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11 Amazing Bodies from Terminator Films

Here's how they remain well now and into the future.

The Terminator franchise is remarkable, not just because it made a star of Arnold Schwarzenegger and his catchphrase, but because it has allowed for strong roles for strong women—not a given in every action movie. From the first two films, directed by James Cameron, to the sequels (which vary in quality), the casts in all have been committed to selling the ideas behind the action, and dedicated to fitness. Here's how they remain well.


Emilia Clarke


Emilia Clarke played Sarah Connor in the film, Genisys. She has amazing skin, and shared her routine with Byrdie. "My morning and nighttime routines are really very similar. In the evening, I might do a double cleanse depending on how much makeup either I or someone else has put on my skin. I also put more moisturizing cream on my face at night than I do in the daytime. In the morning, if I have a big day or I have some stuff coming up, I also do a sheet mask and use a face roller. I keep all of those things in the fridge, which always helps."


Linda Hamilton


Linda Hamilton is the actress most associated with the role of Sarah Connor. She originated the role in the first film, and has returned in three subsequent ones. In an essay for InStyle, she talked about working and training for the film Dark Fate. "On the film we worked a lot of six-day weeks; even if we had a weekend off, there was probably a scuba lesson or military training. When I did have a day off, I'd sleep 20 hours. I'd rest my body and read my books to take my mind elsewhere. Still, the results are different, you know? It's disappointing that you can work as hard and not look the same. But then you just think, 'I cannot be what I was.' It took me a while to just go, 'Hmm, fuck that! Let's go with what we've got and make it as fantastic as possible.' I'd never felt like a badass until I made this film."


Arnold Schwarzenegger


Arnold Schwarzenegger plays the titular character, also known as the T-800, in all of the films. He opened up about his diet secrets in an interview. "The way you do it is burning more calories every day than you eat," he says. "So take the number 2,000. You have 2,000 calories that you eat every day, but you burn off 2,500 calories every day. And now you have a negative of 500 calories. And every day you will start slowly going down with the body weight and down with the body fat. And the first place it will go is at the stomach."


Sam Worthington


Sam Worthington played Marcus Wright in Salvation. He is a prolific action star, having appeared in Avatar and Clash of The Titans. For this reason, Worthington has to work hard to stay in shape. "Why waste the opportunity by doing things half-arsed," he told Men's Health. "Whether that's mentally preparing or physically preparing, or just giving a crap about the work. Why waste time by going to every party in town? This isn't what I got into this for."


Lena Headey


Lena Headey played Sarah Connor in the TV series. She is open about her struggles with mental health and anxiety. When a fan asked how she manages anxiety on Twitter, Headey shared her secrets. "Anxiety is a beast. You have to talk to beasts. Release them back into the wild. Easier said than done, I know, but still. Good to practice."




Common played Lieutenant Barnes in Salvation. He shared his fitness routine with Men's Journal. "I work out four days a week and if possible, five. But I've been improving my workouts by doing things that are active. I'm not just pumping weights. I work with the bands. Today I was doing drills where it felt like I was doing basketball drills. I never used to do a lot of cardio and I still don't do a lot of cardio because then I get real thin. But basically it's just constant workouts and overall I just eat healthy. Of course I have days where I might go in on some French fries but overall it's a pretty clean diet."


Claire Danes


Claire Danes played Kate Connor in Rise of The Machines. Danes shared some of her favorite workouts with "Generally, I run, but I couldn't do it when I was pregnant, and I was introduced to SoulCycle, Barre, and then The Class By Taryn Toomey. Initially, I was a little hesitant about the 'clubbyness' of it, but it is nice to be in a group and to exercise with others as part of a community. Endorphins are released when you move and when you're social. So, when you combine the two, the result is quite potent."


Bryce Dallas Howard


Bryce Dallas Howard played Kate Connor in Salvation. She also stars in the Jurassic World films. Howard revealed to People that she used a wooden platform to help her get in shape for the films. "I'd put my foot on it and do calf raises and then stay on my tippy toe and do squats," she said. "Then I'd turn perpendicular and exercise each side of my foot. Just to practice the stabilizing muscles."


Brian Austin Green


Brian Austin Green played Derek Reese in the series, The Sarah Connor Chronicles. The actor struggles with ulcerative colitis, and had a flare-up in 2022. Green talked about how he manages this condition on Good Morning America. "It's really just dietary," he said. "As long as I can keep things within my system that my body doesn't think I'm poisoning it with then it doesn't fight back." 


Gabriel Luna


Gabriel Luna played Rev-9 in Dark Fate. He tells Men's Health that he was inspired to get fit because he knew he'd be working with Arnold Schwarzenegger.  "I knew I had to get my body into a good place," Luna said. "Because at the time, I was drinking whiskey and smoking cigarettes and all this other stuff I didn't need to be doing if I intended to play this role. I knew I'd eventually have to stand in front of this guy, and my motivation was, I want him to see me and see a formidable foe. I don't want him to see me and think, 'I could squash this guy with my thumbs'."


Helena Bonham Carter


Helena Bonham Carter played Dr. Serena Kogan in Salvation. Carter tells InStyle that she makes sure to get enough sleep, and that this is the reason for her amazing skin. "People say I look really good, and it's because I sleep a lot, which is the biggest collagen booster ever. It's amazing that I achieve anything considering how much I sleep. I snooze during the day and eight or nine hours at night to help collagen production." 

Anna Bechtel
Anna Bechtel is a freelance writer currently based in Hamden, CT. Read more
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