Abu Dhabi: It was during a boot camp in late January that 15-year-old Abu Dhabi resident Amir Fahmy was spotted by his mentor Elliot Simmonds and seven months down the line, he is representing the UAE at the Annual Reebok CrossFit Games.
Fahmy, a British citizen, is the only teenager from the UAE to qualify for the prestigious event that will be held at the Alliant Energy Center in the US city of Madison, Wisconsin in August.
CrossFit is promoted as both a physical exercise and a competitive fitness sport. It incorporates elements from high-intensity interval training, Olympic weightlifting, plyometrics, powerlifting, gymnastics, girevoy sport, callisthenics, strongman, and other exercises.
The three-day competition will feature elite athletes who compete to be named the ‘Fittest on Earth’. Fahmy will be competing in the teenage boys’ aged 14-15 division.
“I’m extremely excited and very proud of myself. This has been a goal since I first started CrossFit. Representing the UAE feels great. I’ve lived here for about eight years and it’s like I’ve trained here all my life, so this country is pretty much my home,” a beaming Fahmy told Gulf News.
The annual competition is divided into three stages: The Open, The Regionals, and the Finale, which is the Reebok CrossFit Games.
This year, the Online Qualifier was added after The Open, where the top 200 athletes in each division competed in a four-day online competition, and the top 20 received a ticket to The Games. Fahmy came in 14th in his division. “In January, Elliot (mentor) approached me and said he saw potential in me,” recalls Fahmy, adding that it did wonders to his confidence.
“He trains me for free, writes my diet, workout plans and takes time out of his work to just come and see if my technique is correct. He understands me so well as a coach and he helps me out with everything,” said the standard 10th student.
Fahmy was banking on his strict training schedule to get the desired result in the competition. “I train almost three to five hours a day, seven days a week. I wake up at 4.30am every morning and train before going to school. Then I come back and train again before hitting bed at around 8pm. I repeat the same schedule the next day,” reveals Fahmy. His diet consists of a lot of protein, oats and blueberries for breakfast and a shake consisting of beetroot, celery, ginger and pineapple as his second meal.
Fahmy’s lunch comprises of salmon, sweet potato, green beans, chicken, pasta and broccoli forms the core at dinner. An additional protein drink ‘Fuel-Up,’ which sponsors his coach Simmonds, also plays an important part in his fitness regime.
Simmonds, meanwhile, hopes that his ward handles the pressure better in his debut appearance. “It’s hard to say how he will cope with the pressure in a debut event and how it will go when there’s someone there next to him pushing against him. But in terms of capability, he’s got potential to come in the top 10 or even top five,” added Simmonds.