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ZODIAC

Found 47 results

  1. Apple has updated its line of smart battery cases for the current generation on iPhones and the Cupertino giant has not only refined them but made them work in the favour of iPhones. The iPhone XR already has an impressive battery life and with the addition of the new Smart Battery Case, we were astonished as to how many hours our iPhones lasted. We got the smart battery case for the iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR and couldn't be happier with its performance. The new iPhone Smart Battery Case costs Rs 11,900 in India and here's our detailed analysis to let you know why it's worth it. How Does It Look? © MensXP/Akshay Bhalla Apple follows a similar design ethos as the original Smart Battery Case. However, there are a few design features that have changed from before. It has the same soft silicone material as the normal covers but has changed ergonomically. It has micro-fibre in the inside so that it keeps your iPhone clean and now has a light that lights up when you charge the case separately. The hump at the back is now evenly distributed and extends to the bottom of the case. At the front, Apple has also removed the chin so that you can now use gestures easily to navigate on your iPhone. The top end of the Smart Battery Case is bendable which you use to slip in your iPhone. Do make sure that you slide in the phone rather than popping it in as you can damage the lightning port inside the cover. Having said that the Smart Battery Case is refined ergonomically, the case does make your phone heavier. It's also quite thick which can be an issue for people who like to wear tight fitted jeans/bottoms. How Does It Work © MensXP/Akshay Bhalla The Smart Battery Case is integrated with iOS and you can see the status of your battery on the lock screen or on the battery widget. The Smart Battery Case has a dedicated Lightning port which means you can charge the case and iPhone at the same time. The case offers Lightning Passthrough which makes it easier to charge both devices at the same time. You should note that it will charge the iPhone first and then the Smart Battery Case. You can even fast charge both devices as the Smart Battery Case also supports USB-PD (power delivery). You will need Apple's fast charger and USB-C to lightning cable in order for this to work. © Apple You can even charge both the case and the iPhone wirelessly as it works almost the same as it does via the wall charger. The iPhone will get the priority and then it will charge the Smart Battery Case. How's The Battery Life? When it comes to battery discharge, the Smart Battery Case keeps the iPhone charged to 100% for almost an entire day. The iPhone first consumes juice from the smart case and then starts to use its own battery when the juice on the case is depleted. This effectively made the iPhone XR last up to almost two full days (42 hours) on a single charge and the iPhone XS Max for around 38 hours. Do note that we used both the smartphones as our daily drivers that included hours of browsing, GPS navigation, a little bit of gaming and a lot of emails. If you are the kind of iPhone user who spends most of the day on your phone and your life depends on it, this accessory is a no brainer. Sure, it's expensive but it is probably the most comprehensive and reliable battery case you can get. It's integrated with iOS and has smart charging features that you won't find in any third party smart battery cases. It works wirelessly and can also be charged rapidly with Apple's fast charger. iPhone cases are our favourite accessories for the phones, and if you are planning to buy one soon; why not extend your battery life while you're at it?
  2. Samsung announced one of the most iconic smartphones in the company history back in February and was the first to show off a foldable smartphone. The company has managed to produce the smartphone at a scale and is now ready to be sold in various regions, Huawei showed off their version of a foldable smartphone as well that also touted a unique and exciting design. Samsung has already started to send out review devices to journalists and there have been numerous reports about the $2000 dollar smartphone breaking after a single day of use. The Galaxy Fold has been suffering a broken screen sometimes due to user error or due to low durability. The first report comes from Dieter Bohn at The Verge where he had a piece of debris under the Galaxy Fold display. It was pressing up against the back of the display and caused a bump in the OLED panel. The debris managed to press against the display enough to break it and killed some vertical and horizontal rows of pixels. © Twitter/Steve Kovach For Steve Kovach of CNBC, the device's display broke right along the fold crease and the pixels in the folding area were dead. This kind of confirmed that the crease in the middle may cause an issue as the display broke right along the crease. © Twitter The Galaxy Fold also comes with a layer on the display that resembles some sort of protective glass. The layer is not supposed to be removed; however, some of the reviewers were not known of the case. Mark Gurman from Bloomberg removed the layer of the display file saying, The phone comes with this protective layer/film. Samsung says you are not supposed to remove it. I removed it, not knowing you're not supposed to (consumers won't know either). It appeared removable in the left corner, so I took it off. I believe this contributed to the problem." The removal of the film totally killed the smartphone as the left half of the display died. © Twitter/MKBD YouTuber Marques Brownlee also peeled off the protective layer and said "the display spazzed and blacked out. Started over with a replacement.” After one day of use... pic.twitter.com/VjDlJI45C9 — Steve Kovach (@stevekovach) April 17, 2019 Folding smartphones is a brand new concept for smartphones and it is bound to see some hiccups before becoming mainstream. Samsung is the only company right now that has managed to make foldable smartphones real then masses. The Galaxy Fold is definitely for first-generation early adopters as we will see some improvements in design in the near future. As of now, Galaxy Fold is already sold out when it comes to pre-orders and has "overwhelming demand”.
  3. It was a bitter-sweet day for Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan yesterday when the batsman played the best T20 innings of his career, scoring 97 runs off just 63 balls but could not achieve his maiden century in this particular format of the game in a Delhi Capitals win against the Dinesh Karthik-led Kolkata Knight Riders, as his teammate and South African cricketer Colin Ingram decided to steal the show on the final moments of the matchup. Deciding to go for a maximum instead of letting his partner take the strike and try for his first T20, Ingram scored a total of 14 runs in just 6 balls sealing a seven-wicket victory for the Capitals. However, yet another highlight of the evening came after the match ended in favour of Delhi when the team's wicket-keeper and the official babysitting mascot of the name, Rishabh Pant was found chasing Shikhar's son Zoravar all around the green field of Kolkata's legendary Eden Gardens Stadium. The five-year-old seemed to be having the time of his life as Pant put a towel around him and began swinging him in a circular motion right next to the pitch. Dear @tdpaine36, Pls be careful next time you ask Rishabh Pant to babysit. ðð#KKRvDC pic.twitter.com/EQMIFgCwxo — Sir Jadeja fan (@SirJadeja) April 12, 2019 Known for being absolutely fantastic around kids, the wicker-keeper-batsman has made a name for himself as a great babysitter ever since India's five-match Test series in Australia back in the final days of 2018, thanks to the extremely entertaining banter with the then Aussie skipper, Tim Paine. Adding to his narrative, Pant even posed with Paine's wife, Bonnie Paine and kids for a picture which would go viral for all the right reasons in the coming days. Tim Paine to @RishabPant777 at Boxing Day Test: "You babysit? I'll take the wife to the movies one night, you'll look after the kids?" *Challenge accepted!* ð¶ (ð¸ Mrs Bonnie Paine) pic.twitter.com/QkMg4DCyDT — ICC (@ICC) January 1, 2019 Watching the cricketer get along with Dhawan's son so well, the Indian fans of the game reacted with extreme joy: ððððððð perfect babysitter — Geetika ðð(@Geetikatuli) April 12, 2019 Abbe bs kr bhai. Gabbar k bete k sath pange mt le 𤣠— Aadi Sharma ð®ð³ (@aadisharma1900) April 12, 2019 Aur bulawo best babysitter. — chiku (@sjchiku) April 12, 2019 The best babysitter in the world isn't for everyone ðð — Dhananjay Saxena (@DhananjaySaxena) April 13, 2019
  4. Seeing the world through the eyes of an explorer soothes more than just our senses, it feeds our soul. There is a renewed sense of vitality that comes from seeking the world with an avid lust of a traveller, who wishes to discover new places and gather experiences that turn out to be nothing less than Aladdin's treasure. This becomes all the more poignant when people say that the world is an oyster for those who know where to look. Tryst with the travel bug is made memorable every time we witness the lush hill stations, or snow-capped mountains and pristine islands sitting in the lap of nature, that are scattered around the world. © Instagram Yet, such amazing experiences would get heightened manifold if one could witness the teeming beauty of this world in the company of someone they love and wish to share their life with. It is a life that most couples would kill for, and there is no guessing why. The possibility of discovering the captivating beauty of the earth with the person who makes your world go round, would pretty much be like living the dream life. And let us tell you that Vidit and Savi are living this exact life. They are lovers as well as travellers in love, and this is exactly how their story unfolded. For Vidit and Savi, their love for travelling and discovering the world together first began from the backseat of their school bus rides at DPS R. K. Puram. Talking about that time of their life Savi says, “we met in high school in New Delhi – we were friends for years, dated for ages, and then got married!” © Instagram Even their first date involved the outdoors, and even though it was a long time ago, Savi remembers it like it was yesterday, “we went for a long drive and coffee at a newly-opened coffee shop in the city! I'd happily do that on a date even today!” Even after having seen most of the world with Vidit, Savi is more than happy to take him up on a similar date even today - who said little things don't count? From that first date to a gazillion one-of-a-kind dates later, Savi and Vidit have come a long way. However, it was back in 2008 when the couple took the biggest leap of their lives. From travelling as a couple to scaling thousands of miles to get married and travel to a new place every month and amping that up to travelling to a new destination every few days and leaving their jobs to make it possible, Savi and Vidit's journey has been nothing short of an adventure. © Instagram The couple decided to document it all on their blog 'Bruised Passports', which today has a great following online. So, when Jaime Lynn Beatty once said that, “jobs fill your pocket, but adventures fill your soul,” we suppose nobody could live up to this saying better than the makers of 'Bruised Passports'. As of today, the couple has travelled to 90 countries around the world, with many more to go as per their itinerary. However, their journey as travellers in love began when they were teenagers. Recalling their journey as a couple, this is what Savi had to say, “we travelled a fair bit in South East Asia as teenagers when we had just started dating because Vid went to university in Singapore. That's when both of us fell in love with travelling together!” © Instagram Soon, life caught up with the young couple and “as we grew up, we moved to London and got married. At this stage of our lives, we would save our salaries to travel together each month. We spent almost 8 years in London and would try to travel to a new place every month! This is how we ended up exploring Europe, the US, and parts of Africa.” However, the thrill of exploration and discovery rubbed off on the couple and they began to seek much more of what they had already tasted of life as travellers. Savi shares more and says, “sometime along the way we fell in love with travelling and savouring new experiences. Eventually, we ended up working towards travelling full time. Experiencing remote corners and busy cities of the world together has brought us a lot closer. It's like being partners-in-crime at a whole new level.” © Instagram Yet, when we asked them of their most cherished memory, this is what they had to say, “Finnish Lapland - the feeling of lying in a transparent glass igloo and looking out at the Northern Lights is incomparable. A trip to Lapland offers so many bucket list items - riding a reindeer, sledging with husky dogs, seeing the Northern Lights, cruising through a frozen sea, swimming with icebergs - and for that reason, it is second to none!” Just reading about it is making us daydream about all the glory they might have witnessed, and that sure as hell would be one of the most romantic ways of spending a date night with our significant other, don't you agree? © Instagram But this journey that Savi and Vidit set out on over a decade ago has taught them as much about each other as individuals, as it has taught them about relationships and life at large. Vidit shares how he learns something new from Savi every single day, “I have learnt to be a fighter when it comes to achieving goals. Savi has a meticulous rhythm of working and because of that, I learn something new from her every day. She juggles so many different roles and does it all with perfection.” As for Savi, she claims that “I've learnt the art of prioritising from Vid and never settling for anything less than 100%. He strives for complete happiness, in work and life, and isn't afraid of spending hours, days, or even years to achieve something. But it has to look exactly like what he had in mind! I'm also really proud of the fact that he's passionate about gender equality and is always talking about how important it is to fight stereotypes and respect women.” © Instagram And when you ask the couple what their relationship has taught them over the years, they say, “loads. But mostly that a long term relationship isn't always about flowers and candles. It's about adventure, experiences, mind-numbing compatibility, and consciously CHOOSING to be with someone every single day. And marriage isn't about duties, being 'tied down' (the one stereotype we hate the most!) or becoming one soul!” For them, love and marriage mean nothing else than saying that, “it's actually about celebrating your individualities, being two financially independent people supporting each other's dreams, giving each other strength when all hope is lost, and most importantly having fun!” © Instagram Savi and Vidit may have travelled far and wide on the face of this earth, but they have also managed to discover themselves in the process, and grow as individuals as well as a couple by coming in touch with myriad people, places and cultures which only helped them to appreciate life and each other a lot better. Why? Because this world can be the greatest teacher, and when you know where to look, it can surprise you with some of life's most splendid experiences.
  5. 'Apex Legends' is the latest and hottest Battle Royale game that is available to play for free on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It was quite an unexpected release by Electronic Arts, however, the game has found success in a matter of days. Just three days after its launch, the game has managed to rake in 10 million players. The biggest game in the Battle Royale genre Fortnite was able to achieve the same milestone in two weeks. © Electronic Arts “We knew it would be risky to take the franchise in this direction, to go free to play, and do a surprise launch,” Respawn CEO Vince Zampella wrote in a blog post. “But we fell in love with Apex Legends and wanted, needed, other people to play it, too.” In addition to the overall player count, the developer also says that Apex has already reached 1 million concurrent players. © Electronic Arts The game is set in the Titanfall universe that has fluid and snappy controls and features some of the most popular features from different genres. It essentially has gunplay like 'Call of Duty' and has characters with special powers that you may be familiar with from Overwatch. It's this unique approach to the Battle Royale genre that made the game successful. © Electronic Arts Currently, you can download Apex Legends via EA Origins on PC and via respective online stores on consoles. Apex Legends is a completely free-to-play game with microtransactions that are only applicable to cosmetics. The microtransactions in 'Apex Legend' does not affect the in-game footage and work exactly as it does on 'Fortnite'.
  6. Before I begin, let me make a couple of things very clear. 1) This is not my very first transformation. My first transformation was back in 2016. You can read about it here. 2) I have been training for nearly 2.5 years now and have an extensive athletics background. 3) The story documented here talks about me getting into photo shoot condition for which, the prep started early August last year. (This was preceded by a 6-8 months of hard core bulk.) 2018 was a big year for me. Not only did I complete 5 years at MXP but also got married to the woman I love. Both my personal as well as professional life moved into new realms of reality. For some things, I was ready. For some, I wasn't. More responsibilities at work came down like mountain, which of course, further narrowed the time I had for myself. Towards the end on 2017, I had made a resolution to put on more muscle on my frame and I knew that this is going to be a tedious task. And so it proved to be. I had too much on my plate to finish and wasn't able to get my diet and training in line and I also lacked accountability. I needed a coach and that's when I got in touch with Akash Vaghela at RNT Fitness. This is what happened after that. The Tri-Phasic Approach Phase 1 – Initial Cut Just like I mentioned above, my goal was muscle building, naturally. At the very start, I had put on a little fat. So to counter that, my first phase was to lean out. I still had muscle on my frame but not as much as I wanted. This was my initial cut and its objective was to prepare me for putting on more muscle later into the year. Always remember, lean out before putting on muscle. When you are fat, your body is well primed to getting fatter. Hence, this cut. Phase 2 – Bulking After losing over 5 kilos on the initial cut, we decided to start a long bulk. This had me eating up to 3500 calories a day and training the hardest that I ever had. My eating plans were set in stone and I followed that to the T. I am good at dieting and at the same time, work a 12-hour desk job. So a set meal plan saved a lot of time. I cooked, packed and ate. No thinking about what to eat. In The Middle Of The Bulk, Came My Wedding Just when I was eating huge amounts of food, I decided to get fat. This meant socializing and endless parties. Unsurprisingly, all the damage I had expected happened. I was already in a surplus and all the wedding food added further more to my daily caloric cap. Though I didn't track but I was easily eating nearly 5K calories during the month of June-July. I drove myself into the dirty bulking category but I had no choice. What I did here was I trained heavier than usual and made sure I was putting the surplus calories to worthwhile use. This Is How I Looked At The End Of The Bulk (Fat) Phase 3- The Final Cut In the early weeks of August, the wedding madness got over. The scale weighed me in at 80 kilos. This was the heaviest I had ever been and of course, I had more fat than muscle. This was about it, and my coach and I decided to start the final cut, which would eventually lead to a photo shoot. I geared up and got into it. This is how I ended up on the shoot day. (In January) I ended my cut at nearly 63 kilos at about 10 percent body fat .In all, a loss of about 17 kilos. What I Ate My diet plan was set which means that I ate the same things every day. Now please, you don't have to do this too. It was doable for me so I did it. These were the food items. 1) Rice 2) Potatoes 3) Ghee/Olive Oil 4) Oats 5) Milk 6) Chicken 7) Wheat The above things are all what my meals comprised of right from the bulk to the cut. Only the quantities were changed according to the goal. (Please understand that no food in isolation makes you fat. It's the amount of calories you eat.) Training This was a complete game changer for me. Before training with Akash I was hitting the gym almost 5-6 times a week. This meant no time dedicated to recovery. He flipped it all up and had me lifting only 4 days a week. This made a HUGE difference in my strength and recovery levels being a natural. 1) Monday – Chest, back shoulders 2) Tuesday – Off 3) Wednesday – Legs and arms 4) Thursday – Off 5) Friday – Chest, back shoulders 6) Saturday – Legs and arms 7) Sunday – off I didn't do freaking 5-6 exercises per muscle group. Instead, I picked up the top 2-3 exercises for every muscle group that I was perfect at doing and a huge margin to overload. Working to failure also went out of the window and sets were limited to 3 per exercise. The focus here was on perfect form and progressive overload. I also got used to reverse pyramiding the sets. Working with Akash as my coach to drive this transformation, it added to my knowledge and capabilities of my body to push to new levels. For an in-depth look at my eating habits and training, you can follow me on Instagram.
  7. Looking back, I remember, I led a very unhealthy lifestyle and had ballooned up to an alarming 100kgs. This was the number one reason why I started to work out and going to the gym, as I was apprehensive about what could happen to me, health-wise. Making a drastic change in my lifestyle and eating habits, when everyone around me was partying and eating junk, was a big U-turn for me. But now, I am glad that I did it. When I started working out, I was told a lot of misleading things. "Don't eat this, take this supplement, eat fat burners, and purchase a mass gainer" and what not. A lot of wrong info came my way without any filter, which led me to be utterly confused and not knowing where to begin. Then came a turning point in my life, as I joined Get Set Go and decide to train under the guidance of coach and co-founder Pratik Thakkar. He helped me in achieving the kind of body I wanted for the past 7 years. He got me there in 6 months and that too, without any useless supplements. He worked on my diet and workout plans and I dedicatedly followed through. Eventually, I got in such good shape that people thought that I was on steroids. The only supplements used through my journey were Whey and Creatine Monohydrate. My training was everywhere. I was doing bro-splits and working out almost every day. This led to poor recovery and poor muscle growth. Pratik then flipped my training around and focused more on recovery and drove me away from the bro-split. My training mostly comprised of push-pull and legs and arms. In time, my volume dropped as well and I was not doing a million reps now either. This brought about the biggest change in my physique. I am now stronger than when I started, my form is way much better and I train intelligently. I don't feel beat up and swiftly get through my schedule. Fitness is about striking a good balance between diet, training and your lifestyle. Be regular, don't cheat and most importantly, get a coach to take care of things that you most certainly can't.
  8. If I look back into time, I remember being a chronic alcoholic. Right from diabetes to thyroid and to high blood pressure, I had everything. Even low testosterone was a huge problem. The doctor told me if I don't change my lifestyle I will never be able to start a family. Sure, addiction to food is a real thing but let me tell you that addiction to alcohol will ruin your life. This is exactly what happened with me. This is how I came out of alcoholism and reclaimed my life back. How I Ate Before anything, let me make it very clear that diet is the first step. I counted my calories, keeping the protein high (150 -250 grams), low fat (50 Grams) and least carbs diet. I reefed myself to keep away from binge eating. What I realized are the rules that apply to staying sober and quitting alcoholism also fit perfectly with weight loss and clean diet. Cutting Alcohol Was A BIG Task Now I was pretty much sorted with my diet. Next step was something that would completely change my life—quitting alcohol. This was harrowing for me to start with. I used to drink regularly. Now I had to stop. But here again, I didn't take any leaps. I took one step at a time. It was tough but I didn't give up. So What Did I Learn? One Day At Time First Apply this motto - When you wake up in morning say this- I WILL FOLLOW MY DIET TODAY NO MATTER WHAT. Don't think about tomorrow or day after, do justice to your diet today. Take it one day at a time. These are certain things I fixed about myself. 1. Serenity Of The Mind Either you are quitting alcohol or trying to be disciplined with dieting in your life. The serenity of the mind is most important. If your mind is not at peace then you cannot concentrate on anything which includes having right meals. So if you want to lose weight or improve your health, then the most important thing is the serenity of your mind. 2. Hardcore Honesty First step is about understanding your problem areas. It can be alcohol or eating junk food. To identify this, you have to be completely honest about it. Don't lie to yourself. If you are fat, you are fat. My alcoholism was killing me but I would tell myself that I will quit it soon. This hardly ever happened though till the time I was warned. 3. Become Selfish If you are not selfish, then you stop caring about what is best for you. If you are selfish you consider your health, your life and your progress before anything else. If you are selfish about your body then you do what is best for it. Most importantly, be selfish about your serenity. How Far I Have Come After years of hard work, now I stand completely sober. I literally came out of the claws of death to becoming one of the hardest workers in the gym and in the kitchen too. To do this, I didn't look at any shortcuts. I believed in myself, ate a structured diet and worked an intelligent training program that was the best for me. If you are also going through addiction, trust me, the solution is right inside you. Find it before it's too late.
  9. I started as an extremely fat guy with some really messed up eating habits. My cravings for sweet and savoury food were high all the time. I can still remember myself in the college canteen munching on patties, Tandoori Momos and soft drinks on a daily basis. Health Issues All of this started giving me major issues in my stomach. I had to take injections for this reason too. During regular check-ups in my school, I used to feel ashamed after seeing the weight scale going overboard. My weight had reached to 115 Kgs then. This made my friends tease me and call me names. Due to his, I had to visit a family doctor who rightly stated my poor eating habits as the reason for my abnormal weight gain. My Source Of Motivation I was forced to go to the gym, but it was against my own desire. The concept of training and working hard did not attract me. All of this changed when I met a girl who told me the hard truth – “You don't look attractive!” Uneducated Start To My Journey That hurt me deep inside but motivated me to start my journey of transformation as well. I started to run on the treadmill for countless hours and neglected weight training in the initial days. This made me lose 10-12 kgs but also made me look weak. I just ran on treadmill without thinking anything about the diet. Self Awareness The tables were turned when I changed my location to Pune and started watching videos on diet and training. I got aware on basic topics like calories, macros and macronutrients. Measuring my food and counting calories with the combination of heavy lifting made a lot of differences in my body. I used to get goosebumps seeing biceps popping out of my arms. My supplement stack only contained following two things: 1. Whey Protein 2. Multivitamin What Worked For Me? Apparently, the combination of these things worked for me: 1. Caloric deficit (Eating less calories than my bod requires) 2. High protein diet 3. Walks to the gym adding to Energy Burn (I didn't have my vehicle in Pune. This made me walk to the gym) 4. Educated and Science Based Training methods 5. Real Food and not meaningless Supplements What Didn't Work For Me? I followed the Ketogenic Diet in between which obviously got me results. Later on, I realized that this diet could not be followed for long because of limited food options. My Final Message To All When your loved ones see your efforts and hard work, they start recognizing and supporting you. Girls who didn't know my name, drool over me now! My parents have started appreciating my fitness goals. Also, our decisions and choices dictate our progress. I'm that one guy in the group who chooses diet coke over a regular soft drink. These small choices can add up in the long run and make us achieve our goal sooner.
  10. Going seven years back in time, as an average IT professional, I was working from 9 to 6 in an MNC with a very limited focus on my fitness and eating habits. With a very lean body type – 60kg and short height (5'6) my appearance was tiny. I was constantly made fun of and that resulted in low self-esteem, confidence impacting my performance across all functions of life. Poor Eating Habits Staying away from home, I used to eat whatever was accessible to me with zero attention to what type of food I was consuming and what it will do to my body. With ample free time after office and during weekends, I decided to join a nearby gym with the goal to become big and at the same time socialize with fellow gym-goers. Change In Job Locations I slowly started to do light to moderate workouts following traditional coaches and their techniques. After not seeing any significant results after 6 months, I was fortunate enough to come across a trainer who focused on natural diet and using correct form. But, as it usually happens in the IT industry I received a better job offer from a company in Gurgaon and hence had to shift my base from Noida to Gurgaon. I restarted my workout but this time I was constantly pushed by my trainers to take supplements from whey proteins to creatine. First Encounter With Steroids & Kidney Issues For personal benefits, my coach even tried to persuade me to go for Dianabol as well. Though I completely ignored his advice of taking steroids, I started taking supplements like whey protein and BCAAs. After a few months, I noticed some changes in my body structure but also observed that my gut health started to suffer. I got constant issues of indigestion, bloating etc. I got a full body checkup done and found that my creatinine levels were very high. Most of the aspiring bodybuilders, aspirants neglect these small issues which are very critical for your overall health. Changing The Coach At this point, I immediately stopped taking advice from this coach and hired an online coach whose fitness methodology focused on 100% natural transformation. By this time, the fitness bug had bitten me and I started to read a lot of online material on fitness and nutrition to increase my knowledge and did my ISSA certification as well. Managing Kidney Issues Also, I decided to train my body in 100% natural way with zero help of supplements. As an immediate step, I reduced my protein intake from 210gm to 130gm which was appropriate for my body needs and my creatinine levels became normal. At this time, I faced a major confusion on growing muscle while digesting protein ineffectively. I began to eat a lot of protein derived from natural or readily available sources like Paneer, Tofu, Legumes and Milk. Self Education & Learning Gradually with more research and time spent on reading online fitness materials, I became aware of my body type, its needs and correct form/technique of doing exercises. I created my own workout plan focusing on more than one body part every day. This was combined with a carefully planned diet plan with optimal calories, macronutrients and micronutrients. With progressive overloading and following a strict yet completely natural diet plan, I gained good muscle mass over a period of time. Now for further refining my Fitness Knowledge and bringing the physique to a next level, I have decided to work with a coach named Rachit Bir from BIRa Fitness.
  11. Sometimes, we fool ourselves into believing that we something we are not. We define our own limits, just because we have always been a certain way. That was me a few years back. All that mattered to me was academics, and exercise and proper nutrition were just not a part of my world. I spent the first 20 years of my life being a kid who gave absolutely zero importance to fitness. Physics, Chemistry and Maths were my protein, carbs and fats. My Savior – Junk Food! Age 20, I find myself studying Computer Science in IIT-BHU. To be honest, at this point, I had nothing in my life that stirred an ounce of excitement in me. Around this time, I also got somewhat depressed. Needless to say, I had shitty eating habits. I'd eat anything that I felt like, whenever I felt like, and in whatever amounts I felt like. Motivation from Jacked Guys I really envied guys in my college with good physiques. They had abs and chiselled chests. I, on the other hand, was totally out of shape and had a belly, which I never really liked. Hell, I wanted a “good body” too! It was something I found myself getting excited to work for! So, I started going to the gym. I goofed around in and out of the gym for 18 months, just showing up fairly consistently and hoping to get “fit https://www.mensxp.com/health/body-building/48916-5-easy-ways-to-get-fit-without-going-to-the-gym.html ”. I had no knowledge of nutrition and training. My diet was totally random. I used to think that going to the gym and “working out hard”, alone was enough to build my dream physique. And no one around me told me any better. After all, they must call it “fat burning workouts” for a reason, right? Wrong. Sick and tired of getting nowhere, I started studying the work of top experts in the fitness field. The likes of Dr Eric Helms, Dr Brad Schoenfeld and Dr Alan Aragon. And it blew my mind! I spent endless hours researching information on the subject. I was loving it. It was all making sense now, and I wondered why there were so many misconstrued notions around fitness. I realized the irreplaceable role of diet and laughed at all the time I waste fooling around in the gym. Meal Preparation I started preparing my own meals instead of eating in the college mess. I applied whatever I learned into my own life, and I started seeing results in no time. I was so excited at this point in my life. I had never been more disciplined and bodybuilding had come to become my burning obsession. My life changed completely. I realised how important is it to read and study the work of successful people in whatever area you want to be successful in. Advice to Everyone Reading This If you can relate to my story, and have not started your fitness journey yet. Just start. Follow the right people who advocate science and not bro-science. Do the right things and you have my word that you'd be a totally different person 6 months from now.
  12. I'll start my story with a small poem on my fitness journey. From losing weight being the only goal, To the time when goals became limitless. From getting fit being a necessity, To getting fit being the choice. From the time that every little change made me happy, To the time that every change became little. From painful heavy workouts, To how those workouts became a warmup! Less Self Esteem In College It all started in the second semester of my College, where my overweight body used to haunt my confidence every single day. Apparently, after getting teased by a lot of so-called friends, one day, I finally decided to join the gym in my hostel. For 1st and 2nd year students, the gym remained open only in the morning slot, which was from 5:30 am to 8:30 am. Waking up early morning and getting ready for the gym was the most difficult challenge of my life at that time. For that, I used to get up at 5 am in the morning and slogged myself to the gym. This slogging to the gym continued for a month but surprisingly, this habit resulted in the best change in my life. When I got hold of my mornings, my half job was done. Poor Cardio Life Initially, I was guided as cardio being the only way to lose weight. Without any further instructions, I slogged on the treadmill continuously for countless hours. This definitely made me thinner, but I also started to look weak. This was never what I wanted. Later, after watching some YouTube videos and following some great fitness industry influencers, I got aware of the importance of resistance/weight training in preserving muscle and losing weight simultaneously! Turning Point My discovery of weight training as being the catalyst to preserve muscles turned out to be the turning point of my journey. Without any further delay, I started weight training. However, my schedule was not optimal. I tried the following workout splits: 1. Mix workouts 2. Single body part a day 3. Crazy pump workouts 4. Lightweight, high repetition work Real Progress However, the real progress was evident when I started lifting heavy weights with proper form. Squats and Deadlifts were the exercises which made me strong and increased my strength. With proper progression scheme, I was able to lift 200 kg of weight on Deadlift. My Squat strength also rose quickly and I was able to lift 150 kg on them. The changes which I made to my Training Program were majorly shifting from training a muscle once per week to twice a week. Supplements Used As I wasn't getting a lot of protein in my diet, I had to include supplements like Protein Powder and a Pre-workout one. Supplements don't mean anything unless and until you aren't ready to put in hard work and commitment towards the goal. My Final Lesson & Outcome With the help of proper nutrition support, training guidance and sleep, I was able to reach my goal of losing fat and getting muscular and in 3 years. I lost 34 kgs and got down to 76 kgs from 110kgs. People will always be there trying to bring you down and break you, but in the end, all that matters is how much you are ready to put in for yourself.
  13. My name is Miten Kakaiya and I am a fitness coach. You might think it was easy for me, because it is my profession. The truth is that I was nowhere close to where I am now, physique wise. I tried and failed for many years before I learned what I was doing wrong and what I had to do right. This is a look into my journey. When Fitness Was A Dream Back in school, I was the 'fat', out-of-shape kid. I would still push myself to get through a workout routine (3 sets of 10 push-ups, 3 sets of 50 crunches, 3 sets of 10 squats) that I had fashioned for myself every night before bed. But those push-ups, crunches, and squats did absolutely nothing. Perhaps because I was doing it for the wrong reason, which was simply that I was frustrated. My first gym experience was a short, 3-month stint before I was to leave for the university to Manchester, UK. I thought it would do the trick since I clearly wasn't getting anywhere on my own. As part of my membership, I received a complimentary month-long diet plan, which was quite terrible. I also hired a personal trainer, who introduced me to the basics of weight training. The outcome was- I did manage to increase my arms by half a cm which gave me the false impression of having achieved an Arnie-like physique! Life Lesson 1 Stints don't stick. When starting any fitness journey, even if it's an 8-week Plan, the mindset should be to focus not just on a goal to be achieved by the end of the plan but to look ahead at making that planning part of a journey. When Fitness Was A Fad False impressions aside, my stint at the gym in India led me to join a gym as soon as I got to the UK in 2011 for keeping the momentum going. But the distractions of being in a new country, with new friends and a new life meant that I went to the gym not more than 6 times in a whole year. This plus my irregular eating habits resulted in a 'skinny fat' physique, which I had come to accept as my body shape. With very little motivation left in me, I didn't dare re-join the gym next year but occasionally played some football to keep my stamina up. When, in my third year, a gym opened up right under my student accommodation, my flatmate and best friend, who was also my first fitness motivator, persuaded me to join with him. We believed that thanks to the proximity, we'd be more regular than we'd ever been. What happened in reality though was that gymming became just a vanity trip – we'd go only on days we were planning to go out clubbing, so we could show-off the pump and feel good about ourselves. And although we were more consistent with gymming by the end of the year, my nutrition needs were severely lacking. Grabbing a burger from McDonald's or a £1 frozen pizza for our post-workout meals effectively meant our 'workout' sessions were nothing but a waste of time. The next year, an unexpected (albeit misguided) motivation came my way when my sister moved to the US, making it possible for me to attend my dream festival – the Ultra Music Festival in Miami in March 2014. Two months ahead of the festival, I was gymming 5 days a week, pushing myself to run that extra mile, and eating only home-cooked meals. At the end of 2 months, I achieved decent results (still no abs though!). But again it all came to naught, as after the festival I had lost all my motivation again. Life Lesson 2 Right reasons matter. Motivations come in many shapes and forms but the ones that truly last are those that are not limited by transient goals, such as a number of the weighing scale, a pair of jeans to fit into, or the number of abs that show. When Fitness Became A Reality In my final year at university, a new friend became possibly my biggest and most influential motivator till that point. He introduced me to the concept of a Balanced Diet (as opposed to just dieting), and Macros and how it all works. I came to realize the connection between food and exercise as I observed how eating healthier made working out easier, effective and enjoyable. It was during one month just before the summer of 2015, when I was on lockdown, studying for my exams that I went a clean-eating mission. Naturally, I had no distractions in the form of parties and what not. Instead, I was tied to my study table, with very little physical activity. My daily routine was cooking clean meals, eating them, studying, cooking again, eating again, studying and sleeping. To my shock and surprise, I saw the best results that I had ever seen in my entire life from those 4 weeks of no exercise but eating pristine clean. I had lost 7 kgs! I even observed the faint beginnings of my ab muscles showing through for the first time in my life. After years often pointless slogging at the gym, I realized that food was the real answer! Soon I couldn't wait to apply weight training with diet to see what wonders it would do for my body. And for once I was not disappointed! Two months later, I had a ripped physique with six-pack abs. Now I was the one with the physique I always admired on others. Life Lesson 3 Finding the right balance is crucial. Food is an essential part of the health and fitness equation. It literally is the fuel for our body and can change the outcome of your workout routines. Being on the fitness journey is also a constant process of learning about your body, how it works and what works. When Fitness Became A Lifestyle The results were so incredible and addictive that I just didn't feel like eating anything unhealthy. Eating clean and going to the gym became a natural part of my life, such that my day felt incomplete if I didn't eat clean through the day, and didn't manage to squeeze in at least one weight training session. What was also incredible was that I was seeing these results without having done a single mile of running or cardio. And I didn't even have to resort to bland foods and salads all the time. But I was willing to experiment, learn, and adopt a few things from my old lifestyle to fit my new one. By now, I knew what I was doing would continue to get me the results if I was consistent, and so I had no reason to stop. My goal, then, changed to PROGRESS. They say that it is good to have an end goal in mind. According to me, however, that's not the case for fitness. The aim shouldn't be just to reach a particular shape, size or number because you'll lose motivation the moment you get there – similar to what happened to me after Miami in 2014. But when the goal is to keep growing and progressing, one day at a time, to be the better version of yourself every single day - there is nothing that can stop you. My biggest victory was a mental one. I had long stopped comparing myself, my physique, my body with those around me. I was my only competition, and that was what motivated me to stay on track. Make this a lifestyle – do it to please no one but yourself. Life Lesson 4 The fitness journey never ends. Fitness becomes a lifestyle when it stops being something extra that you have to accommodate into your lives, instead becomes what directs how you live your life. Your fitness routine (diet and workout) also has to be your own. It has to seamlessly fit into your life so that it stops being a struggle but comes naturally to you.
  14. Looking back in time, I had always wanted to become a cricketer and my entire childhood was spent on the pitch. Then came the shock for me, as just like many talented young players, I could not clear the national trials and sadly had to put the bat down. My parents and teachers asked me to focus on the dreaded board exams. Back then I was extremely skinny. So skinny that my ribs were visible to the naked eye! People assumed that just because I was skinny, I was weak, which resulted in me getting bullied. This got to my head at times and I wanted to hit back but since I was way too skinny, they would often overpower me. This constant body shaming was bringing down my morale and confidence. Then I thought that if I would gain some weight, people will stop picking on me and I could stand up for myself. I joined a gym solely for this purpose. When I went in, I couldn't even lift a 2.5 kg dumbbell and even bodyweight exercises would hurt me. I was yet again bullied at the gym. I got frustrated within a week with all the bullying at the gym and decided to quit. Later that night, I saw Yash Anand's body transformation on YouTube. He was skinny just like me. Actually, even skinnier! But with consistency and hard work he built a great physique. This motivated me to forget about my bullies and just focus on my goal. Since that day there has been no turning back. Week by week, I overcame my weaknesses and got stronger. I learned from different Indian YouTubers and made my diet that fitted my lifestyle and budget. Training I usually follow two muscle groups a day routine and split it up into push-pull. Compound movements still are the core of my training. Progressive overload plays another big factor in muscle growth that I have always kept in mind. Eating I counted the calories that I needed in order to put on muscle mass and that was about it. I cook all my meals and keep a check on how much I am consuming and what all I am eating throughout the day. My ultimate goal is to build a physique like Hrithik Roshan, and I believe that in the last 2 years I have made some progress towards my goal. And I will continue to better myself each day.
  15. When I sit back and remember my childhood, I realise my major time was spent in playing sports like Football, Hockey and Cricket. I've always been actively participating in every sport which I could in my school days. Skinny Throughout Despite being superb in all sports, I've always been skinny like a bamboo. My good height was another thing that added salt to that wound. My arms looked like sticks and twigs of a tree. The body weight always hovered around 43 kgs which was the reason I was losing confidence over time even after playing a lot of sports. Gym Life & Fraud Trainers To fight with my skinny body, I decided to join a gym nearby. I soon fell in love with the whole concept of going to the gym, lifting weights and talking to people. But this did not give me any kind of results at all. The pump in the gym made me feel good about myself for a short time, but it was a temporary boost. I was given stupid sounding diets like – Eating every 1 hour, waking up midway in the night to drink Protein shake and what not! Even YouTube did not help me. I was doing this Workout Split: Monday – Chest Tuesday – Back Wednesday – Shoulders Thursday – Biceps Friday – Triceps Saturday - Legs All the trainers tried selling me supplements like Mass Gainers and other pills for their own commission, but none of it made sense to me. Totally confused about what steps to take, one fine day I met this strange, tall guy in the gym and then magic happened! Encounter With This Dedicated Guy One fine day, I went up to this person in my gym who looked committed and dedicated to whatever he did. He logged every repetition in his log book and his exercise form/technique looked stunning to watch. To my surprise, he was so humble that he corrected my form/ technique on almost all the exercises and suggested me to change my workout schedule a bit. I was educated about training a muscle twice a week for added benefits. My workout schedule looked like this now: Monday – Upper Body Tuesday – Lower Body Wednesday – Rest Thursday – Legs Friday – Push Saturday – Pull He also educated me about the myths created by the fraud trainers and helped me clear all the concepts regarding the importance of calories. Changes In Body After Getting Educated In no time, my body began to change magically. I could see my chest and biceps popping out. This made me believe more in him and I started asking for solutions to each & every problem I faced. I did not use any kind of mass gainer or meaningless supplement in this journey. Just proper guidance, smart work and consistency made me gain 15-16 kgs of weight (mostly muscle) in 1.5 years. My weight went up from 47kg to a whopping 63 kg. The name of that stranger who helped me reach this goal is Rachit Bir from BIRa Fitness (https://www.instagram.com/birafit). He runs an Instagram page with loads of fitness tips posted regularly.
  16. This is the story of a guy who ended up in a hospital bed suffering from tuberculosis due to random gym advices given by 'desi trainers'. But this is also the story of a guy who didn't give up and fought against all odds to make things work for him and became a successful fitness trainer with a great physique. Shubham started working out at the gym at a very early age of 15 years. Since he was a little overweight from childhood, he joined a gym near his house in a small town near Kolkata to get into shape. There weren't decent equipment in the gym, let alone an educated trainer. He still continued lifting weights in the gym, by looking at others and learning how they did it. After that, he came to Kolkata and joined a better gym which had decent equipment. However, the trainers and their advices were still the same. He was told to eat less and train more if he wanted to get in shape. Furthermore, he was told that the only way to build muscle was to use supplements and steroids. And since he couldn't afford any, he just ate a calorie deficit unstructured diet that was low in carbs and protein. He did lose a lot of weight by eating less and training more but ended up suffering from tuberculosis due to an unhealthy diet. After spending more than six months recovering from that ailment, he knew that he had to do something if he was serious about his health and fitness goals. Fitness Education After his ordeal, he decided to get proper education in fitness and do it himself. Though his parents didn't support him, he went ahead anyway and got a certification. This decision completely changed his outlook towards fitness. From A Recovering Patient To Six Packs After completing the certification, the first thing he did was to fix his nutrition. He made changes in his diet and workout according to his goals and decided to get back into shape in whatever time possible. He knew that it would take a long time but he was ready to put in the efforts. Since he was weight training from a couple of months, his body responded well. Diet Since his target was fat loss, he knew that there was no other way to get into shape except counting his macros. He followed a deficit of 500 calories per week and the total calorie intake was about 2400 calories a day with a macro breakdown of 140 grams of protein, 70 grams of fats and around 350 grams of carbohydrates. Workout Body recomposition is best achieved when you have a good combination of resistance training and cardio. Shubham also did the same. Cardio was a regular part of his workouts; however, he chose to do it outside the gym. His gym was around 4 kilometers from his house. So he used to run from his house to the gym and did the same while coming back. He was on the Push-pull-legs routine which looked like this. Monday and Thursday - Chest, shoulder and triceps Tuesday and Friday - back and biceps Wednesday and Saturday - legs and abdominal Sunday - rest
  17. When I look back, what I remember the most was being bullied for being weak and skinny. I was just a thin kid and had absolutely no strength. My father was a star athlete during his school days and I looked up to him as my source of motivation. It was him who taught me about the importance of being fit. He got me into working out at home by making me do bodyweight exercises. I started my home workout with a pair of 5-kilo dumbbells and that was the beginning of my chase for a better physique. The Social Media Bug I craved for an aesthetic body mostly because I was hooked on to at looking at fitness influencers. This led me to join a real gym for the first time in my life. Though I did start working out, my diet was still crap. I was eating whatever I got my eyes on. I went in hard at the gym but since my diet was bad, I saw little to no results. Frustration followed suit and I quit hitting the gym. The Second Attempt College days brought me back to the gym. But I still lacked the needed diet and the desi gym trainers were still very misleading. Luckily, I got myself a separate room in the hostel. This helped me store my own food and not share. Still, I was bro-dieting and eating eggs. The trainers I consulted just took the money and never really helped me with the nutrition. Then came in the myths about whey protein, but my parents didn't let me buy it. Anyhow, I convinced them and bought a tub with high hopes. Again, I failed! The Luring World Of Steroids Some trainers tried to sell me steroids making baseless claims like only steroids will get you big and get you abs. The guys you see shredded are all on steroids. If you want to look like models, you have to get on steroids. Luckily, I was intelligent enough to not do it. The Turning Point The very first guy who actually helped me was my online friend. He was the one who told me about the importance of dieting and calorie counting. He saw my images and asked me to get on a bulk first and then cut out to see how much muscle I had actually put on. His help brought about a lot of visible changes in my body. Then I came across Pratik Thakkar, the co-founder of GetSetGo Fitness. He busted all the myths in my head and made me further understand the science of dieting. I trained under his guidance and got into the best shape of my life.
  18. Ever since my childhood, I was fascinated towards sports and cricket was my forte. The basic fitness required for playing demanded everyday drills. And to say the least, I was a champ at doing these drills. I still remember doing the maximum number of push-ups and running the most laps of the cricket ground. Soon into the first year of my grads, I was hooked onto building a physique. This is where my struggle started. All the regular push-ups that I did back in school did make me a bit strong but not as strong as I wanted to be. I decided to quit playing all sports and took up a gym membership. And just like any rookie, I started weight training twice a day. I slogged for hours on end six times a week. As far as nutrition was concerned, it was simply crap. I knew nothing about eating and protein intake. I ate what most gym bros ate- bananas before workout and eggs post-workout. Probably the stupidest thing I have ever done. The nutrition was just not there. Unsurprisingly, a few months into training, I still looked like shit. Pretty soon, somebody convinced me to believe that weight training before the age of 20 hinders height growth. I got so scared that I gave up weight training. Soon I was found myself drinking and smoking and soon, this became an addiction. Somewhere inside, I still had a dream of building a good looking physique. I joined a gym again and then again, as random trainers led me into doing stupid stuff. Yet again, there were no results and this time it tested my patience. Almost Got Into Steroids Tired of looking skinny fat, I looked at using steroids. A guy at the gym, of course, a regular user, advised me to do it. I gave it a thought but luckily due to being short on funds, I pulled back. I was almost convinced to invest in it but luckily I was short on funds, and later on, I simply quit the gym. My Job Made It Worse Soon after my MCA, I got into an IT job. As you would guess, it demanded me to sit for hours on end. Years passed by like this and my physique became worse. For one final time, I bucked up and looked through the internet and came across GetSetGo Fitness and trained under the guidance of Nagarjuna. Initially, I found it tough to cook all my meals and hitting the gym in the morning, since I came from being completely sedentary. But Nagarjuna guided me in preparing all my meals and answered all my questions. Hard Work Pays Off With the right guidance on nutrition and training, today I have a physique that I always wanted to have. Right now, I am training right and eating just as required. I have further set goals for the future as well.
  19. I always had a thing for outdoor activities. Right from my school days, I participated in sports events and cross country runs. Once into graduation, one iron head friend of mine dragged me into a real gym. It was here where my real weight training habit got inculcated. As far as the nutrition was concerned, we just ate whatever we had in sight. You know, this is how the hostel life hits you on the food front. There was no YouTube or guys around whom I could really ask about nutrition. So it was just 'eat-see' almost throughout the grads. The Challenges Out of everything, the worst thing that hit me was lacking motivation. Blame that on lack of a mentor and lack of guidance and knowledge during the starting days, things really looked bad at times. I used to get de-motivated and sometimes, even quit working out. One of these breaks was so long that for over half a year, I didn't even step into the gym. Fake Supplements As there was no proper nutrition and supplement guidance, I got trapped into the vicious circle of fake supplements. Only after spending a considerable amount of money that I realized I was consuming fake supplements. I still remember my first ever tub on whey that I purchased. It was completely fake and tasted like glucose. The Myths Throughout my journey I came through a LOT of myths. So much so, that even I started believing some of them. Some of them were – Salt makes you fat No eating after 7 in the evening Fat makes you fat Such kind of myths was massively promoted to me by so-called 'gurus' Close Encounter With Steroids I remember one of my friends suggested me take 'DIANABOL' and said that it will take you to the next level. Being a rookie, I took them and since it was a steroid I gained lot of weight (water & fat mostly). Soon issues with gyno and acnes came through. I never contacted that person again. Never! The Turning Point My turning point was in June 2017. I came across coach Aminder Singh and his natural bodybuilding ethics. Under one of his coaches, I learnt about natural bodybuilding, proper exercising techniques and proper nutrition. Then, adding to my knowledge was GetSetGo Fitness's Pratik Thakkar.
  20. My fitness journey started in April 2013. I remember the first and foremost challenge was convincing my mom. You know how Indian parents are - “You are too young to join a gym. Turn 18 first.” I literally had to beg for it. But this endeavor only lasted about 5 months, as I had to quit the gym for 'board exams'. I was an active kid, who loved playing football and basketball. However, I was chubby and in pursuit of excelling the exams, my health took a toll. I gained 14 Kg during the boards and my eating habits went from not so healthy to terrible. Physics, Chemistry and 5 McDonald burgers became my constant companion. As soon as the board exams ended, I re-joined a gym and embraced the grind. After working out for several months, I could not see much change in my physique. The trainers would simply tell me one thing- “dabba nahi lega toh body nahi banegi”. I tried to find a good trainer in many gyms but found no help. After 2 years I finally decided to buy a supplement stack from my trainer. One tub of whey protein, a box of BCAA & fat burners! To your surprise, nothing magical happened. I was frustrated but this was also a blessing in disguise. I began educating myself about training and nutrition from the internet. I realized my biggest mistakes were- training every muscle only once per week. P.S- As a natural, you should train them 2-3 times week. Next, I was unnecessarily trying to gulp boiled chicken, potatoes and daal, whereas all my body and yours as well, is concerned with nutrition, not how the food is cooked. Once I began tracking my macronutrients, my physique began changing drastically. I followed Jim Stoppani's training plan and got leaner. But I was not satisfied with mere aesthetics; I wanted to get strong, really strong. For this Yash Sharma was a very useful resource. And once I learned about progressive overload, I was able to take my strength and physique to a whole new level. I have been natural throughout so far. I have taken plenty of different supplements like L carnitine, Creatine, Whey Protein, pre-workout, and fat burners, but have never taken anabolic steroids. I believe in prioritizing the health inside more than the looks outside. It has been over 6 years since I began this journey of becoming the best version of myself. And believe me, it was not linear. I was misguided, got injured and had multiple plateaus, but every time I felt like quitting I would think “Just one more day”. And now when I look back, it seems I have made some progress. I currently train 7 days a week with a combination of bodybuilding, powerlifting, and calisthenic workouts. I am lean, strong and agile. My name is Sidhant Rai Sikand, and this is my story!
  21. Whenever I look back to my college days, what I remember the most is a lanky 50-kilo kid trying to hide from his bullies. They would call me names and this disturbed me to great lengths. Then I looked into my lifestyle and wasn't really surprised as to why I was so skinny. My activity levels were immensely low, and so was my appetite. The only activities I did were going to the college and coming back home. My diet involved 2 meals a day and some canteen snacks. That's about it. 15th of December 2016 was a remarkable day in my life, I saw an interview of Thakoor Anoop Singh on YouTube. This one video got me so inspired, that I joined a gym the following day. I come from a small town in South India, where we do not have a lot of people to guide us in the right direction. Improper exercise technique and ego lifting soon got me injured and I had to quit the gym for a while. But during this period I learned about fitness as much as I can from YouTube. Yash Sharma Fitness was a vital source to learn exercise techniques, bracing and how to lift heavy. I went back to the gym after a few weeks and decided to take it slow. No more ego lifting and I lifted according to my strength and focused on my technique. Gradually my strength and physique began to enhance. Further, I learned about correct nutrition from YouTube. And after bulking for more than a year, I decided to cut down and aimed to get as lean as possible. I also competed in Muscle-Mania 2018 for which I prepared for 3 months, relentlessly. This journey was awfully exhausting and taught me that bodybuilding is tougher mentally than it is physically. Being a student with limited funds, it was indeed challenging but I enjoyed every bit of it. Like oxygen and water, lifting weights has now become a necessity for me. I am studying to become a professional trainer alongside my college studies but more than the monetary aspect, I love the person I have become due to bodybuilding- disciplined, hardworking & committed. It is something only serious lifters can resonate with. I am very thankful to MensXP Health for allowing me to share my journey and reminiscing how far I have come.
  22. My tryst with fitness started when I was in college. I generally had a good physique, and at that time it was mostly about workouts- nothing to do with diet. I just wanted a fit body. Flash forward 10 years and work stress hit me hard. Work and family completely took away all of the time I had. My IT job demanded 9-10 hrs of sitting on the desk. Exercising went out of the window. I am a foodie, hence ordering in became a regular habit. I was into stress and binge-eating as well and without knowing, I piled on kilos of lard. Realization came in hard at a health camp at my office. That's when I decided to step on the gas. Getting back into routine was the major hurdle. I knew I had to make gym a daily routine. Anyhow, I started with waking up early to the hit gym first thing in the morning. In order to achieve at least 6-7 hrs of sleep, I tried to go to bed early. All this meant that I had to adjust everything else like spending time with my family, etc. It indeed was pretty difficult but I did it anyhow. Getting into healthy eating was the most difficult part of it all. I had to always be cautious of what I put into my mouth. But in due course of time, that came to me naturally and it got easier to avoid junk and high calorie eatables. The Mistakes I still remember having those stupid slimming tablets. It was when I was at my heaviest- 84kg. I bought few packets and started having them. Needless to say, I saw no change and it didn't take me much to understand that it's all false. With hard work, I dropped down from 84kgs to 76kgs. But then, I hit a plateau and did not understand why my body wasn't responding. That's when I talked to Rajiv Ambat, who had cofounded the online platform, GetSetGo Fitness. I decided to enroll under Coach Melvin and gave it a shot. Though I was having a 'healthy diet', I was still overlooking the macros in my diet and wasn't counting my calories https://www.mensxp.com/health/nutrition/45485-7-foods-that-contain-almost-zero-calories-are-a-good-addition-to-everyday-meals.html . Through Melvin's diet plan, I understood the importance of calories and macronutrients. That along with the exercise plan that he gave me, helped me achieve the desired body composition. He made me understand why it's important to see the energy balance, achieve the correct body fat percentage, and what changes to bring about it my diet. I could then see the plateau break.
  23. It was my first year of Bachelors in 2014 when the fitness bug first bit me. At that time I was very skinny, weighing around 49kgs at 6 feet 2 inches tall. Bullying was just as regular as college. Friends, relatives and almost everybody I knew made me the butt of all jokes. This broke my heart and I decided to steer things around and answer the bullies. Getting into the gym was another struggle. The bullies came in the form of gym bros and desi trainers. I shut myself off from the loathing and focused on lifting. For three months, I hustled my way through the weight and had no idea about nutrition. This backfired and I gave up with a beat down mentality. In 2015, I resumed lifting but this time around, I was tricked into buying mass gainer by a desi trainer. As a rookie, I took his advice and spent around Rs 10,000 and bought 20 kilos of it. Over the course of the year I had gained nearly 20 kilos of weight. Now from a skinny fat dude, I was a fat dude. The trainer now asked me use fat burners. Luckily, I didn't. In 2017, I was expecting to get my weight down but I didn't see any results. Then I came in touch with GetSetGo Fitness' coach, Vishwa. I followed his posts on Instagram and impressed by his knowledge, I enrolled under his guidance. After 2 months of training with him, I was impressed with the progress I had made. I made it a point to not quit this time around. Nearly 12 weeks into his training, I got absolutely shredded. I used nothing but food and barely any supplements apart from multivitamins. Along with this, I also learned to create my own diet plans. At present, I am bulking. Fitness is all about understanding the science of nutrition and exercises and applying the right thing at the right time. It is a lifestyle. A never ending process that demands consistency!
  24. Right from the start, I had no real drive to get a beach body other than the fact that it would have been nice to own one. I had been training with a personal trainer 5 to 6 days a week for about a year before this, but to be completely honest, although I felt stronger, I still looked very similar to when I started. I was still stuck in the 'skinny fat' region. For sure, my diet was not on point. I did feel a little disappointed and was massively sceptical about hiring a new coach. Then RNT and Akash came into picture and wanted to give RNT a run for their money, and I thought 'we'll see how it goes'. This is how I started. I started with zeal and within just the first month, I started seeing a change in my body composition. It was insane how quick the changes were to appear as I dropped body fat and increased muscle simultaneously – something that I had previously heard and believed was impossible. Akash had literally dialled in my nutrition and it showed very clearly. The weekly check-ins kept me accountable and made sure that I didn't deviate. Especially when I would try sneak in little bits of chocolate. I booked for a photo shoot which served as a constant motivation. There were times when I did feel that I need to loosen up but the thought of looking great on the shoot day kept me going. I held on very well through the weekly changes in calories and the peak week. The Results Two photo shoots later, I am now sporting a physique I had only previously only dreamt of. I thought to myself, 'I'm done now – I don't need RNT anymore'. However, the period after the initial transformation has actually been the most useful RNT have been. Having helped me to achieve the body I had only previously dreamed of, the trick was how to keep it going forwards without having to weigh out all my food, and live life. I've now realised that transforming your body will always generate results that transcend far beyond the physical. It positively impacts all areas of your life. Your mental health, your relationships, and even your wealth and finances will all benefit from the habits, discipline and structure a physical transformation embodies. You can read my whole journey here:
  25. Last year, I started a new job in the city and I was finding it difficult to find the right balance. Going for dinners, drinks and partying was taking its toll and I wasn't happy with the way I looked. The process had become boring and I was essentially just going through the motions. I am a goal and target-driven individual in all aspects of my life, however, when it came to training I had no goal or purpose. After seeing my brother's incredible transformation with RNT, I thought it was about time I stepped up to the plate and that's when I contacted Akash. From being a skinny teenager, I was always concerned about the way I looked. Like many others, I tried to do it all myself. It took me a few years to realise I needed some guidance when it came to nutrition and training. I had known Akash for a number of years, as he was my brother's best friend, so I was lucky to be directed towards him. Indeed, Akash has helped me a create a great physique which people often stare at when I'm on the beach, but more importantly, he provided me with valuable life skills, particularly around discipline. The first six weeks were challenging, both mentally and physically. I hadn't food prepped in a very long time but fortunately, I had my brother) helping me with it. The training and diet weren't a major issue, to begin with. However, the most difficult part was the volume of the steps I was doing. Due to the nature of my job, I'm not as active as I used to be. This meant doing over 15,000 steps, which was extremely demanding. I thought I wouldn't have enough hours in the day but I got it done. I even remember walking around my park at 11.45 pm just trying to get all my steps in! The last three weeks were tough. It was bad enough going to work every day whilst dieting, but when I was finally on a diet of 100g of carbs – it was even worse. What kept me going the most? The results...there were noticeable changes in my body every day and this became my source of motivation. I want to thank RNT Fitness as a whole for their consistent content and motivating podcasts (RNT Fitness Radio). And in Akash, I not only have a hardworking coach and role model, but a great friend and I hope this relationship grows. You can read my whole journey here
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