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Fitting Fitness into Busy Routines

How finding the time to workout amidst a busy schedule is important.

Finding time for fitness is tough for most of us. Yet some people manage to juggle it all so effortlessly, it might seem. On the contrary, it takes a great degree of will power and dedication to take some time out for exercise, when you would rather be doing anything else besides. Here’s how some experts in their respective fields do it.

One common thread among achievers in all fields is that they always make time for their health. They consciously work towards physical wellbeing and mental acuity. They understand that taking the time out now will only give long-term rewards through life. So we spoke to specialists and achievers in various fields to find out how they fit fitness into their busy routines. The answers left us inspired and motivated. They are all true believers that working towards good health doesn’t take time, it gives time.

How I fit fitness into my routine

Working out at home.

Neelesh Sarda, Senior President and Compliance Head, YES Bank Ltd.

“With an almost 11-hour work day, two hours of driving to and from work, and an almost six-day working week, it’s a stressful life. The only balance I get in this madness is through dedicatedly fitting fitness into my routine. I do yoga thrice a week. It helps that my wife is a yoga instructor and conducts an amalgamation of Ashtanga, Iyengar and Hatha yoga classes at her Yoga Central studio in the mornings. It’s a great balance between strength building, improving flexibility and relaxation. I alternate the calming effects of yoga with running twice a week to get my dose of cardiovascular exercise. In fact, I have been running the half-marathon every year since almost a decade now. The stretches I do in the yoga class have actually helped improve my running performance in the last few years. Over the weekends, I try to get in some freehand exercises or light weights, or maybe even some cycling or swimming. Complete stressbusters these. And of course I try to stay positive and live happy.”

Try yoga at home if you can't hit the gym often.

Satish Ramchandani, Director, Institutional SME and Real Estate Ratings, CRISIL Limited

“I remember when I was around 18 years of age and I used to tell my family and friends that ‘no matter what my age, I will never stop exercising’. Well, when I said that I never realized the high level of commitment needed to continue exercising, especially after having children and with late working hours and other daily chores of life at the age of 40! However, over time and while interacting with some wise people around, I have realized discipline is key to staying healthy. This is what I try to include into my routine and would suggest to others as well: 1) Exercise of any form with some element of non-weight workouts –  I go for a swim three-four times a week as along with physical exercise, it is quite refreshing and relaxes my mind. 2) Good eating habits – I avoid eating anything unhealthy unless I’m craving for it or during weekends (thanks to my wife!). It really feels nice and light! 3) Spirituality – Reading and speaking about spirituality add new perspectives to my life and makes decision-making easier and stress-free, which I believe also impacts my body positively. As rightly said, health is wealth!”

Fitting fitness into busy routines.

Wing Commander of the Indian Air Force (name withheld as per regulations)

“As an Air Force officer, I need to keep myself fit. So I try and fit workouts into my routine any way possible. When I am in town, I make sure that I go for a brisk jog about three to four times a week. I usually cover about 10km within the cantonment area followed by some weights, push-ups, sit-ups and freehand exercises. When I travel things are usually very hectic but I make time for a jog around the campus that I am visiting. Or if I put up at a hotel, I use the gym facilities there. Most importantly, I try and balance my caloric intake with the amount of activity I am able to fit into my day: if I do not get time to exercise on a given day, my meal portions are smaller and food choices leaner. I have tea once a day, don’t have any sort of carbonated or fizzy drinks and limit alcohol intake to once a week.”

Going for a run helps.

Jainy Shah, HNI Wealth Manager and Investment Consultant, Partner – Wealth Prime

“With full time work, a 10-year old daughter and home management responsibilities, the first aspect of life to take a backseat is probably health. I have persistently taken some ME time out every day to keep myself physically fit and mentally happy. What really helps is the ability to wake up early. I’ve been an early riser for years now, no matter what time I sleep. This helps add the much-needed hours to my day where I can fit in some form of exercise or other. I have a yoga teacher coming home thrice a week in the mornings at 6:30. The other three days I go for a walk or run on the beach, which is conveniently close by. The day I’m back early from work, I try to spend some time at the gym across my home. I recently took up weekend kick boxing classes. That makes for a super strenuous workout. My husband and daughter love swimming, so many of our Sunday evenings are spent doing that. I try to eat healthy and light, avoid binge eating desserts (my weakness), and follow a strict liquid detox diet of juices and soups every Monday.”