US President Barack Obama evoked strong reactions when he was spotted walking out of a gym looking "as thin as a rail", sans his muscles. FYI finds out whether you should do an Obama, why lean is in and how to do it right
Not so long ago, beefed up actors Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone ruled the roost, and nudged an Alpha Male to flaunt a muscular physique. It wasn't just for individual self-esteem, but also a quick ticket to attract the ladies.
Two sides of Prem: Salman Khan's character Prem in Maine Pyar Kiya went on to inspire men to hit the gym and build their muscles. Twenty years down, we have the very lean Ranbir Kapoor essaying the role of a goofy Prem in latest popcorn flick Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani.
But times have changed now. And how. The lean men have marched ahead, with President Barack Obama leading the trend with his slender frame attained with a regular game of basketball and rigorous exercise regimen.
Dr Mahesh Jukar, Fitness Consultant, Dr LH Hiranandani Hospital, admits that he has been inundated with queries from men on how to develop a lean, toned physique in the recent past. "To an extent, it depends on the body structure that a person has. Some are ectomorphs with a naturally skinny body while endomorphs tend to be on the fatter side. Mesomorphs have a bodybuilder kind of physique. So, it might be easier for ectomorphs to develop a lean physique than for the other body types." He adds that the path to becoming lean is crucial and should be done through proper exercise, which balances both weight training and cardio exercises, and followed with a protein diet that includes carbohydrates. "Do not starve yourself trying to be lean as it just erodes the lean body mass and harms your looks," he stresses.
Deanne Pandey, Founder, Play health and Fitness, feels that a lean body is much more healthy and fit than a muscular one. "A lean physique is more flexible in contrast to a muscular frame which makes the body pretty stiff and leads to lack of stamina. You can opt for high intensity exercises in the gym, such as cardio, for around 50 minutes, and then switch to other activities like swimming, cycling, running, skating or power walks for another half hour to develop a lean body," states Pandey. She adds that taking short cuts such as fat burners are a strict no-no and it should be done gradually under supervision to prevent injuries.
A lean body is more flexible and fit. But taking short cuts such as fat burners are a strict no-no. Opt for a proper exercise and diet regimen instead
Deanne Pandey Founder, Play Health and Fitness
US website The Drudge Report featured a picture of US President Barack Obama walking out of gym looking skinny. It sparked concerns about his skipping meals and hectic lifestyle. But insiders insisted that it was all thanks to his exercise regime that included regular games of basketball.
Shalini Sethi programming head, Bindass
If you look within Bollywood itself, it is the older lot Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan who switch between the muscular and toned down look. In contrast, younger stars like Ranbir Kapoor are toned and lean. In our shows, such as Sid Vs Varun or Dadagiri, we have lean anchors and contenders playing prominent roles. It does look more appealing and the audience can relate to them as compared to the unrealistic muscles.
Anjali Peswani Nutritionist
To attain a lean body, include all the main food groups in your diet and ensure that your meal comprises 55% carbohydrates, 25% protein and 20% fat. When you start following this diet and exercise, it may seem that you are gaining weight. Don't get alarmed as it is just part of the process of fat getting converted into muscle mass. Consume a lot of energy-sustaining food, such as fruits, vegetables, pulses, fish and meat.
Shenaz Treasuryvala Actor
It's hard to choose. Even though I am quite turned on by men with muscles, I usually choose smart and funny over the hot body. But I am also attracted to the lean-and-mean type.
Sarah Jane Dias Model
Lately, I have developed a liking for the lean physique. But it depends on whether the look suits a person or not. Being too lean makes men look effeminate while too much of muscles is very unnatural.
Jeena Jayaprakash Student
A lean physique like Ranbir's is a better bet. An overtly muscular body looks artificial while a lean look is much more natural. When I see a muscular guy, I tend to wonder whether they are on steroids.
Manpreet Dua Visualiser at design studio
Ranbir Kapoor's toned look is better as it looks aesthetically appealing while muscles don't suit everybody. However, being too lean can also translate to looking malnourished, which is not good.