FROM COUCH POTATO TO HALF MARATHON- By Vidhi Rita P.
Since childhood and till five years back, I was a day dreamer-couch potato. I never had a skinny body as girls had in my school and college. I had made many attempts to set the fitness routine and shed a few pounds. I lost miserably and conveniently I had blamed my every failure on to people, situations, studies, office, manager, maid and whatever or whosoever I could do to soothe my ego.
The aspiration to fit into XS-size had made me done fling shopping in Sarojini Nagar and Lajpat Nagar for years. I still have those outfits in my wardrobe, and every time my mom rearrange my closet she ended up saying “Mintoo(my nickname), you had borrowed dresses from all your friends and you had never returned it. Is this what I have taught you ?” Phew, it is so challenging to explain mothers. I could never make her believe that I had bought those clothes with my hard-earned money, so she doesn’t have to get filmy and talk like Nirupa Roy to make me feel guilty.
Now I have given up the thought of fitting into that pile of clothes. Instead, the stack has become a cause of motivation to march ahead on the health trail.
I started my real fitness adventure in 2016. As always, I got enrolled in an opulent gymnasium and hired the most qualified personal trainer. And before he could define a target for the first three months for my weight loss program, I assigned him a task to motivate me to an edge so that I won’t skip a day hitting the workout. Hereon, my life and mindset started transforming. Though I was slow and I had never pushed my body to go faster just by looking at fellow gym mates. During the course, I had understood four significant points to stay Fit.
- Acceptance – We won half of the battle when we happily accept our looks and body shape.
- Never made weight loss a primary goal; instead, focus on fat loss and building strength.
- Eat Clean – 70% of the body is made in the Kitchen. Even if you are daily spending two rigorous hours in working out but not watching what you are eating then only god can help you.
- There are no shortcuts to fitness. You have to be consistent and steady.
I was doing good in my journey; the urge to do better has propelled me many times to try for “Running”. Also, my runner friends on social media and from nearby vicinity had influenced me a lot. But It is not easy to change our behaviour. So again I repeat the cycle of attempts, re-attempts and failures. However, this time the learning curve was not as long as it was last time.
I hit the road in March 2019 in Delhi to do my first run. I ran 5Km. Immediately after my run, I relocated to “Mumbai”. Suddenly I landed up from a comfortable, settled life to a new, strange city.
“I have realized; it is during the times I am far outside my element that I experience myself the most. “― C. JoyBell, C.
Now, I have got the sense of this quote.
I knew I also had to restart my fitness journey in a new city with a fresh perspective. But till September 2019 nothing changed much as the roads were slippery due to rains. Once the monsoon got over the entire city came on the way. Every second person I met here was a runner, or perhaps, my manifestation of being a runner myself had brought forward so many people who were into running.
I did my first 10 km in December 2019, and then I did a couple of more 10 km in the following months. Despite doing 4-5 runs, the thought of running was not so exciting to me. I was struggling with my pattern of trying and leaving. Most of the days, I used to go to the gym rather than the ground.
In March 2020, gymnasium and other public places -were announced to shut to control the global pandemic. So, now we are in the lockdown, we are supposed to stay at home and do whatever we can.
The situation turned out in favour of me. I started walking in my living room. After a few days, I started running in the living room. I didn’t exceed my limit from 10 km.
Then one day, a nationwide run was organised to promote Indoor Run on the International Running day. All my fellow runners had registered themselves. This time I registered myself for half marathon, but I didn’t share with anyone as I wasn’t sure how would it go with me.
But I prepared well
Training- I made all the efforts not to fail this time. Before the final day arrived, I already completed a couple of rehearsal runs 5/7/10/12/14 km.
Nutrition is the Key- Eat healthy and clean over junk, oily and sugary food.
Meditation – The mind has a wandering nature. Meditation brings back your attention to your present. It has helped me a lot in changing my outlook not only towards running but in other areas of life too.
Trust me on the day of a run, it doesn’t matter what your motivation is; all that matters is that you get out and do it. Just getting started can be the hardest part, but once you get over that initial hump, it gets easier and believe it or not, it becomes fun. I started running in my living room and stopped once I finished 21kms.
The whole day I couldn’t believe I could do it and that too an Indoor one. My most significant learning after this episode is that “Don’t stop when you get tired, stop when you are finished.”
The funny thing is when I initially started running, I only thought it was to break the monotony of my regular workout, but now it has become an integral part of my exercise regimen. Best of all, it will have a long-term positive effect on my quality of life.
Vidhi Rita P.
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