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Meet the man behind Farhan Akhtar's amazing physique
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Farhan Akhtar trained with Samir Jaura for five to six hours every day for
13 months. (Image Courtesy: Mid-Day)
How would you describe Farhan Akhtar's physique before he started
training for Bhaag Milkha Bhaag?
I have been training Farhan for the last five years. Before he signed the
movie, his fitness level was just 70 per cent of what you see in the film.
Once he signed the project, Farhan and I had a long chat. I told him that
since he was playing an athlete, his body needed to be hundredfold better.
How much weight did Farhan gain and lose for this film?
Initially, Farhan was around 66 kilos. His weight was around 75 kilos in
the portion where he sports a rippled look. We shot that part first. Then
he had to drop 15 kilos for the portion in which he joins the army. This
took three-and-a-half months. I couldn't change his body structure, only
his muscles had to be toned down.
What did his workout schedule entail?
I would change his training schedule every 15 days so that his body does
not get accustomed to a particular kind of workout. I would make him do
strength training and later hypertrophic strength training whereby your
muscles thicken. He also trained with heavy weights and I made him
follow the Tamata Principle where you train with emphasis on time. He
also went through endurance training. It took him 13 months to develop a
chiseled look. He trained for five to six hours every day.
What diet did he follow?
Farhan was off rice, roti, bread and alcohol for 13 months. He had low
sodium food which was monitored regularly. We gave him a meal that
balanced his carbohydrates, protein and fat intake. He ate six to seven
meals in a day; I ensured he ate every three hours.
You are also working with Priyanka Chopra for her biopic on Mary Kom.
How are you training her?
Since she plays a boxer, it involves a lot of shoulder movements. Her back
and legs have to be strong because while boxing, one is constantly
Who else is training with you?
I am training Rani Mukherji for a film with Yash Raj Productions and also
Aamir Khan's son, Junaid. It's just general training for him, though.
Bollywood News Service
Get quads of the gods like Farhan Akhtar
The talk of the town for the fabulous physique he has built for his
upcoming movie Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Farhan is not your regular bodybuffing star. The 39-year-old actor and director is said to have worked on
his body for nearly two years to achieve not only the look, but also the
fitness level of one of India's top sportspersons Milkha Singh. "It took
consistent training for four to five hours a day to get three different
looks," says Samir Jaura, his personal trainer. “Farhan’s ectomorphic (lean
build) body type helped him, and his body responded well to hypertrophy
strength training (HST).”
1 Jump squats with the barbell- An ideal exercise for your quadriceps,
hamstrings and calves, be careful with it though. If there is tension, it
means you are doing something right; however, outright sharp pain is a
distress signal and you need to change your activity.
2 Cross lunge with the barbell- This move targets the hamstrings and
glutes extra hard, teaching your body balance and coordination at the
same time. It also enhances your ability to move in any sport-in case you
were planning any 'crossovers' of your own.
3 Reverse lunge with the barbell- Reverse lunges place less stress on your
knees when compared to forward lunges as it is easier to form the 90degree angle between your thighs and calves. It also keeps your knee
aligned with your ankle.
4 Hamstring leg extensions- A weak VMO (the teardrop shaped muscle
near the inside of the knee) can cause the knee-cap to move the wrong
way in its grove, causing knee pain.
5 Hamstrings leg curl- Work your hamstrings as hard as you would work
your biceps. Don't ignore them just because you don't see them. You
should be able to do hamstring curl at least 60 per cent of the weight you
would for knee extensions in order to maintain balance and to prevent
6 Donkey calf raises- Unlike conventional standing calf raises, this
exercise places the load directly over your hips, bypassing the spine. It
puts maximum focus on your gastrocnemius (larger of the two calf
7 Sissy squats- There's nothing 'sissy' about the sissy squats! In fact, it's
one of the toughest moves you are likely to perform. Designed to produce
massive muscle separation in the quadriceps, it can be used as a warm-up
or even a finishing movement-the latter in this case.
"You can't look like an athlete if you don't shock your system into growth.
Do the exercises mentioned above without taking rest in between sets.
Lift enough weight to get in about 12-15 reps for each move and rest
anywhere between 30 seconds and a minute at the end of each round.
Repeat this routine six to eight times, twice a week and see results in
around three weeks," says Farhan's personal trainer Samir Jaura.
Making of Milkha
Farhan Akhtar sweated it out for 13 months to get the perfect Milkha look
Farhan's favourite exercise, according to his trainer, was lateral raise
which helped him develop round, muscled shoulders. Along with that, he
did 15 sets of front raises with dumbbells regularly.
For his eight-packs, Farhan did around 2,500-3,000 crunches, leg raises,
side bends and other abdominal exercises daily.
The runner's legs were attained through 300 counts of squats, jump
squats, lunges, leg press andextension and a100 calf raises.
• Liquid Diet
Fresh fruit shakes
To build his athletic body, Akhtar went on a liquid diet thrice in 13
months and he would stick to the diet for five days a week.
Endurance is Key
Akhtar's routine included functional training which consisted of 10
rounds and 15 repetitions of 10 exercises such as pull-ups, push-ups and
high knees under the keen supervision of his trainer Samir Jaura.
The bulging biceps developed only after he regularly did 12 sets of
exercises such as curls, preacher curls, cable workouts and concentration
Samir Jaura's passion for fitness was born out of desperation. "I was a
fat kid," says Jaura, now better known as Farhan Akhtar's personal trainer
in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. He recollects spending the better part of his
childhood munching on potato wafers and taking an hour to cycle to
tuitions which were only 15 minutes away. At 21, he decided to mend his
ways and lost 40 kg in four months through persistent cardio and
Jaura started off by training Manoj Bajpayee, then a resident in Jaura's
housing society in Lokhandwala. He went on to work with Fardeen Khan
and Urmila Matondkar for Jungle and was later Abhishek Bachchan's
personal trainer for two years. His biggest feat was helping the actor lose
25 kg for Raavan (2010).
"Farhan trusted me 150 per cent in what I was saying and the result was
there for everyone to see," says the 42-year-old fitness trainer. Bhaag
Milkha Bhaag's success has resulted in more projects: The forthcoming
Mary Kom biopic with Priyanka Chopra and the Yash Raj Films project,
Mardaani, starring Rani Mukerji. Even as more film projects come his
way, Jaura wants to choose work keeping in mind the production house,
the actor and the film's subject.
"I want to do serious projects where the actor wants to get 100 per cent
into the skin of the character," he says.
Farhan Akhtar Workout Routine & Diet Plan for Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag is a movie about the flying Sikh ‘Milkha Singh’ who
won commonwealth gold for India and missed out (by a fraction of a
second!) the bronze medal in the Olympics games that were held in Rome
in the year 1960. The film tells the tale of Milkha Singh from his struggle
for existence during the partition of the country to leading a refugee’s life
and winning honor and accolades for India in adverse circumstances.
The lead character of Milkha Singh is played by Farhan Akhtar. He made
his Hindi film debut by acting in the movie Rock On. Zindage na milegi
dobara is another movie from the star which was praised by the critics.
Farhan Akhtar is the son of famous screen writer Javed Akhtar. Apart
from acting Farhan has also participated in film direction, screen writing,
production, television show hosting and lyrics writing. Born on 9 July
1974, the highly versatile actor and director has received praises for his
acting in the movie.
Farhan Akhtar Exercising Schedule
The movie is directed by Rakesh Omprakash Mehra. The director took
the services of Samir Jaura for sculpting Farhan Akhtar’s body. The
inspiration was the look of Brad Pitt in Fight Club. The training sessions
began in November 2011. Initially the training was only for four days a
week and Farhan had to give 1 hour a day. Gradually the duration
increased to 6 days a week and Farhan had to devote 6 hours a day for the
Farhan trained for five to six hours daily. The training sessions included
lessons in cycling, repetitions, swimming, football, stair running, etc.
Farhan totally avoided all kinds of junk food while shooting for the movie.
A six course meal program for the day helped the actor gain adequate
strength and muscles to look and act like the Flying Sikh.
Farhan Akhtar enhanced his physique and stamina by around 30% for the
movie. There is a period in the movie when Farhan joins the army. To play
that part he had to drop 15 kilos of body weight. It took his trainer three
and a half months to accomplish that.
Training schedule for Farhan was changed after every 15 days so that his
muscles did not get accustomed to a routine. The chiseled look of Farhan
comes after 13 months of hard training. He further trained for an
additional period of 6 months after that. Farhan followed hypertrophic
training and strength training routine for thickening the muscles. He had
to follow the Tamata principle and was required to do weight exercises
by his trainer.
Farhan Akhtar Diet Pattern
For Farhan, breakfast for the day included egg whites/scrambled eggs and
fresh fruit juices. During lunch he had kebabs, dry fruits and digestive
biscuits that had low fat content. Other food items included beans,
asparagus, grilled chicken etc. At evening’s supper time the diet was of
protein shake. There was no or little dinner for him. Before bed he used to
have protein shake. Other food items consumed during the training
sessions were nariyal paani (also called as coconut water), oatmeal and
skimmed milk. Berry was the most favored fruit.
Farhan Akhtar ate around five to six times during his workout schedule.
He was off from alcohol, bread, chapati and rice for a period of 18 months.
The meals were balanced to ensure that they had adequate fat,
carbohydrate and protein content for the muscle building process. Farhan
ate after every 3 hours on the advice of the trainer during the 18 month
exercise schedule. He consumed 3,500 calories a day. For the soldier’s
look Farhan drank 5 liters of water a day. For the runner look, the
portions became smaller and calorie count was reduced to 1800.
Trainers for the Milkha look
The exercise routine of Farhan Akhtar was meticulously planned and well
executed by Samir Jaura. The routine was designed in such way so that it
added muscle to the ectomorph body of the actor. An ectomorph body is a
body with long and thin limbs. The exercise schedule became all the more
difficult as Farhan had to sport 3 different looks during the whole movie.
The lean runner and the bulky soldier were antagonistic views. The
trainer and Farhan both worked hard to get the desired looks. Farhan had
to sleep at 10 and rise at 5.30 for the training sessions. There were no late
night parties for Farhan for a long period of time.
The athletic training sessions of Farhan were conducted under the
guidance of Melvyn Castro. The sessions were held at Priyadarshini Park
in Mumbai. This training session was for increasing flexibility and for
The combined sessions and well planned diet pattern helped Farhan to
get the desired looks of the flying Sikh. Both his acting performances as
well as his looks have received praises from the critics.
Watch a video below to get an insight of how Farhan Akhtar transformed
into Milkha Singh.