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Last week, Mark Wahlberg sent the internet all a-flutter after he revealed his daily routine while answering fans' questions on Instagram.
His schedule involves waking up in the middle of the night, working out twice and eating an ungodly amount of food... with next to no down time. Oh yes, and there was the small matter of what appears to be a 90-minute shower.
I admit, when I was asked if I would like to try it for a day, I hadn't properly looked at it. But the very fact I had been asked suggested it wasn't going to be all cocktails and swingball. Still, even having looked over his regime, I thought it could be a bit of a laugh. How wrong I was.
First up, I am not a morning person. I dread early starts in the same way that Wahlberg presumably dreads free time and carbs. I have only ever been awake at 2.30am at the end of my day. But this was a day for firsts, and so my alarm sounded and I began my prayers.
I don't know what Mark prays for (perhaps a new alarm clock), but for me the half-an-hour was wholeheartedly devoted to not falling asleep.
At 3.15am I was picked up and driven gymwards, consuming an egg white omelette and a coffee in the back of the car. I wasn't hungry, obviously, but what I felt like doing had no part to play in Mark Wahlberg's day.
At the gym I met personal trainer, Callum, who felt it very important that we recreate Mark's workouts as faithfully as possible. While I agreed in principle, I didn't like the glint in his eyes.
"How much do you normally lift?"
What followed was an hour-and-a-half of physical torment so cruel that it rendered the rest of the schedule infinitely more difficult than I ever could have imagined. A particular lowlight was doing pull ups with weights dangling between my legs like a hefty pair of unwelcome bonus bollocks. I was completely spent and began to feel faint at around 4.50am.
With the help of a few water breaks I made it to the end and was served something called 'overnight oats', which I pretended to like. I don't want to do a disservice to whoever made it, but at that time I was feeling more peaky than peckish. I washed it down with a strawberry protein shake that tasted a little bit like strawberry and a little bit like gravel.
More full than was comfortable, I took the opportunity to have a quick lie down on some carpet before beginning one of Marky Mark's legendary 90-minute showers. Unfortunately, I didn't have time for the full hour-and-a-half, as we had get to the golf course - but I still had fingers like a prune in a hot tub by the time I got out.
During golf, at around 7.55am, I smiled my first and last smile of the day - just after my first and last successful connection with a ball.
From there, it was back to the club house for another omelette and two coffees (Mark didn't specify how much caffeine he uses to facilitate his schedule, which I took to mean six coffees).
I invested a lot of hope in the 9.30am cryogenic chamber treatment - 'you will come out a new man', I told myself. And I did. This man was still physically and mentally drained, but with much pointier nipples.
As I write this, two days later, I am really struggling to exhume myself from chairs, slowly unfolding to a vertical position as I walk, as though I am acting out the stages of human evolution.
Consequently, I can only conclude that either cryogenic chamber therapy doesn't work, or I would now be dead without it.
After nibbling on some protein balls and having another coffee I spent some time working. This was a horrible lull in the day. The slight energising effect of the chamber had worn off and I was exhausted, with coffee only making me feel like a jittery zombie. It is in this state that you truly appreciate how god awful chart music radio stations really are.
Lunch was a struggle, too. Ordinarily, a chicken wrap would be pleasant enough, but I was up to my lungs in protein... I also had another coffee. By this point, I had taken to pissing sitting down.
For reasons unbeknownst to me I was then ferried to some kind of lunar beauty clinic for an additional fat blasting treatment. Every surface of the building was either as white as snow or a mirror and I was feeling extremely dazed as it was, scrawling my signature inattentively across numerous tablets and consenting my life away.
Shortly after, one of the cosmetic space aliens rubbed some kind of jelly on my belly and used a tiny vacuum thing to burn off my fat cells. They did explain to me in more depth how exactly the treatment works, but I had no capacity to absorb.
This was one of the major challenges of the day, in fact - trying to conjure up basic manners as endless nice people introduced themselves to me and explained stuff. To any of the aforementioned nice people, I am sorry if I was a little quiet; I was very, very tired.
Following a predictably unsuccessful trip to a local school to pick up my non-existent kids, I was back en route to the chamber of despair for my second work out. But not before swallowing down a protein bar, which I crumbled into a sort of grain and swallowed down with a bottle of water.
At the gym I was greeted by a second personal trainer called The Bear. Fortunately, he was more cuddly than grizzly and I could tell he sympathised with me as I tried and failed to tie my shoelaces.
The workout itself was a blur. If I slightly bent my knees my whole body started trembling involuntarily, but psychologically I had gone beyond, almost hysterically anticipating the end. Following my final box jump I was wetter than after my extremely thorough morning shower, but much smellier.
A significantly shorter shower then followed and I was at last homeward bound and ready to enjoy some precious family time. Unfortunately, though, my girlfriend is the only family I have to speak of and she was out of the door and on her way to a pub quiz within 10 minutes.
So there I was, in my flat, with only a bowl of tuna, avocado, carrot, wakame, cucumber, spring onion, sesame seeds and rice for company. The final push.
Come the blessed 7.30pm finish line I felt immensely relieved, but also a bit delirious, and annoyingly I had only just managed to drift off when my 'family' barged her way back in from the quiz.
It is now two days on, and I am still consumed by Mark Wahlberg day. Things that I never used to think twice about are now hugely challenging, such as crossing roads, holding glasses and retrieving forks from meal deals. And while I was pissing sitting down due to fatigue during the day itself, it is now so difficult to get from sitting to standing that I have taken to shitting standing up.
To conclude, I thought this may be quite a fun challenge, but it was actually deeply unpleasant. There are numerous reasons why Mark Wahlberg can do this and I can't. Firstly, the fact this is his routine, rather than a random one-off post-bender assault. Secondly, the day cost in excess of £1,000 ($1,300). And thirdly, he is Mark Wahlberg, while I am not. Hats off to him, though, he is one incredible specimen of a 47-year-old.
... Still, if there are any 26-year-olds out there, though, who want to know how to look 47, get in touch and I'll send you my daily schedule.
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