Their passion for work, their excellence on the job and the change they have wrought has taken them to the top of their game. Fitness and bodybuilding have been looked upon as male dominated professions and sports throughout the globe. However, slowly and gradually women stepped into this exclusive fiefdom and proved to the world that women are as iron cast as men and can achieve anything. One such woman of substance is Ankita Singh aka Ankita Extreme. She is a fitness model with 73K and 40K followers on Instagram and Facebook respectively. Let’s catch up with the inspiring story of Ankita Singh who represented India on the international stage. Perhaps, you too will be inspired to perspire and compete too….
1. Could you tell us more about yourself and how you got started with bodybuilding?
I’m a Computer Science graduate from M.S.Ramaiah Insitute Technology, Bengaluru. And this is the place where all it begun. Food at my college hostel didn’t suit me because of which I fell so sick that I had to get admitted to hospital for five days. This is when a doctor asked me to avoid oily food and to be on fruits, clean food basically. After getting discharged, I joined a dungeon gym close to my college on New BEL Road, as my relationship with my boyfriend of long distance wasn’t going well either. As soon as I joined the gym, it was like an instant love affair. I was able to concentrate on my studies more than ever. Life was GOOD! After finishing my graduation, I worked as a Java developer, Android App developer at two IT firms.
2. Who was your inspiration or what was the motivating factor that helped you develop a passion for fitness?
No one! I had never heard (or met) any bodybuilder at the time I joined the gym. It was solely to get fit.
After the owner of my gym (Murali) told me that he had never seen any beginner especially a girl lifting so much weight, it became not just the motivating factor, but also MADE ME KEEP GOING!
3. Can you share your success story with us?
I have competed 12 times nationally and twice internationally. I represented India in the 6th WBPF Championship (2014) at the International stage in Fitness as well as in athletic physique category and got placed Fifth. I was also a part of the 7th Asian Championship (ABBA) – Represented India in the ‘Bikini’ category this time, Sept 2016. I was also a semi-finalist at MTV Reebok fitness challenge season 1 (cross-fit games) in October 2014. I have been engaged in promoting Natural BodyBuilding for which I have also been awarded/felicitated at Mr Gujarat (Rajkot) 2016, Karnataka’s biggest bodybuilding show ‘Sathish sugar classic’, Mr Vajradehi 2016 (Hubballi). Also I was among the TOP 5 contestants (ALL INDIA) in Jerai Classics 2015-March. I secured Fifth position at e senior Nationals Mr India 2016 championship held at Roha, Raipur, in March.
My fitness led me to modelling as a fitness icon. I was selected among the 5 fittest girls in India by Mens’ Health Magazine and was featured in the November as well as December edition of the Men’s Health magazine in 2014.
My interview and my journey into fitness was showcased on Headlines Today News channel, in the month of August 2014 in a show called as Fit, Fitter Fittest. Incidentally I was chosen as the Cover model for the special edition (Body Power Expo) of the elite Fitness Magazine, Fitness Guru Year 2015-March. I have been called for guest posings by various states viz Gujarat, Goa, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, etc. I also did a couple of shows at FM 91. 1 RADIO City on Fitness, featured in print media, Star sports, ETV news Kannada for the Fit-factor Auditions. I was also former face of the brand, and the brand Ambassador of Muscle-Blaze (Product of HealthKart), ESN. I was also chosen as the Ambassador of Body Power Expo, wherein I had participated at Jerai Classics last year and was among the top 5 contenders and was in the list of ‘one of the top 10 influential Indian Instagramers’ from past two years! I was also a brand Ambassador of Rite Bite from December 1.
4. How has your family helped you achieve your goals?
I belong to a political and a joint family where my grand-dad was a former Member of Legislative council in Uttar Pradesh. After my grand dad, my father became the MLC of the same constituency.
Wearing sleeveless tops in front of family members was a BIG THING forget me telling them about my championships, where I needed to pose and flex in a BIKINI. They never knew until I did my FIRST INTERNATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP, which was hosted by India for the very first time in Mumbai, in the year 2014, the news of which went to my parents, after a few reporters went to my home in UP to interview my parents after I achieved the FIFTH position in World.
5. Tell me about your personal life experience with family?
Initially I didn’t get support from my family. But now they have accepted the fact that it’s my first love, all though they want me to get married soon (laughs)
I have gone on shows all over India, appeared on TV several times, done Radio shows to promote fitness and bodybuilding. I also came on the cover of a couple of magazines about which they now feel very proud!
I’m happy to have been able to spread awareness about fitness not just to my family but also among the new generation, because A HEALTHY WOMAN IN THE FAMILY, MAKES THE FAMILY HEALTHY!
6. What is your success mantra?
I have always believed :”ONE LIFE, BE EVERYTHING YOU HAVE EVER DREAMT TO BE!!” Because regrets will always take us down, if we do not ACT when we HAVE the time.
So I’ve tried to be a Blogger, Software Engineer, in team India representing our country in not just one but TWO Categories (Fitness and Athletics), then later this year I chose to be a Bikini category competitor during the sian Championship. Apart from training people Online and Offline, I also remotely manage my Dad’s Business which is based in Mirzapur.
7. What would you advise young body-builders?
Some of the middle aged women have a very common misconception that if they begin working out, lifting weights, they may start looking manly. Well, as a matter of fact it is virtually impossible for women to start looking manly because our body produces 9 times less testosterone than men and there is no way of us getting huge unless they use unnatural supplements.
Having said this I see a lot of womenin the sport without much lifting experience recently using Anabolic steroids in order to be stage ready (without Muscle Maturity). They try everything to see short-term results which infact is very harmful in the long term. Not just that it affects their periods and their ability to conceive, but they also get mood swings and couple of other physical changes like increased jawline, and even a change of voice because of high testerone level in their bodies.
Often trainers put not just women but guys too on steroids in order to show others that their clients are making fast progress. But what’s after the cycle? One must research and consult their families, if one is planning to go for something like this as it not just impacts the one who’s taking it but also the ones around them!
Also, there’s a myth: Protein is often considered as steroid (or Babajika Churn) by beginners. Most of the beginners (and those who are not into fitness) think that whey will hulk up, and fat burners will make them shed their fat in no time. As the name goes “supplements are supplements, and can never be considered as substitutes” to your regular food. Having said this, solid food is more important and these supplements shouldn’t be consumed as staple food, but to meet your deficit. Also, one must buy their supplements from authentic supplement stores like Neulife which is the best supplement store chain here in Bengaluru.
8. Can you share with us your dieting and eating habits?
(Laughs) I don’t count my calories when I’m in my off season I just eat right and lift real heavy!
But when I’m preparing for Championships I go on a low carb with high Protein and moderate Fat diet (customized by myself). My workout too changes as my main motive is to shed fat and look ripped and dry on the stage.
9. Could you indicate your workout plan?
I generally train two body parts per day, starting with mobility, Lifting weight followed by a very short time of cardio and static stretching. I do Yoga as well (thrice a week).
Every body part I try to hit twice a week. One day in the week is off (generally mid-week as I love to work out on Weekends, crowd being less) as body needs recovery in order to grow!
* Sugar is detrimental when trying to lean down; it spikes blood glucose levels, which then quickly spike insulin levels and encourage fat storage. Avoid sugar at any cost.
* Keep changing your workouts to see a better result.
* Never ever skip a meal to keep your metabolism high n intact.
* Alcohol, processed food, stress, medication, and environmental pollutants can all have harmful health effects. Eat organic n raw food as far as possible 🙂 STAY AWAY FROM ALCHOHOL!
*Eat your carbs! It has benefits; do not drink processed juices, instead eat your fruit (right after the workout is the best time!)
* Avoid Gluten free and artificial ingredients.
*MOST IMPORTANT: Cook your meal and the same, wherever you go! Carry Protein shake along in a shaker.
10. You have endorsed a couple of brands, may we know about them?
I was the former face of the brand, and brand Ambassador of Muscle-Blaze, ESN. I’m very thankful to IBBF (Indian Body Builders Federation) who believed me and gave me an opportunity to show my talent on the international stage!! I’m also the face of the gym ‘Pluto Fitness’ which is based in Koramangala, opposite Forum Mall.
11. What’s next on your list?
I’m planning to compete in Natural Olympia, as I’m a Life Time Natural Athlete. Opening a gym of my own is on my list. Apart from this I’m going to be associated with Rite Bite (Protein bars) and an Elite Protein supplement brand, the name of which I can’t disclose as of now unless an official announcement is made. I’m a fitness model, so apart from doing shoots, I’m also planning to give movies a try. I have been getting offers but never took them seriously mostly because of time restriction.
FITNESS STARTS WITH YOU! You will not only LOOK GOOD IN ANY SORT OF CLOTHES, BUT ALSO WITHOUT THEM Always remember ‘ONE LIFE, TAKE CHANCES…BE EVERYTHING YOU WISH TO BE’.