The Part-Time hustle is a platform set to explore people’s interests/hobbies outside of their 9-5. Just as we share ours, we want to share yours and create a community fuelled by your passions.
Wouldn’t it be a dream to make you passions or hobbies a career? We sat down with Amar who has done just that, transforming his craft into not one…but two companies. Have a look at what he said about his inspirations and experiences below.
Full-Time Job: Self employed at ‘Opti Lift’ & ‘AMA Creator’
Part-Time Hustle: Fitness, photography, videography and fashion
At Brunel when you first started going to the gym was bodybuilding the end goal or was it just to look good?
In the midst of studying at Brunel, going to the gym and training in general was a ‘feel good’ factor for me. My day was never complete if I didn’t go to the gym (and trust me my friends could vouch for me on this one). Bodybuilding was never the end goal, in fact being so naturally slim and skinny, I wanted to add size and just work towards looking good and feeling good about myself. For the first few years of University, I tried to refrain from even wearing a t-shirt because I was that embarrassed about how slim my arms were. This was something I always wanted to change. In turn, the process can be priceless and teach you a lot -both physically and mentally. It was through the help of the gym that I channelled my discipline and consistency in to studying too.
How do you find balancing your work life and your fitness life?
I think it all comes down to preparation. For example, cooking up a few meals for the week can really help when it comes to managing your time and being able to stay consistent with your nutrition throughout the week. There are times/ days however when I am so busy that I can’t go to the gym (ironic as it sounds despite being in the fitness industry) but I usually try to throw in some kind of home workout or exercise on those busy days. Again, it also comes down to fitness being a kind of therapy for me and something I really enjoy – so I will always make the time for it.
What made you so passionate about fitness?
I love the idea of being able to physically see progress when you are consistent and work hard towards something. If you can apply this ideology to everything else in your life, you will begin to see progress in those areas too. You probably won’t see results in business, relationships, ventures etc as quick as you may with fitness and building your body, but if you stick at it every day for long enough, rest assured, you will. It can be a very rewarding journey.
There are a few other factors that have played huge parts in my passion for fitness and training. As previously mentioned, I was always quite paranoid about being tall and slim and the way I felt about myself. This motivated me so much during times where I really needed that drive to pick myself up and stay on track with everything. As well as this, my Grandad was also a huge influence for me. He had a very strong build and history in power/ weight lifting. I was encouraged to work hard with sports/ training from a young age by him. To this day, I still have/ and use the weightlifting belt he used to win competitions with back in his day.
My guy you’ve always been styled up! Who are you inspired by?
Ha, thanks! There are a few people and artists/ celebs with cool style who I used to look at, but if you just go on to Instagram these days, there’s a lot of cool bloggers with unique style these days. There’s so much inspiration around us that you can take inspo out of outfits and styles which you think look good, and create your own take on them. Social media is such a great platform for fusing fashion across the world. As for myself, I just like to mix things up all the time.- sometimes formalwear, sports, casual – it all depends on what I’m doing really.
For what you’re doing you need to remain disciplined, how hard is it to remain focused, and keep in shape?
I like to be fairly lean all year around, gradually adding size to my physique each year. Saying that, I feel as though it’s also important to be fully functional and athletic, meaning that I am healthy and mobile (in addition to staying ‘in shape’).
We’re all human at the end of the day, and I’m not going to lie, there are times when I will indulge in whatever I feel like (sucker for chocolate/ desserts too – especially cheesecake). Majority of the time I do stay disciplined though and it honestly does not feel like a chore. I don’t like the word ‘diet’ either because to me, that term sounds like something which is not sustainable long term. Small lifestyle changes over the years have allowed me to stay disciplined with my food in-take and training, whilst being able to enjoy the whole process at the same time. One thing which I do every day before I sleep is write a ‘to-do’ list on my phone in ‘notes’. This helps me to tick off tasks each day, whether they are big tasks or small (not just fitness related either). You will find that over time, if you look back at all of these lists, you would have accomplished so much even in the space of one week. Imagine what you could achieve in a year, or even 2?
I saw on your Instagram that you competed, when you got into bodybuilding, was that your aim? And do you want to compete more in the future? (Tell us about the competition)
I competed in my first show towards the end of last year (2016). My class itself is called ‘mens physique’ which is different to bodybuilding. Where bodybuilding is judged more on size, Men’s Physique brings a whole new dynamic to shows. It’s more about proportions, balance, effortlessly showing ‘conditioning’ and a fresh look of lifestyle, as opposed to extreme mass. Judges look for an overall aesthetically pleasing physique.
Training towards a show never crossed my mind until mid-way through last year when I was setting up my personal training and fitness business; Opti-Lift. I wanted to set a goal for myself and see what I could achieve by an end deadline date. A lot of guys these days want to emulate a men’s physique lifestyle, and I felt as if it went hand in hand with my lifestyle and the kind of industry I was working in.
The lead up to my UKBFF competition itself was quite an intense experience. I was on a pretty strict food regime for 16 weeks, with two training sessions a day (one cardiovascular, one weighted). Sacrifices were made to say the least and the process did almost take over my life for that period of time. The pinnacle for me was attending my cousin’s wedding a few weeks before, and not being able to eat or drink anything there, but instead going back to the set ‘meal-prep’ in my car every 3 hours. This was VERY tough and demanding, but my long term goal of working towards that deadline and doing whatever it takes stuck with me. On the show day itself, I had so much support from the close people in my life. Even though some of them didn’t understand the extent of what I was doing, they still showed support in whatever way they could, and I really appreciate that to this day. I met so many people during the lead up to the show and on the show day itself, and it was reassuring to meet others who have been going through the same process. I learnt so much about myself, the main one was learning to become comfortable, whilst being uncomfortable – this is how GROWTH occurs.
What music inspires you?
I love all types of music, my tastes is very diverse. Depending on the mood I’m in or what I’m doing, I could be listening to anything from deep house, trap, trance, bhangra or Rnb/Rap. As I am also a producer, I feel as though these times I listen to music for different purposes without even realizing too.
Do you aspire to be like anyone within your field or are you just focused on yourself?
There are some real successful entrepreneurs out there in the fitness industry and media/ creative industry. As much as I read and love to network with new people and inhibit traits of successful people, I will always aspire to be the best version of myself. By this, I mean I want to constantly progress in what I do, every single day, and be the master of my craft. I don’t think I will ever be at a point where I am content with where I am, which in turn will always drive me and keep me motivated.
What places do you think your bodybuilding and fitness can take you to?
Possibilities are endless. You could be the best personal trainer in your local gym, or you could be a YouTuber and athlete who inspires millions worldwide through creative content. It all depends on what you want and how much you want it. I feel as though fitness has/ and will open up many doors for me. Saying that, nothing will come to you if you don’t work for it and create your own luck. I am constantly exploring new avenues (as opposed to the usual conventional ones), so I guess time will tell…
How many cheat days do you have?
I don’t have cheat days as such because I just feel lethargic and demotivated if I over indulge for a whole day. Instead, I throw in a couple of cheat meals throughout the week to break things up. If I do end up eating something which is very calorie dense, I will just add in some extra cardio, or increase the intensity of the training session the next day – no big deal.
We’re the part timers, apart from your job etc what is your part timer hustle?
Currently, Opti-Lift is my ‘full time’ hustle if you like to call it that. I also run my own production firm called AMAcreator. This started out as a hobby/ or ‘part time hustle’ but has now also become a full time role (very recently) alongside Opti-Lift. I’ve always enjoyed creating content and making videos. As a creative with a background in marketing, branding and media, AMAcreator works directly with brands, people and businesses to create innovative video content. You can check out the Instagram/ website below to see more of what we do:
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