In Conversation with Bodybuilder Sangram Chougule
Born in a small village in Kolhapur, Maharashtra, Sangram Chougule had to face many hardships to reach the position he holds now - one of the most feared and revered bodybuilders of India. With his well defined, symmetrical and muscular body Sangram went ahead to win a bronze in Mr World 2011 and gold in Mr India 2012. In a workshop for Gold’s Gym in Mumbai Sangram speaks to Healthmeup.com about his fitness dictums, diet and discipline.
How did you first think of bodybuilding?
It's my passion. You can say it’s my first love.
How did you train yourself to build this hulk-like body?
It’s very simple if you follow these simple rules - Work hard, eat healthy food and take proper rest.
What are some of the common misconceptions about fitness models and pumping iron?
People think that if you start weight training you build a physique, but if you leave it you will become flabbier than you were earlier, and they say that models or bodybuilders look best in their youth but in their old age they rot. That’s not true, because if you exercise properly and eat a good diet you will live a long and fit life.
So where do you think most people go wrong when it comes to training their abs?
First thing they do is that they start skipping their meals and do hundreds of crunches, it is totally wrong because it results in enuresis and muscle loss. Because abs are made in the kitchen, you just have to control your calorie intake and give your body a balanced diet and a proper workout. Keep in mind that diet is 80% and workout is 20 %.
So do you even touch “bad food”
Yes, sometimes but in a limited quantity.
How do you stay so motivated?
I always keep my goals in mind and always think about how to achieve them and that gives me self-motivation.
What tips would you give to someone who wants to become a fitness model?
To be a fitness model you have to be loyal to yourself, never cheat your workout and diet and train under a good trainer or coach in a good gym. You have to have patience, because to achieve something you have to give it time.
Give us an example of one of your typical workouts.
There is no typical workout of me, but I always train my weak muscles more than my strong muscles and this is how I make my workout routine.
Do give us a look into your weekly diet/workout/supplementation routine.
Now my diet is low carb, high protein, and less fat. My day starts with cardio after which I take a Combat protein shake with multivitamins and some complex carbs, then after two hrs I have egg whites, oats.
After half an hour, before my workout, I have my pre-workout drink. I train two muscles a day. As I finish my workout, I gulp down my post workout drink and then my protein shake. After two hours I eat chicken and brown rice with green salad.
My mid-day meal is again protein shake and a fruit with vitamins. In the evening I eat grilled fish and brown rice with salad. My dinner is again grilled fish n salad.
Two hours after my dinner I drink my Isolate Whey Protein with Casein (20 mins later). And my last meal is a sleep recovery drink.
How does your pre-contest workout routine and diet change from your normal routine?
My pre-contest workout includes more cardio, more repetitions, less rest in between the sets. And during these days I eat a high protein diet with more fiber, for instance I eat green salads a lot (with no sugar and very low sodium).
*Image Courtesy: Gold's Gym,Mumbai