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Fat To Fit: Watch Aamir Khan’s Extreme Transformation For ‘Dangal’

Aamir Khan spills the beans on his extreme ‘Dangal’ transformation, don’t try this at home. 

Updated
Entertainment
3 min read
Aamir Khan spills the beans on his extreme ‘Dangal’ transformation. (Photo courtesy: Facebook)

Aamir Khan’s physical transformation for Dangal has been too extreme, even by his own standards. A behind-the-scenes video tells the story of the actor’s personal dangal with weight. He gained 28 kilos in five months for his wrestler character in the film based on Mahavir Phogat. But his journey there and back is not one for the fainthearted.

What you’re about to read will give you fitness goals for sure, but what’s almost unbelievable, is for an actor to put his health and life through such hardship, all for his passion.

This piece too comes with a disclaimer: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME.

Aamir Khan Knows His Weaknesses Better Than His Strengths

Dangal director Nitesh Tiwari gave Aamir the option to start filming with his Dhoom 2 and PK six-pack body, and then gradually progress to his overweight wrestler built. But Aamir decided to do the exact opposite. He wanted to gain 28 kilos and shoot the larger chunk of the film (80%) first, and then work on getting lean towards the end of the film. The logic?

Aamir Khan knows his strengths, but he knows his weaknesses better. He thought that after gaining all that weight, he should have a reason to work towards getting back into shape, and he didn’t want to promote his film as a paunchy wrestler.
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Putting On Weight Is Fun But Uncomfortable

Reel vs Real: Aamir Khan meets the real Mahavir Phogat, who the actor will be playing in the film <i>Dangal.</i>
Reel vs Real: Aamir Khan meets the real Mahavir Phogat, who the actor will be playing in the film Dangal.

Even though Aamir ate his way through food paradise (samosas, vada paos, brownies, chocolates and what not) to gain the required amount of weight, he says that it made him physically very uncomfortable. He could barely bend down to tie his shoelaces and he had trouble breathing too. It affected his wrestler training, because he wasn’t fast enough on his feet.

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For Aamir, Acting Is Never ‘Faking It’

Aamir had the option of wearing a body suit for his heavy avatar, but he turned it down because it wouldn’t have the ‘feel’. Even Nitesh Tiwari was taken aback by his passion for real cinema. But Aamir had a very valid reason behind taking the tougher option of actually piling on the pounds. He explains in the making-of video that the excess weight made his movements restrained and his breathing heavier, which helped him be more of the character, given his age and built. Wearing a body suit would have been a half hearted attempt at looking heavy, but Aamir is not about that, as we all know.

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The Ultimate Goal Will Only Depress You

Aamir Khan has an important tip for all those who have weight targets, or even other high-set goals for that matter. Once he was done filming his overweight part of the film, he had an Everest to climb. Losing the 28 kilos and coming back to his prescribed body fat was going to be a bigger battle than gaining it. There were several moments when he was convinced that this had been a mistake, a challenge too big even for Mr Perfectionist. He felt depressed and gave up on his body too. But he mustered up the courage to wipe out the negative thoughts, and decided to work at his goal one day at a time.

If you have an ultimate goal in mind, make sure you don’t look up to see it. If you look at Mt Everest and think about where you have to reach, you’ll simply give up, you’ll get depressed. But if you look down and just focus on every step, and push yourself to take just the next step, you’ll reach your goal eventually. 
Aamir Khan, Actor
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The Silver Lining

Kiran Rao, Aamir Khan and Azad on holiday in Meghalaya. (Photo courtesy: <a href="https://twitter.com/aamir_khan/status/795479034859655169">Twitter/@aamir_khan</a>)
Kiran Rao, Aamir Khan and Azad on holiday in Meghalaya. (Photo courtesy: Twitter/@aamir_khan)

Apart from the fact that Aamir’s passion drives him to achieving perfection, there was also something else he thoroughly enjoyed about being overweight. His little son Azad enjoyed hugging and cuddling him a lot more with all that fat, than when he was lean and muscular. As adorable as that is, what Nitesh Tiwari finds humbling is to see a superstar of his calibre giving this much passion to what he does. It really is borderline obsessive, and Aamir admits that candidly too. The video shows Aamir cringing, panting, concentrating and struggling with extreme pain, and even though he doesn’t recommend it to anyone, we know that he wouldn’t have done it differently.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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