General Hospital star Donnell Turner is destined for the big screen — and not just because of his movie star good looks. For this week’s Wellness Wednesday, the fan-favorite chatted with Soap Hub about how he stays in shape physically and is studying movie-making when he’s not in Port Charles.
Donnell Turner — Working Smart
Turner says that he recently had a milestone birthday, one of a few reasons he takes a different approach to fitness these days. “As we get older, [staying fit] becomes more about diet,” Turner advises. “You can’t pick up those heavy weights like you could 10 years ago. The same thing I did [much earlier in life] now causes injuries. I tell my guy friends, ‘Use lighter weights but do higher reps’ as we get older.”
The actor says he also frequents the gym a little bit less often. “I used to work out six days a week,” he says. “Now, I work out every other day. I need a full day to recover.”
Conversations With Maurice Benard
“We have to be more strategic about wellness, less reckless, more careful,” he says. Turner suggests that an important component of wellness is being kind to oneself. “Give yourself a break. Take your vitamins. Say your prayers.
“I had a conversation with Maurice [Benard, Sonny] about being in the here and now,” Turner adds. “Five years ago something going wrong would have really bothered me. Now, I try to shrug my shoulders. There’s something I heard that I live by — one definition of hell is meeting who you could have been when you die. I don’t want to meet that person. I want to be that person.”
Donnell Turner — State of Mind
To that end, Turner has enrolled in a Los Angeles film school where he’s studying for his bachelor’s degree in digital filmmaking. He has eight more months to go. “I’m learning a lot,” says Turner, who was recently inducted into the school’s honor society. When he met his fellow inductees, they wanted to know what he — a working actor on a network TV series — was doing in school.
“For most, a contract [like I have at GH] is a finish line,” he suggests. “I don’t see it that way. It’s a start for something more. I believe that ‘your direction is more important than your location.'”
Turner says he can relate to Jennifer Lopez, who was the recipient of the iHeart Radio Music Awards ICON Award in 2022. She ended her speech by telling listeners that she was just getting started. “I feel that way,” Turner says. “I still approach things like I did when I was growing up. I still keep the same zeal and gusto.”