Behind the Scenes: How to Make a Movie Trailer for Your Product (or Book)

I first met filmmaker Adam Patch, courtesy of David Brundage on Facebook, over Thai food in San Francisco.

It was a warm evening in the Mission district, a good omen and unusual blessing. The goal of our meeting was simple: to see if we clicked and, passing that hurdle, to plot the making of “the best book trailer ever made.”

Whether we pulled it off or not, that ambitious mission statement was necessary to survive the many all-nighters and hiccups that would follow.

August of 2010 was the starting point.

On November 30th, the end product was a 59-second trailer, which debuted on Huffington Post Books. It immediately took The 4-Hour Body from near #150 to #30 on Amazon, where it later climbed to #1.

The launch was initiated by a simple poll post, which was followed by an analytical second post. Due to its high production value, the video then made the jump from online to offline, eventually making it to national TV for The Dr. Oz Show (see the clip at :40).

This post will explain exactly how the trailer was created, including early concepts, tools, the team, and more…

Hitting the Pink Elephant First

Let’s hit the most common question first. How much did it all cost?

I paid close to $12,000 total, but I also brought a lot of resources and co-promotional opportunity to the table. The same trailer done with a good freelancer could cost $40-50,000. If you choose a production company, which involves more moving pieces, it could add up to $100,000+.

But don’t be scared away by the above numbers. Can you sometimes make budgetary miracles happen? Most certainly.

Emulating a Hollywood film is much more expensive than a slick demo trailer such as those produced by Epipheo, and the latter is better suited to many start-ups and services:

Second, it’s easier to contain costs if you have a clear vision of your goal, as well as a clear picture of your would-be partner’s longer-term goals. In my first fateful meeting with Adam, I slid a piece of paper across the table within ten minutes of us sitting down — the draft storyboard:

Click here for larger version.

Following up on our meeting, I sent him this e-mail:

Hi Adam,

OK, so here are some goodies to get your juices flowing.

Here is the basic book idea — I’ve made myself a guinea pig so you don’t have to:

The video clip in this mock-up vid (attached) is from an incredible gymnast in the UK, Damien Walters. I have an email in to him to see if we’d be able to use any of his stuff. Pretty amazing, but it’ll give you an idea.

Current book cover is attached. I imagine it, some variation, or book/combo would appear at the end after the dude jumps over the car (perhaps even mid-air), or whichever visual we use.

Other potential vids for ideas:

Breathholding: (jump to :25 or so, seems very low-cost but potentially HD) (just for fun)


Running: 2:35 or so forward here:

These are all starting points, but feel free to go nuts with your imagination. I want your ideas and input.

Look forward to your treatment!


How did it all hold up? Here’s the final product in HD (give it some time to load):

Getting from that scrap of paper to spots on national TV was not easy.

The music portion alone almost killed the project. But the success of this trailer IS replicable.

The following interview and footnotes will explain the process and the lessons learned.

Adam Patch, interviewed by Charlie Hoehn (with comments by Tim)

Tell us a bit about your background.

My name is Adam Patch, and I directed and edited the trailer for The 4-Hour Body. I went to film school in San Francisco to learn directing, and got my start doing music videos, commercials, and motion graphics editing. I’ve been a freelancer for the last five years or so.

How were you chosen to direct the 4HB trailer?

I received a call from Tim one day, out of the blue.

He introduced himself, told me about the new book, and said he wanted to do a trailer for it. It sounded cool, and I hadn’t really seen many book trailers, so I was intrigued by the idea.

When we first met up, Tim laid out his entire vision, which was pretty clear from the beginning. He already had the track from Sevendust (“Splinter”) picked out, and knew he wanted to base all of the trailer’s visuals around that song.

After our first meeting, I wrote up a treatment (which is just a specific outline of how I wanted to shoot the trailer and the energy I wanted to bring to it), presented it to Tim, and he was on board right away. Shortly after that, we went and filmed it on a two-day shoot.

[TIM: Here is the original treatment Adam presented to me]

What happened after The 4-Hour Body trailer came out?

It blew up. The trailer got a ton of great comments on YouTube [896 at the time of this writing], the hits on my website took off, and I got several calls from other publishers interested in doing book trailers. I’ve also been getting emails from film students who are interested in learning how I did certain effects. It’s been really cool to see such a positive response to the video.

The trailer opens with a shot of Tim working at a table. Can you talk about that day of shooting?

We basically did a full day’s worth of shooting at the atrium inside Tim’s house. We knew that we were going to split it up, so we took our time finessing everything and really made sure all the shots looked nice. And visually-speaking, the atrium was super cool to photograph.

How Adam gave the atrium a cinematic feel in After Effects.

We brought all this stuff to make it look like a mad scientist lab, like he had been doing experiments on himself and taking notes. We shot that 30-second part of the video for probably six hours in one day. Then the following day, we drove all around the Bay, meeting up with each of the people in the video and shooting their little vignettes.

What goes into a six-hour shoot like that? Why does it take so long?

Almost all of that time was spent setting up lights. We lit up his whole atrium so it looked cool on camera, laid out a dolly track, and set up two cameras for shooting. We had a rough idea of what we wanted to shoot, but we were also exploring while we were there and coming up with ideas on the fly. For instance, there was one shot from overhead where the camera kind of drops down on Tim, and we didn’t really plan for that shot.

Typically, a shot like that would be done with a jib. But we didn’t have a jib, so what we did is we had the camera up on two C-stands and had two of our grips lower them down slowly. That looked pretty amateurish while we were doing it, but we also couldn’t see what we were shooting. We just put the camera up there and hoped it would work. So it was cool because it actually turned out pretty great.

There’s also a shot of a dilating eye. How did you guys shoot that?

We just had Tim sit in front of a camera with his eye closed for 20 seconds or so. We had a light nearby so that his eyes would quickly dilate when he opened them. Then I actually enlarged his pupil in post-production to make it even more noticeable.

4HB Trailer

What were the “holding your breath in the pool” shots like?

Those little pool shots were with Nathan Zaru. I remember it was kind of cold outside, and the water was freezing. And we had to keep doing take-after-take to make sure we got it right.

The camera we were using was the GoPro HD Cam, which is this really small HD camera where you can’t see what you’re shooting at all. It just has a fisheye lens. You shoot with it, and then you have to download the footage to see what it looks like. So we would do several takes with the camera from different positions, hoping one of them would work. In the meantime, poor Nathan is just sitting there freezing his ass off. By the end, his lips had literally turned solid blue, and we finally said, “Okay, that’s probably enough. I’m sure we got it.” It worked out.

How about the deadlifting shot in the gym?

We went down to Mark Wild’s Wild Iron Gym in San Jose, which is a really tiny, grimy old-school gym. It’s basically a big storage unit with a roll-up door, and there’s a whole bunch of huge dudes working out inside. It was pretty awesome.

What was amazing about that shot was that powerlifter Mark Bell [our photo subject] was just in the middle of a workout. It wasn’t like we were telling him to do the lift. I mean, he helped move stuff around to make it look good, but it wasn’t as staged as I thought it would be. He was lifting about 600 pounds, repeatedly. He kept saying, “You guys want me to do it again?” It was nuts.

[TIM: Just for fun, compare the above “after” post-production shot with the below “before” still. The footage is exactly the same. Notice any differences?]

We also shot Tracy Reifkind with the kettlebell at the same location. We were trying to find a good spot to film her workout, and it was basically a parking lot and storage units. So we ended up lugging all of our gear onto the roof of the building and shooting.

Her scene is on the roof of this huge industrial building. It was kind of sketchy; you’re not supposed to be able to get up there. But we shimmied up the ladder with all of our gear and shot her at the top, just so we could have a nice view of the sky.

What about the running portion?

We were driving around with Brian MacKenzie, trying to find a good spot to shoot his stuff, and we ended up finding a cool place right off of the freeway in San Mateo. We pulled over and ended up shooting a lot of different angles, because I wasn’t sure I was going to use them at cut. There’s a ton of footage of him just running around and going through trees and trails, but we only ended up using a tiny portion of it.

And the second to last shot: the Parkour jump over the wall?

We shot that with Brian Orosco at Ocean Beach in San Francisco, and he was just coming off of a sprained ankle, so he wasn’t even up to par. It was a little scary because we weren’t sure how many takes we would get. He was totally doing us a huge favor and after the first jump, we didn’t expect to get another take. We figured he would hurt himself or something and we’d have to move on. But he was great. He did that jump four times, I think. And the one we ended up using in the trailer was what he called “The Lazy Boy,” where he puts his hands behind his head and jumps off.

Brian on top of the world. Not a small wall.

The set-up for one of four total camera angles.

We have to talk about the original ending. The first time Tim and I watched it, we busted out laughing. It just didn’t work.

[Laughs] Yeah. When Tim first spoke to me about the trailer, he told me a theme of his book was “becoming superhuman.” And one of the things that I put in my original treatment was that it would be cool at the end (after Brian jumps off the wall) if it were actually Tim who slams down in the final shot. So I wanted to do this totally epic comic book-style, like “Sin City” or something, where Tim would smash down on his knee and look up at the camera. That was the plan, at least.

[TIM: Here’s what the rough cut looked like, using placeholder numbers for experiments, test subjects, etc. Try and keep a straight face at the end.]

Keep in mind that this shot would only look good after a lot of work in post-production. But it was basically Tim softly dropping down to the ground, which looked extremely silly while we were shooting it. I still think that if I’d had some time to fix the shot, it probably would have turned out cool. But in the first round of edits, it just looked like a joke.

Tim called me right after he saw it for the first time, and he couldn’t stop laughing. He suggested we replace him with the book slamming down instead.

The book was just a high-res still of the cover, and I rebuilt it in 3D using After Effects. I took the different planes, rebuilt a book shape, and just slammed it down. I added dust particles and concrete cracking and all that stuff to make it seem more energetic than just a cut to the book’s title.

What kind of gear did you and your crew use during this shoot?

My crew consisted of Phillip Briggs (cinematographer), Jeremy Wong (1st AC), Chris Galdes (gaffer), and Chris Bennett (grip). Below is the full list of video gear I had to use for this shoot (minus lighting equipment).

Cameras from the shoot:

Canon 5D

Canon 7D

GoPro HD Camera (for the underwater shot)

Camera Lenses:

Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro

Canon EF 14mm f/2.8 Mark II USM

– Canon EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

My workstation set up:

8 core Mac Pro (2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon) with 10GBs of RAM

– 2 x 24″ Apple Cinema Displays

Medium Intuos 4 Wacom Tablet (I use this instead of a mouse)

Software/Plugins I used for trailer:

Final Cut Pro

After Effects

Twixtor (for all slow motion shots)

Magic Bullet Looks (for color correction)

Footnotes and Cautionary Notes from Tim

But what about the music? Ahhhhh…. music. You capricious little minx, you.

The entire trailer started as a fantasy while listening to Sevendust’s “Splinter” track in an airport. I chartered Charlie with identifying the route to licensing and the costs involved.

At first glance, it appeared that, for online use only, we needed to pay approximately $320 to either ASCAP or BMI, two large clearing houses for licensing music.

In the beginning, it seemed so simple. That is, until is wasn’t simple at all. Here’s what we found in the rabbit hole, partially from ASCAP and partially from industry mentors:

There were six writers on the title “Splinter” performed by the band known as “Sevendust”:

John M Connolly

Vincent E Hornsby

Edward Clint Lowery

Corey French Lowery

La Jon Witherspon

There were four related publishers, listed below, Chrysalis being the primary and the place the start:






Once determining the above, the standard next steps were then:

Issue a “quote request” to the publishers (starting with Chrysalis) indicating the various rights and terms we were looking to clear. The request could start with “initial rights”, the most narrow we could manage, followed by “options” for broader rights. To begin the quote request, we’d need to define the scope of rights sought:

Initial Rights:

Media: Internet and TV (Need to specify if this is “all tv”, free tv, cable, satellite, etc.)

Territory: For Internet, it’s the world; for TV, is this for “Good Morning America” in the US only? North America?World?

Timing: What is the length of the use — how much of the track? Is it edited or interrupted?

Nature: Is it a background vocal? Background instrumental? Visual vocal? How is the song being used (i.e. In what context)?

Term: 6 months minimum with two options for 1 year, then 3 years? Additionally, there would be a master recording which needs separate clearance.

Sevendust’s “Splinter” also came out through Asylum, who would be the label to clear the master, typically on an MFN basis (most-favored-nation) with the publisher’s quote. While it might be helpful to have a relationship with the band (to approve the use and help expedite the process), ultimately we’d have to deal with the publisher and label at the end of the day.

Sound complicated? It should, and that was just the tip of the iceberg.

It was then time for disaster-recovery planning.

Since the trailer made no sense without accompanying music, and “Splinter” was up in the air, I began to look for sound engineers as a back-up insurance policy. For a 60-second original track, the cost could range from $500 to well over $10,000, all depending on the complexity of the score, their reputations, past clients, etc.

Based on Adam’s original recommendations, I ended up working with two engineers/musicians: Steve Emerson and Dave Groseclose.

Re-editing the visuals before launch was impossible, so their tracks would need to match the cadence of our cuts. Both Steve and Dave were excellent to work with. Here are two of their samples:

Steve Emerson:

Dave Groseclose:

Incredibly, at the 11th hour — literally, late the night before the final video deadline — we received the official go-ahead to use Sevendust’s track online, and I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Alvin Witherspoon, LJ’s father; Tony Couch, Sevendust’s manager; and Aaron Ray of The Collective for making it happen.

Last but certainly not least, thank you to Sevendust for creating such incredible music. If you haven’t heard their stuff, you should absolutely grab either Cold Day Memory or their acoustic Southside Double-Wide.

In summary: If you’re on deadline and need music, either hire a professional (such as a seasoned production company) to manage the complexity, or hire a sound engineer from the outset. Licensing tunes is not for the faint of heart.

The Morale (and Moral) of the Story

This trailer was incredible fun to create. It was also extremely stressful towards the end, with more than a few late-night sessions fueled by wine and caffeine.

The entire experience was infused with an anticipation wouldn’t have existed without the ambitious “create the best X ever” goal. I also believe, as smooth as most things were, it could have gone horribly wrong without a few key ingredients:

  • A well-defined vision for the end product
  • In-depth review of Adam’s prior reels, as well as in-person discussion, to ensure an aesthetic match.
  • Two brainstorming sessions with Adam prior to making things official, to ensure a collaborative match. Creative headbutting, as opposed to give-and-take, creates delays. The request for treatment was also to observe his response time, which was outstanding. Remember: reliability and on-time delivery is more important than optimal skill set.
  • Alignment of interest: Instead of focusing solely on price, Adam and I looked at how we could help each other. He was eager to show-off his killer directorial abilities in addition to his post-production skills, and the trailer provided an outlet.

As I’ve written before and still maintain:

It’s lonely at the top. 99% of the world is convinced they are incapable of achieving great things, so they aim for the mediocre middle-ground. The level of competition is thus fiercest for “realistic” goals, paradoxically making them the most time- and energy-consuming. It is often easier to raise $10,000,000 than it is $1,000,000. It is easier to pick up the one perfect 10 in the bar than the five 8s.

If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.

Unreasonable and unrealistic goals are easier to achieve for yet another reason.

Having an unusually large goal is an adrenaline infusion that provides the endurance to overcome the inevitable trials and tribulations that go along with any goal. Realistic goals, goals restricted to the average ambition level, are uninspiring and will only fuel you through the first or second problem, at which point you throw in the towel. If the potential payoff is mediocre or average, so is your effort. I’ll run through walls to get a catamaran trip through the Greek islands, but I might not change my brand of cereal for a weekend trip through Columbus, Ohio. If I choose the latter because it is “realistic,” I won’t have the enthusiasm to jump even the smallest hurdle to accomplish it. With beautiful, crystal-clear Greek waters and delicious wine on the brain, I’m prepared to do battle for a dream that is worth dreaming. Even though their difficulty of achievement on a scale of 1-10 appears to be a 2 and a 10 respectively, Columbus is more likely to fall through.

The fishing is best where the fewest go. There is just less competition for bigger goals.

As the Romans (or at least Turnus) would say: “Fortes fortuna adiuvat!”

Fortune favors the bold. Have fun with it.

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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185 Replies to “Behind the Scenes: How to Make a Movie Trailer for Your Product (or Book)”

  1. First time commenter, long time reader. I’m a professional athlete that bought 4HB even though I saw it was aimed at the “common (wo)man,” but knowing there’d be at least one gem in there that even I could learn and profit from. Not even finished reading yet but I was 100% on. Great work, Tim — I will continue to follow your content.

  2. it’s been three months of waking up, having breakfast and watching this trailer. every day. i haven’t seen anything like that ever, such an energy-impacted, boosting in all finest directions, video-drink…

    thanks to all of you guys in front and behind the scenes

    you already did the impossible

  3. Hi tim, I find the video trailer fantastic,unique and straight to the point. It looks like a commercial video for a huge sport event seen on tv, it is very professional. The collaboration of you and Adam Patch was great. A nice way to start promoting the book, the 4 hour body and probably the most effective way.

  4. Very n.i.c.e post, awesome content, motivating and thanks for me looking “behind teh curtains”. Jeroen from Holland

  5. Sweet video. Good sound. Was wondering why I didn’t hear any thumping, splashing, thudding, or other hard-core sounds besides the music. Was there a reason you left out sound effects?

    Also, I picked up 4-hour / week book (ironically from my boss’ book shelf) and started reading. I got to your challenge–contact celebrities–and thought I’d start with you. Would enjoy meeting / talking with you. If I came to San Fran, would you care to do tea some time? Are you ever in SC?

  6. Hi, Tim. I just stumbled across your post. Let me commend you first for your excellent book trailer. I find it really entertaining, refreshing, and of course, one-of-a-kind. It’s a nice way to disseminate your message and it’s not everyday that I see a book trailer. As for your tips, I’m not really into DIY filming because of the technicalities and what-nots, but overall I find them very helpful. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post!

  7. I’m a U.S. Army officer who got lazy and let myself go after several surgeries to fix my leg. I can’t fault anyone but myself and finally a Division Commander came along and told be to shape up or get out.

    I decided I liked my job so I started to shape up. One day I saw you on Dr. Oz and said, makes sense, I’ll try it. So I cut out the white foods, eat lots of veggies and more fish now than before. I haven’t been brave enough to have a carb pig out because I have a lot to get off to get back into standard.

    I can say that in the last three months I’ve gone from 325 to 275 and have more to go, but the progress is very noticable. I use the ice packs on my neck and back at night and I was getting a good hour of workout every day on the stationary bike which is all I can do due to other injuries. I’m hoping for the same loss for the next 50lbs, but I know I have to follow this carefully.

    If you have any further advice on how to continue the loss without the plateau I’m interested. Also bought a kettle weight and have to use this carefully but I’d like advice where to go on how to do low impact with it to get the best workout.

    Thanks for your hours of research and encouragement,


    1. Congratulations, Ron! That’s fantastic progress. Just keep up the faith, follow the rules, and your progress should continue.

      Please keep us posted!

      All the best to you and yours,


      1. Hi TIm,

        I am just 29, no one from my Fathers Fmily side has hair loss, I am having trouble in my life and due to stress I am losing front square section of hair, Could You Please advice on how can I maintain what I have till now and if possible ways of chance to regain them.


  8. The trailer kicked ass. As a photographer, I always like to see the pre and post-production of images like you presented for the guy deadlifting 600lbs. Plus, that’s just a shitload of weight.

  9. I didn’t know how to contact you but I figured the best way was through your blog. I go to East Hampton highschool curently and a teacher mentioned to me that a former student of his was in the New York Times, I read your article and I was really interested in everything you believed in. I am trying to attend Brown and I really want to set my resume apart from everyones else, so I started a teen fitness club for kids to exercise twice a week and do dynamic excercises like yoga, trx or spinning. If your ever in East Hampton or have any advice for the member of my club anything would be great! Even if rounding respond I think it’s really cool just in general what you do.

  10. I definitely think Tim landing could have been edited and/or speed changed to work “better”. Whether or not it would still be silly, can’t say for sure.

    Also, re: music, don’t deny the power of today’s stock music market.,,, and others are putting out some pretty good stuff, much better than the previous decade.

    In addition, Smartsound’s SonicFire can deliver some nice results – shallow learning curve, but still quite powerful.

    Also, check out VideoCoPilot for some useful dramatic scoring solutions.

  11. Hey I wrote a short story inspired by 4-hour work week.

    It’s 401 words long and I just felt like sharing it with him but I can’t find where to send it to.

    I don’t have twitter but I’m willing to make one.

    Other than that, not sure what to do from here.

  12. I actually have a question for those of you who have been doing this for awhile. My husband and I are just finishing day 6 (very much looking forward to tomorrow’s treats!) Today he’s feeling low energy and thinks it might be the lack of carbs?

    Any thoughts? Suggestions? Thus far the week has been easy, satisfying and fun. Not hungry and no desire to snack. Nice.

  13. Very interesting and you can see how its true what they say that if you have great advertising you can sell anything

  14. I absolutely loved this video!!!! the cuts, the angles, the video quality, the feel….I mean everything about this video WORKS! its so awesome!!

    I used to work in television as a Production Assistant and one of the things I learnt to do was produce small features. The editors I was blessed to work with did an amazing job and seeing this just brought home how much FUN it was putting images together along a storyline and bringing it all to life onscreen! I’ve been trying to do my own video work but my ultimate goal is get to the point where my work looks as good as this does! You’ve inspired me to really forge ahead to realizing this vision. Keep it up!! 😀

  15. Hi..

    Thanks so much for such a detailed account of how you made this trailer. I’m just starting out filming workouts and cooking demos (just got my video camera yesterday woohooooo!!!!), so this will be a great help!

    Tegan x

  16. It’s cool to see all of the production that went in to making that film. You guys crammed a lot in that two day period. Keep the inspiration going.

  17. Great article Tim. I love seeing the amount of work that goes behind video. (especially web video) I have been wanting to put video on my site for a while but don’t want it to look bush league. Once again you’ve inspired me to take action and at least try to make a video.

  18. I have been working with video for a few months now. I haven’t created anything like this but it is pretty impressive what you can do with a a $120 HD camera and windows live.

  19. Tim,

    in your book under “The Forbidden Fruit: Fructose” you mention that Fruit Juice is actually bad, particularly for men. Basically, that it messes with your iron and Albumin levels.

    I cannot find any supporting evidence for this in any medical information and in fact, what the medical information suggests is that if your iron levels swing wildly like this that there may in fact be someone medically wrong with you? Further, is it possible that this rapid chance is in some way tied to the particular high protein slow card diet?

    My wife is sceptical about this data. We have two boys and we have tended to drink a lot of juice in our family. Is your insight here suggesting to massively reduce or cut our fruit juice altogether from their diets?

    Do you have any independent evidence you could point to to help establish the view that fruit juice is bad for men, or have I completely misinterpreted what you wrote in your book?

    Fabulous book btw! Am loving it!!


    1. Klaus,

      I’m no expert but in reading your comment, I am curious as to what you mean when you say “we have tended to drink a lot of juice in our family.” Are these the commercially processed juice bought from the supermarket? Or do you juice them yourself from fresh fruit?

      If you currently drink commercially processed fruit juice, I would say they are not the best sources of nutrition. Most are made up of a lot of sugar – which is not really a healthy choice anyway. The process of making the juice also reduces the nutritional content of the juice.

      If you make your own juice, are you juicing with the right equipment? Enzymes etc are destroyed by heat when fruit is juiced in the wrong equipment, so that also defeats the purpose.

      Just wanted to get that clarified before getting to the real question of whether or not fruit juice is good for you (which I’m not qualified to answer anyway! Haha!)

      1. @Chiao,

        thank you for your kind reply. I am aware if the nutrition issues with manufactured fruit juice. What I was particularly interested in was the stated impact on Iron levels and Albumin.

        that seemed a startling finding and am curios to understand it better.

  20. I just finished reading the book, but I am still unsure as to how many carbs in grams I can eat per day. Especially since beans tend to be high in carbs,so I’m not sure why I am encouraged to eat so many of them…..for protein, carbs or fiber? But I would find it helpful if I had a “goal” number per day.

    Any concern of ketosis on this diet due to low carb intake? I seem to be eating about 100 carb grams or slightly over that daily. Is this a good number or too high? Love the concept….but I want to eat fruit, cause it seems like I am depriving my body of something good. Prior to starting this diet, I didn’t really eat a lot of fruit, usually 1/2 a piece 2 or 3 times a day, I tended to eat more veggies. It appears as though grapefruit might be okay?

    Any input would be greatly appreciated!

  21. The low carb diet in particular the cheat day on Saturday is perfect for Jews who observe the sabbath. On that day we are supposed to enjoy our food. It’s good that you suggest Saturday as the cheat day (although for us it starts on Friday night and lasts all Saturday) even though you are not Jewish!

  22. Kia ora Tim

    Just had to say – I like the ending of you hitting the floor – I wasn’t laughing I was amped! The finished trailer is awesome; kudos to you, Adam and the team that put this together. It’s great to see some new techniques – like a video trailer – for a very established industry. Books are exciting but they are not usually promoted as such.

    It’s great to see all of your ‘life hacks’ in 4HWW, 4HB, blog – I reckon the Matrix is real and you’ve cracked it!


    Lisa (another Kiwi)

  23. Thank you so much for posting this Tim. I’m a novice video guy who uses my 7D, green screen, and After Effects on a daily basis. Seeing the behind the scenes of professionals has my brain absorbing information like a sponge.

    Thank you so much. It’s a tremendous inspiration.

  24. Great post on productions. You really got a deal on the video. And Adam will do great in the productions world.

  25. I really enjoyed the trailer Tim. I now feel inspired to make a trailer on my own. Thank you very much.



  26. Tim!

    So excited to read this post. When we first saw your trailer it inspired me and my friends to take action on a small project idea we had. We have all been avid 4HWW readers and are constantly challenging each other to get outside of our comfort zone by testing muses.

    We set out with our limited experience to create a 90 second trailer to inspire people to get off their couches to move and look at their world in a different light. Our hope is being able to produce a feature length 90 minute film to really do the trick. Using what limited resources and connections we all had were able to make it happen in no time. We’re now on kickstarter and have already surpassed our fundraising goal in about half the total time available.

    We did all the filming and editing ourselves and found an amazing composer to create an original score and what a difference it makes. So far we’ve raised more than our base goal, been scouted to appear on an international outdoor film tour, and been approached by several organizations that are interested in having a substantial stake in the film. We couldn’t have gotten here without your inspiration and wisdom.

    Thanks a million and we hope you can enjoy our film. We sure had a blast putting it together.

    1. Shane, the film looks AWESOME! Can’t wait to see it, and congrats for making it happen. Ideas can become something incredible once you let them out of our your head 🙂

      All the best — keep it up,


  27. Awesome Tim! I am becoming a huge fan. I thought originally that your fourhourblog was just some marketing gimmick used in the books but you share it all. Thanks for taking the time. Mike

  28. The video looks very polished and quite inspiring too! Which I suppose is the whole point 🙂

    My friend gave me your book last week as a pre-30th birthday present so I have about 60 days to lose (or convert) around 10kgs so I can look back to my best before then at the end of June. We’ll see if I can actually manage that as I don’t want to push things too far too quickly, but any impact will be happily received. Particularly by my girlfriend! 😉

    So today is officially the first day of my Four Hour Body regime!

    Luckily I already eat a lot of the recommended foods such as all those delicious veggies like broccoli and spinach and I’ll mainly be upping my protein intake and removing all white carbs and replacing with beans and so on. I’ll miss the beer though!!!

    Next week I move on to stage two and get a kettle bell! Good luck to everyone else out there trying to change their body for the better!


  29. Hi.

    Awesome trailer. Have the book and going freak atm 🙂

    Offtopic: I found this gym in my small home town.

    I have no other relation to it other than I workout there.

    What’s special about it is that they have negative workout machines wich add 40% load on the negative. Thought you might find this interesting.

    Here’s the web address.

    Keep up the good work and thanks for a really good book.



  30. That trailer was hard hitting great music well syncronised with awesome action. Great video hits the point really grabs your attention. Great stuff!

  31. Hi Tim we have an amazing first to market armpit stain remover called PitStop recently mentioned in the Wall Street Journal. It is selling so well and we want to get it into the hands of distributors without paying the costly fees associated with trade shows do you have any suggestions? We are based out of South Florida.

  32. THIS DIET SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!I I am a 44 year old woman and I have been on this diet for 5 weeks with my husband who continiues to lose 2-3 pounds a week and I am ready to kill him, and have followed it to a t.The first week I lost 2 pounds the next thrree weeks I didn’t lose anything and last week I gained a pound. WTF am I doing wrong. Every morning I have a spinach omlet and a half a cup of beans measured. For lunch I have a a half a cup of beans measured 8 ounces of chicken breast and 2 cups of shredded Romain with salsa as my dressing. For dinner I have a dfferent vegatable but the same amount in weight and the same amount of lean protien and a half a cup of beans measured. I don’t get hungry and I don’t snack during the day. I am so frustrated.

    Saturday is my cheat day and believe me I am eating enough calories on my cheat day.

    1. Ellen- Have you measured the inches you’ve lost? A lot of women don’t lose weight, but inches.

      Keep in mind that losing fat doesn’t always budge the scale as much as you’d hope.

    2. Ellen, 1) you’re not hungry 2) you’re not cheating and 3) you’re eating healthier. That means you’re likely improving your blood chemistry, lowering cholesterol and improving your chances of avoiding cancer and heart disease. If you don’t [know] this is true, you’re not doing what Tim suggests: get measurements, get labs. It’s important to know what’s going on in your body, and weight is the absolutely WORST measurement to use as a gauge for success.

      BTW, I too haven’t lost much weight (since dropping the first 20 lbs or so), and am a bit frustrated. But, my labs look amazing, cholesterol is down from “oh, you gonna die” to “wow, keep doing whatever you’re doing.” I’m no longer suffering from diabetes and don’t have to take ANY of my medications. Oh, and I actually know what I can do to accelerate the weight loss. So, I’ll share what I’ve found to help you along with that also.

      One more really important factor: thyroid health. Have it checked. If your thyroid is unhealthy, you’re going to have a hard time losing weight. While you’re at it, there’s a list of things a good internal medicine practitioner would check to tell you what may be blocking fat loss. You didn’t list drugs, but there’s a laundry list of medications common to overweight folks that would stop weight loss in its tracks. I had to drop a few to expedite my health recovery, drugs that were necessary when I was eating junk.

      1) You’re eating chicken. Is it chicken filled with preservatives, chemicals and drugs? If it’s not specifically sold as drug free, chemical free chicken, I assure you it’s jam packed with stuff that preserves your body’s cells and changes your body chemistry. Preservatives are known to slow the body’s decomposition. It’s such a problem in the modern world that they have body farms to create new standards for forensics to determine time of death because human bodies no longer decay at the same rate they did 50 years ago. If your skin doesn’t decay as quickly, your fat doesn’t either. Stop eating chemicals that preserve your food and you’ll stop preserving your fat. Only eat meat that is legitimately organic and vegetarian (meaning you’re not eating animals that eat animal products).

      2) Move immediately before meals, and 1.5 hours afterward if you can. Not a big deal, just do something besides sit down after you eat. Tim offers HIT options, like air squats and wall pushups (outs).

      3) Drink more water. Set out a gallon a day, and drink that in addition to the water you drink during your meals.

      4) Don’t drink diet drinks, or any kind of sodas. It makes a huge difference.

      5) Change up your breakfast. 6 eggs would get you there faster than two small chicken breasts. BTW, it’s in the book. Tim encourages his dieters to eat eggs. Some proteins hit your system faster. I used whey my first month and it really made a difference.

      6) Ice pack on the upper back. It helps, and it works!

      7) Measure stuff that matters. Measure inches, exercise ability (like how many pushups or air squats you can do before giving out). If you want to be thin, just stop eating and starve yourself skinny. If you want to be fit, this diet will work just fine if you do it exactly as prescribed. You can be skinny and fit, but sometimes you’ve got to build muscle and internal organ health to get to skinny the healthy way.

      8) Eat lentils. The lysine in lentils really makes a big difference. They also have much more protein to carb packed in.

  33. Hi Tim,

    I can totally relate to the pot belly stomach you mention in 4 Hour Body, that even the thinnest of women have. Any other suggestions than the hip flexor stretches and planks you can help provide? I’m sure diet has to do with this too. I’ve also been doing the good ole cat vomit excercise. 🙂



  34. Wow really nice, the picture i like the most, is the guy lifting 500 pounds! I do have to work out a bit, until I can make that! 😀

  35. Tim,

    You mentioned such videos easily costing $40,000-50,000 and $100,000 with a production company… I am looking to start a company of this kind, but cannot find many such companies through googling. Can you list any you know of?

  36. Tim,

    I have been following your studies since the release of 4HWW and this article is great. Earlier this year I was working as marketing director of Rebounderz Indoor Trampoline Arena. When I was brought in, there was little attention being payed to internet marketing. Being a musician, I wrote a song and had a group of passionate videographers help me to build this promotional video to assist in developing interest in the sport and franchise, all was done for less than 800 dollars. I will post the link to the video to give other entrepreneurs a look at what is possible on a budget when finding the right hungry individuals. Thanks again for the wealth of info your blog and books have provided me!

    -Justin Vincent

  37. [Comment moderated]

    Thanks for the great post. I think this would be a really cool idea for a product that our company has just began producing. THis post has made me really consider making a product trailer.

  38. You know thus considerably in the case of this subject, made me in my opinion consider it from so many varied angles. Its like women and men don’t seem to be involved unless it’s one thing to accomplish with Woman gaga! Your own stuffs nice. Always deal with it up!

  39. The clips of raw footage, before editing and everything, look sort of gritty and dim and everything else, which is how my footage always is… but I have yet to figure out how to get that finished, professional look. What do you do in the editing process to make the quality look so great in the final video?

  40. Really enjoyed the trailer Tim. This was such a cool idea. I remember seeing you tweet way back about wanting to make a movie trailer for the book so it’s cool to finally see how it all came together. Awesome stuff.

  41. Wow, Tim! Your posts are so generous with free content and details. My sister is a professional film maker, and she is looking for niches. Of course, I sent her a link to this post. Thank you so much for sharing your joie de vivre!

  42. Tim,

    This is an awesome post. The entire post was inspiring and generated so many ideas as I was reading it. The breakdown of the production process was very helpful, and provided plenty “take-aways” that I will be applying to future video marketing efforts.

    Your ending words, related to how larger dreams are easier to accomplish than mediocre dreams, really spoke to me. Man, you hit it on the head!

    From the beginning, you planned to do a style of book promotion video that had never been done –to this magnitude– and you accomplished that. It took a lot of time, energy, planning and commitment, but the end result was all worth it. Setting your sights on a smaller vision for the video would never have produced all the ingredients that were necessary to make it this much of a success. I totally get it!

    I am truly inspired and will be raising the bar on my current and future goals. Thank you so much for helping me refocus!

    Tim Walker

  43. Hello, Neat post. There is a problem along with your web site in internet explorer, would test this… IE still is the market leader and a huge component to folks will omit your wonderful writing because of this problem.

  44. Extremely interesting, enlightening … useful. Thanks for all the real facts and examples. Great stuff.

  45. What I appreciate about this post is a huge amount of generosity you show towards everyone involved. It’s a lot of hard work that normally goes unnoticed, thanks for showing me how to be generous.