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Eat Your Way To Fitness: With Eatonomist

3 Jul

A very special offer exclusively for TDB readers at the end of the post - don’t miss it!

Eat Your Way To Fitness with Eatonomist

How many days in a row can you eat a salad for lunch?

If you’re new here, here’s something new for you (and so old for you regulars this side of town!) - I’ve been trying to get fit over the last few months. The first and easiest thing to do was eat healthier, or so I thought. When you work in Gurgaon and the only thing you can cook is Maggi (yayyy - ban! *rolls eyes*), the options for healthy eating are limited. I discovered a place that serves the best salad (as good as the ones I had in New York!) but…

How many days in a row can you eat salad for lunch?

My palate was bored out of its mind, ordering healthy food from the same places over and over again. I had started eyeing shammi kebabs and chicken biryani home delivery restaurants on Zomato. My will to eat bland food just for the sake of eating healthy was fast dwindling.

Enter - the folks at Eatonomist.

I had heard about them, but had never ordered because I kept thinking - no one will deliver just one soup! And such delicious sounding meals can’t possibly be healthy. And…I’m sure they’re not reasonably priced.

Turns out, they will, they are, and they sure as hell are! Eatonomist has officially found the perfect balance between tasty, healthy and filling meals. And I propose a re-writing of their slogan from “Healthy Delicious Convenient” to - food heaven for the waist-minded brides in Gurgaon!

What We Did

I decided to try out a lunch a day from Eatonomist’s extensive menu, for a whole working week. You know, mirror the hectic schedule of a working bride who is planning her wedding while completing projects late into the night. Could I manage to eat healthy meals that satiated my stomach and nutrition needs, without letting work and my taste buds suffer?

First Impressions

I was unsure how I would feel about a pre-decided lunch menu for a whole week. I typically eat on a whim - whatever I feel like, whenever I feel like. And the last thing I am is an easy person to feed. I am finicky about my food, and I think I have the discerning taste buds of a Masterchef Australia judge! :p

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Fitness Update: April & May 2015

1 Jun fitness update april may 2015

I decided this March to get back on the fitness bandwagon. From trying different forms of working out, to exploring Clean Eating options in my city - I’m going to be sharing progress updates on every front, every month. Including the inevitable struggles that come along with getting back into shape after letting go of yourself for 2 years.

In this update, I share my experience using the Apple Watch for fitness, cold-pressed juices in Delhi and the 30 Day Abs Workout Challenge all your friends are taking on.

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Fitness Update: March 2015

30 Mar fitness update march 2015

3 years ago, my wedding date was decided. I had 8 months, to be the fittest bride I could possibly be. I began yoga classes for the first time in my life, and started eating healthy. I still gorged on cakes, but I also had more home food and completely gave up potato chips and aerated drinks. Over the first year of my married life, I slowly began to let go of all my healthy practices. I won’t go into details of the past here, mainly because you can just read about the struggles in old Fitness posts. Thankfully, we are not trees. If we don’t like where we are, we can move. We are not trees. And so I’d like to move. Get back onto the fitness bandwagon. Feel full of energy and strong again. This is the chronicling of that journey. It’s far from perfect, but that’s what change is - it’s hard, and it’s messy. And since a lot of you will be getting married in a few months time, this might help you out - as I’m starting from scratch again. Brides of 2015, welcome to my first fitness update where I started working out again after a gap of almost 2 years.

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The Tale of Ten Surya Namaskars

30 Jan

The Tale of Two Surya Namaskars Staying Fit After The Wedding

Guess what I did this morning - I re-started yoga. I left it almost two years ago, which made this morning nothing short of pure torture. I woke up an hour earlier than I normally do, which in the Delhi winters is a lot more complicated than just placing the alarm far from the bed so that you’re forced to physically get up to silence it. Because after that first wave of cold air hits your bare arms, you’re going to waive a mental middle finger to Robin Sharma’s 5 am club and wiggle yourself back under the blanket.

Today, though, was a different day. Continue reading

Of Big & Happy Brides

7 May

Pallavi, a friend of my husband’s from school, married her long-time sweetheart – Nikhil – on a surprisingly warm November evening in New Delhi last year. In the months leading up to her wedding, I came across a frustrated rant by Pallavi on Facebook – she’s never been the slim and petite kind, but suddenly she was feeling the pressure to lose weight and fit into the size standards we’ve set for brides.

Her words struck a chord in me.

I immediately asked Pallavi if she would like to share her frustrations and what she learnt in a guest post for my blog. Why? I’ve seen this happen over and over again, with bride after bride - girls losing all confidence in their body, and internalizing the societal norms of beauty. Trying hard to “fit in”, pun intended, without realizing how beautiful it is to stand out. Now before you start wondering whether Pallavi and I are anti-fitness, hold your horses, and read it straight from the bride’s mouth!

Of big and happy brides - Pallavi

Let me spell it out, right at the beginning - no bride wants to look fat on her big day.

Fat. A word that makes you cringe, doesn’t it?

So we come up with nicer synonyms, which make us less nervous about our appearance - large, healthy, chubby, big-boned. And I am okay using any of these adjectives to describe me, as they’re not far Continue reading

14 Diet Secrets Every Bride Should Know

25 Jul

You know I’ve been guest posting for Indian Roots recently. And I have some news to share about them - they’ve finally launched their online store for Indian wear! It’s still in beta phase, so expect a limited stock for some time, but I’m really excited about all that they have in store! From Shehla Khan to Raw Mango, there’s enough pretty clothes to whet your designer-wear appetite.

Their blog has shifted to - it’s called The Daily!

And I recently wrote a guest post for them about

“14 Diet Secrets Every Bride Should Know”

thedelhibride 14 Diet Secrets Every Bride Should Know

Check it out and tell me what you thought of it! Do you also follow any of those rules?

thedelhibride Asks…How to Eat Healthy post Wedding

24 Apr

After reading this article on 7 Ordinary Ways to Be Healthier, I remembered something I had forgotten within a few months of my wedding - my mother had stopped keeping things like Nutella and Chocopie and Cheeselings around the house because I would gobble them up at God-speed since I was a teenager and of course, that’s extremely unhealthy! As the first point in the article states, just don’t keep junk food around the house and you’ll automatically find yourself reaching for that banana instead of a chocolate bar. However, since I’ve gotten married - there’s been an abundance of these foods around the house. And of course, my first instinct was to say “take it all away! don’t keep this in the house otherwise I will become seriously obese and have clogged arteries!” (my mother always threatened me with clogged arteries every time I asked her for another round of oranges and fresh cream) But that is a senseless kind of demand. Just because I completely and utterly lack self-control when it comes to my favourite “bad foods” doesn’t mean the whole house needs to suffer - it should be around the house for whenever someone wants to munch on something yummy, and also for any guests that arrive unannounced.

thedelhibride Asks…Eating Healthy

But the problem I’m facing is - how do I learn some self-control? I’m honestly terrible with it - nobody was in the house the last 2 days (they’d gone on a short trip) and I managed to clean up an entire bottle of Nutella, and all the fruits and yoghurt and cucumber/tomatoes/eggs were left untouched. Continue reading

Workout Options For Gym-Hating Brides

21 Sep

Have you read about my 47 Day Wedding Workout Challenge? I’m 10 days into the challenge now – which makes it the perfect time to give you an update.

I’ve been doing yoga on most days – either because of class, or on my own. I’ve taken 3 days off, which means I have 7 more rest days to use and 20 more days to workout! Sounds doable? For more details, check out the Wedding Workout Tracker page.

I’ve heard from a few of you brideys that you’re also getting serious about working out for your wedding. Have you picked your form of workout yet? Multiple options are available to us – from the gym to dance class to even playing sports! I’ve never been a fan of the gym. I find it terribly boring. I can’t imagine running on a treadmill day in and day out, staring at that screen which tells me how many calories I have burnt. I don’t care! I would much rather be out running in the park. Not that I’m a runner, but still!

I picked yoga, but you have other options as well. I found a few great alternatives for thedelhibrides to choose from in this article on A Non-Gym-Goers Guide to Getting Fit by Little Black Book Delhi (a site which runs on similar lines to brownpaperbag Delhi). Other options (tried and tested by yours truly) for Delhi & Mumbai brides include:

1. Dance class at The Danceworx – they teach mainly jazz style of dance, but for the last 2-3 years they’ve been teaching ballet as well. And if you were looking for a couple’s class to go for with your fiancé, they have Social Dance classes as well where they teach you different forms of partner dances (samba, salsa, etc) (Edit: these classes have been discontinued). I went here to learn jazz for many years at the Bluebells school branch – the instructors are fantastic, classes are always so much fun and the dance routines will make you want to move that butt! Side benefits include a boost in confidence levels (they teach you the jazz walk – which is almost like a ramp walk, so you can imagine how many inhibitions you lose, and lose them quick!) and a seriously flat stomach (because a lot of their warm up exercises stress on using your core muscles). If you’re wondering why I left such a fantastic class, it was because of timings. As you get to higher levels, the timings start to clash a bit with office hours. But I’d give an arm and a leg to get a job that allows me the time to get back to this class.

  • How much does it cost? Super cheap – INR 3600 for 3 months (this was the price a year back, not sure about now)!
  • How to get in touch with them -  Call up their offices in Delhi (011-40520111, 40562570 to 75) or Mumbai (022-65220077, 42958789, 65159994, 65159995, +91-8879307626)

2. Yoga class with Bharat Thakur Artistic Yoga – a personal trainer comes home to teach me. He’s really, really good. And the class is tough, it’s not as easy as I thought yoga would be. Best thing about classes at home is that I never miss a class. I decide the time according to my convenience. Of course, you have to coordinate with your instructor who will have to fit you in as per his own schedule – he takes classes for other people also, you know!

  • How much does it cost? This does not come cheap – INR 15,000 for 1 person per month, INR 20,000 for 2 people…keep adding INR 5,000 for every additional person. I would suggest if you have the space in your house, enroll multiple family members as it works out to be more reasonable then. They also have group classes which cost much lesser – the same personal trainers teach these classes as well, so I’m assuming they are equally good.
  • How do I get in touch with them? Call their toll-free India number 1-800-102-1000 (they are in UAE & Moscow as well)

How are you planning on getting fit for your wedding?

The 47 Day Wedding Workout Challenge

13 Sep

Accountability. I’ve heard it’s a powerful tool for achieving a goal.

What’s my goal?

To be fighting fit by my wedding day. And no, not just for those few days, but for life. I’ve been using the wedding as an excuse to get fit, eat healthy and stay healthy. And let me tell you, it’s a darn good excuse.

But why hasn’t it worked out so well for me?

Reason #1 : Not visible enough

I started off with putting up a page on the blog - Wedding Workout Tracker. In case you’ve been tracking it, you would have noticed I barely ever update it. I thought the existence of this page would make me feel accountable. It did not. Why? Probably because it’s hidden away in a tiny corner of the blog. Not visible enough.

Reason #2 : Nothing to lose

Another issue was - I didn’t have much to lose (pun intended). I am not an over-weight bride who wants to lose a couple of kilos to look better in her wedding lehenga. In fact, I may even be a bit under-weight! What’s the worst that could happen if I didn’t workout? I would have to cover my stomach with a dupatta while wearing a lehenga. Big whoops *rolls eyes* Obviously, not a good enough reason to get my a** off the bed for a workout.

Reason #3 : Not measurable

If I’m a bit underweight, why would I want to workout? My main concern was my health - I tend to fall sick a lot. I assumed that working out and eating healthier would put me in in a better state of health. There was just one small issue with this end goal - it’s not quantifiable. I can’t measure “better health” or “better immunity” as easily as “losing 5 kilos” and this was further dampening the workout mood.

What am I going to do about this?

Presenting to you…

What’s the 47 Day Wedding Workout Challenge?

Workout for 80% of the remaining 47 days leading up to the wedding. That means I can take a total of ~10 days off, MAX. Which is necessary, because rest days are important for your muscles to recover from the strain you put them through. And let’s be honest - my work schedule tends to go a little crazy sometimes, so I need some margin for error!

How will I make it work this time?

#1 Make it more visible

So I’m going to publicise this page all over the web now. And talk about it DAILY. Yes, for the next 47 days, I will give you all the boring details of my workout. And I have created empty space on the Wedding Workout Tracker to fill in as the days progress.

#2 Have something, ok, a LOT to lose - INR 20,000 worth!

I will donate INR 20,000 to a charity of your choice (will put up a poll later with charity options and the blog followers can vote) if I fail to workout on more than 10 days. Yup, 11 days of no workout will mean I have to create a large dent in my bank account. If that doesn’t motivate me, God knows what will! I am transferring this money to my fiancé’s bank account - and he has full freedom to donate it if I fail the challenge (which I’m really, really hoping I don’t!)

#3 Make it measurable

47 days, INR 20k - measurable enough for me!

Do you think I’ll make it?

PS. This post was supposed to be up 2 days back, but I just got some time to publish it now. I’m already on Day 3 of this challenge - you can track my progress on the Wedding Workout Tracker page.

My Personal Fitness Plan For Getting Bride Ready

10 Aug

You know what I want right now? Cake.

I want that piece of mouth-watering cake!
Image by © KidStock/Blend Images/Corbis

And you what I can’t have right now? Cake!

Why, you ask?

Because the sun has set, and I’ve already had a pastry today, a cookie yesterday, and a packet of Hide & Seek biscuits the day before that. I have more than exceeded my quota for having junk food this week *sigh*

I’ll tell you what works for me - cold cut off. There are people who say that you should allow yourself to indulge in your favorite junk food once a week. As long as you’re eating healthy all other days, one day is absolutely fine. You know what that 1 day does to me? It re-introduces me to the delicious taste of junk, and I’m hooked again. In addition, because I have been deprived for so many days, my taste buds want to overcompensate by going overboard! This method definitely does NOT work for me. It makes it WORSE.

While we are on the topic of healthy eating, here’s what I think is the ideal way to get fighting fit for your wedding:

  1. Hydration - 2 litres of water a day, 1 glass coconut water daily - great for the skin! CHECK
  2. Workout - you must. There’s no two ways about it. It helps you lose the fat (for your lehenga and saris), makes your skin look great (who doesn’t want that?) and most importantly, it makes you energetic and alert and less likely to feel stressed (this gets more and more important as wedding day gets closer!) CHECK I’ve been taking personal yoga classes at home 2-3 times a week. Although I feel the need to add Nike Training Club to my routine, just yoga is amazing all by itself as well
  3. No junk food - please, don’t eat that pastry today. And no, drop that packet of chips. And yes, biscuits are also considered junk food! Honestly, stick to as much ghar ka khaana as possible. And always opt for freshly prepared food (even in the office canteen) over processed and packaged food. So, yes to that pasta and no to Maggi. Yes to cold coffee and no to Tropicana fruit juice. IN PROGRESS This is the hardest one for me because most of my diet over the last 5-6 years has been junk food. Since I am blessed with a high metabolism, I have always eaten anything and everything without giving it a second thought. But a flat stomach is not possible without cutting on junk, so I am trying in earnest to limit my junk food intake as much as possible.
  4. No caffeine - difficult for most, but there’s 2 reasons to find an alternative for your morning cuppa coffee or tea - #1 you are unknowingly introducing too much sugar to your diet because of the spoonful of sugar you add to your cup atleast 3-4 times a day. Wouldn’t you rather satisfy your sweet craving with a bite of chocolate? #2 it stains your teeth. Don’t believe me? Try not having tea/coffee for a month and you’ll see the difference yourself. CHECK! Tea & coffee-free for four months and loving it!
  5. For a flat stomach / abs – there are a few basic rules = don’t have junk food, if you must then never have it after sunset (since your metabolism is at its slowest then), never have a heavy dinner (if possible, try having it before 8 pm), always have a big breakfast, stop eating egg yolks (just the whites), 50 crunches daily, do a workout that makes you sweat (Cardio) and limit your salt intake (because it causes water retention in the body that causes bloating).
  6. For toned arms/legs/shoulders/back – You cannot attain a truly toned body without weights, or anything that gives the same kind of impact on your body as weights. In case you find dumbbells difficult to handle, do workouts that involve using a medicine/gym ball or elastic bands. I’m no expert at this, but it appears to be common sensical. JUST STARTING OUT I’ve bought a medicine call, and I have light dumbbells, but I rarely use them.
  7. Eat every 2 hours - I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times. But, it’s true. The reason why it works? Let me explain this to you through an example. Imagine you ate a big breakfast at 8 am. That’s great. You reach office, have tea, start working. You eat lunch at 1 pm. That’s a FIVE hour gap between two meals. Your body gets used to this routine and ends up doing this - storing fat in in order to release energy during the 5 hour gap. Instead, if you eat every 2 hours, the body knows it doesn’t need to store any fat because you’re keeping it well-fed at all times. CHECK This comes extremely naturally to me, but I’ve seen how easy it is for people to change this habit. Just eat smaller meals every 2 hours, it’s truly easy and body-changing!
  8. No more white - No white rice. No white bread. They’re both just empty calories - which means, only calories, no nutrition. Which is pretty pointless. Instead, opt for brown rice (which is essentially rice that has been boiled with the chhilka/cover on it, so that Vitamin B gets absorbed into the rice grain) and for wholewheat bread (not even brown bread - because sometimes it’s only white bread that has had brown coloring added into it, and wholewheat has fibre as well). Be aware that brown rice takes longer to cook, and it doesn’t feel as soft and mushy as white rice. But honestly, who doesn’t like a change? :) CHECK We only get wholewheat bread delivered to the house, and I eat white rice only when I’m eating biryani, which is not often.

If there’s anything else I remember, I’ll add it here later. I’m sure I’m forgetting many right now. Source of all the tips is - Rujuta Diwekar’s books, my yoga teacher and plenty of hours spent googling “How to Get Abs” and “How to get Glowing Skin” ;)

Are you trying to get yourself fit/lose weight before the wedding? Which part of the plan is most difficult to stick to?


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