Hate Being Photographed, I'm Shy and Don’t Like Coming Out in Public, Says Milind Soman
Milind Soman, one of the fittest men in showbiz, says he doesn't have a workout regime and does not exercise to look good on camera.
Milind Soman redefined masculinity for a whole generation when he emerged from a box in Alisha Chinai's Made in India. That moment has been etched as iconic in showbiz history, establishing Milind as the epitome of all qualities that a male model is supposed to possess – desirability, fitness, etc. He's worn the crown of the top model for years, and continues to make women swoon even at the age of 50.
Beginning as a model, occasionally acting in films and now as a fitness ambassador – Milind has been in the public eye for 30 years now. But he says none of it was planned, he actually went against his nature to make a career in showbiz.
"I started modelling because someone said that you look amazing, we want to take pictures of you. I hate being photographed, I am shy, I don't like coming out in public. But because it was a business which I thought was interesting, I did it. Even now, I don't like to be photographed, but I know how to be photographed well. For me, it's an exercise of talent that I have," says Milind.
Milind is one of the fittest men in showbiz, even at the age of 50. From being a national level swimmer to acquiring the titles of Ironman and Ultraman in multi-sport races, he has been an ambassador for fitness for years now. But he says none of it was because he wanted to look good on camera.
"I did not like running initially. I wanted to participate in the Mumbai Marathon once, but when I did it, it felt amazing. I wanted to keep up that momentum. I was fit from my childhood, I started swimming competitively from the age of 9. My looking good is a by-product of the things I do, I don't do it to look good," he insists.
Long before workout videos became a cool thing to share on Instagram, fitness became a way of life for Milind. He is now sharing his fitness journey with enthusiasts on the web platform in the show Maximise Your Day, as part of branded content on Hotstar.
Talking about the show, Milind says, "The show tells people what I do, and if I can do it, so can they. My philosophy is to maximise my day, to get the most out of it. If you are struggling to find time, start with two minutes. Do a two-minute workout, which could be just push-ups, or push-ups with a plank. As you get fitter, as your mind-body connection improves, you'll realise you will be able to find more time, it won't be that much of a struggle. It's only a matter of prioritising. Start small, start slow."
If you ask him about his fitness regime, Milind's answer will surprise you. He has no regime, no routine and his pursuit of fitness is driven by his willingness to try out new, different things.
"I don't know what a fitness regime means. I have a very fluid approach, which you can see on the show. People think I run all the time, but the truth is I run whenever I can, and that changes every day. I am looking for things to do always," he says.
He is associated with multiple fitness events, including the Pinkathon, which is held every year to spread breast cancer awareness. Milind says that it's heartening to see that people around the world are more concerned about fitness now.
"I see people around the world taking more interest in fitness because they understand that the lifestyle they are following will take them into an early grave. They realise they need to make an effort to stay fit. That is happening all around the world, and India is also following that slowly. India is the fastest growing running community in the world, which is amazing," he says.
The model-turned-entrepreneur has also dabbled in films, last seen on the big screen in Bajirao Mastani and in the web series Four More Shots Please. His acting jobs have been few and far between on purpose. "I am not a career actor. I never pursued a full-time career in acting. I have different interests, I try doing various things."
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