 percent fat. He stuck close to the plan, not eating anything outside of it.
Within a week he was losing weight—after 70 days he’d lost 14 pounds. “It’s truly inspiring to see results from such hard work,” he says. He feels more productive, getting out of bed when his alarm goes off instead of snoozing. Friends and family noticed not just his physical changes, but his higher energy levels. “And I’m no longer hesitant to take my shirt off!”
Wenderoth now walks into auditions with a newfound confidence. He’s even trying his hand at stand-up comedy; having started at an open-mic night, he’s now looking to build a set he can take around the country. He’d love to find himself performing back in front of his hometown crowd in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
When it comes to advice, Wenderoth says mental preparation is as important as physical work. Recognizing that your body can handle more than you realize is a great first step; “own your thoughts,” he says, meaning to take charge of your mood and emotions when it comes to fitness. Establishing routines helps keep you on track, too. Most of all, he says, let others motivate you: “Count on others and accept that others are counting on you.”