Let’s Get Physical – Karan Medappa

Fitness is the new-age mantra and need of the hour. And what better way to motivate more people to get bitten by this bug than with a colourful spread on those who’ve made fitness and exercise a way of life. RITZ gets candid with a few well known faces from the South, all supremely fit personalities with rippling bodies and oodles of strength.

Karan Medappa – Model and entrepreneur – Bengaluru

He’s 6 feet tall, 65 kgs in weight and an absolute ramp scorcher. Twenty eight year old Karan Medappa has been one of the country’s top models for the last 6 years. However, behind his good looks and ultra fit body is a mind that’s razor sharp. He’s the founder of Blue Degree, a sports marketing, events and PR company and also works as a consultant for Prasad Bidapa Associates. A top-notch tennis player, he stays in touch with the sport by coaching kids aged between 9 and 16 at Sol Sports, where he is Director of Fitness and Training.


How fit are you?

I would call myself sports fit, due to my background in various sports. I can play a 90-minute soccer match or a 5-set tennis match or 48 minutes of basketball.

Having played competitive tennis, basketball and football this is the best measure to gauge my fitness level.

Your push up record?

I’ve never really checked my push up record! But at one stretch I can do around 40-50 full push ups (i.e. going down entirely and coming up). I’m more of a lower body workout person, hence I prefer doing more leg workouts and abdominals. I believe in having a solid foundation on the body (i.e. stronger legs compared to the upper body).

What’s your favourite fitness mantra?

The mantra is to learn a new sport, play it often and then learn another sport. It is an integral part of fitness. I also focus a lot on body weight exercises, calisthenics and TRX (suspension trainer) to achieve sports conditioning. Weight training is a key part as well although it is not to build muscles but mainly to gain strength and to tone up muscles. If there is a specific shoot or during fashion week time my gym sessions are to ensure more muscle is retained and the running is lesser. My weekly routine consists of football/tennis twice a week, badminton and basketball once a week each.

Fitness to you means…

Oxygen! It is something I cannot live without. Hence almost every single day there is some fitness based activity happening. Either a sport or running or TRX or weight training. 

At the gym you….

I make sure I do a lot of stretching before and after a workout, something very important and basic which not many people do. It is actually one of the easiest ways to keep your muscles in good shape – by stretching everyday.

You go to the gym to….

Make sure the muscle mass is retained when in need – for specific shoots or shows, or sometimes during fashion weeks. Otherwise I go to the gym twice a week to make sure the muscles are in good shape – lean and ripped.

The treadmill is….

An equipment I use only when there are rains and I cannot run outside. I’m not a fan of the treadmill at all. I do a lot of skipping, almost everyday. A habit I learnt as a tennis player during my competitive days. 

Is food your friend or foe?

It is a very close friend, as I know what I eat and eat the right food!

I live to eat! People around me will always see me eating, which is all burnt out later during the workouts. I believe in eating well throughout the day.

How do you exercise when on vacation?

The only equipment I carry when on vacation are my skipping rope and TRX. Apart from that running is something I do no matter where I go. I also carry my tennis racquet if on a long vacation, I hook up with the nearest tennis court and end up playing with someone.

What’s your ideal workout?

Like I said, I focus a lot on lower body workouts and body weight exercises. An ideal workout for me is a day when I get to play either of these sports (tennis, basketball, football or badminton) for at least 90 minutes followed by a workout session of 60 minutes consisting of body weight exercises and minimal weight training.

A secret to your fitness?

There is no secret as such. It is something I like doing, hence I do it no matter what and wherever I am. Even on a rainy day I’m out running or playing football. During my MBA days as well, I used to do intense 45-minute sessions everyday in spite of having exams the next day. In Mumbai I go up and down the stairs for 20 minutes on my regular visits when I stay with my friends.

It is also some amount of discipline I guess which is needed to stay fit.

Also, I have this funny/strange thought that the older you get the more you have to workout to keep yourself in peak condition. As age increases, the metabolic rate decreases hence the intensity of workout has to increase to strike a balance.