When I was in my teenage, weight loss, diet, health, fitness – for me these terms had more or less the same meaning, and I was of the opinion that gym and diet are for those mindless people who are lazy at home and don’t know where to spend money. Reason being, I have grown up with the belief that eating ‘ Ghar Ka Khana’ and some mild physical activity is all you need to stay healthy. The problem began when puberty hit me, causing some major hormonal locha (I like blaming hormones for all the crazy stuff I did in teenage)! I gained weight like crazy and so my love for ‘malai toast’, and before I could realize what was happening to my body, ‘moti’ became by nickname. The problem began when I couldn’t find dresses of my size and even the close family members began to comment! It was a major blow to my self-confidence as a teenager. After being in some extreme inferiority complex for major part of my teenage, I said enough is enough! I started exercising like crazy. I had mindlessly cut down my food portions. And yes I got the results I did lose some weight, though I used to get tired every now and then, but who cared! I got major relief from comments of the aunties in the community.
However, the relief didn’t remain for long because that I gained all that weight back, which at that time I blamed on coffee addiction and my desk job. As I was entering that marriageable age, and my weight was major concern of my parents. They allowed me to join gym. I stopped consuming junk food for a while but then I thought working out 2 hours a day is all I need to stay fit. Why deprive my innocent self of the delicious food! And to some extent I did help me get in shape (exercise! not the food). And once I got in shape, I stopped going to gym. I thought now that I am slim! Why sweat?. And life went on like that for a year or so and health had already taken a backseat in the run for career. But something was wrong. I was not feeling confident. Forget confidence, I used to be in bad mood for major part of the day. I used to get tired with even normal physical activity. Climbing stairs became a difficult task as before I could reach the first floor, I used to start panting horribly! My social life almost diminished. Routine was like home to office and office to home. Still I kept postponing the idea of joining gym or doing any effort to stay fit for that matter.
Until one day when I spared some time went out with my friends to chill and got a few pictures clicked. As I came back home, I was into tears already. In my head I was constantly comparing myself with my other beautiful friends and things got worse when I saw my pictures and realized the crime I have done to myself and my body.
NOTE: Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes! My feeling of dissatisfaction was less about having a heavy body and more about being unhealthy, not having the radiant skin my friends had, not feeling active and confident like my peers. I realized how much I have neglected my health and my body all these years. At the age of 26, I looked like someone of 40.
And that was the time to start my journey of weight loss again! but this time… It wasn’t easy. I didn’t know where to begin! I tried all kinds of diets, and random tips I got on internet and from the aunties around but all went in vain. Until I visited fb profile of a friend of mine, who is a nutrition coach, and read the stories and saw pictures of body transformation done by him. And that’s when it clicked! He’s the man! Happy Singh, my nutritionist, guided me to pay attention to my diet and not mindlessly munch on everything I had on plate. Earlier I was more of a cardio bunny, weights are for men… (that’s what I believed till then). But Happy Singh strictly instructed me to do weight training for at least an hour a day. And I was desperate to lose weight so I blindly followed everything I was told. Diet was the toughest part to begin with actually! All I had to eat was eggs, chicken, veggies, soya chunks, oats, almond and rice (yes rice!) vitamins etc etc. Sounds easy? Trust me it wasn’t to begin with. The discomfort of not consuming even a single grain of sugar for months together and not even tasting the delicious snacks made at home was a pain! But when I shed three kgs in a week! yes you read it right! Losing three kgs in a week was like the spark of motivation. I can’t describe the wonderful feeling of seeing the results of my hard work on the weighing scale. But then I became habitual of mindful eating, eating healthy and feeding my body with what it actually need.
And I was amazed to see the positive changes in my life. As dramatic as it may sound, but apart from my drastic weight loss, my skin texture improved, my hairs looked healthy, I was active all day round, mood swings were the thing of past, life took a whole new turn. Weight training made me strong and toned my body. And I realized that how my food habits and routine were not only influencing my health but also my confidence, my thoughts and my moods. I became way more alert and active in my routine works. Of course I loved the compliments I got from family and friends and also my gym mates. But the best feeling was when my BCA-BMI report showed my body age as 25. That’s when I realized fitness is all about healthy lifestyle. I no more run after losing weight, rather I pay attention to my body’s actual needs.
If I could sum up all that I have learned from my journey towards fitness- I would say “Train Hard-Eat Healthy and the weight and waist size will take care of itself!”