With customised fitness plans, celebrity trainers like Kris Gethin and Ramona Braganza help our stars lose the fat, find their abs and get super fit for the screen. By Mrinalini Sundar
Enough has been said about how Matthew McConaughey transformed and lost 22 kilograms for his film, Dallas Buyers Club. Back home, Shah Rukh Khan left many a shirt undone to display his hard-earned eight pack in Happy New Year. Hrithik Roshan’s perfect ‘V-cut’ for the film, Ban g Bang –— including a 30 cm waist size — was no easy task either. Today, a superstar is no good without a super trainer. in fact, when Priyanka Chopra’s trainer deserted her (over production delays) during Mary Kom, her director Omung Kumar could resume shooting only after other trainers took over. That’s how dependent actors have become on their fitness trainers. We get talking to some of the best:
Client: Arjun Kapoor
According to Kyle Arthur, 40, from Portsmouth, UK, body building is an umbrella term for influencing body composition. The man behind the remarkable transformation of actor Arjun Kapoor, from fat to fit, Arthur’s interest in the principles of building a body saw him complete his Exercise Science Bachelors Degree, and attempt a degree in teaching. “I spent 14 months lecturing in exercise science before coming out to India to train Bollywood actors,” says Arthur, who has been actively involved in body building for the past five years. His area of expertise is building lean muscle tissue and reducing fat cells. About training with Kapoor, “I’ve been coaching Arjun from December 2013 and have had a great relationship with him. He is a great client and continues to push past his boundaries with his work ethic and commitment. With Arjun, we had a number of goals, but mostly it was to slowly and steadily build lean muscle tissue whilst burning those stubborn fat cells,” says the trainer, who seems a hard task master. “I’m not someone who listens to excuses and accepts them easily,” he admits. Arthur creates a strict diet and educates clients in the kitchen. And though he is busy training Bollywood actors, working with a Hollywood actor is on his agenda.
Arthur’s RAW28 training system “is designed with intensity at the hub of its design and is perfect for people who hunt for a challenge.’’ We’re talking 28 days of bludgeoning your muscles, your energy systems and forcing your body to adapt. ‘‘It incorporates old-school bodybuilding principles, functional training and high intensity intervals. Another effective method for transformation is HIIT (high intensity interval training). It is not about spending 30-40 minutes on a piece of cardio equipment, but to unleash 100 per cent effort for 10-20 seconds followed by a period of rest. This is how we really stimulate fat loss,” he shares.
For entrepreneur, Nick Orton, 45, fitness is key. With one of the largest networks of elite personal trainers, Physique Elite, and a 20- year experience worldwide, plus 2,000 trainers in India, he has global athletes, high profile actors, leading businessmen and politicians as clients. In his book, Think Big, that launched a few weeks ago, Orton asks if, given the right tools, fitness professionals can grasp the huge opportunity that lies before them. He also has the Bodypower brand and a fitness clothing line. Two of his trainers who have made a mark with our celebrity brigade are Kyle Arthur and Kris Gethin.
Clients: Hrithik Roshan, Mahesh Babu
From Wales, Kris Gethin, 40, has chiselled the likes of Hrithik Roshan and John Abraham into shape and believes that body building provides energy, focus, confidence, discipline and happiness. Attracted to individual sports over team events, Gethin initially began training to help with the rehabilitation of his back. Now a specialist in transformation, he shares his experience with actor Hrithik Roshan, “Our priority was to rehab two slipped disks in his back and recover his knee injuries, while transforming his physique for the role of Krrish 3. We had to do a lot of core stability, secondary and stabilising strengthening while working on his primary muscles to ensure that we also developed his vanity muscles to suit a superhero and his role in Bang Bang,” begins the bodybuilder who has been training celebrities since 2005. Paying attention to his client’s diet and workout even during travel, he says,“I give much credit to Hrithik because he is the most focussed client I have ever worked with.” He has also trained Telugu actor, Mahesh Babu.
12 week plan
A fan of Arnold Schwarzenegger, Gethin believes that “12 weeks is all you need to transform.’’ He recommends a nutrition, training and supplement plan based on the client’s full blood analysis, physical report, blood type and body type. and ensures that clients’ ‘‘neurotransmitters, GI, PH, hormones, antioxidant levels, etc, are all at an optimum during and after the transformation.”
Clients: Halle Berry, Jessica Alba, Anne Hathaway
Having trained the likes of Halle Berry, Jessica Alba, Anne Hathaway, Ryan Reynolds and others in Hollywood, Ramona Braganza is in the country to promote her new book, Feel Fit Look Fantastic in 3-2-1, published by Harper Collins. “It is a health and wellness book designed for the Indian body type. As an Indian, with parents from Mumbai, I face the same genetic health challenges as other Indians, though I have been raised in the West. At 52, I hope I am a positive role model and can inspire others to get fit,” begins the trainer whose first celebrity client, Alba was her big Hollywood break. “I recently trained Paula Patton for her 2016 movie, World of Warcraft, where she rides horses in battle scenes. By training constantly, she has become very fit, and can easily complete gruelling days on set and master new skills,” shares the passionate gymnast who started out by “training Alba for the TV show, Dark Angel.’’ Sharing that her work with celebrities is a lot of fun, the former professional cheerleader for
The LA Raiders says, “At times it goes unnoticed, like last summer, on singer Ke$ha’s music tour, we biked around Sweden without any problems. Not so, when I took Zac Efron on a hike up a mountain in Vancouver, and he was spotted by teenage girls. I had to call security.’’
“My fitness philosophy states this idea: 3-2-1. Get ready mentally, get set physically, go forward emotionally. Most of us, lead a fairly sedentary lifestyle. Hollywood actors are fortunate in that they are always challenging themselves physically, mentally and emotionally. That is the big secret they have to being able to prolong a youthful body and mind,” she says.US $150 for a workout session. Details: ramonabraganza.com
Clients: Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif
Having helped actresses like Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif and Kareena Kapoor attain those enviable vital stats,Yasmin Karachiwala believes perfection for each individual body is very different. “There are various factors that play an important role in how each body can achieve perfection,” she begins. Explaining that bodies are relative to the roles actors play, she shares, “Katrina had the hottest body in Dhoom 3, Deepika had the hottest body in Happy New Year. Depending on what look a celeb requires, I chalk out a food plan for them. In my opinion, dieting will not make you fit. You have to eat more frequently (I eat every two hours) and eat smart.”
Karachiwala breaks the myth of spot reduction. “There is no magic formula to lose fat from the area that you desire. You need to do a full body workout,” she says. Suggesting cross training, running, walking, biking, swimming, hiking, pilates or yoga for the non-sporty types, she tells us how she got started. “I discovered fitness under pressure. My best friend had a new boyfriend and wanted to join the gym to look better. She forced me to join her for companionship. Reluctantly I agreed and over a couple of months I realised I loved it. So here I am after 22 years,” she says. The best part about her job? “To watch their bodies take shape to meet their goals and knowing that you’re a part of the process,” she says.
Karachiwala’s favourite workout is pilates. But it doesn’t stop there, for her company, Body Image, also offers options like core align and wunda chair. “Fitness fads come and go, but pilates is favoured by Deepika and Katrina,” says the trainer. Rs2,000 per class/session.
Southwatch: Kannan N
An engineer, Kannan was first introduced to actor Suriya by his hair stylist, Thilina Nuwan. Kannan has been working with the actor since Maattrraan in 2012; the latter’s six pack has always been the talk of the industry. “For Suriya, fitness is like eating food. It is compulsory. He wanted to make sure he does not miss even one day’s training, which is why I always travel with him,” begins the 29-year-old. Focussing on functional training, stamina building, toning muscles and weight reduction, Kannan incorporates sports like football and swimming in Suriya’s regular workout. A professional karate master, he includes that as well. “Whatever work-out you do, it helps him during his fight sequence or his dance steps,” shares the trainer. As for Suriya’s diet, Kannan has complete control over what he eats. “He has at least three litres of water every day and if he wants to eat something, he will check with me and then go ahead. I include a lot of veggies, protein rich shakes, health drinks and oats in his diet,” says the trainer who works out with the actor at The Leela Palace’s gym. “He also gets trained for marathons and cycling events,” he concludes.
A session costs Rs2,000. Details: 9962039373