Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Team MFC starts for Mr. Maldives 2007

MFC athlete Adil (Left) 01st Place, Ajmal (right) 2nd place in fly weight category on Mr. Maldives 2005.

The Bodybuilding Federation of Maldives has announced the dates for this years Mr. Maldives (The National Bodybuilding Championship). The competition will be held on the second week of December according to BBFM.

The first bodybuilding championship was held in Maldives during 1999, and before a National level competition Maldives participated in Mr. Commonwealth during 1998. I am delighted that I had the chance to serve BBFM since than.

Now where am I heading with Bodybuilding in Male’ Fitness Club(MFC), yes I am determined to work and produce bodybuilding talent in Maldives and win the Mr. Maldives by an athlete from MFC in the coming years.

In the past years MFC has not been well known for producing bodybuilders, as the sport was not our sole concentration in the club. The club was devoted to train all sporting talent and concentrate on recreational weight trainers and lifestyle exercisers. Now that the club has a good reputation in guiding the sports personals from all sporting areas, I have diverted my concentration on producing bodybuilding talent in the country.

In the history of bodybuilding in Maldives, MFC has participated in the Mr. Maldives competitions although we were not vocal on the area. In the past 2 years we have won 2nd, and 3rd place ranking in the flyweight category. And in 2005 our athlete won a 01st place too.

As this years Mr. Maldives is approaching we have selected our athletes for the competition, our team consists of 04 athletes and the team will be on perfect condition for challenge in December. The competition preparation has begun. I am convinced that my team will win medals for the club.

Competition preparation is a rough ride to bodybuilders, it takes a lot of discipline to get on stage with that perfect muscularity, symmetry and definition in the body and training is dead hard. The athletes have the winning spirit and they are hungry to win.

At present pre season training has been implemented, with lots of flexibility work and group exercise moves to loosen up their muscles. Posing practice is also going in same line along with pre season training.

On the 26th October the athletes has been checked for weak areas and training adjustments has been made for weak point training.
The progress of training will be given on this blog. In the next article descriptions of all athletes from MFC with the detailed training procedures will be published.

“When winning means more to you than just living”, we are hungry to bring the trophy to MFC. My athletes have the spirit and will not give up until the trophy is in our home.

Friday, October 26, 2007


National Teams & Victory’s No 1 Goal keeper Imran is right on track with the rehabilitation process from the ligament surgery on his left knee. The process started 21st July and now he has completed the basic training components. In the past month we established a strong base on endurance exercise by implementing jogging.

The endurance training process started with a mild jog of 2 rounds around 400m track ground (800m) to see the stress respond on his leg. It responded well without any niggle or stiffness on the area. We have progressed his endurance training to a distance of 5000m within the month, he is going strong on it.

On 18th October I have implemented the next step of his prediozed plan, zig zag running, backward running, and some minor dynamic stretching … the out come is fantastic and he will be fit to play on early December.
Praise him for his hard work and dedication to go back to the game.

Former captain of New Radiant Sports Club Ammadey has started his rehabilitation with me on 18th October 2007. The player has been out of play for few months for this ligament injury he picked up this year. After the surgery from Sri Lanka he has to go on a long rehabilitation process. The Athlete has undertaken a major arthroscopy on his right knee. Below are detailed observations and present condition of the athlete.

Ruptured Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL)
Meniscus tear

Acute Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction.
Meniscus Repair

Muscle atrophy (waste), restricted movement and low muscular strength observed on the injured leg.

The rehabilitation process began on 18th October, at the first day athlete has been assessed for movement patterns and functional strengths, to bring an athlete back to field after a surgery of this severity normally takes 6 months depending on many factors. At present the athlete is working out twice daily on a very low intensity with the periodization plan for six months.

Ammadey have started to work on to develop his range of movement of the knee and to build the wasted (atrophy) muscle on his injured leg. This key player of New Radiant Sports Club will take an estimated 5 months to be back on the field. Estimated to be on the field during early March 2008.

Monday, October 22, 2007


Food is fuel – the quality of fuel taken affects your performance during activity or day to day lifestyle. Your energy levels, your performance during your event or workout, and you bodies ability to recover efficiently are all affected by your diet.

A lot of people ask me “what is the best food to perform better?” this is a very big question although it looks small. Let’s take a look at some guideline to maximize your performance by properly fueling your body.

Avoid “empty calories”, low nutrients food such as biscuits and cakes, sweets & processed foods. These foods will provide energy but give you no edge on performance! Poor quality fuel will lead to mediocre results. A lot of elite athletes tell me they take sweets or sugary foods prior to the game or race, be cautious there is no evidence that sugary empty calories aid performance or energy levels, it’s a misconception that sugary food aid performance or energy levels.

If you are serious about your training or sport, you need to get your diet right.

1. Choose your foods to fit in within your training: for a quick energy burst, choose foods that are digested quickly – good examples includes bananas, water melons or rock melons. If you aren’t training for a couple of hours, slow release carbohydrates (green vegetables, oats, beans and pulses) eaten with protein are the best option.
2. Good hydration is essential for regular exercisers, particularly in warm weather; don’t wait until you are thirsty as this means you are already dehydrated.
3. Losing any more than 2% of your body weight in water will impair your performance, a loss of 3% or more will dehydrate you, and a 4% loss can detrimentally affect your performance by up to 25%. A good measure of how much to drink water is one pint of water for every pound lost during exercise session. To make it in simpler is to replace 1liter for every KG lost during exercise.

· Breakfast is the most important meal.
It’s surprising to see many sports people skip or find hard to have breakfast, but remember it’s the most important meal for training or performance, if you find difficult to have breakfast at least have fresh fruits or fresh fruit juices.
· Drink at least two liters of water each day.
This will maximize energy levels, enhance your performance and keep you well hydrated food.
· Drinking little and often allows the body to absorb water more easily
Gulping large amounts of water immediately before and during training or a race will make you uncomfortable – small regular sips are much easier to handle.
· Don’t try new things on the day of the event or match.
The new food or timing meals and training on non event days to see what suits you best. Some elite athletes find two hours before the event is the best time to consume a meal where as other find two and half hours to suit them. This shows that you have to find the best timing for you.
· Plan ahead
Plan meals and snacks ahead to guarantee top quality nutrition whenever possible, mix fruits and yogurts as small snacks, make up potato/pasta salad/rice for lunch, keep dried fruits, bananas, nuts & seeds at work and training kit bag for a quick fix.

A great idea for breakfast for those who find hard to eat in the morning
One large Banana & 100g yogurt with a small cup of water mixed in blender for 2 minutes is an absolutely nutritious breakfast …. Try it

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


We a football crazy country was looking forward for the WCQ against Yemen. Before the Maldivian National Team left to Yemen I was going through the local newspapers about the progress of training. I came across sincere and some crazy quoting in those news articles …

Well maybe some of the articles can be some ticks of journalism to sell those papers , the major concern the Sports Physician and the officials of FAM brought forward was the altitude (2300m) where the game has to be played, the second concern brought forward was the lack of oxygen due to the high altitude. He was right on pointing out those concerns.

The problem when training at high altitude (>2000m) is that there is less oxygen, this may not be frightening to individuals at rest but create a challenge to endurance athletes. To simplify the higher the altitude the longer it takes to adopt. Before training or competing at high altitudes it’s advisable to understand the adaptation process and things to be done as there are number of physiological changes in human body when training at high altitude.

Adjusting to the Altitude

There are key steps to remember whenever playing or training above 5000 Feet. (Our National Team played above 8000 Feet)

1. Allow time for your body to acclimatize (approximately 5 days)
2. A rest day or two before activity
3. Recognize early warning signs and symptoms of high altitude sickness
4. Prevention through education means being aware and knowing that there is no substitute for common sense.

There are complementary methods that can possibly prevent or speed up the body’s ability to

Eat Healthfully & Supplementation

1. Two days before: high complex carbohydrates
2. Eat complex carbohydrates diet throughout the entire trip
3. Eat frequent small meals rather than rather than large meals
4. High amounts of green leafy vegetables
5. Drink plenty of fluids
6. Sip small amounts every 15 minutes prevents fluid consumption
7. Take vitamins on a regular basis and increase certain vitamins beforehand
8. A multi-vitamin should be taken on a regular basis
9. Increase vitamin C intake
10. Increase vitamin E intake
11. Take antioxidants and vitamins in liquid form

Other recommendation

Increase amounts of amino acid, tyrosine. Tyrosine is an amino acid considered unessential because it is manufactured in the body. The importance of this particular amino acid is its role in metabolism, and its support of proper nervous system functioning. Taken three times daily before meals, and gradually increase during the trip if above 10 thousand feet preventing altitude and exercise induced deficiencies.

Studies have indicated that these vitamins and antioxidants taken before and during improve the body’s ability to remove free radicals, as exercising increases free radical activity. Vitamin C and E are strong antioxidants and increases the body’s cellular ability to use oxygen.

Activity Recommendation

The activity intensity should be lowered at the start of training at high altitude. Pushing the exercise or practice too hard may increase your risk of overtraining or injury, a gradual progression on training or practice is a must. And keep a note that some people just do not adapt as well as others.
There is no one exercise progression plan which fits all occasions – same as at sea level it is advisable to keep a log which you rate fatigue during workout and at rest, morning resting heart rate, weight, and mood. Correlate this with the intensity of your practice, this will help to get the best out of players.

With the information above there are few questions to be asked …

1. Was our team fully prepared for the high altitude adaptation while we travelled to WCQ at Yemen?
2. Will talking about the matters of high altitude problems in the media without a proper education of the adaptation procedure do any good?
3. Did our team arrive Yemen in the right time for the players to adopt for the thin air (low oxygen)

I leave it to the readers from here for their opinion on this … and let’s learn something from this experience.

Good luck to Maldives National Team for the match against Yemen in Maldives.

Friday, October 12, 2007


You’ve heard this all your life: Exercise is good for you. But believe that it’s too late for you to start. The American Council on Exercise (ACE) says it’s never too late to reap the benefits of exercise even if you have never exercised a single day in your life.

Ask yourself these questions. Can I perform my daily tasks without feeling fatigue or joint pains? Am I keeping myself in good condition? I am confident that every man and women would want to stay fit and strong and also functional to day to day activities for as long as possible. This simply doesn’t have to be a wish or thinking.

The myth: “As we grow older we get much weaker and suffer more aches and pains.”

We have been told that as part of aging process we gain fat and loose muscles. The fact is that many of symptoms of aches and pains, loss of muscles are signs of inactivity, we don’t use our muscles. Muscle weakness, loss of bone and slow metabolism are changes that accompany aging but are not solely cause by it. It is possible to slow and possibly reverse these symptoms of aging by increasing strength and flexibility, turn your wishful thinking to a reality.

The primary weapon against aging is resistance training; more and more fitness professionals recommend resistance training for health reasons for both men and women. Declines in muscle mass, bone density and metabolism can be minimized by resistance training.

Let’s take a look at exercise consideration for seniors

Aerobic exercise consideration
Frequency: 3 times weekly
Intensity: Resting Heart Rate + 20bpm (for safety increase duration not intensity)
Time: 20 to 30 minutes
Type: Continuous or interval training. Low impact aerobic (designed for mixed ability), walking, swimming or cycling

Resistance Training Consideration
Frequency: At least 2 time weekly
Intensity: Should comfortably perform 15 reps with resistance used. Do not work for failure
● At least 1 set per exercise, 8-10 exercises
● Complete a total body workout within 20 to 30 minutes
Type: All major muscle groups with compound exercise using free weight and machines.

Flexibility Training Consideration
Frequency: After every workout, minimum 2-3 times weekly
Intensity: Slow movements to a point of very mild discomfort
● 10 – 12 seconds hold on every stretch
● 3 – 4 repetition for each stretch
Type: All major muscle groups

If you are 35 or above it is recommended to do a medical check up before starting any exercise program.

Resistance training is critical for combating weakness and disability, for increasing strength and mobility, for staying active an self sufficient. You don’t have to decline with age! If you want to stay fit, strong, functional and physically independent as you age, exercise is your choice.

There isn’t another investment that pays off as well.
Wishing all readers a Happy Eid Ul Fithr, may Allah bless you all with happiness and joy.

Monday, October 8, 2007


Tennis is one of the most physically challenging individual sports played in the world, a tennis player, to perform at their best you must find the right mix of training aerobic, anaerobic endurance, strength, explosive power, speed and agility. On a clay court an average point probably won’t last longer than 10 seconds. Between points you get some luxury of about 25 seconds rest at most and 90 seconds if it’s a changeover. This should tell you something about the physical nature of the game.

Unlike the marathon runner who maintains a steady speed for over 2 or more hours, tennis players must sprint, lunge, stretch and change direction over a very small period of time.

If you are training to meet the physical demand of your game, you should plane you training strategically. Take a look at how to train to get all those right combinations in your training program.

Foundation phase: The objective of this first 6 to 8 weeks is to build a base on which you build more intense, more tennis specific training later. In all competitive sports even tennis places uneven stress on your body like on swings with one arm causes injuries due to over use. By developing a solid base on resistance training injuries like tennis elbows and damage on rotator cuff muscle caused by over use can be minimized. A typical foundation level fitness training program parameters are as follows.

Foundation phase: 6 to 8 weeks
Number of sessions: 2 sessions per week circuit training
Number of exercises: 9 to 10 includes full body
Resistance: 45% of 1RM
Repetition: 12 to 15
Rest between exercises: 30 seconds
Rest between circuits: 2 to 3 minutes
Speed of lifts: Controlled smooth movement

Tennis strength training phase: This is the part for intense training. Players who can leg press 180KG for 1 repetition has a greater maximal strength than a player who can press 130KG. You get the idea the more strength you have the more weight you can push in one repetition. Why is strength so important to tennis players? On its own it isn’t. But power which is a major factor in the game is a product of speed and strength. The more maximal strength you have the greater potential to generate more power. A typical strength training parameters are as follows:

Strength phase: 6 weeks
Number of sessions: 2 to 3 sessions per week
Number of exercises: 6 to 8 split routines preferred
Resistance: 80% of 1RM
Repetition: 4 to 6
Rest between exercises : 3 to 4 minutes
Number of sets: 2 to 3
Speed of lifts: Controlled smooth movement

Obviously it is almost impossible to design a one size fit all program when prescribing these kind of sports specific training programs. It is recommended to use the above parameters with compound exercises like squats, dead lifts, lunges, bench press, standing shoulder press etc.

Give it a go if you want to show your opponent how good you are.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Flexibility training is the most undervalued component of fitness. This is a shame because flexibility is something simple and painless and which has so many benefits.

Flexibility training can improve posture and help prevent low back pain. Stretching the full body promotes relaxation in the tissues reducing strains. Many experts believe that flexibility conditioning has an important role in maintaining healthy joints. Stretching increases tissue temperature, blood supply, nutrient transport to tissue, synovial fluid with the joint capsule and athletic performance.

Every professional athlete will start to complete a training session with stretching exercises. And while there’s ongoing debate as to its effectiveness for preventing injury, stretching after exercise when muscle tissue is warm is a great way to increase flexibility. Many athletes do not realize one of the most important benefits of flexibility training. It is an integral component in speed and power.

A muscle can contract forcefully as its opposing muscle (antagonist) relaxes. For example when performing a bicep curl the triceps muscle has to stretch and relax for the movement to occur properly and powerfully. Flexibility training has been shown to reduce tension and resistance in muscle tissue. A common mistake done by many athletes is to neglect flexibility training or in worst cases they even don’t do it. But the harsh reality is sports without training for flexibility can have a quite an unbalancing effect on performance. Let’s take our most popular sport soccer as and example . . .

A soccer player uses their foot to kick the ball thousands of times over and over again. To make this movement of kicking to occur, mostly for every kick on the ball the hamstring muscles has to relax for the quadriceps to generate force and kick the ball. If the flexibility on the hamstring muscles is poor the power on the ball or the direction of the ball after kicking will be affected. The same applies to most of the sports.

Key points for effective stretching

1 – Perform stretching exercise when pour body is warm. Ideally at the end of a session to increase flexibility or before a session after about 10 to 15 minutes of light aerobic exercise

2 – Complete a range of stretching exercise for different muscle groups. Pay particular attention to the muscle groups that are involved most in the activity to follow.

3 – Perform dynamic (movement based) stretching before the activity including some mobility movement on the joints

4 – After the sport or activity do a series of maintenance stretching on all muscle groups in the body holding each stretch for minimum of 15 second, for development stretches on tight muscle repeat the stretching 2-3 times in succession.

5 – Perform the stretch routine after activity or sport everyday or a minimum of 3 times weekly.

6 – Ease slowly in and out of the stretch. Do not bounce! Breathe out as you stretch and continue to breathe as you hold it.

Flexibility training is vital.

Photography: Mohamed Nazeeh (