Farhan Akhtar is probably one of the most versatile members of the B-Town. He is a composer, a lyricist, a singer, a director and also an incredible good actor. His most memorable performance has been his portrayal of Milkha Singh in the biopic Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. Milkha Singh is a former Olympian and an athlete of international fame who had brought India numerous accolades as a sprinter. His unimaginable running prowess had earned him the title of the Flying Sikh. Farhan gave everything he got to ensure that this legend comes to life on the silver screen. Two things made Farhan’s performance rock solid – his acting skills and his impeccable physique. The entire nation was swiped off the moment Farhan stepped onto the silver screen with his lean body, crisp abs and that perfect athlete-like structure. Today, we will share with you the entire Farhan Akhtar Workout and Diet Plan so that you too can achieve a perfect athlete body.
The Workout Needs and Plan
Farhan had to play the role of Milkha Singh who was an ace athlete. An athlete’s physique is very different from a normal bodybuilder. To play the role of a sprinter, Farhan needed a physique that was lean and yet had ripped muscles. The muscles needed to be prominent without adding bulk to the body. The director Om Prakash Mehra invited two fitness trainers on board to achieve this feat – Samir Jaura and Melwyn Crasto. Samir was entrusted with the job prepare Frahan’s body while Melwyn was to train Farhan on the running styles and postures.
Based on the movie a complete workout and diet plan was laid down. The movie showed Milkha Singh’s complete life. So Farhan had to play the role of an army cadet as well as the role of Milkha Singh at the peak of his athletic career. There was a vast difference between the physical requirements of both the roles. Hence, first Farhan who was merely 64 kilos in weight had to put on 8 to 10 kg to get the body for the cadet. Then he had to reduce 10 kilos again while preparing for the body of the athlete.
Start of the workout journey:
Farhan began his workout in November of 2011. The first thing that he was asked to do was changing his lifestyle and lives in a more disciplined way. Farhan had to give up on the late night parties, alcohol and smoking. He had to go to bed by 10 pm and wake up early in the morning by 5. Farhan took around 13 months to keep himself in shape for the movie.
To have an athlete’s body that endorses minimal body fat, a strict diet control is very important. Farhan was put on a strict diet which he adhered to religiously. The entire diet plan was broken down to 6 to 7 meals throughout the day. Farhan had to refrain from fats and sugars. However, to keep a balanced diet, all his meals had to provide a source of protein, vegetables and some carbs. The main source of carbohydrates was fruits and vegetables. He refrained from chapattis, bread and rice entirely.
In the initial phase where he had to put to weight, he consumed around 3500 calories a day along with five liters of water. In the later phase, when he had to shed down, he consumed only about 1800 calories a day. Only the number of calories intake was played with, his diet chart remained the same throughout.
Breakfast: Farhan’s day started with a healthy, protein rich breakfast consisting of a 6 egg-white omelet, mushrooms and a glass of orange juice.
Mid Morning Snack: About 2 hours after the breakfast, Farhan would have oatmeal along with half glass of skimmed milk. With a gap for 30 minutes, this was followed by coconut water i.e. Nariyal Paani.
Lunch: Farhan did not have the luxury to enjoy rich and lavish meals. His lunch included sauteed vegetables like a cabbage, beans, Pak Choy also called as Chinese cabbage, broccoli, asparagus etc. Pak Choy being rich in nutrient was consumed almost 250 grams in a meal. For protein, 150 grams of grilled chicken was included. Everything was cooked in olive oil.
Post Lunch: Around 2 hours after lunch Farhan used to have a protein shake as his he was undergoing a rigorous work out plan and so he needed enough protein for muscle development and recovery.
Evening Snack: This snack usually consisted of a moong or boiled chana salad. The salad was tossed with cucumber and tomatoes. Farhan restricted his fruit choice to berries only as it had a great amount of antioxidants and was amazingly low on its glycemic index.
Dinner: There was not much of a difference between lunch and dinner. The menu remained pretty much the same. However, for dinner, chicken was replaced with fish like salmon or basa.
After Dinner: The last thing on the menu was a protein shake that was consumed before going to bed.
Farhan had an incredibly difficult diet plan. He could not even add salt to his meals as sodium led to water retention that was fatal for this work out goal. He missed having gulab jamuns and other sweets however; he had to keep his nerves under strict surveillance. He was allowed to have only a glass of Lassi every 15 days.
Work Out Plan:
Farhan’s workout plan was divided between Melwyn and Samir. He used to work out 6 hours a day in there intervals i.e. Workout for 2 hours three times a day. The workout plan was divided into athletic training, functional training and weight training.
Farhan along with Melwyn Crasto used to meet up at Priyadarshani Park at 6: 30 am for the athletic training. The focus of this training was to teach Farhan about professional printing so that he can convincingly play the sprinting sequences in the movie. Farhan says with this training, he became almost a professional runner.
This routine including 3 major components of running – upper leg motion, knee lift and push off. Milkha Singh had a typical pattern of running, his right hand used to bend inwards while sprinting and with Melwyn’s coaching Farhan was able to capture that. Each session, Farhan would sprint for 1200 meters.
The second workout session (6 hours after morning session) involves functional training with Coach Samir Jaura. The functional training focused on strengthening the core as well as enhances flexibility which is of importance for a sprinter. Routines involved included climbing up the rope with weights on the legs, hanging down and several abdominal exercises. This session took about 1.5 hours to 2 hours. He used to do 12 sets consisting of 15 reps of pushups, pull ups, high knees and 10 such exercises.
The third session of the day commenced at 6 pm consisting of weight training. The routines focused on Hypertrophy Strength Training (HST) and Tabata. The HST helped in gaining muscles by subjecting the body to increasing loads. In the first 6 months of the training, 3 months were dedicated to HST. Samir had laid down a special 12 week program for Farhan.
Abs: Working on the abdomen, Farhan used to do 12 sets of crunches involving 200 repetitions each. Thus, each day with each session, he used to do 2400 crunches. He also did side benches, leg raises and several other abdominal routines.
Legs: Since Farhan was playing the role of a sprinter, his legs had to be in perfect condition. For this, he work out plan involved a set of 300 repetitions of each – lunges, leg press, leg extensions, squats and jump squats. This was followed by 100 calf raises.
Biceps: Those incredibly pumped up biceps were a result of a rigorous work out plan including cable work outs, curls, concentration curls and preacher curls etc.
After 3 months, he moved on to Tabata which is a special and a tough module. Tabata involved achieving the maximum number of repetitions in a given time span. His Tabata session included 8 to 10 sets of several routines with each set lasting for about 90 seconds. Two muscle groups focused on a body like shoulder and legs, chest and biceps and back and triceps etc.
For the athletic version, when Farhan had to lose weight, his routine consisted of weight training and endurance training. Each day, he used to focus on two muscle groups. The routine involved 15 sets with 100 repetitions each. After a year, he completed his training and by then he had only 5 percent body weight.
Farhan’s impress physique is a perfect example of dedication and determination. For more than a year Farhan refrained from his leisurely life with respect to food, drinks and lifestyle. He did everything that it took to do justice to his role and it paid off really well. You too can achieve such a physique if you are determined enough.