When I was planning to do 24 season 1 there was one problem. I knew I was not in the shape physically that I needed to be to play “Jai Rathore Singh”, and I knew of Matt (the owner of the company) from “true fitness” where I use to do Bikrams Hot yoga. Matt had an office in the 60k sq ft gym there in Andheri. So I approached him and asked if he would get me in shape for the role, as I knew I needed to go further than I ever had done before in my career. Especially physically, in both the way I looked and also performed in the action scenes and being in my mid 50’s that was going to be a challenge.
So I did Matt’s 3 phase weight management system and lost 7.5kg in 4 weeks of phase 1! We then went on to do a lot of re-education on food and how I should be eating, also what I should be eating. Then when I got to phase 3 Matt took me to Gold’s gym and started to get me loosened up. I had a lot of issues with sciatica and blockages in my muscle tissue which Matt dealt with. These were due to hours spent sitting around on set and in departure lounges. But Matt did his best and got me through months of demanding shooting! When Matt had got me loosened up we then got onto the training with weights. My strength went up, my body shape improved and my levels of energy increased considerably!
I can say in all honesty, that when Matt had worked his magic I was in the best shape of my life! I was shooting for 18 hours straight and people who were half my age were asking to take a break while I was still on full battery! We worked on that prep (with Matt) for just over 14 months and it was some of the best times I have had on set. Matt kept calling me to see if I was drinking my water. Staying hydrated is a major part of the results that I was achieving. Matt would give me pep-talks in the gym when I was feeling insecure as to 24 going over to the Indian audience well or not. And we actually became friends after a few months. We went to the theatre together and a few movie premiers. Matt got me through that entire 14 months of my life! I will say that 24 was the hardest thing I have done in my entire career and if I had not had Matt around to guide me and coach me I do not think I would have made it through.