Over this weekend, well, technically only 6th of December, Phoenix Market City in Kurla had #FitFest going on. They had healthy eating workshops, Zumba classes, self defence classes and much more lined up. It was a terribly managed event with no visible signage of this going on, no timelines being met (The Zumba class that was supposed to start at 5:30pm started at 6:15) and no one really there to tell you what was going on.
The word fest has been used very broadly in this context. There were a stalls here. The Aromathai Day Spa people gave up on trying to get clients and packed up by about 6pm. The other places like a brand selling active wear from Brazil looked deserted and no one seemed to be buying anything.
Anyway, in all this, I managed to speak to Sucheta Pal who is a Zumba Education Specialist and Master Trainer for India. Which means that she’s the one who trains all the trainers who teach you Zumba. Here are her 5 tips to keeping in shape, and this is besides doing Zumba, of course.
By the way, Sucheta Pal looks strong, fit and healthy and the kind of person you would want to listen to when she talked about fitness. She’s got energy, power and lots of swag.
Before the tips, I also asked her a little bit about her which I am going to also throw in.
So, Zumba? How did you know about it and why India?
Sucheta: I am an engineer by profession. But my passion was always dancing. I pursued a dance career in India and then I moved to the US to further study it. In fact, I just wanted to explore different dance forms. I went for a visit and ended up staying there for 4 years. I thought I was going for an African dance form but it ended up being the best workout class ever. The best part of this was that the instructor was not a size zero, she was on the heavier side and no one was judging her. I was actually smiling while I was working out. That was my first impression of Zumba and I never looked back.
I became an instructor and taught in the US for 4 years. In 2012, Alberto Perlman, the CEO of Zumba heard about me and my classes. I was auditioned in Miami and then sent to India to make Zumba bigger here.
5 fitness tips:
- Try different workouts
Try a bunch of different workouts before you settle down on one. You may like yoga, you may like aerobics or you may simply want to run outdoors. But choose carefully and don’t go with the latest fad. Because if you don’t like it, you won’t stick to it and it won’t be effective.
2. Mix your workout
If you are doing cardio 3 days a week then definitely go for strength training on the other days. You have to cross train.
3. Watch what you eat
You can workout all you want but you know they say that the body is made in the kitchen, right? So yes, watch that. Be mindful of what you eat.
4. Keep a diary of your goals
Write down where you are and where you want to go. And then write down everything you are eating and drinking. It helps keep a check and also keeps you going. And this also helps answer the question, ‘I am doing everything right, why am I not losing weight?’. This probably has the answer.
5. Be realistic
When you’ve a goal in mind, don’t expect to reach it in two week. Realise it’s a process and that it will take time. Don’t get frustrated with it. But definitely stick to it.