These days, Clifford Smith Jr., also known as the rapper “Method Man,” can bask in his status as a founding member of the influential music group — the Wu-Tang Clan. Though that part of his life still seems to be humming along, Smith Jr. appears to be enjoying his downtime polishing up something other than his vocal pipes. In this case, that means strength-training his body.
On Dec. 3, 2022, Smith Jr. shared a clip where he worked through a 10-rep set of incline presses with 120-pound dumbbells in each hand. The rapper-turned-strength enthusiast wore elbow sleeves, and wrist wraps to help him through the chest-focused set. His elbows reached a shoulder-joint friendly 90-degree depth on each repetition.
Smith Jr. hasn’t shared his long-term upper-body training goals, if he has any. Based on part of his recent precedent, it could be fair to assume he’s working out with a bigger picture in mind.
For example, in early November 2022, Smith Jr. successfully locked out a 227.3-kilogram (500-pound) deadlift personal record (PR) from a conventional stance while wearing a lifting belt and utilizing lifting straps. That pulling session was likely connected to previous progressive training feats like a 224.5-kilogram (495-pound) deadlift from mid-October 2022.
Meanwhile, in August 2022, Smith Jr. shared an update on his bench press progress when he worked through a 142.8-kilogram (315-pound) press for five reps with wrist and elbow wraps. Another clip from early November 2022 showcases Smith Jr. polishing up his back muscles with some lat pulldowns at an undisclosed weight. All this paints the potential picture of Smith Jr.’s latest incline dumbbell presses being part of his trying to incrementally improve upon his bench press with auxiliary exercises.
As far as Smith Jr.’s recent musical exploits, he is featured on Vinnie Paz’s latest solo album entitled “Tortured in the Name of God’s Unconditional Love.” The compilation was released on Nov. 18, 2022, and has the 51-year-old Smith Jr. dropping a cameo verse in the solo track “Invisible Ether” discussing the current state of the music industry.
Regardless of his precise training aim, it’s evident that Smith Jr. places a premium on maintaining his fitness in the gym while simultaneously keeping his music pursuits busy. His Instagram, for one, is littered with occasional clips of his moments from working out when it’s not disclosing a promotional item for his recording career.
It seems if Wu-Tang is for the children, then well-maintained weights, assumed quality nutrition, and heavy lifting is for one of the group’s founders.
Featured image: @methodmanofficial on Instagram