Irreverent, unapologetic, joyful and happy. These are the words that describe my approach to fitness. Of course, I bust my ass in the gym. I push myself as hard as humanly possible blah blah blah. But really the secret to my fitness is that I enjoy it. It’s what gets me up. It what gets me pumping iron after a long tiring day of teaching intensive cardio group classes. And honestly, this is the most powerful of all motivations.
I came to Delhi several years ago from Amritsar, with the impression that success and fitness involve some kind of brutal tasteless life. When I began living with my sister, my brother-in-law and their best friend I learnt a very different approach to life. They laughed, ate, enjoyed, drunk deep from the cup of life all the while being on transformative fitness journeys and casually laying the building blocks of Crush Fitness India (now one of India’s fastest growing fitness companies) which I would later go on to co-found with them.
I and my company are in many ways evangelists of this slightly odd approach to fitness. I strongly believe that the best workout is the ones that happen. Which means that the most important thing when it comes to judging a workout (after the safety of course), is the amount of enjoyment you get out of it. The most important question to ask is- is this something I will look forward to or dread?
That is the question that has brought me to where I am today. I am always looking for the workouts that will bring a smile to my face, even if that smile is accompanied by inhuman grunts while bench-pressing double my body weight. My cardio workouts are Crush Club classes, our signature dance fitness program that I teach at crush fitness. I get my dose of plyometric conditioning through bouncing on bhangra beats. My weight training regime involves training always with my personal training students. Every workout is a combination of learning, teaching, motivating, cracking jokes and comparing progress. I know there’s always at least a couple of extra plates on the squat rack just because I know that my students are going to get that extra spurt of motivation by watching me. I suffer from poor flexibility because of my heavy weight training, and honestly stretching is something that I dread. But I run a barter program with my friend Kapil Chaudhary, who is a Crush Core pilates instructor- I help him with his weight training goals in exchange for excruciating body manipulation by him which is better than any massage and that opens up stiff muscles like nothing on earth.
See a pattern? I combine my workout plans with friendship, with an occasion to spend time with the people that make me happy and combine my passion for teaching into my own workouts. This way, even when my glutes are killing me from yesterday’s heavy leg session, I know I will never miss the chance to come to spend time with the very people from whom I draw energy.
And this is what I encourage everyone to do too. Establish what gives you joy. Whether that is music, a social experience, the chance to train with a good looking trainer, or anything else. Everyone will tell you that 200 burpees a day are the best workout you can do. But who the hell wants to do 200 burpees a day anyway? So find your groove- there are so many options out there. Find a running club, a dance fitness class, a morning yoga class, or a late night MMA session. Find a buddy who will text you at 7 in the morning and push you to get out of bed on the pretext of drinking some nariyal pani before your workout. In short, find the workout that you will never want to miss. Fitness is just a few laughs away after that.