Recently conferred with the award for the best personal trainer, this athlete and kettlbell expert has Trained many a international athletes and has helped many reach their goals.
A candid talk with Jinnie Gogia Chugh.
Abhinav Malhotra is a Fitness and Nutrition Coach currently working with Fitness First, Dubai. Recently being recognized as the MALE PERSONAL TRAINER OF THE YEAR 2019 IN UAE & GCC at FIT AWARDS 2019 (biggest health & fitness awards of Middle East).
His specialization includes fitness & nutrition education, fat loss, athletic strength & conditioning, rehab for back pain, exercise referral specialist, neuro-fitness (brain based conditions) and kettlebell master trainer.
Currently holding the highest status of a Master Trainer in Fitness First, Middle East. Abhinav was also nominated among the TOP 10 MALE PERSONAL TRAINERS IN UAE in FIT AWARDS’18.
He is also a member of “Panel of Experts” by FRIDAY MAGAZINE (Gulf News) where he regularly writes answers to fitness queries by the readers in “ASK THE EXPERTS” column. He is also a regular columnist for BETTER HEALTH feature by Dubai Health Authority.
He is also a regular Radio guest doing regular appearances on most Radio channels in Dubai for his expertise in Fitness & Nutrition.
His online client base spans across many countries where he has worked with all kinds of clients like athletes, bodybuilders, obese/diabetics and special population.
1. You have been a very successful trainer in India, and now as they say, EXCELLENCE is your habit, so you have established yourself in Dubai too. How does it feel?
To be honest it feels great - A feeling of “Yes I belong to the industry in Dubai, where top fitness professionals from all over the world are doing excellent work”. I arrived in Dubai 4 years back where no one knew me and I had to start from ground up continuously grinding myself and working 19 hours a day, at least for the first 2 years. I had just one goal – to be recognized in Dubai Fitness Industry as one of the top names. So it does feel amazing to be recognized the PERSONAL TRAINER OF THE YEAR 2019 IN UAE & GCC.
2. What does it take to be the best always?
First of all the passion for your work. I’ve always worked to be more skilful and educated in my work than the others, rather than just to earn money. Earning money is just the byproduct of my passion and zeal to become good at my work.
Secondly the desire and efforts to learn more and keep bettering myself every other day has been the key to my success so far. And the more I learn, the more I realize that how much I don’t know !!!
Lastly the desire to become the best in whatever you do is extremely important. No matter what profession you are in, work to become the best in that, else you will just be another person doing mediocre work and soon become out of demand and at a risk of losing work or job.
3. What are your strengths as a TRAINER?
EMPATHY and EDUCATION are my biggest strengths as a trainer.
Not many know but I have been obese all my life before I became a trainer. Not only that, I was suffering from chronic sciatica for 3 years of my college life, had developed knee problems, and started developing metabolic problems by 2010. I was able to reverse all that by learning and practising the science of fitness and nutrition. So I really know how it feels to be in the same situation and hence I am able to relate and empathize with my clients a lot more than other trainers. That also gives me a sense of huge responsibility towards my clients which makes me continuously put relentless efforts in educating myself in different areas of health, fitness, nutrition and performance. Most of my clients trust me more than their doctor which puts huge pressure on me to educate myself even more.
As a trainer, it becomes imperative to keep upgrading ourselves every day, as we are dealing with a very complex human body. Fitness, health, pathology, nutrition, medicines – are not mutually exclusive so we need to keep educating ourselves in every domain. If we don’t upgrade ourselves, we will soon become obsolete. This will also allow you to be in demand all the time, have more referrals and charge a premium price.
4. How do you plan the diet and workout for a client, of course the Fitness goals are kept in mind, but what are the major observations that help you bring out the best in one?
Planning a diet is very personalized and cannot be generalized here. People come to me with all kinds of goals, fitness levels, problems, health conditions, allergies, intolerances etc. You have to keep in mind everything before planning a diet which includes adherence ability and personal preferences. In general, estimating caloric requirements, prioritizing proteins, filling the rest with fats and carbs, having enough micro nutrients and fibre intake are crucial. All the calculations are based on fitness levels, goals, intensity and volume of training. If a person with specific metabolic problems (like diabetes or hypertension for example) comes, then they require different planning of diet and supplementation and also the current medications need to be reviewed before planning a diet.
The biggest factor while planning a diet always remains – adherence and behavior. If a person cannot adhere to a particular diet, no matter what, it will FAIL! There is no single best diet out there.
5. What is the most popular form of Fitness in UAE? Do people prefer other forms of exercises over weight training?
When I started here, so called “functional training”, was the rage in commercial gyms where trainers were obsessed with circuit training and changing workouts every session. There is a lot to argue on the “functionality” aspect of those workouts which I’ll keep for another article.
But in the long run, genuine strength training (or progressive weight training) will always prevail and that is what most of the good trainers will emphasize on. One can take a ‘hybrid’ approach where a mixture of progressive strength training can be included with conditioning workouts. At the end of the day, training is always goal dependent. We plan the training as per the desired goal – bodybuilding (hypertrophy), strength, crossfit, endurance and there is no one fit for all.
But as I said, no matter what the goal is, strength should always be the foundation.
6. What are the main reasons that people are not able to achieve their fitness goals?
Lack of proper guidance is the topmost reason in my opinion. If a person is guided well as to ‘WHY’ to do certain things before ‘WHAT’ to do, he is more likely to stay on course and will enjoy the journey.
Second reason is the consistency and perseverance. People don’t often have the patience and they are more end goal oriented rather than process oriented. The sooner they realize that it’s a process and they stop being in a hurry to reach an end goal, they are more likely to stay on course and get consistent. ‘Consistency beats intensity’ we say in fitness and is damn true !
7. What are the essential supplements that one must have?
Omega 3 fatty acids is the single supplement that everyone should take – an any age, goal, or fitness level. The rest can actually be taken through a properly designed diet. The supplements will be required in case of deficiency or improve performance or sleep. For example, all my clients are mostly advised a good multi-vitamin supplement and magnesium in addition to Omega 3.
The other dietary supplements and the ones for performance, recovery etc are advised case dependent.
8. Professional competing has become extremely popular all over the world, and the number of participants have increased. What is your advice to the young competitors?
Don’t ruin your health in a bid to win those competitions. Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs) have always been a part of such competitions and will always will be. Just don’t be in a hurry to take those substances (without building a solid foundation at least) and even when you do, do not abuse them. Be sure of what you’re taking and under the right guidance. It is a mad race and no one will remember you after a few years even if you win a few competitions.
9. What are your future plans?
To be an entrepreneur of course. I will always be a personal trainer which will remain my cover picture, because this is something I am really good at and really enjoy doing. Along with this, whatever business opportunities come, will always be welcome. In the long run, you cannot lead a life JUST as a personal trainer so being an entrepreneur and having a flourishing business is important (which will be fitness related for sure !).
Awards & Recognitions
• Male Personal Trainer of the Year 2019 – FIT AWARDS UAE 2019
• Top 10 Finalists – PT of the Year 2018– FIT AWARDS UAE 2018
• Special Recognition Award by FITNESS FIRST MIDDLE EAST – 2018
• Top Personal Trainer for FITNESS FIRST (Q2, Q3, Q4 2018)
• Multiple Times Personal Trainer of the Month for FITNESS FIRST, DUBAI FESTIVAL CITY
REPs level 4 – Lower Back Pain specialist
REPs level 3 (Diploma) – Exercise Referral Specialist
REPs – Level 3 (YMCA) Certified in Personal Training
Certified in Personal Training from K11 School Of Fitness Sciences
Certified in Advanced Personal Training for Special Population from K11
IKSFA (Russia) - Certified Kettlebell Sport Coach – Level 1
IKFF (USA) - Certified in Kettlebell, Bodyweight & Mobility Training
CrossFit - Level 1 Coach
Stick Mobility – Level 1
Brain Based Fitness Course – Level 1 by BodyHack UAE
Certified in Basic Massage Therapy from K11
EBFA (USA) - Barefoot Training and Kinesio Taping
CISSN (Certified Sports Nutritionist from International Society of Sports Nutrition)
WEBSITE : www.abhifit.com
INSTAGRAM : @officialabhifit
TWITTER : @officialabhifit
FACEBOOK : @officialabhifit