Restaurateur Rushabh Chowksi knows that Friday nights and a beer belly go together, like wine and cheese. Chowski also knows that the desire to eat, drink and be merry can sabotage your fat metabolism. So, what does one do if you are social? Choksi doesn't necessarily party every Friday night but being the co-founder of a tapas bar in Mumbai means he has all the reasons or excuses to have the biological age of a man in his 40s, despite being in his 20s.
Abstain for health
"I don't drink alcohol, neither do I drink any aerated drinks," says the 27-year-old who started Escobar with his brother. A chubby teenager, Choski says that he now knows the importance of a good diet-no aerated drinks or alcohol. "My parents are inspired by the fact that I have such control (I don't smoke either) even though I am in the hospitality industry," he says. These choices- abstaining from alcohol, sugary drinks, though, have come to him after years of dedication and focus, and after living an unhealthy life. "I used to eat icecreams, chocolates and pizzas almost three to four times a week." The sugar bombs that he has now eradicated from his meals were making him feel lethargic. "I could hardly run for a few minutes without panting but now I can do an MMA (mixed martial arts) session for three hours with the same intensity," he adds.
Don't wait for a trigger
The transformation was promising, and he knew that it would take time. It was long and arduous, he agrees, but the results are immeasurable because of the feel-good factor and the energy and concentration he has now. "It took years just to get regular on my diet and exercise regime but more than anything else, you need to believe in yourself and inspire yourself. You need to see the progress in the mirror and want more," he says. He tried a liquid only diet for a few weeks and he knew he had to stop because it took a toll on his body. Now he drinks a glass of luke warm water with lime first thing in the morning. His breakfast includes a glass of milk or milk tea (without sugar), lithesome oats.
An apple, some walnuts or almonds and a protein shake are a great source of protein and ensure good metabolism, he says. Lunch consists of boiled veggies or grilled veggies (broccoli, spinach, mushrooms, pumpkin and cauliflower), a portion of salad, some low-fat curd or low-fat paneer with two amaranth parathas without oil. In the evening, he eats a peanut butter sandwich and an intra-workout supplement while working out. He has a protein shake after the gym, and for dinner, he has boiled veggies or grilled veggies, a portion of salad and if he is still hungry, he has a dark chocolate (NSA) or a protein bar.
Learn from your mistakes
One of the most common mistakes people make is that they diet rigorously, starve themselves and then binge on food on off days. That's a complete no. Have a diet you can maintain.
Don't workout till failure
I tried that and nearly hurt myself. Push as much as you're capable of. Increase intensity gradually.
When I started, I was always told I needed to be a non-vegetarian to build muscle but that depends on your goals. I'm a pure vegetarian and I know that it is not impossible, especially with all the protein supplements available and a little bit of dedication.