The wellness coach and realtor, 24, was featured on the cover of the March 2022 issue of Men’s Health Magazine, where he talked about the “Terminator” actor, 74, and the life lessons he taught him.
A Simple, Yet Very Effective Advice
Baena shared that Schwarzenneger’s advice to him about acting was funny at first, then it made sense: Do the reps.
“I was like, ‘Really? Like in workouts? What are you talking about?'” he said, but then he found out the meaning of Schwarzenneger’s words.
“I say the lines over and over again—with a scene partner, an acting coach, or just by myself—repeating, repeating, repeating until it’s muscle memory,” Baena explained. “To a point where you can wash your clothes, do your dishes, basically do anything—and spit the lines out. About as glamorous as lateral raises. But as in the gym, repetitive work is the price of success.”
On Not Using The Schwarzenneger Name
However, Baena doesn’t like using the Schwarzenneger family name, especially during his auditions. He values honor and hard work above all else.
“My dad is old-school; he doesn’t believe in handouts,” he noted. “He believes hard work pays off, and so do I. I love the word honor, and I’m very prideful in the sense that if I use my dad’s contacts or ask him for favors, I wonder what honor is that gonna bring me?”
He continued, “When I go to auditions, they don’t know who I am, because we don’t have the same last name.”
And when successfully gets a gig, he’s proud to say, “I know it’s all me.”
Remembering The Past
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Baena is Schwarzenneger’s love child with ex-mistress Mildred Baena. Him admitting to the affair ended his marriage with his then-wife, Maria Shriver. The exes share four children, Katherine, 32, Christina, 30, Patrick, 28, and Christopher, 24.
The messy scandal had a huge impact on Baena while growing up.
“I remember the day very vividly. I was in the eighth grade. Fifth or sixth period,” he recalled. “And I get called out of class to leave. And my mom’s there, and she’s like, ‘We gotta go—everyone is finding out about you and who your father is.'”
With all the paparazzi hounding them at the time, Baena and her mom went to Texas to hide.
“She was really the only person I had, and I was really the only person that she had,” he said of his mother. “No one knew, and everyone wanted the details. We had each other’s backs.”
The One Thing They Have In Common
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Despite it all, Schwarzenegger still reached out to his son and built a relationship with him. Now, they bond over fitness.
The actor was a body-building expert, but Baena didn’t want to reach out to him for help.
“Even though I could call him anytime, I was too proud. I went straight to the book,” Baena admitted. “I wanted to figure it out myself.”
But he did reach out to his old man for tips, specifically on how to work on his shoulders. It led to the father and son training together on his 18th birthday.
“I was so nervous. I was being observant, trying to see what he was doing and the way he was acting,” Baena said.
He Will Never Change His Last Name
While he admires his dad, Baena has always been firm on not using the Schwarzenegger name.
In an interview in December 2021, Baena explained his decision.
“There’s a few different variables in that,” he said on E! News’ Daily Pop. “But that’s just not my main priority at the moment, so I’m just focused on building myself up and building my career in acting and real estate and just focusing on that right now.”
“I mean, my dad is a stallion. He’s a man’s man, I like to think, and I look up to him a lot,” he added. “So in a way, he’s influenced a lot of things: the path that I have taken with acting, with fitness and my physique and the many other things that I’m doing.”
Baena shared the same sentiment in his January 18 interview on the “Unwaxed” podcast.
“I haven’t focus[ed] on changing it. I’m doing my own thing,” he said. “I haven’t thought of it that much. I have a last name already. I’m already doing so much and succeeding and moving forward with my goals. That’s the last thing on my mind.”