Category Archives: Fitness

Himalayan highs-The healthy habit of hiking

Doorways to the next dimension

Its hard to express the unparalleled euphoria of exploring a pristine dimension to unearth the ultimate sanctum in words. Although it has no door but the doorway into the infinite abyss of uncertainties can only be unlocked by a key of guts and passed by a spirit full of adventure.

Anyone dwelling in a valley would testify that the surrounding mountains allure you sooner than later. Dehradun is one such valley, ideally located at the lower Himalayas. The 10-25 km trails to surrounding peaks are a perfect platform for novice hikers.

Hiking or simply running up a mountain (without spraining your ankle or bruising your knee) is one of the best cardiovascular exercises. Moving up a mountain is an absolute physical and mental workout, specifically challenging the pillars of your frame( your lower body) and the resilience of ure brain. It also makes your lungs suck in more oxygen and your heart pump more blood, thus making both these vital organs function more efficiently.
Anyone looking to overcome health concerns this new year, can take up hiking. Although the health benefits are only a bit part of the overall package that hiking offers. The interaction with nature, typical to the specific terrain, infuses calmness and serenity to the hikers paradigm. Simple things teach you much more than elaborate researches and Byzantine texts.

Hiking

Hiking up a mountain can be quite debilitating by itself. But it will test the resolve of the toughest men if it follows their lower body workout day. My spirit for adventure overruled my lower body’s plea for recovery when an acquaintance made a spontaneous plan to backpack up the 18 km long path to Mussoorie, the queen of the Himalayan hill stations.

What to carry in your backpack?

I have made around 6 backpacking trips to Mussoorie and each time the backpack has gotten a little heavier. Our latest journey was much more organised as compared to the first one. So for anyone starting off with hiking here is what you can carry for your short trips:

1. Water Bottles- The elixir of life is the ultimate essentiality,.

2. Something to Eat- Carrots, Bananas, Chocolates, Chick peas and protein.

3. Army knife- Just in case.

4. Camera- So that you can share better photos than I am.

5. Footwear- How can I forget footwear, I slipped so much the first time. Footwear with good gripping is a must.

These might not include everything but they are definitely enough for simpler terrains.
Hiker1

You might get tired and want to turn around and go home where all the comforts of the world await, but then the feeling of reaching the peak,even of a hillock, cannot be mirrored by any luxury that your house beholds.

hiker2

 

Please follow and like us:

Breaking the Plateau

Re-invention and improvisation are the offspring’s of instincts and spontaneity. the social contagions of fear and insecurity prevent this union from taking place. Instinctive freedom assists you in approaching previously arduous tasks with creativity and innovation and getting more efficient results due to your impulsive decision making. I try to super impose this pattern at the gym as well. Before diving into how, I shall discuss a line or two about the gym.

The show-offs groan louder, the indolent overdose on protein powder,

The sluggish keep waiting for the spark, baby elephants enjoying protein bars on their walk in the park.

Beauty queens smothered in make up, others sleepwalking the treadmill, trying to wake up.

Some asking questions like a detective, others flirting around dejected.

Midst these, the dedicated who inspire don’t have no swag or style,

They are the ones drenched in sweat and tears, still affording a smile.

True fitness demands sacrifice and patience there is no way that you can bilk,

Fight major wars later, begin with having your coffee without the sugar and milk.

The modern day fitness fad replicates the same craze as drugs from the hippy era. Everyone wants to make themselves extra fit, may it be by pulverizing a Tyre with a sledge hammer, dancing on a pole, enrolling in Spartan like combat classes,taking part in endless marathons or simply by going to the gym.

The gym of course is the focal point for all fitness enthusiasts, Everyone doesn’t come to the gym for the same reason. Whoever has cared to read this post till here will knows the different categories of “gym” people from the comfortably corpulent to the desperate housewives, from the despondent souls after a break up to the skinny predators trying to get a glimpse of some yoga pants, from the ones who were bully-ed to the ones hunting for the next prospect. Their purpose defines their commitment. On the other hand some of us just go to the gym to be in the habit of staying fit, some others to prevent others addictions by compulsively having a good one. Others still, have seen their loved ones suffer from unexpected health issues and believe in the “prevention is better than cure” adage.

The ones who think they belong to the second category of gym freaks might just benefit from this post. Anyone who follows any schedule in the gym reaches a point of time when he doesn’t perceive any muscle or strength gains, he reaches a self perceived plateau where the willingness to slog is about to be overtaken by the lack of belief as a consequence of less visible results. An improvisation helped me overcome this plateau and gain more strength in the process. The method involves following your normal exercise but approaching the sets of particular exercise in different ways. This is specifically for weight training.

  1. Warming Up– Take weights you’re comfortable with and do as many repetitions as you want to get warmed up.
  2. One rep max– This is where strength comes in. A one rep max helps you measure and improve your progress.
  3. The Drop Exhaustion– This helps in really tiring those muscles beyond limits. once you have measured your strength you try to exhaust your muscle for growth. This is done through a simple set wherein you do sets of 1,3,6 and 12 repetitions while dropping your maximum weight at these intervals.

This technique can be applied to any weight exercise you do. It will assist you in breaking all the physical and psychological plateaus as you would have a better measure of your performances. I don’t even need to be a gym geek and turn to my phone or diary after every set to keep account of my performances.

Other than this little pattern of working out, you should always keep all your sense open. Any new concept involves interlinking and representation of older concepts in a newer pattern. Hence by noticing all the exercises that you see around you, you can come up with exercises which suit you better. Although there are no shortcuts to fitness, the journey involves a lot of pain, sweat and patience but still you can make it a little pleasurable by improvising on your exercises. The improvisation is not limited to your exercise but expands to your eating habits too, which will require a blog or two.

Please follow and like us:

Dancing to the tunes of the muse

Don’t walk around with an empty bucket when you have a fountain inside.

Feeling useless cause you are museless, when the muse herself is a creation of thought. The motivation of living to create put in the hands of an external force, is like waiting for the steak to come to your plate. A muse cant fill your empty bucket, its just the fountain inside which replenishes the creative force, if you manage to keep it uninhibited from external muses.

Muses at the Gym

More often than not the muse serves as an excuse to delay action. The multiple forms that this external force takes serve more as excuses than to empower. The gym can be a good example for this. I couldn’t lift as much today cause I dint have my pre-workout, Museless! I don’t feel like working out cause they dont play good music, Museless! The gym doesn’t have any energy, its too empty,Museless! These among others which include I forgot my headphones, I dint have enough proteins, I don’t feel comfortable in the new shoes are all Museless excuses, which were initially meant to be supports and turn out to be self imposed prisons.

Muses while writing

A writers prime job of piercing the mundane to find the marvelous gets blunted if the source of inspiration is primarily external. The muse might appear as the initial injection of inspiration but in time divulges its true colors. As the creator gets used to the muse, he loses his ability to think independently and wastes time waiting for the muse to turn up.One is better off at making persistence his muse,throwing himself into the never ending loop of creation. This will keep you focused at the task at hand and prevent you to be led astray in search of the Muse.

Does the muse impair spontaneity?

If an external force is required to foster thoughts and ideas, will you think about the muse or the situation at hand, as it occurs. Yet again depending on the misleading muse not only wastes your time but eats off your spontaneity,  which in all honesty is the source for all innovation and creativity. Defeating your habit, of pursuing the muse for ideas,by spontaneous originality helps you overcome the ill habit of always having to look up to an external force for solutions.   

We are bound to get dependent when we seek external inspiration to seek the truth,

The muse is meant to dance for us, but most often we end up dancing to the tunes of the muse.

Please follow and like us:

Ignite a soul to illuminate the universe this Diwali

As the festival of lights gradually transforms itself into the festival of sounds, the Indian government leads its citizens on a money splurging spree. The thousands that people burn on ear cracking crackers and environment damaging rockets are justified, as the Indian government lead the way by forking out Rs 450 crore($73 million) on a Rocket of its own. It seems that a space mission to mars will be a sign of our countries development. I believe that these two events occurring so close to each other, Diwali and the rocket launch, spur people, who care to notice, to unravel the cogs in our society.

Is it worth it? 

The money burnt on creating the visual and audible spectacle on Diwali could have been utilized to illuminate the lives of the needy around us, the echoes of their good wishes would have resonated throughout our lives, motivating us to keep working for the betterment of our world.

The money behind the mission on Mars could have contributed towards eradicating poverty in a country which boasts of a third of the worlds poor. We are capable of going to Mars and beyond but should it be the priority right now? A scientist might say yes, try putting that scientist inside an earthen hut, living on crumbs throughout this winter, then ask him again. But here, even an earthen hut is a luxury which only a few can afford,and the bread crumbs are the rewards for waking early and braving the cold to stand in a long line.

Charity begins at home, and if the government thinks it has enough to splurge why not make some friends by donating to our neighbors or to another underdeveloped country. If you think that you can change the world by burning crackers all night long or splurging superfluously on other festivals then go ahead, hope you enjoy denting the universe, but just ask yourselves is it worth it?

No one wins in the race to another planet

Changes wont occur if we find life on mars or waste our money to prove our existence to our neighbors. Our planet wont sustain itself until we make ourselves technology capable of living on two different planets. Greed and selfishness will finally get the better of us in one way or another.

When you cant care enough for the people around you right now, I don’t know what relevance do the green bob heads from mars hold.

“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us. And the world will live as one.”

Lennon reflects the point I am trying to make. Are you strong enough to forego the little pleasure of your lives to create a lot of value for people who actually need it. Our you willing to come out of our comfort zones and contribute towards the general well being of your race. Have you discovered your own selves enough so as to start going on a discovery mission to another planet. As per the people running the country and the race to another planet, the lines from Lennon can be rearranged to:

“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday aliens will join us. And together we will crash and burn.”

The cure

Every problem comes with a solution. The obvious one here is to first share the privileges you were born with, with the less privileged. Then, to be a thought leader. If you can persuade even a single mind for the benefit of the world you live in, you will make a world of a difference.

Please follow and like us:

6 cures to the chill

My morning research led me to the diminishing number of Gaelic speakers and the beautiful Isle of Skyes located at the inner Hebrides of Scotland.  I was in admiration of the aesthetic magnificence, that means a lot considering that  I have plenty around the Himalayan valley I dwell in, but I felt a chill after glancing through a few photos. By the afternoon, the chill transferred from my brain to my city. An unexpected downpour bought down the temperature considerably, but the change  was a pleasant one.

As we look forward to the approaching winter, I would like to elaborate on what I will do to use the changing conditions to my advantage. These aren’t medically tested but self tested, so they are comparatively safer.

1. Long runs will lead to strong lungs

This is true for any kind of cardiovascular exercise all throughout the year but with the winters running provides the added incentive of nullifying the cold temperatures. Nothing is better than a cold morning run to kill the laziness that keeps you hooked to your bed.

2. Feel the power with a cold water shower

Its a myth originating from someone unwilling to come of their comfort zone that, one shouldn’t take a cold water shower in winter. On the contrary a cold water shower is the best thing that one can do to himself as it helps in blood circulation making one think and feel better throughout the day.

3. Test your will go hiking on a hill

The perfect natural adventure awaits you if you are willing to take the first few steps towards the nearest mountain or hill range. The winter hike will help season your lungs better. They will improve on their oxygen absorbing abilities when you hike up a hill, where the air is thinner ( has lesser oxygen).

4. Be prepared for the frigid fight add nuts and resins to your diet

As most of us know prevention scores over cure, so make sure that you spend some time and money on stacking up readily available resins and nuts, and not leaving the house without stuffing a few in your mouth and many in your pockets. The essential fats in these will protect you against the cold by keeping you warm and enhancing your resistance.

5. If you feel unwell just make some chicken soup, it will definitely help you recoup

Everyone has there own chicken soup recipe, mine involves some chicken a lot of black pepper, ginger, garlic,some chilly and some Himalayan herbs. The spices help wash away the mucus from the throat and provide resistance against the virus. The soup should be consumed as soon as one recognizes symptoms suggesting the imbalance which include an itchy throat, running nose and a mild body ache.

6. If it all gets too byzantine just guzzle on some red wine

At times the weather outside is too detrimental, in such cases sitting by the fireplace, listening to some music and guzzling on some hot chocolate or wine is the best alternative. I would include a book into this setup but you can replace them with friends.

As mentioned in an earlier post Superimposing negative habits with positive ones is the basis for inculcating new changes into our identities. Thought condition can only take place if our grievous habits are over written by salubrious ones. If we cannot get out of our comfort zones it will be impossible for us to make any kind of changes to ourselves. Lets not waste time complaining that we cant and make necessary changes in ourselves to attain what presently appears unachievable.

Please follow and like us: