The Real-Life Diet of Aaron Tveit, Who Went Mostly Plant-Based for Moulin Rouge
ムーラン・ルージュのためにほとんど植物性の食事にしたアーロン・トヴェイトのThe Real-Life Diet(実際の食生活)

The Real-Life Diet of Aaron Tveit, Who Went Mostly Plant-Based for Moulin Rouge

To power through roughly 75 pop songs a night, the broadway actor sticks to his fair share of fruits, veggies, and grains.


BY DANIELLE COHEN  September 19, 2019

Real-Life Diet is a series in which GQ talks to athletes, celebrities, and everyone in-between about their diets and exercise routines: what’s worked, what hasn’t, and where they’re still improving. Keep in mind, what works for them might not necessarily be healthy for you. 

Real-Life Dietは、GQがアスリートやセレブ、そしてその中間の人たちに、自分たちの食生活やエクササイズのやり方について話を聞くシリーズです。彼らのためにうまくいっていることが、必ずしもあなたのために健康的であるとは限らないことを心に留めておいてください。 

Aaron Tveit has a face you know you’ve seen somewhere. Perhaps, like me, you were a teenager when Gossip Girl premiered, in which case you’d recognize him from his Season Three arc as a sleazy legacy politician named Tripp Vanderbilt. Or maybe he looks familiar from when he played Eddie Redmayne’s impassioned, revolutionary sidekick Enjolras in the big-screen adaptation of Les Misérables. If you’re a real theater head, then you might pin him as Wicked’s Fiyero, or Danny in Fox’s 2016 airing of Grease Live. Basically, he’s done a little bit of everything—which is why he seems particularly cut out for the lead role of Christian in Alex Timbers’ recent Broadway adaptation of Moulin Rouge.

アーロン・トヴェイトの顔を、あなたはどこかで見たことがあるでしょう。私のように、あなたが10代のときにゴシップガールが放送されていたら、シーズン3から出てくるトリップ・ヴァンダービルトという名前の薄っぺらな世襲政治家として彼を知っているでしょう。あるいは「レ・ミゼラブル」の映画でエディ・レッドメインの相棒の熱心な革命家アンジョルラスを演じた時に見覚えがあるかもしれません。もしあなたが本物の劇場ファンなら、ウィキッドのフィエロ役や、2016年に放送されたFoxのGrease Live!のダニー役にピンとくるかもしれません。基本的に彼は少しずつ何でもこなしてきました。だからこそ最近ブロードウェイで封切られたアレックス・ティンバーズの『ムーラン・ルージュ』の主役クリスチャン役には特に向いているようです。

Baz Luhrmann’s original 2001 movie-musical stitched together an anachronistic mix of contemporary pop to tell the love story of a cynical courtesan and an idealistic writer in late 19th-century Paris. The Broadway version, which opened in New York in July, expounds on that wonderfully deranged premise and ricochets between roughly 75 jukebox pop hits in a three-hour smorgasbord of glitter-coated burlesque dancing. After hearing a pitch-perfect Natalie Imbruglia song mere moments after absorbing “Take on Me,” I was mainly wondering how much it costs the show to cover some of the most iconic tracks of the last few decades. 

バズ・ラーマン監督オリジナルの2001年のミュージカル映画は、19世紀末のパリを舞台に、シニカルな高級娼婦と理想主義の作家の愛の物語を、時代錯誤なポップスを織り交ぜて綴っています。7月にニューヨークで公開されたブロードウェイ版では、3時間に渡って、約75曲のジュークボックス・ポップスのヒット曲の間で、きらびやかにコーティングされたバーレスク・ダンスが繰り広げられます。「テイク・オン・ミー Take on Me」を聴いた直後に完璧なナタリー・イムブルーリアNatalie Imbrugliaの歌を聴いた後、過去数十年で最も象徴的な曲のいくつかをカバーするために、このショーがいくらかけているのかを主に考えていました。

The music-licensing team wasn’t the only group putting in the legwork to bring the show to fruition. After Moulin Rouge’s first run in Boston last summer, Tveit was eight pounds lighter, nursing serious shoulder pain, while physically exhausted from the sheer cardio required to churn out a three-hour performance eight times a week. So he made some changes: mainly, carbo-loading and cutting back on aerobic workouts. A year later, he’s almost totally plant-based, completely dairy-free, and 110 percent prepped to sandwich Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy” between verses of “Rolling in the Deep.” GQ caught up with Tveit as he maneuvered from a quick gym session to his Friday night show and talked to him about his biggest lifestyle changes, from amping up his weight training, to discovering the joys of late-night cereal.

このショーを実現させるために尽力したのは、音楽のライセンスチームだけではありません。昨年夏にボストンで行われたムーランルージュの初公演の後、トヴェイトは体重が8ポンド(約3.6kg)も減り、肩の痛みもひどく、週に8回3時間の公演ををこなすために必要な激しい運動に疲れ果てていました。そこで彼はいくつかの変化をしました。主にカーボ・ローディング(筋肉中へのグリコーゲンの貯蓄をするための食事法)と、有酸素運動を減らすことでした。1年後には、ほぼ完全に植物をベースにし、乳製品を一切使わず、110パーセントの準備をして、ナールズ・バークリーGnarls Barkleyの “Crazy “を “Rolling in the Deep “の歌詞の間に挟むようになりました。GQは、トヴェイトがジムで少し運動した後、金曜日の夜のショーまでの間に、彼のライフスタイルの最大の変化について、ウェイトトレーニングの強化から深夜のシリアルの楽しさの発見にいたるまで話を聞きました。 

GQ: This is pre-showtime, for you, right?

GQ: いまはショーの前の時間ですよね?

Aaron Tveit: It is! I actually just finished up at the gym, took a shower, and here we are.


Perfect for this conversation, then.


Exactly. I’ve been reading this particular column for years, and I’ve always been fascinated by how different people in different walks of life treat their nutrition and fitness.


Since you just finished a gym trip, can you walk us through what you typically do there?


I’ve been in demanding stage shows before, but this one is its own animal. I consider it to be very much like an athletic event, so you’re basically doing a repetitive athletic event for three hours, eight times a week. I’ve always been curious about how many calories are burned in the show, but I know it’s a lot. Last year, when we did the show in Boston, I thought I was prepared for that load, and I ended up losing like eight pounds over those two months. After that, I wanted to try and stay ahead of that metabolic curve. The name of the game, I’ve found—especially as I’ve gotten a little bit older—is that it becomes all about recovery and maintenance. I might spend about 15 minutes rolling out, trying to warm up. After that it’s a 30-minute workout. I might do an upper body push-pull, lower body push-pull, and I try to lift heavy. I keep track of how much weight I’m doing and I’m trying to increase weight over time, but overall, I just want to get in and get out.


How often do you do that kind of workout?


When I’m not in a show that’s so demanding, I’ll work out four or five times a week, but with this I really feel like two or three times a week is sufficient. There’s so much volume that happens just doing the show every night. And I’ve found through process of elimination that my body keeps itself together and responds to that workout best on this sort of schedule.


What kind of workouts were you doing before you adjusted your routine for the show?


I knew that it was going to be demanding, so I tried to put on weight, go in a bit heavier, before we started. I thought that I was eating enough, but just needed more. I was doing workouts that were more to burn fat or tone, so higher reps, more sets, even some sprinting mixed in. After the first run, I realized that type of workout in combination with how much energy is expended in the show, it’s just not sustainable. So this time around, people call it “bulk” or “gain,” but it’s just high-volume, high-weight, low-rep. And it’s been less taxing on my body. It seems to be counter-balancing the amount of aerobic energy expended during the show.

このショーは過酷なものになると思っていたので、始める前に体重を増やしたり、少し重くしてみたりしていました。食事は十分だと思っていましたが、もっと必要でした。より多くの反復、より多くのセット、いくつかのスプリントも混ぜて、脂肪を燃やしたり、筋肉を引き締めるトレーニングをしていました。最初の公演期間の後、そのタイプのワークアウトとショーの中でどれだけのエネルギーを消費するかを組み合わせると、あまり持続可能ではないことに気付きました。だから今回は “バルク “や “ゲイン “と呼ばれている、ただの大容量、大重量、低反復です。それで体への負担が少なくなりました。ショーの間に消費される有酸素エネルギーの量と相殺しているようです。

Any muscles or areas you try to target?


I dealt with a shoulder injury earlier in the year that I rehabbed for a bit, so I’ve been focusing on a lot of rear-delt and rear-lat work to strengthen those muscles and help pull my shoulder back a bit. That’s been a lot of the focus in the past few months, just taking care of little weaknesses and muscles that aren’t used a lot. I grew up playing tons of sports, so I still try to keep my legs as fit as possible, because that’s also a huge part of running through the show every night. You need that lower body fitness.


How’d the shoulder injury happen?


It was just over time, doing a little bit too much overhead pressing without working on the stabilization muscles around it. And then when we went into rehearsal for the show I tried to keep up the same kind of exercise load, and I didn’t realize how taxing even rehearsal was going to be. It was just a perfect storm of pushing myself a little too much in the gym and being tired. I didn’t tear anything, it was just a nagging pain that I’d never had before.


Do you have a trainer to help you figure out what works?


I don’t. In the past, I tried to really pay attention when I worked with any kind of trainer, and through 10 or 15 years of working out seriously, I’ve honed in on what works for me. Plus, I’ve never had a problem self-motivating to get to the gym, which is maybe why I’ve been able to get by without a trainer. When you have a trainer it’s really helpful to motivate you to get in there and keep pushing through, but 99 percent of the time I’m able to do that myself. Which I’ve been very grateful for. I’ve tried to read a lot, and I’ve definitely learned tons from the people that I’ve worked with previously.


What kinds of adjustments to your eating habits did you have to make when you hit that breaking point after the show started?


Over the last two years, I’ve had big changes to my diet. For many years I was super high protein, super high fat. I used to do a lot of intermittent fasting. When I was on a television schedule, that schedule is very conducive to intermittent fasting because you can get up, have your MCT oil, coconut oil, or butter in your coffee, and then go to work and not eat for the first four or five hours. You get right to set, and then by the time you’re ready to shoot, it’s all of a sudden nine or 10 o’clock in the morning and it’s time to eat something. But that really doesn’t work at all on a show schedule, because we work so late at night. I don’t get home until 12, I’m trying to get to bed, I’m usually starving, so I need to eat something. 

I also found out in 2013 that I had a very severe dairy allergy. So at that point I cut out dairy, and then my stomach and everything was much better. From there I started reading a lot of nutrition stuff, and long story short, I’ve gone from a super high protein—I’m talking, like, 250 grams of protein a day and a lot of fat, with minimal carbohydrates—to now, I’m probably only getting between 80 and 100 grams of protein, and pretty low fat. I’ve become—I don’t wanna say a plant-based vegan, because I still do eat a minimal amount of animal protein—but I’d like to say I’m, like, 90 percent plant-based.

Since I’ve switched to a very “high carb” diet, my energy levels have been through the roof, and I’ve made more significant gains in the gym. There was also a time a few years ago that I was seemingly in great shape, but all of a sudden my cholesterol numbers were really starting to creep up. Since I’ve switched and gone away from a high-fat high-protein diet, those numbers have gone below average.

ここ2年で、僕は食生活を大きく変えました。何年もの間、超高タンパク・高脂肪で、よく断続的断食(Intermittent fasting)をしていたんです。テレビの仕事のスケジュールは、断続的断食にとても合っていました。 起きて、MCTオイルやココナッツオイル、バターをコーヒーに入れて飲んで、仕事に行って最初の4、5時間は何も食べない。 現場に着いて撮影の準備が整う頃には朝の9時か10時で、何か食べる時間になっています。でも、ショーのスケジュールではそうはいきません。夜遅くまで仕事をしているからです。12時までには家に帰れないし、寝ようとしてもたいていお腹が空いているから、何か食べないといけないんです。



So what kind of eating schedule works for you when you’re doing a show?


When I get up in the morning I like to drink a lot of water, sometimes with lemon or chia. I’ll have coffee, and then very soon after that I usually have a big fruit smoothie with a scoop of vegan protein powder. Then maybe half-an-hour later I’ll have a big bowl of oatmeal with hemp seeds and fruit. If it’s a day where I’m going to the gym, I try to get some more carbs and a little bit of fat before my workout, and then right after I’ll have some carbohydrates as protein. Today I got a huge amount of rice, black beans, a tomato avocado salad, sautéed kale and some tamari sauce.

At intermission I’ll have some fruit, and brazil nuts or almonds. My dresser is amazing and refills my pineapple and watermelon for me. And then after the show, when I get home, I’m ravished, so I try to keep some rice or pasta, usually some kind of leftovers. And that’s the way I get through it.



Do you usually prep food for after the show on your off days?


I try to. Sometimes I’m tired and I’ll just have rice cakes with peanut butter or hummus. But the thing that has really changed in my life, going from the diet that I used to eat to my diet now, is for years I deprived myself of the joy of cereal, and now I really enjoy eating cereal late at night. It’s a nice way to go to bed.


What other foods do you like to indulge in?


I really, truly miss pizza. That’s the one bad thing with my dairy allergy. So if it’s a really nice place with brick-oven pizza, I’ll get something without cheese on it. I still try to scratch the pizza itch as much as I can. And my girlfriend and I, if we go on a road trip, we’ll indulge in an Egg McMuffin and a hash brown. That’s few and far between, though. I like to stick to the staples of what I eat every day: lots of grains, lots of fruit, and I try to get some kind of vegetable with every meal. 


 This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.