Get Size Wise….. my book is finally published!


GET SIZE WISEAfter a three-year wait my book “Get Size Wise” is finally out It published by Rupa Publishers, India. It took me about a year to write it and two years to get it published. Finally it is done and am hoping it is widely read.

So, this book is basically for the Indian woman (because I work primarily with Indian women), but the basic principles would apply to women anywhere. It gives her an idea of how exactly to go about her fitness routine. What she needs to include, what to be wary of, setbacks to anticipate and so on. No, it does not supply any magic tricks to “lose weight”, “get slim” and more such crap.

This book is more about Fitness than Weight alone.

However, eventually, as the book explains, when done right – Fitness and Diet, the weight will fall in place. That is my premise in the book.

I have seen too many women fall prey to clever marketing, advertising promising perfect bodies ……. if only they subscribe to a dubious product, procedure and so on. Of course, the women concerned are to blame too. They WANT the easy way out. They DO NOT WANT to be questioning these claims that promise miracles. They are constantly making excuses for themselves. They play the VICTIM ROLE very well, leaving their health and bodies to sheer chance and circumstances and under other peoples control.

As is very clear I am totally against women relegating control of their bodies to others or to society. I think they need to sit up and take notice of themselves. Prepare to be shocked or pleasantly surprised with what they see in themselves and then, make the necessary changes to progress not regress!! This seems to be extremely hard to do for many. It is much easier to go to, lets say a dietician or trainer and have her draw up meal plans or exercise routines for drastic results. Have her take responsibility for the success or failure of the person concerned in ‘losing weight’. If there is no weight loss, then the dietician/ trainer is to blame. They are uninterested in the ‘why’, unacceptable of their own responsibility and unwilling to question what is being recommended. They are not concerned with the long-term effects as long as there are short-term results. They choose to believe what suits them rather than try to sieve the wheat from the chaff. So for instance, if someone recommends ‘drink lemon and honey first thing in the morning’ to ‘burn’ fat, they would much rather believe that than – ‘exercise first thing in the morning’!

I believe women need to be more proactive with their choices about their bodies. They need to be more discerning about their long-term health and not just short-term cosmetic results. They should not fall prey to societal pressure to look a certain way. It is not always possible to get to a ‘certain size’. A lot depends on genetics and environment especially lifestyle, stress, work and so on. Comparing one with other women who one perceives to be ‘beautiful’ or ‘slim’ is a futile exercise.

Every woman is beautiful in her own way. She can also be the best possible version of herself physically by applying some basic principles of diet, exercise and healthy living. By challenging herself intellectually and creatively, she then can proceed to live a fuller more fruitful life.

Women are more likely than men to allow emotional challenges to affect their eating, weight and health. Crisis in relationships or work can set one to start abusing food and ultimately their bodies. Binge eating, anorexia, bulimia are all psychological disorders with a basis in ones lack of self-esteem and a troubled consciousness. Women are also more concerned about how society views their physical appearance. This would translate as them trying all means possible to ‘look’ a certain way. This self-defeating attitude can be highly corrosive to ones self-esteem.

You should ultimately want to look a certain way for yourself and not for society. No doubt, that societal influence is great even while making that choice. For instance, in the early 16th century a more voluptuous figure was considered beautiful. Today in the 21st century, such a body would be considered ‘fat’. The point is, should you try to attain a certain ‘look’ because it is expected of you? More importantly, what happens when you cannot achieve that look? Does it make you a worse person? Not at all.

Women have to understand that they are truly more than their weight on the scale. They cannot evaluate their life by a mere number. Yes there are a several reasons (not just cosmetic) why being overweight is not recommended, and why losing fat is advised. The reason to lose weight therefore should be more focused on health than mere looks.

Certainly, if you believe that just losing weight will make you feel better about yourself, you may be in for a surprise! You may feel ecstatic initially after losing the weight. This is because of the sense of achievement, the admiration and applause from others and what you see in the mirror. After a while however when this palls and when the complements fade, you still need to find a reason to continue to exercise and eat healthy for yourself. You still need the self-motivation to keep going with your fitness routine. You need to find those resources from within yourself and if you are lucky, from encouraging friends. This is what makes for a success story and for the difference between short-term weight loss and long-term achievements.

One has to understand that Fitness is a Journey, not a Destination. Being Fit is not just about being a certain Size, but an improved level of Performance of the Body and a Superior Quality Life.

This is the only way to persist with a fitness routine and healthy eating, day after day, week after week. Sometimes, even when you don’t want to. Sometimes, when you are lazy. Sometimes, when you just don’t see any reason to! It is the understanding of this journey that keeps you experimenting, progressing and enjoying the process enough to persist with it for as long as you possibly can.

It becomes a way of life. It becomes so much a part of your day that it is no more an ordeal to exercise. It is your way of saluting your body. Of respecting it. Rewarding it for being there for you!

These are the ideas that I hope will permeate the lives of those who read my book, “Get Size Wise”. I hope to make them love their bodies more. Be thrilled, amazed and appreciative of it. I also hope to make them stop abusing it with food or lack of exercise. I hope to help them understand that they ARE already beautiful but can become even better versions of themselves if they only try.





To be a Better Version of Oneself!

“Women are angels, but when our wings are broken, we continue to fly……. on broomsticks, we are flexible like that!!”……..I love that quote, have no idea who said it!

As an Obgyn I am constantly amazed at the strength of a woman. How much we endure physically and emotionally. The various changes the body undergoes right from attaining puberty; the changing body in pregnancy and through menopause. It is not easy to stay focused on fitness routines or pay attention to physical appearance. There is just so much going on. Besides the hormonal swings, we have families, careers, hobbies, friends, competitors and loved ones to deal with. Yet we do! Beautifully!!!! (Well, most of the time anyway!)

If you doubt yourself in any way, endure criticism or pointless comments especially about physical appearance; remember what an extraordinary job you are already doing. Remember to tell yourself that your life is yours alone. Others opinions are not always relevant.

I believe we are all capable of great things,

I believe we have it within us.

I believe we are truly capable of healing ourselves just as we help and heal those around us.

For this to happen we need to accept a simple truth –

We need to stop playing the victim, get over ourselves and stop getting in our own way of realizing our potential.

Here are what I find the 5 most common self-defeating attitudes:

–     Self-pity – The easiest thing to do is to indulge in self-pity.

‘I have no time’,

‘I do ALL the work myself’,

‘I am a career woman AND I look after home and children’.

‘I get no help from my husband or the rest of the family’,

‘ My boss is over demanding’ and so on.

These pessimistic thoughts can keep one from actually finding solutions to problems that may very well be real, but are certainly not irredeemable. Most women these days are confronted work, family and a hundred other things and expected to sustain high performance levels. One is not alone. If one really chooses to face up to ones circumstances and work around the problem, it is possible to do so. Granted there may be other sacrifices to be made. But again, these are CHOICES that one makes.

–     Not being honest about lifestyle choices – We may have a tendency to avoid the truth if not be outright dishonest. I have counseled several women who swear they “hardly eat anything”, “exercise all the time”, “have absolutely NO TIME to exercise” and so on. This may be far from the truth and does nothing but prevent progress. It is best to lay all the cards on the table, accept responsibility and try to find honest solutions to real problems, not make-believe ones. This is pure self-sabotage because the only one harmed by avoidance strategy is oneself.

–     Laying the blame on other people or situations – It is easier to blame someone or something else for one’s life situation. Be it being over weight, unhealthy, depressed, having to handle career and family or even, not being able to work outside of home but having to stay a house-wife. Blaming someone else makes the situation seemingly easier to deal with. In reality, it is not. Trying to lay the responsibility of ones life choices on someone else takes away the power from oneself. It creates a sense of helplessness, deepens self-doubt and lowers self-esteem. Once again, it is a CHOICE one makes. A decision whether to take responsibility for ones own life, mistakes and all, or consistently lay the blame on someone else.

–     Not seizing an opportunity for improvement when it is available – Oftentimes, even when one is faced with an opportunity for change, one is unable to exploit it. For various reasons, some of which are listed above. Opportunities are available all the time. One has to be open to them. One has to be willing to face the challenge if there is to be any improvement. It is not always easy to change ones lifestyle, eating habits, activity, thought process and so on. However, change is inevitable if there has to be progress.

–     Always looking for a quick fix or an easy way out – Nothing worthwhile comes easy. Therefore, if it is a better quality of life, a better body, a fitter mind that one is looking for, it takes time and effort. Believing in quick-fix solutions, vacillating from one extreme diet to another in the hope of quick weight loss, trying bizarre exercise plans, pills and potions are not long-term solutions. Nothing is worse for ones moral than regression. Regression is what happens when one finally realizes these temporary solutions don’t work.

Setting aside these self-defeating attitudes can create the right environment for growth  from strength to strength. It is not always easy. One is so often tempted to let go and blame the world for our condition including out weight gain or poor fitness.

–     “It’s the fast food industry to blame.”

–     “It’s the internet and TV that make us so sedentary”,

–     “It’s my husband/mother-in-law who drive me to eat too much”. Whatever the excuse, it’s just that – An Excuse.

Every one of us does have a CHOICE that we can exercise with respect our own lives. We can choose not to eat unhealthy food, not to sit in front of the TV for hours on end, not to let other people’s attitudes intrude on our peace of mind. It is a choice. Perhaps not an easy choice, but a choice nevertheless.

As I said, we ARE capable of amazing things. I have seen it in the most unusual women –

– A poor village housewife doing a brilliant job of bringing up responsible, remarkable children.

– An elite socialite with her own sense of responsibility to society, working tirelessly for a cause.

– A busy doctor reinventing herself by losing an incredible amount of weight, improving her health and changing the direction of her life. I have seen the force of their spirit sustain them through the most difficult times.

…..These and many more such women are the inspiration to try to be a better version of oneself.