what exercising is like (when you aren’t fit at all)

Photo by Content Pixie on Pexels.com

I open Instagram and am showered with pics and videos of headstands, abs, and fitness challenges.

I, on the other hand, still fall flat on my face every time I try to do the knee-chin-down-ass-up part of a Suryanamaskar.

No arm strength, you know.

Or back strength.

Or core strength.

Basically, no muscles anywhere.

And it sucks.

  1. I hate group classes. It has nothing to do with people (even though I usually stay away from them too). It has everything to do with the fact that I just can’t keep up. And sure, it’ll get better with time. But until then, lagging behind / not managing half the things others are doing / realising just how unfit you really are – just isn’t fun.
  2. When I first started lifting weights, I felt like a pro. Then realised I ordered the wrong weights, and was actually lifting 0.5kgs.
  3. Andheri West gyms exist to make you conscious. Forget worrying about that bit of belly flab. You’ll question everything from your non-branded wardrobe (Oversized t shirt and pajamas? What were you thinking? Where’s your Nike Sports Bra?), to your lack of makeup (sweat-proof MAC only please).
  4. Protein bars make no sense. Unless you’re really working out like crazy and need that extra protein. I think it’s time we admit why we eat that expensive stuff – it’s filling and tasty (and probably contributing to more weight gain than loss, given you aren’t working it off as much)
  5. Yoga pants are a quick-fix ego savior. Feeling unattractive? Throw them on. They tuck and squeeze at the right points. Enough said.
  6. Sometimes, letting go and just enjoying a workout is good enough. So maybe you find a partner in your group class who is as unfit and you (video?!) hi-five in the middle of a sumo squat. Maybe your favourite pose is shavasana. Maybe you pose in front of a mirror in extremely tucking yoga pants, sucking in your stomach, and post it on IG (even though you know that’s not how you look the rest of the day). The simple fact that you turned up for your workout is something to celebrate.

In all honesty, weight gain is something I’ve struggled with my whole life, and specially the last six years. It’s something that people would love shutting me up about, because how can you complain about weight gain when you aren’t actually obese? But the fact of the matter is, how we feel about our bodies changing is relative to each of us.

Maybe it’s age. Maybe it’s genes. Maybe it’s hormonal imbalances. But come what may, I can’t get rid of the 8 kilograms I’ve gained in the past 6 years. I’ve tried calorie burning workouts at home. I’ve worked out at the gym (I would gain muscles, and somehow suddenly lose them, and go back to square one. Something that even my instructor couldn’t understand).

And after a lot of hue and cry, I’ve come back to just enjoying yoga.

No, I still can’t do any of the fancy poses. In fact, I can’t even do a lot of the basic ones. My hands still can’t touch my feet when I bend.

Maybe it’ll get better, maybe it won’t. But I’m showing up. I’m enjoying it. I’m trying to be mentally and physically fit, and not bother with the weighing scale or the measuring tape. And really, all that matters is that we try, no?

Until then, tucking yoga pants, suck in tummy, click.

Or, accept yourself. (Tell me when you manage this one, okay?)

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