At 29, Prakash Amritraj walked away from the game ‘a skinny guy’ with shoulder issues. Seven years later, he is the main tennis presenter, ‘higher actor’ than father Vijay, and follower of workout regimens of ‘The Rock.’ Across the arena, on the opposite end of the phone, Prakash Amritraj talks with labored breath. Each sentence is broken up by way of an audible and desperate gulp of air, and it doesn’t take long for him to recognize this. “Sorry,” he apologizes earnestly. “Bear with me right here. I’m within the center of my first training session.
He’s at a health club in Indian Wells, California, going through the first checkbox in his cautiously designed morning habitual. First on a listing is an exercise he’s taken up lately – fasted cardio – one which changed into inspired with the aid of a sure Dwayne Johnson – higher referred to as ‘The Rock.’ “I’m doing plenty of aerobic workout routines before eating anything,” he explains. “Then I devour my breakfast—blueberries, oats… the good things. I get more than one work-outs accomplished earlier than I get into my day.”
The 35-12 months-antique has been on this adventure to super-health considering that 2013. Armed with unwavering willpower, he’s visible his once skinny frame rework right into a specimen that might rival the most avid of frame-developers. Every pound of weight lifting at the gym is with cause, and every morsel of food he eats is measured. This has been the way he’s lived his existence each day because he left the day job that he becomes widely recognized for tennis. After going via a reconstructive shoulder surgery six years ago, Amritraj, who became once India’s highest-ranked singles player, has moved on from his days of playing tennis professionally to make inroads into the world of film production performing, and his present-day adventure: sports activities imparting.
The closing endeavor took him to Acapulco, Mexico final week, in which he watched the ATP 500 event from the sidelines and interviewed players after their fits. After one unique sport, Rafael Nadal dutifully walked over to Amritraj, who became waiting on the edge of the courtroom. The Spaniard, the Hulk of the tennis global, became outsized via his interviewer. Amritraj had on a white polo t-shirt with sleeves stretched to the max that could barely cross over his biceps (“I have a splendid tailor,” he says gently).
“All of the players who see me now,” he says, “are surprised. They used to recognize me as the thin man at the excursion. As for Rafa, my biceps are virtually bigger than his. Let’s get that clear proper now.” The remaining time Amritraj performed a competitive tennis suit was in July 2013, when he changed into nevertheless just 29. At the time, the former international no 154 required reconstructive shoulder surgical procedure, but it caused the selection from him to no longer get lower back to the excursion. “When you’re younger, and also you don’t have a good deal attitude, your thoughts are closed,” he says. “I used to assume that tennis is existence and lifestyles is tennis, and that became it. You quickly comprehend that you don’t assume past your tennis existence while you’re younger, and while you’re completed, you suddenly think, ‘oh wait, there are another 70 years left in lifestyles.’”
“When you’re schooling 8 hours a day to your complete life, a number of your day is based around that,” he explains. “So a lot of my lifestyles become based totally on physical ache and physical schooling. Everybody knows me for my work ethic and subject. Many people do it with golf after tennis; some do it with poker to position that competitive pressure into something else. I could not carry weights when I turned into gambling tennis, but I usually enjoyed it. So for me to just shut that down someday, I would lose my thoughts.
So I commenced entering into that.” There’s a set of images Amritraj has on his cellphone, all split-monitors of the before-and-after kind. On one aspect, he poses topless with a hint of put-up-surgical procedure weight around the midriff in a picture dated September 2013. On the proper, he’s flexing his muscle mass as a body-builder could. A layer of sweat brings out a glow because the camera captures the bulging biceps, the chiseled torso, and those difficult-earned six-percent abs. The ‘after’ image changed into taken in September 2018.
The paintings ethic with which he performed his chip-and-price game did now not allow him to enter a health club and play the function of an instructor’s puppet. Just lifting weights to fill the void tennis had left was now not going to be enough for him. He went out of the way to find out about vitamins. What all it takes to earn the body he now has, even training under the tutelage of renowned Hollywood instructor Corey Calliet – whom Sylvester Stallone once called ‘the Picasso of the frame.’ “He weighs his food within the morning,” says his father
Vijay Amritraj, a former international no 18 and the maximum decorated Indian singles participant within the Open Era. “He chefs his food, so he is aware of what’s getting in. He takes these types of meals to the numerous meetings that he goes to. Who does that? People who see him need to do it, but they don’t.” So full-size is
Amritraj junior’s nutrition information that he asserts some modern tour players have approached him for recommendations on their diet. At the equal time, Prakash has also helped out some friends of sixty five-year-vintage Vijay. “I can write a book on nutrition now,” Prakash says. “I simplest desire I knew all this once I was playing. But it’s crazy that I’m eating six food an afternoon now, which doesn’t sense sufficient, and once I turned into gambling, I ate three food a day and changed into full.” The fitness regimen he has set up for himself leaves him no time for distractions or excuses for that depends. He recollects a time closing yr while his presenting and statement paintings wished him to cover a tour event in Beijing from the studio inside the United States.
“My name time changed to 4:30 within the morning due to the time distinction. So I became at the gymnasium at 1:00 am regular.” A cellphone name from India at some stage in a grinding fasted exercise is less complicated. In 2010, Amritraj, still 27, found that his love for the game had started to dwindle. That harm took him off the excursion didn’t assist both. But it turned into then that he first delved into the different passion he had recognized since he was an infant, the artwork of movies. He auditioned at a Los Angeles studio run by famed performing educate Jocelyn Jones to study the change better.
“That converted my craft as an actor due to the fact you’re training with individuals who’ve carried out so much in performing,” Amritraj says. “It spread out my eyes and my angle.” Even though, he did return to the excursion for one final fling two years later in August 2012. But that lasted only until July the subsequent year when he ultimately referred to it as it quits at 29. “I had beaten so many gamers who are sitting inside the pinnacle 20-30 right now and that they’re all playing nicely into their 30s,” he says. “I may want to have; I should have saved going, genuinely. But after I had the reconstructive shoulder surgical operation, I had an unusual perspective approximately everything. I thought about all of the things I desired to do in life.
I become starting from scratch in one’s career. It became the right time to head beforehand and chase all of that instead of chase all of that when I was 35-forty.” To date, Amritraj has labored as co-manufacturer and govt manufacturer in Escape Plan: The Extractors and Untogether, respectively – he even had a performing function inside the latter. As such, he’s observed in his father’s footsteps. Back in 1983, the senior Amritraj had played a cameo in the James Bond film Octopussy and later functioned in theseries before entering into manufacturing and tennis commentary. It’s also led to three comparisons in the own family.
“From the paintings and education I’ve achieved, dad says I’m a better actor,” Amritraj says. “But listen, he becomes in a James Bond movie. You can’t argue with that.” Father Vijay concurs: “Like his tennis, he’s worked very difficulty at his appearing. His performing is lots of extra-scientific and expert and by way of the book. I become precisely the other.” Of late, though, the younger Amritraj has been preserving busy visiting the arena along with his new role as tennis presenter. It’s given him the risk of going to tournaments he never was given to play in and giving him time to excursion the metropolis. In Acapulco’s remaining week – where he by no means played all through his time on an excursion – he managed to slot a few ‘adventures’ into his agenda. “As a participant, it was simply courts and hotels, courts and accommodations.
Now I’m honestly looking to soak up everything around the globe,” he says. “We were staying at the beach, so I did jet-snowboarding, ATV-using after which, I become about 2 miles within the sky, zip-lined all the manner across the land and the ocean. It became outstanding.” Shortly after Indian Wells and the Miami Masters, he’ll journey to Europe for the clay season. And he’s already were given some matters coated up on his schedule. “In Rome, I virtually need to visit the Colosseum, and Monte Carlo is right there by the water…” These days, his baggage throughout travel consists of a pleasing crisp in shape and “anything (he desires) for the gym.”
Amritraj is not any stranger to traveling – he’s been at it considering that he changed into a toddler when he used to accompany his father all through tournaments. “Prakash had a second passport while he turned into two,” Vijay recollects. “But he nicely behaved for the duration of the journey. He slept on the plane. If the food became past due, it didn’t matter. The simplest time he’d cry becomes while he had to get a shot because he becomes afraid of the needle. Interestingly, if you have to attract blood these days for a blood test, he needs you to employ his aspect. I guess the early idea manner hardly ever leaves you completely.”