Just today I read about a television actor who had cardiac arrest while on a treadmill and died. He was all of 38. Apparently he had a heart condition that he had kept hidden from his gym. It is bad enough to lose one’s life due to lifestyle diseases; it is worse losing it trying to overdo fitness. Yes, the crazy six-pack and washboard abs generation is going all out to get that elusive shape. Fads, starvation and overexercising are some of the unhealthy short cuts taken. Women want to slim down to fit into a particular dress at a wedding rather than for upping their stamina, energy or flexibility. It is very sad that instead of health, it is looks that is the ultimate goal. I hope it serves as a wake up call for all those who are insanely obsessed with what they think is fitness.
That is not to say that one must let oneself go and become fat. But in maintaining a healthy body weight, it is important to first understand one’s own body and its health issues. Before starting any fitness program, it is important to get a complete health check done to know your health status. Consult your doctor if you suffer from any diseases and ensure that your trainer, nutritionist and gym are aware of your conditions and customize your fitness regimen accordingly. If you are planning to just hit a gym without guidance and without your doctor’s knowledge, it is quite possible that you may end up doing more harm than good.
Another very important aspect when exercising is hydration and nutrition. While you must not exercise on a full tummy, you must not be starving either. Having something an hour in advance should be fine. Carry a water bottle with you and after exercise do eat something nutritious. I read somewhere that one loses more weight or burns fat on an empty stomach. That is clearly rubbish. As a matter of fact, our diet should be more for days when we do more physical activity whether exercising, sports or tending to a little baby. The only way you will lose weight is if you eat sensibly and eat loads of nutritious food. Consult a dietitian to help you out. Please don’t rely on newspaper columns or magazines; they are not meant to be used as a basis to chalk out your fitness program, neither is a session with your gym-going friend. What works for them may not work for you. So, the sensible approach will be to get professional guidance especially if you are a beginner.
Yes, obesity is a huge problem facing the world today. And staying fit is absolutely mandatory from a health standpoint. Respect your body. Recognize its shortcomings and strengths. Don’t weaken it and punish it by embarking upon yo-yo diets and crazy gymming.Do it the right way!
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