Monday, October 16, 2006

Physical fitness

We’ve always been conscious of what we eat (calorie content, trans fat, cholesterol etc.); but our awareness in this field has increased substantially over the years. I’ve made it a personal goal to be fit and healthy, and Hobbes has also taken this up seriously this year. Here are a couple of changes we have made to our lifestyle.

1. No eating out. The exception to this rule is vacation. So yes, we have eaten all meals out when we were traveling earlier this year. I was willing to go the Tasty Bite way, but Hobbes is not a big fan of those and their sodium content isn’t exactly low :) That is not to say that we never eat out on regular days – but we certainly try to minimize those occasions. We both brown bag our food to work. This has the side effect of saving money. I have seen numerous calculations of how much that $5 coffee or lunch adds up to over a long period of time.

2. No rice on weekdays. Earlier our mindset was such that a meal wouldn’t seem complete unless rice was included. One day we decided and boom, no more rice. (On earlier occasions, we had talked about giving it up, but it just seemed too difficult to do.) We indulge in rice on weekends with dishes that taste especially good with rice (think egg curry). Also, khichri is more or less a permanent fixture on our weekend menu, so we get our rice fix then.

3. Exercise. There is no substitute for this, unfortunately :( Hobbes has joined the gym at my work. Both of us exercise first thing in the morning. We try to be at the gym by around 7-7:30 AM. Cardio, weights, crunches and stretching take up about an hour. My gym is really cool because they have showers with adequate facilities so that you don’t need to carry anything other than your clothes. The gym has towels, shampoo, conditioner, even q-tips! Hobbes could have used the gym at his work for free, but working out together has his own advantages. (We pay a nominal fee for him to access the gym). We encourage each other to work out when one of us doesn’t feel like going. And best of all, it’s fun! We compliment each other, correct each other, and it’s just more time we spend with each other, totally relaxed and having tons of fun! Hobbes has also started coming to my yoga classes. At the risk of sounding clich├ęd, I will say, that is really quality time as a couple :) And oh, we try and do this ~3-4 times/week.

4. No booze. I haven’t had a drop for a while now. Hobbes also decided to give up drinking, at least till the end of the year. BTW, all this effort is directed towards looking good at an upcoming family event, but my hope is that we will continue everything even after that, and if possible, for the rest of our lives. It was funny how quickly Hobbes went through all the liquor in the house because he was trying to give up drinking ;)

5. Running. We go for a run every Saturday morning. This started a couple of weeks back, and I can feel the differences in such a short time. We essentially cover the same distance and always the same trail, but every week, we manage to get it done in less time than the previous week. Right now we are at 5 miles in a little over an hour. The amazing this is that ever since I started running, I feel less cold. Earlier, I used to be cold all the time. My resistance to cold has gone up, albeit by a few degrees! And for someone, who is always the butt of everyone’s jokes for being cold at odd times of the year, this is certainly a welcome relief!

That’s it. Sometimes we throw in an evening of Turbo Jam, but we’re pretty bad at that stuff, cause we’re still learning some of the moves. Both of us are noticing considerable improvements in our physical constitution, and that’s the greatest satisfaction because we know that the hard stuff is paying off – we like the folks staring back at us in the mirror :)

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Toronto photos

All the photos that I took in Toronto are here.