“If I don’t run at least twice a week, I start having withdrawal symptoms!” that’s Tollywood hunk Tota Roychowdhury has to say about the impact of running in his life. According to the Bengali fitness icon who is also a part of Tata Steel Kolkata 25K this year running is the great equaliser’ and he is moved by the reach of distance running from fitness to even social depths- the revolution has finally come in Kolkata.
His secret to stay fit and have a body to drool over at the age of 42 is moderation. In his diet, lifestyle & even in his exercise routine he doesn’t over do it neither do he under do it. It’s all about a healthy lifestyle and maintaining it. His affection towards running, his take on fitness without weight training, how his fitness routine is influenced with running- everything is all about sheer dedication and passion.
Tota, the part of Bengal’s biggest running carnival TSK 25K this year who follows simple Bengali diet plan to stay fit said: “Running is the great equaliser’. From the CEO of a company to the humble office boy of the same company, both are united by a common goal, are challenged by the same elements, when they hit the trail. Bronze labelled Tata Steel Kolkata 25K is giving that chance to the city of joy to come forward and show our unity.”
Our questions continued and the handsome 42-year-old actor replied within his heart-
- You have been an absolute inspiration to others, a fitness icon throughout and at 42 you look fit as ever. What’s your secret?
My ‘secret’ is moderation- in everything including moderation! In my diet, in my lifestyle & even in my exercise routine I don’t over do it neither do I under do it. It’s actually living a healthy lifestyle, on that suits my needs and temperament. And I avoid fad diets and fad exercise concepts, like the plague.
- What’s your take on fitness without weight training according to you?
For me fitness is the Holy Trinity of Strength, Stamina & Suppleness. Hence resistance training, running & yoga form the core of my workout.
- How important is freehand training and running as nowadays maximum people are running after gyms, doing weight training, taking various supplements for faster result?
Since the basics of fitness is biomechanically correct movements, running is but a natural extension of it. So is managing one’s own bodyweight. Hence bodyweight based exercises and calisthenics are of primary importance to me. However, supplements without the recommendations of a qualified nutritionist, is a waste of resources and also could prove to be dangerous.
- Your favourite place for running is Maidan, the lungs of Kolkata. How your fitness routine is influenced with running and cardio routine?
I have been running since I was eight years old. I was into organized football and athletics and running was a part of my daily curriculum. That habit has remained. Hence if I don’t run at least twice a week, I start having withdrawal symptoms!
- There is a belief in people that a physique built with freehand and natural diet is more sustainable that gym, supplements made bodies…. Is that true?
Partially true. Any physical activity has to be sustained over a period of time in order to see lasting results. Some supplements dramatically increase one’s muscle mass but most of them are not safe unless prescribed by a qualified nutritionist.
- Can free hand training, especially running help you achieve your desired physique and fitness?
Running can contribute to cardiovascular health and also help in controlling body weight. Achieving a physique is an individual thing. If one desires an athletic physique then running combined with calisthenics is good enough. But if one wants a massive & muscular physique then running is counterproductive.
- Your diet? How you balance your busy schedule and fitness regime at the same time?
My diet is the common Bengali diet without the fries and fritters. Exercise is a non negotiable part of my daily life; no matter whether am busy or not.
- How has TSK helped Kolkata develop in terms of fitness and has the revolution in fitness come that you wished for with TSK?
Tata Steel Kolkata 25K in just 4 years has given the runners in Kolkata, a very positive & enticing target. A goal which is worthwhile for even the most reticent Kolkatan to wake up in the morning, warm up, lace up and hit the road, park or trail.
The dramatically increasing number of runners, year to year is proof enough.
- Your message to the Kolkatans to join TSK Ananda Run, run for charity and thanking them for making TSK Bengal’s pride with overwhelming response.
Thank you Kolkatans for registering for the Tata Steel Kolkata 25K. I am told by Procam that the numbers are overwhelming.
Run. Not to compete with your fellow runners but run to compete with yourself. Above all, be proud of the fact that you are a foot soldier of the most important revolution of this century- the fitness revolution!