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Michael B. Jordan: Steroids or Natural?

Michael B. Jordan is no stranger to playing ripped characters. Does the Hollywood actor use steroids to get in shape for new movie roles or is he still natural?

Michael B. Jordan steroids

Marvel fans rejoiced when an old fan-favourite character, the Black Panther, got his movie. It came out and made good money. More perplexingly, it attracted the audience from both the African-American community and – surprisingly – the Alt-Right. The former loved the character for his African pride. The latter loved him for his conservative views on his nation of Wakanda. But this is a topic for a different text. Right now, we will focus on Michael B. Jordan his possible steroid use.

Michael B. Jordan is no stranger to superhero or athlete roles. In 2015 he played the Human Torch in Fant4stic, a reboot attempt of the franchise. Shortly before Black Panther, he put on some muscle for Creed 1 with Sylvester Stallone. Then in 2018, Michael gained what seems like another 10 pounds of muscle for the second Creed film.

The actor his last change didn’t go unnoticed. Did Michael B. Jordan use performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) for his Creed 2 transformation, or did he get his swole on naturally?


We start this analysis of by looking at the actor’s transformation from his teens to now. Steroid users typically get huge within a short time frame. Hollywood actors are often required to bulk up and change their appearance in very short periods for various roles, and it’s no secret that steroids make these transformations easier. Natural bodybuilding progression takes many years of blood, sweat, and tears. Furthermore, non enhanced bodybuilders often reach their peak physique after a few years of training.

Teenage Years

Michael B. Jordan as a teenager

The throwback picture above shows us that back in his teens Michael was much skinnier. However, the image shows us that he has great genetics, as the photo tells us that Michael B. Jordan has great muscle length attachment. The lower the insertion, the higher the mechanical advantage, thus the more force one can produce.

Michael B. Jordan is very fit for bodybuilding.

The Fantastic Four (2015)

Michael B. Jordan in 2015

The picture above is of the actor in early 2015, before he appeared in Marvel’s movie ‘The Fantastic Four’ as the Human Torch. The then 28-year old actor had gained quite some muscle mass compared to his teens. His arms, shoulders and chest got noticeably larger.

The gains made thus far are natural. Most people that start lifting can initially achieve approximately 20lbs muscle gain. These are so-called ‘newbie gains‘; these are the great strides you make in growing muscle (and power) when you initially begin a training program.  As long as your workout plan is sufficient, you are getting adequate sleep, and your diet is strict, you will experience newbie gains.

Creed (2015)

Michael B. Jordan as Adonis Johnson in Creed 1

The same year Michael appeared approximately 4 pounds heavier in the first Creed movie. At this points, Michael B. Jordan gained about 24lbs of muscle. To any natural bodybuilder, this is pretty normal. With the intense workout regimen he underwent, it’s entirely possible that he got it the natural way. His appearance in Creed proves this. He is lean, tight and muscular, but he is not huge.

His muscle mass looked and felt non-enhanced; enhanced muscle tissue seems fuller as a result of glycogen retention, and is dryer.

Black Panther (2018)

Michael B. Jordan in Black Panther as Erik Killmonger

Then came the Black Panther. As any Marvel comics enthusiast knows, the original Killmonger is a beast. He’s enormous, jacked up to the extreme. Yuge, as president Trump would call it. Thus, to get the extra 15lbs, Michael B. Jordan had to train hard. It’s difficult to get that amount of muscle in three years by merely exercising.

Michael did mention that when the movie’s director Ryan Coogler called him for the role, and he accepted, he immediately started training. He was smaller and leaner in Creed, but in interviews for Black Panther, he said he wanted to add size to look more threatening. He stated meal prepping, consistently eating (almost to a point where it became a chore), and said he worked out daily.

Given a bodybuilder follows a good, structured diet and exercise plan, a 150-pound novice bodybuilder can likely grow 18-27 pounds of lean muscle per year. A 170-pound average bodybuilder can potentially gain 10-15 pounds of muscle per year.

It’s possible that the actor gained 15 pounds of muscle in three years naturally.

Creed 2 (2018)

Michael B. Jordan as Adonis Johnson in Creed 2

Despite to what some might think Michael B. Jordan isn’t larger in Creed II than in Black Panther. The actor had four months to train for Creed 2 after the Wakanda movie. He didn’t use this time to get bigger, but instead, he used it to look more like a heavyweight boxer. So he maintained the size he built for his Black Panther character Killmonger while becoming more explosive.

Healthy Lifestyle

Some guys use steroids but don’t diet and work out properly and still look pretty decent. However, there are also guys that do eat and train properly, are natural, and get accused of steroid use because they ‘look too good to be true’. We believe that Michael B. Jordan probably belongs to the second group. As the following clips will prove, the actor commits to building a fantastic physique for his movie roles.

In an interview with Ellen Degeneres, the actor mentions that he barely has a social life while getting in shape for movies. Training three times a day, eating six meals and drinking at least a gallon of water a day tend to make going out difficult. Near the end of the interview Michael says “As soon as I leave here, I’m going to the gym,” adding that he is “in the process of getting back in shape.”

If you’re curious about what it exactly is that Michael Does in a day that helps him build and maintain a muscular physique, then you can watch the Vanity Fair video above. This video tells us everything Michael B. Jordan does in a day.

In regards to working out, the actor’s first gym session is at 8 in the morning. At 3:30 pm he trains again, and usually, he even squeezes in a third workout.

He goes on to say that for movies like Creed mass gain is his primary focus. He follows a strict high-protein/calorie diet. Without proper food, you can train all you want, but you won’t see the results.

Workout Regimen

We’re pretty sure Michael B. Jordan didn’t use steroids to prepare for Creed 2. The thing is, the actor already had the right size for the sequel boxing movie thanks to his training for Black Panther. While getting in shape for Creed 2, he was more focused on really becoming a heavyweight boxer.

The USA-Today item in the video above goes into more detail about Michael B. Jordan’s Creed 2 workout Regimen. As you can see he works with a personal trainer that’s massive himself, so this guy knows how to gain muscle.

Michael, his celebrity personal trainer Correy Calliet, has been working with him since the beginning of his career. In an interview with Men’s Health, Correy mentioned that for Creed II they had to take the actor’s workout program to the next level. The primary challenge was that Michael B. Jordan had to transform from a light heavyweight into a heavyweight.

Correy made a 4-month workout plan for the actor which would bring him in similar shape to his Black Panther Killmonger physique, but more defined. This program featured strenuous lifting exercises Calliet developed utilising his bodybuilding background, next to hardcore boxing training—way more than they had done on Creed 1.

Fun fact, when Michael B. Jordan first met his co-star Florian “Big Nasty” Munteanu who plays Ivan Drago in the movie Michael said, “He’s huge, what weight class are we fighting in again?”

Side Effects

Giving the man one cursory look, we wouldn’t fault you if you concluded that Michael B. Jordan didn’t take any steroids. He doesn’t have gynecomastia (the less-than-popular “bitch tits”), nor any acne. Hell, he doesn’t even have a typical steroid gut most users do. Can we stop doubting? Is Jordan off the hook when it comes to steroids?

Michael B. Jordan transformation
On the right, he appears to have a bloated face

Comparing the old Michael B. Jordan to Killmonger Jordan gives away a few possible clues. His face looks more bloated than usual. If you use anabolic steroids, you can retain some fluid in your face area. When you look at the man’s midsection in the movie, you can spot slight bloating.

One side-effect of taking steroids for bulking includes a bloated, smooth-looking gut. In other words, it’s precisely what Killmonger Jordan has, and regular Jordan doesn’t.

However, the bloating is all we can spot that indicates possible steroid use.

Noteworthy, bloating is also a byproduct of a bulking diet, which is likely the case here as Michael shows no other side effects.

Bloating is caused by consuming food including grain, rye, barley and sometimes oats. Fat in the stomach is often an indication that you are consuming more sweet & starchy carbohydrates than your system is burning. The liver converts them into fats and stores them in your belly, similar to a beer belly.


Going by his transformation it seems unlikely that Michael B. Jordan uses steroids, he gained approximately 39 pounds (17.7 kg) of muscle since he started bodybuilding. His physique is attainable without the use of steroids. A steroid user would typically get about 50lbs of lean muscle after several cycles. Now, Jordan didn’t gain this much muscle for his role of Adonis or Killmonger. He only added about 39lbs to his muscle mass since his teens.

Furthermore, Michael has the benefit that each new role required him to get bigger. So he always gets to bulk up between movies and does not have to slim down. Not having to sacrifice size makes the natty-route much easier.

We find it highly likely that he gained all his muscle the natural way. To achieve this, he would have had to increase his frequency of training massively. Secondly, he’d have had to do an aggressive bulk. He did both. Michael B. Jordan got that body through hard work, discipline and years of exercise.

About James Smith

James Smith is a personal trainer for professional bodybuilders. He uses his experience, knowledge, and understanding of all the intricacies regarding bodybuilding and anabolic steroids, to deliver detailed reviews for every new legal steroid on the market. As an author, he may receive some small compensation for some of them. However, we guarantee the neutrality regarding the evaluating of each of the products and the factuality of the information.