Sunday, June 8, 2014

Fitness Series: Beginner's Tips

Hello friends! Hope you all are having an amazing week!

Today, I will be talking about a highly requested topic for my Fitness Series. I got many Instagram comments, tweets and emails asking me how I lost weight. Well Yes, I joined a gym and that's the main reason but controlling your diet and watching what you eat makes for 50% of the reason. Let's start with some general fitness tips and we will dive into proper diet charts, what to eat, what not to eat, etc in another post. Remember, in no way I am criticizing anyone for being fat but I am trying to motivate people to choose a healthier lifestyle.

1. Lifestyle Change, not a Crash Diet!
First step is to make up your mind that it is more of a lifestyle change than a crash diet, this will help you stick to your new habits and not go back to old ones. I have always faced this problem of slowly returning to my old eating habits and not sticking to my new diet plan and that results in gaining back all the weight you lost and more. This time around though, I was certain and aware of the fact that this is my new lifestyle and no matter what this is what I am going to stick to, not only because I want to lose weight but also because I want to lead a healthy lifestyle. 

2. Include Workout in daily routine
Along with controlling your diet, it is important to include a little workout in your daily routine. If you think you do not have the time to go to a gym, let me tell you something: I also thought the same until one day I decided my health is more important than my work and joined a gym. My working hours (including travel time) started from 8:30am and ended at 8:30 pm which is basically 12 hours a day. It was difficult at first but once I got into the habit of waking up at 5:30am and reaching the gym by 6am, I did not miss a day! I workout 6 days a week, only taking off on Sundays and for about 1-1.5 hrs daily and have lost 5kgs in past two months. I have also taken Personal Training on which I will elaborate in another post but yes, that also helped a lot. 
If you absolutely do not have time to hit the gym every morning or evening, try doing light exercises at home. Go for a brisk walk, jog around the block a few times, meditate, do yoga, aerobics or just put on your favorite music and boogie woogie woogie till you just can't boogie no more!

3. Drink Water
Yes, this one you have probably heard like a million times already but trust me, this actually works wonders. Water will flush out all the toxins in your body and apart from helping you lose weight and making your skin glow, it will also keep you full during the day so that you don't crave for snacks and give into whatever is easily available which is usually fried junk. 
Keep a bottle of water where you spend most of your time and keep drinking throughout the day. You can add flavours like a slice of Lemon or Peach in the bottle while adding no extra calories!

4. Rethink your drink!! 
Cut out all the sweetened beverages from your daily routine. No Pepsi, no coke, no Tang, no Ice-Tea, no Starbucks! You can most certainly indulge in these drink once a week but you need to realize, they don't only make you fat but also makes you a bank of potential diseases!
I have completely stopped drinking coke or any other fizzed drinks, it was very difficult especially during movies because you know, we always ordered "Popcorn and Coke" but now we take Water instead of coke. And if you really fancy these drinks, have few sips and throw out the rest. This tip was particularly very difficult for me to follow but Aman made sure I did it, so we basically used to purchase coke when we really craved it and after sharing half a can, we threw out the rest of it. We also indulge in Vanilla Ice-Blended Coffee once a week :P
For a more clearer perspective, have a look at the chart below, it helped me so I am hoping it will help you guys too in realizing how much sugar does these beverages actually contain. 

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5. Say NO to Alcohol 
Every Cosmopolitan or Martini you order, packs 100 calories at least. And I am sure, everybody is aware of the "Beer Belly"! But if you do not want to look like a stuck up person in a social gathering, have a glass of red wine but no beer please!
Red wine contains resveratrol, flavonoids and saponins. The latter two protects you against cardiovascular diseases. And resveratrol is one of the most powerful antioxidant compounds which can help reduce the saturated fat accumulated in the arteries. Red wine also helps tooth decay, prevents cancer, reduces fine lines and wrinkles and keeps your bone strong. Word of caution though, an ideal serving is 150 ml and it should be consumed by healthy people only. 

6. Stay away from Fried Food!
Any kind of fried food, be it burgers, french fries, chicken nuggets, they are not good for your health in the long run. Sure, they are yummy and finger lickin' good but would you really make yourself  unhealthy just so that your tongue can be satisfied for few minutes? 
When I started with controlling my diet, I used to slip every now and then when it came to french fries, but after a couple of times I started feeling guilty and bad every time I ate them and hence, I decided, I need to feel better about myself and not eating junk food actually felt rewarding! It's been over 6 months or so I haven't been to McDonalds. I go to KFC sometimes for their fiery grilled chicken though, because it's grilled, not fried. 

That's all for today! In next post, I will be sharing Diet Charts in detail. And if in case, you decide to start a fitness regime, do check out my previous post in the Fitness Series!