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Cross this line

health-and-fitness Updated: Apr 03, 2012 14:00 IST
Shrenik Avlani
Shrenik Avlani
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

I am a pretty active chap. I play football on Sunday afternoons, basketball on weekdays, hit the gym about five days a week, run at least five km twice a week and cycle about 25 km once in 10 days.

One might ask if I work at all. My colleagues always do. But they also take tips from me when they are in an inspired state of mind. And I usually have something for them because I love to try out new training methods.

When I heard about Crossfit from a friend’s BBM update, I was curious. I Googled it, asked around, got a number from a workout buddy at my starry gym and landed up at Dheepesh Bhatt’s studio in the corner of a garage in Juhu, quite like the Hollywood boxing movies.

He agreed to let me have a go at this fitness regimen that is becoming popular in the city.

“This method aims to get you to work out using the movements and motions we use in day-to-day life,” says Dheepesh. Crossfit involves a lot of freehand exercises using your own body weight. There are no machines or treadmills, not too many weights either. The place is filled with overhead bars and rings instead. Each batch of 15-20 works out for an hour under the supervision of three-four trainers.

The workout — the same for everyone, varying only in intensity — is written down on a white board and invariably includes an AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible) routine. (The gyms give us exercise charts quite like school report cards.) A 10-minute AMRAP of five push-ups, 15 squats and 10 sit-ups had me drenched in sweat on the first day and a 20-minute AMRAP of two-minute rowing, 10 hands-off push-ups, 10 pull-ups and one-minute plank almost made me puke.

“Routines like Crossfit are high on endurance training,” says Abdul Hannan, fitness advisor at Gold’s Gym in Bandra. “If your goal is big muscles and mass, then it won’t help. You need to pump iron for that. Weight training is also crucial for improving strength.”

“Crossfit is not for those who are chasing the John Abraham physique, nor is it for women aiming for an Angelina Joliesque slim figure,” says Dheepesh, adding, “However, it will help you achieve a David Beckham, Ranbir Kapoor or Maria Sharapova-like body.”

Star Crossfitters
For those who do things because their matinee stars do them, Aamir Khan trained with Dheepesh to prepare for his role in the latest Dhoom film. Actors Bipasha Basu, Jacqueline Fernandez, Neha Dhupia, Jackky Bhagnani and designers Niharika Khan and Masaba are among others who have taken to this fitness regimen.

Bedding the stars: Shahana Goswami, actor

Do you use a hard or soft mattress?
Hard mattress

Do you have a cluttered bed?
Not really.

Do you carry a favourite pillow with you everywhere?
No… In fact, I usually avoid using a pillow when I sleep.

Do you need your eight hours of sleep or can you get by with power naps through the day, especially when you’re shooting?
Power naps are great for me. I can sleep anywhere and in any position. I’m blessed!

What do you prefer, cotton sheets or satin ones?

Do you keep your phone on silent at bedtime?

Can you sleep with a light on in the room or somewhere close?
I can sleep through light, noise, anything.

—Priyanka Jain