Champion couple Bajrang Punia and Sangeeta Phogat share their health secrets
A couple that trains together, stays together! Star wrestler Bajrang Punia and Sangeeta Phogat are the best examples of this, as the power-couple has become increasingly popular amongst the youth who wants to know more about their diet and fitness regimens. However, the wait is now over as Punia and Phogat share their health and wellness journey with us!
Organic food with generous servings of ghee and doodh is our go-to meal
“Jo humare Haryana mein khaate hai, doodh, dahi, dal, sabji, raita, salad, roti woh hi meri diet mein rehta hai. Supplements bhi lene padte hai kyunki hume jitna protein chahiye hota as wrestlers utna hum khaane se nahi le sakte. Getting enough vitamins, calcium and minerals through your meals is essential. Mere coach aur physiotherapist ke saath baith ke main meri diet discuss karta hun aur wohi ensure karte hai ki saare vitamins, calcium wagera poore mil rahe hai. ” says Punia, to which Phogat adds, “Basically ghar ka khaana is what we eat everyday. Organic food with fresh vegetables, and generous servings of ghee and milk is our main diet. If we have to control our weight for upcoming competitions, we might temporarily control our portion intake of certain ingredients like carbohydrates and fats, but a balanced diet is still maintained. Bajrang loves to eat Choorma and I love to eat kadhi chawal prepared by my mom.”
Avoiding pre-workout snacks to lose weight is a myth
“Banana, eggs, coffees are a good pre-work out snacks to have. The myth that one must not have anything before work out session should be busted. If you take pre-workout snacks before an hour of your training, you’ll be more energetic. When I was training with my father, I didn’t know about this but now I usually do take a pre-work out snack,” says Phogat. Punia agrees and adds, “Pre workout kabhi kabhi lete hoon.” And when asked if black coffee is his fav pre-workout drink he laughs, “Coffee toh doodh wali hi peete hai.”’
Fad diets are unsustainable in the longer run
“In a frenzy to become fit, people take to strict diets and even starvation and this is just not healthy. Not eating food is not the solution to regulating weight. Eat a healthy diet and sweat it out while training and exercises,” advises Phogat. Echoing a similar sentiment Punia says, “Kabhi koi fad diet try nahi kari. I don’t think fad diets are sustainable in the longer run. They might lead to craving which can ultimately lead to over eating and binging. Being healthy doesn’t mean taking to the latest fad diet, it means being mindful of what you eat and working hard to burn the calories.”
Limit your cheat meals
“Athlete aur sadhu ka same jeevan hota hai. It’s very important to eat your meals at the right time and exercise discipline over what your put in your body. Therefore, cheat meals must be avoided as far as possible,” shares Punia. Phogat and Punia visit restaurants in Connaught Place in Delhi when in the mood to rarely indulge. “We limit our junk food intake like pizzas and burgers to once in a month. We are mindful of resisting food that’s fried, oily and unhealthy as that leads to weight gain,” says Phogat.
Say no to steroids, yes to hard work
“Steroids are a no-no. Gym trainers advocating the use of steroids to build muscles or diet pills to lose weight are misguiding you. Steroids have a very negative impact on your health. Running, exercising and building your body with hard work and effort will instead keep you naturally healthier in the longer run,” says Punia, and Phogat couldn’t agree more.The couple looks forward to representing our country together in future championships.
Author tweets @FizzyBuddha