By:Nirali Sharan (Nutrition & Fitness Consultant @ INFS (Institute of Nutrition & Fitness Sciences)
I would often engage in binge eating and was a night owl”. Additionally, I would watch all the latest movies and web series and had a very sedentary lifestyle in general.
A lack of control over my taste buds meant that I would often eat outside food or order take away. All this led to me being diagnosed with PCOS, Obesity and borderline diabetes. That’s when I put my foot down and started following a healthier lifestyle.
I started following a calorie-deficit diet and picked up on Strength Training along with Zumba and Running. Today, I feel much more confident, positive and energetic. The journey from a housewife to Nutrition and Fitness Consultant has been a rollercoaster ride for me. My family and friends have found my transformation from 97 kilos to 59 kilos to be very inspiring. This motivates me to push myself harder and give it back to the community in whichever way I can.
Below listed are few jottings that will help you kick start your fitness journey.
1.Quantified Nutrition: Quantifying Nutrition means measuring the food items that you ingest on daily basis. It is always good to measure raw food before consuming it as it gives you an approximation of how many calories you are having in one single day. Tracking your calorie intake helps you achieve your fitness goals. For effective results, quantified nutrition should be always coupled with strength Training
2.Strength Training: It is also called resistance training or weight training. It has numerous benefits. To list down a few: Helps in increasing muscle mass, improves immunity and heart health, increases muscle stability, improves joint mobilization, good body balancing, effective fat loss, improves sleep, enhances mood and reduces anxiety, improves mental health, reduces the risk of heart diseases and diabetes, minimizes the risk of injury, back pain and arthritis and general well being
3.Healthy lifestyle: Embracing a healthy lifestyle supports in maintain good energy levels and stay away from lifestyle disorders like blood pressure, bad cholesterol (LDL), PCOS, Diabetes, etc. It comprises various important aspects, which usually get neglected in today’s digital age. In a nutshell, both quantified nutrition and strength training should be accompanied by the below-mentioned factors:
- Water: Water fetches oxygen to the brain. It also helps in assimilating and transporting nutrients like vitamins, minerals, amino acids, glucose, and other important substances to different cells and tissues in our body. A minimum of 4-5 Liters should be consumed to regulate temperature, metabolism and flush out toxins. It also helps in curbing your hunger pangs.
- Sleep: In order to maintain good physical and mental health a minimum of 7-8 hours of sleep is a must as it plays a very vital role. It helps in preventing hormonal imbalance and weight gain, reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases, boosts immunity and metabolism, increases knowledge retention, elevates brain functioning, repairs damaged cells, and rejuvenates new tissues.
- Stress: In today’s fast-paced era, there is so much competition which automatically leads to a lot of stress. The moment our brain detects stress, chemicals like cortisol, epinephrine and norepinephrine gets triggered and start floating around the body causing harm. Stress should be managed effectively on all fronts; may it be professional stress or personal stress. Meditation, yoga, exercise, and mindfulness should be brought into daily practice to manage stress efficiently.
- Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT): It is the energy expended through physical movements which is not planned exercise or sports. For example, walking to the grocery store instead of using a vehicle, climbing stairs instead of using the lift, gardening, etc.
Hence a combination of all the above-mentioned dynamics can help you achieve your fitness goal, live a healthy lifestyle and sustain it for the long term. It worked for me, so will definitely work wonders for you too, however, it needs to be coupled with consistency, dedication, and a lot of patience.