Before bulking up
As an actor with a pumped-up frame appears on screen, girls go weak in their knees, guys make a beeline to the gym, and sceptics question the use of steroids. But for Telugu superstar Prabhas, bulking up and losing it all for ‘Baahubali’ part 1 and 2 was all about sheer hard work, says his trainer Lakshman Reddy. The actor plays two roles — Baahubali and Shivudu, father and son, respectively, in the film and had to yo-yo between two distinct physiques over four years.
Reddy, who won Mr World 2010, says, “As Baahubali, Prabhas had to build a lot of muscle and for the son’s character, Shivudu, he had to look lean. His physique fluctuated for more than four years; that was difficult. Prabhas weighed almost 100 kgs with his body fat percentage staying in the range of 9-10. For the younger character, he had to build a toned body with minimal muscles.”
As father Baahubali As son Shivudu
Discussing a typical day in Prabhas’ life, the trainer says a half hour cardio session would be followed by an entire day’s shoot. He followed a strict diet, eliminating all kinds of carbs and concentrating on proteins for Shivudu’s character. “He would have six meals with egg whites, chicken, nuts, almonds, fish and vegetables thrown in. For Baahubali prep, he had eight meals a day, carb-heavy with cheese and mutton. In the evenings, we had weight training sessions, which included dead lifts, squats, bench press and other rigorous exercises.”
Every 20 days, there’d be a cheat meal. “He loves biryani, so he was allowed that. At times, he’d ask for junk food. I was strict, but understood his cravings. I was continuously monitoring his food intake and workouts,” Reddy says.
Despite a hectic schedule, the actor religiously followed his workout regime. “He would shoot for hardcore stunts and by the end of it, be tired, but never missed workout. There were days when we would start exercising at midnight. His dedication was amazing.”