Varun’s journey towards his Iconic transformation began at a pivotal moment in his life: turning 40, embracing fatherhood, and navigating a bustling professional career.
The incentive for change stemmed from a joint decision with his wife to make the most healthy transformation possible. Ioannis (his trusted Physiotherapist and friend from Kinesis, who he had been seeing due to a knee injury) made the crucial recommendation which led them to Iconic Fitness and into the resourceful hands of Coach Hannes and myself, sparking the beginning of an exciting and life-altering journey, which is still going strong today.
The Influence of Roles and Responsibilities
Juggling the roles of dedicated husband, attentive businessman and brand-new father significantly influenced Varun’s decision to start prioritizing his health more than before. Supporting his wife post-delivery, combined with the desire to be the most hands-on dad with their new son, Zahan, and not to forget his passion for playing Padel, all fueled his determination even further! Varun also discovered great solace in workouts as a stress-reliever from the demands of his professional life. Physical exercise is of course great for the body, but also for the mind, which Varun quickly came to learn and appreciate.
Navigating Challenges: Parenthood, Work, and Injury
Despite the demands of parenthood, professional workload and the additional stress of nursing a knee injury, Varun decided to incorporate gym sessions into his routine by opting to be an early bird. Trusting professionals like Ioannis, Hannes and myself (or as Varun likes to call us, “Batman & Robin”), also aided in overcoming any possible challenges or setbacks along the way. And even with a newborn in tow, weekends were still able to be family days at the gym, with little Zahan playing with his soft plush toys in the corner whilst mommy and daddy played with significantly heavier toys, further exemplifying Varun’s commitment to both fitness and family time.
Conquering the Impact of Injury
With great patience and dedication to his rehabilitation in the gym, and regular physiotherapy sessions, Varun was able to persist with physical activities and go from strength to strength, despite any pain, discomfort or frustration experienced during the process. His combined steadfast trust in experts and adherence to his rehabilitation program undoubtedly facilitated a successful recovery, evident in his ability to now run, jump and lunge when only a few months ago he could barely squat lower than 60 degrees (and that was without additional weight). Varun was even able to to participate in the Iconic 2023 Throwdown, where his new found strength, fitness and overall capabilities certainly shone!
Nutritional Changes and Progress
Like many of us starting out any fitness journey, Varun was a bit lost when it came to nutrition. However, once he came to learn about the importance of calories, protein, and ultimately how to lose unnecessary and unwanted weight, he adopted a strict and meticulous macro calculating way of life, and refused to even look at a slice of cake anymore. He has since transitioned to a more intuitive, maintainable and enjoyable dietary approach. The initial struggles served their purpose and provided him with many lessons, but now he knows how to ‘have his cake and eat it too’.
Support System and Long-term Goals
Varun credits first and foremost his dedicated wife, Dhun, who has shown immense physical and mental strength and support by accompanying him to the gym (and training as well) even on mornings following sleepless nights with the little one. And then of course his team of medical and fitness practitioners, consisting of Ioannis, and his colleague Sujin from Kinesis; as well as Coach Hannes and I at Iconic, and last but not least, his Padel coach Mauro, who have all shown unwavering support and patience throughout his transformational journey. Looking ahead, his goals revolve around achieving peak fitness in 2024, envisioning a triathlon, and sustaining an active lifestyle for quality time with Zahan and Dhun.
Beyond the Gym: Victories, Insights and Advice
The journey has not only made Varun fitter and more energetic, but has also heightened his awareness of mindful eating and its impact on overall well-being.
His advice to men facing similar challenges echoes the significance of not wasting time and seizing the moment, not being afraid to ask for help and then learning to trust in the professionals, and most importantly, understanding that wellness is an investment in oneself. It is never too late to start, but there is no better time than the present.
Varun’s experiences highlight an apparent distaste for lunges (although I am still hoping to someday change this), a love for time-bound challenges during workouts that have allowed him to truly discover the potential of his strength and stamina, a growing preference for South African’s ‘hillbilly’ music thanks to Coach Marnus, and a lingering uncertainty about Coach Hannes’ early and often ‘random’ morning trivia sessions, all contributing to a colorful journey of self-improvement.
Varun’s story epitomizes the profound changes achievable through dedication, resilience, and a robust support system. His journey furthermore emphasizes the power of commitment to wellness, transcending beyond physical transformations into a holistic lifestyle change.
Coach’s Final Words
Working with individuals such as Varun is what makes my job truly enjoyable and rewarding. From the moment him and Dhun walked through the doors of Iconic Fitness, he was ready to grind, and the proof is most definitely in the hypothetical pudding! To date, he has already achieved so much – he is stronger, fitter, leaner and more confident than he has been in a long while, but 2024 has brought with it newer and bigger goals, which we will no doubt achieve.
If you feel inspired by Varun’s story and are ready to embark on your own transformational journey, we would like to offer you a Free Transformation session. This is your chance to find out more about how you too can change your life and finally realize the best version of yourself.
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