Why go the distance?

Why go the distance?


Bharat & Shalan Savur explain why it is crucial to get into shape and to stay that way

To be physically fit is to experience magic. Even if you’re not doing anything, just resting, it’s a sublime experience. A muscle strengthened and made supple through exercise truly knows how to relax. And when it moves, it’s poetic!

It’s not enough to read and talk  about weight-loss. You must personalise it. You must say, “It’s for me.” You need to give it priority and recognise its value. It’s not enough to take the first step, you must take countless more. One day, you should be able to say, “Oh, I don’t even remember the day I started exercising. What I do know is that I’ve never stopped.” It must become an integral part of your day, your life.

You can actually make yourself happier by focusing sincerely on your physical fitness. Sincerity consecrates your action and reaps better results. Sincerity is a wonderful personal accountability that keeps your compass always pointing in the right direction. Sincerity adds sinew to your will and doesn’t allow it to falter and be drawn away from your purpose. At first, you may experience pangs of regret when you forego a film with a friend to keep your appointment with physical fitness. But soon, the rewards from your fitness routine will unfold as you transform into a fitter, better, healthier version of your earlier self.

The common pattern with too many people is to rush into instant high gear and exercise every morning and evening. Whoa! You’re more likely to say pretty soon, “I can’t do this,” and quit. I recommend the uncommon way — ask, “What will I be able to do for the rest of my life?” Long-term habit patterns pay higher dividends than short-term, short-lived drives.

Scientific studies suggest an exercise regime for a minimum of three days a week. So give yourself three days — Monday, Wednesday, Friday or Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday — for about 45 minutes per session. Thirty five minutes of stationary cycling especially during the monsoons and 10 minutes of abdominal crunches and some stretches to keep the body lithe. At the end of the year, you’ll tell your mirror, “Hey, I’ve exercised 156 times in the last year!” That’s 52 weeks multiplied by three times a week and that’s awesome.

If you do that, you’re expanding and enhancing your value system. You’re saying, “I’m worth it. Exercising is one of my top priorities. My wellbeing is an important purpose in my life.” There are some who miss their workouts to make a beeline for the beautician, to play a game, go on a shopping spree, etc. This demonstrates a personal value system. It’s what you want to make of your self, your health, your life.

Too much stimulus causes restlessness, disorientation and fatigue. Sitting around causes dullness. Exercise brings about a balance. It gathers together our bio-electrical vibrations and makes us feel more like our selves.

There is wisdom in the fitness of ‘things’. When you experience a state of fitness, you tend to be vigilant. If you’ve exercised the pain away, it’s in the fitness of things not to go back to pain again and continue to exercise. To an over-self-indulgent person, fitness may seem like an extreme measure. But the truth is that indulgence gives way to transient pleasure but subsequent ill health. The fitness way gives way to more lasting joy and good health. It’s your call.

(The authors have penned the book Fitness for Life.)

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