Emmerdale’s Sam Dingle actor James Hooton reveals secrets behind ripped body transformation
Emmerdale star James Hooton has been lighting up the small screen as loveable goofball Sam Dingle since 1995.
During his time on the soap, the character has been shot, kidnapped, stampeded by a cow – and now looks set to have his world rocked when his wife Lydia gets close to a face from the past.
Emmerdale fans were left gobsmacked when fan favourite James, 50, shared a topless snap to Twitter.
Soap fans couldn’t believe their eyes as the actor behind Emmerdale’s timid and naïve Sam unveiled ripped abs and bulging biceps in the photo.
Even former Emmerdale and I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! star Adam Thomas heaped on the praise, replying to James’ snap with the simple message: “Beast!!!!”
So how did James achieve the seriously impressive body transformation?
James regularly updates his 29,000 Twitter followers with details of his strenuous workouts.
Cardio appears to play a major part in James’ fitness regimes, with the soap star sharing several snaps from numerous runs and jogs around the countryside – even in plunging temperatures.
When he's not learning his lines for Emmerdale, James is leaping up and down mountains as he get to grips with rock climbing.
An avid fan of the sport, the actor often also documents his exploits on Instagram, showing himself climbing various structures, including viaducts and boulders with his bare hands, combining both strength conditioning and cardio.
Of course, exercise can take its toll on the body, and James is no different as he’s opened up about injuries he's sustained in the past.
The TV star previously pulled a hamstring due to his high intensity workout.
“Hamstring…pulled! #gutted #cantwalk,” James tweeted after his injury.
Ripped abs and sleeve-busting biceps haven’t always been a characteristic associated with the Emmerdale star.
It’s safe to say James has changed a lot from when he first appeared on the show in 1995.
Away from the Dales, James' life is very different to his character's.
James joined the soap as a 21-year-old Sam, who is Nellie and Zak Dingle's son, in February 1995, when his character was released from a young offender's institute.
He then took a break from the soap from 1998 until 2000 and has remained a staple in the Dales ever since.
The soap wasn't James' first acting gig as he made his TV debut in 1985 at the age of 12 in the children's TV series, Your Mother Wouldn't Like It.
You can watch James play Sam Dingle on Emmerdale, weekdays, at 7pm, on ITV.
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