Exercise Without Realising

Exercise Without Realising

I am a lover of routine so much so that for years you can put me in the same routine and I would not complain, I love status quo, and changes make me mad 🙂 But still whenever I feel to exercise without realizing, I go back to my childhood days to bring back the charm to my otherwise strict regime.


My childhood days were busy. I used to sit down only for reading a book or for doing homework, most of the other times I was a busy child hopping from one class to other. I learned a lot in my childhood, and dance is the first thing which comes to my mind when I think of those days. We had these numerous dance competitions in our school, and I used to be a part of all of it. I never realized then that I was dancing my way to fitness. 🙂 As soon as I settled in a city, I enrolled myself in Kathak Class ( A classical dance form of India). Twice a week it works as an efficient fitness routine and also relaxes me. Dancing is a good exercise. It works on the core and stability.

Jump Rope:

Those days all children used to play in their front yards for a couple of hours in the evenings. Today also in gated communities you can see children playing, but then the percentage of that carefree play has come down considerably. Girls used to enjoy playing jump ropes. Two girls used to hold it at its end, and one would jump on it. That was fun. I use to jump rope now when I feel that I need to do effective cardio in less amount of time.


This is something I love playing with my daughter. While I was a child, hopscotch in many different forms used to be played in the front yard. Usually, we played single-legged hop, with a small piece of flat stone on the head. Now, when I recall it, I feel amazed by the capacity of this simple game. One legged hop with something on the head is a great lesson for balance and stability. Playing Hopscotch with my daughter is the favorite fun workout which we are going to cherish for years to come.

Tree climbing:

This was my favorite past time in childhood. My grandma’s place had a number of trees, and my uncle was an amazing tree climber. He taught me how to climb up and get down on trees and walls. It helped me to strengthen my muscles and workout without realizing it then. Though I am there in the city since last 20 -25 years, I love big trees that I come across while walking on roads. There is no way that I can climb the tree. But there is a rock climbing arena nearby, which I should join soon. 🙂


I used to cycle to my school. I had a fantastic friend who used to come home, and we both used peddle our way to school over an exciting chat. Reviving those days is so much fun now. I have got a cycle which I use when I feel bored with the routine. A 5-6 km ride around the city makes me and my soul fresh.

Bring back those amazing games that you used to play as a child, incorporate them into your fitness routine and never realize the calorie burn 🙂 



My connection with super soft roti – Indian Flatbread

My connection with super soft roti – Indian Flatbread

Roti, the normal version of the Dramatic “Roti, Kapada Aur Makan”, or The “Do Waqt Ki Roti” has been in my life since the day I was born in the central part of India.Super soft rotis are a norm in all Indian households.I was born in Nagpur to father who belongs to the Marathwada region and mother who belonged to Vidarbha region. Both regions still have only one thing common which is Roti. The way they make it and the way they eat it both differ.
I was brought up in Bhandara which is a total Paddy belt like Namma Tamil Nadu. I am lazy by nature and thankfully I am a daughter-in-law of Tamil Nadu where I don’t have to make 30-40 rotis every single time. I mean morning and evening, the way my mom used to do. Nagpur is changing day by day, as most of the people have a lady who comes home exclusively to make rotis so that the lady of the house does not exert on that part. This is such a liberty which was not there when my mom was alive.
I still remember her bangles used to tinkle when she used to make roti early in the morning around 5.30. She was working in the bank so before she set out for work, she always made sure that her family has enough good food to eat. As she left for her heavenly abode, I and my sister promptly took her place. Those were the days when we used to make 50-60 rotis when the guests were around and 30-40 when there were some and 10-20 when only we three were at home. It was a norm and we could hardly do anything about it.

As I got married, I could not make rice properly, but who was worried? I could make fluffy fulkas without much fuzz. I could make Three/ Four Fold chapatis, Puran Poli, Paratha and everything with the glutenous whole wheat flour.

What makes the Roti Super Soft?


Well, the wheat grains are carefully chosen from the wholesaler and ground at a local flour mill. The flour then is brought home and kept aside open to cool down.

The Storage

Then it is kept in a steel dabba preferably, my mom used to have 10 kg dabba exclusively for Atta, I have 5 kgs. That type of storage makes it happy is what I feel. In the humid environment like Chennai, it has to be kept very carefully to protect from moisture.

The Kneading

Normal kneading with ample water does the trick. Dad tells not to pamper the atta and keep it aside once it is bound. In 10 mins, we can knead again to a proper consistency.

And Lots of Love 🙂 

Recently I have got the Pearl Millet, Ragi and Jowar atta just to reinforce my roti making prowess. Well, I really faired well with Pearl Millet Roti which is called as Bhakri in Marathi. I got a certificate from my dad that he has taught me well 😉 

Here is my attempt.


The article is written as part of the #SuperBloggerChallenge2018 by #Instacuppa conducted by HealthWealthBridge.comFashionableFoodz.com and AllAboutTheWoman.comand should not be repurposed, republished or use otherwise. The content herein is owned by the blogger. SuperBloggerChallenge2018 is not responsible for any infringement caused.

Decide Your Fitness Goals

Decide Your Fitness Goals

Deciding your fitness goal is very important for the health and fitness journey. Weight loss, Strength, Fat loss, Endurance, Stamina and lot more can be your goals. But how to go about deciding a goal and slowly planning for it is a great challenge as we lead very busy lives with the commute, calls, meetings, discussions and especially junk. I have written about the circadian clock which our body works on. This circadian clock is a body clock. Our current lifestyle has tampered our body clock in such a way that it leads the body to FAIL. I am no doctor but I know it by experience. My body started giving me red signals when I had acute IBS. I understood the importance of good food and better exercise only when I faced a serious problem. I never knew how to set up a goal for my body which it will be able to take up.

Here we discuss these different goals which body can set and also the way to measure them.

    • Weight loss:
      • Most common of all and drives the fitness industry.
      • Healthy weight loss for a month can be around 2-3 kgs depending on the workout and food that is being eaten
      • Anything beyond it is unhealthy weight loss
      • A normal weighing scale would help measure it
    • Fat Loss
      • This is a kind of a tricky thing
      • Fat loss is something which is the most desired outcome of the workout
      • Would not show up on the weighing scale but you can see that your inches are dropping down with fat loss.
      • So it is absolutely possible to get lean without losing your weight.
      • Can be monitored with Body Fat Calipers
    • Strength
      • Strength training results in fat loss
      • You can gauge your strength using the weights that you can lift easily
      • If you are lifting 5 kg dumbbell and after some days you are lifting 10kg without compromising on your form then your strength has definitely increased.
    • Endurance
      • Endurance is the way you push yourself for any cardio or aerobic activity which uses oxygen in the body immediately
      • Athletes train for endurance while performing sports.
      • If you plan to be a runner, instead of working on the muscles you should do endurance workouts.
    • Flexibility
      • I find flexibility very alluring
      • Flexibility training helps to reduce injury and improve posture.
      • It also relaxes mind and body
      • Yoga is the best way to go about Flexibility training.

My goal is to work on Strength and Endurance so I couple both workouts accordingly. What is your workout goal?


Clean Eating- A Modern Diet With Old Wisdom !

Clean Eating- A Modern Diet With Old Wisdom !

Clean Eating- A Modern diet with old wisdom!

Met an old friend on a Friday night bash!

My friend:- Oh! I have eaten a lot today, no workout too! I may have to skip my lunch tomorrow. Else how can I make up for this indulgence? “

I wondered and laughed in my heart that she had almost forgotten about the number of glasses she had poured in. I also thought that according to her logic if she counts those then she can’t eat food for the whole next day to compensate for the sin, she has committed.

I gave her peck for her innocence and yes this post is dedicated to other fitternity members who should know what to eat and how to eat. It is a known fact that “30 % of the gym and 70 % of diet”.

“Abs are made in the kitchen, not in the gym.”

Weight loss is a word which is very close to my heart. This is my second journey towards the same goal, now of course it is the postpartum weight!Thanks to my all day home(read as study and TV) and  no play attitude in my childhood days! I am blessed with a metabolism of a buffalo and to speed it up yes! I exercise. It is indeed my way of life today. I miss cycling as I never enjoyed the ride in my high school days. I want to relive my childhood back again by an hour of outdoor activity. Sounds like a child!? I know but I love to.

Many people suggest fad diets and yes the internet mommies like me are very vulnerable to those illusions. GM diet, Keto Diet, Whole thirty, Paleo, many more fantastic names to enlist here. I have tried a few only to realise that I was in great health when I was eating from my mother’s kitchen. Infact, when I read about “CLEAN EATING” I was about to close the window until I realised that it is the same way of living which our mother and grandmother fed us with. Not digging too deep  into the subject but I outline the basics of Clean Eating!

Eating clean is not something to be defined but here are a few basics.It is a change in lifestyle which can itself yield a transformation.

So let us know what are those simple sustainable changes:-

  1. Do not fall prey to shortcuts diets while you are on the making of fitter selves.Don’t lose faith as the results take time.
  2. Eat frequent small meals:- The idea is not to starve yourself and then fall into the trap of bigger portion to satisfy the loud hunger. Three big meals and two-three small fillers are great to go. Frequent eating also boosts up your metabolism.
  3. Balanced diet and Portion Control:- A balanced diet means incorporating the goodness of carbohydrates(the complex the better), the lean protein , the good fat (Yes! Fat is good to mobilise other fat from the body) and the fibres in correct proportion, in addition to the various vitamins and minerals. Portion control comes with mindful eating. Curb the distractions while you take your food.
  4. Avoid processed and refined foods:- However tempting and easy it may look. Always bank on the whole grains, nuts, legumes and pulses instead.
  5. Patch up with good fat:- It is a misconception that fat is all bad. Good fat is essential for the body as much as any other nutrients.
  6. Drink two-three litres of water every day:- We humans often confuse thirst with hunger and then gulp on those extras.

Remember the more consistent you are, the more consistent are the results. A journey to a fitter world can’t be achieved without consistency and sustainable changes.


Body Basics – For Strength Training

Body Basics – For Strength Training

Body – The place of worship.

Your body is your place of worship. This sounds so cliche but I would say today it is the most abused entity in the whole world. We are what our body is well 50% and 50% mind I am sure. So before embarking on this journey let me just quickly walk you through some basics of the body. Body parts as they call in the bodybuilding terms. While building the body each of this part is worked out to bring out the best in that muscle. Body is an amazing machine if you slack it slacks and if you push it pushes all the limits.

Bulking up – A strict NO – NO

Most of the women are not interested in weight training or bodybuilding in the fear of bulking up but the truth is WOMEN NEVER CAN BULK-UP. Women should do weight training progressively and plan food accordingly. If you have been going to the gym for 5 years and are lifting the same 3 kg, 5 kg weights then you may not see the desired result. The body needs to be challenged at every stage of working out. Increasing your weight lifting capacity is the next move for all ladies who are working out for a long time. I am sure most of you know it but here are my two cents.

Here are the body parts that need to be worked on.

  • Chest:
    • The chest is a major muscle group in the body which includes Pectoralis Major and Pectoralis minor generally we term them as Pecs.
  • Shoulders
    • Shoulder muscles are called as Delts named after deltoid, on the front and back side.
  • Arms:
    • Biceps: The most loved muscle group for all gym goers because this is where it shows up.
    • Triceps: Triceps is the posterior side of biceps, this is the part where most of the ladies struggle. This is a part which jiggles more and needs to be worked upon.
  • Abs
    • The core muscle group of the body
  • Quads
    • This is my favorite muscle in the body. It has a lot of strength. These are the thigh muscles.
  • Calves
    • Calf muscles are something I am working on for a long time. I love calf muscles of runners. It shows the hard work and dedication.
  • Hams
    • The backside of thigh muscles. Working on them is a pain but I still love it.
  • Glutes
    • The hip muscles which is the biggest muscle in the body. Working on them the toughest job in the universe.
  • Lower back
    • These are above your hip muscles. Working on core works simultaneously on the lower back.

Let’s check out what needs to be done to bring these muscles back to life. 🙂 in my next post. 


A Lifestyle Change Begins with A Single Step

A Lifestyle Change Begins with A Single Step

Wellness of mind and body:

Wellness is generally underrated and also highly market driven. I say so because we are a kind of sales and marketing driven economy since the Britishers left us. I always feel that they never left us for good. They left us because they knew that they had already created a potential market for many things in India. Wellness of mind and body can never be overlooked. In my experience, my mind is pretty much driven by my body. And the day I do not work out my mind is tossed. The daily dose of endorphins is the must for maintaining my sanity and to carry forward the day as it should be. The workout is a compulsion not because my body needs it but because it sets me free.

How did I start my fitness journey?

My fitness journey started when I started working in Mumbai and had acute gastric issues due to the graveyard shift which I used to do for a company. It was pretty bad to the level that I started getting my throat sore quite often due to the acid reflux. A doctor told me, a well-balanced diet and a good exercise routine might help. That’s where I climbed the stairs of a Gym called Gold Gym in Thane.

Those days were of cardio. You just had to break your sweat on elliptical and treadmill to reduce a few kilos of your weight slowly. It was all about weight loss back then but 10 years on, the food and fitness industry has changed amazingly for good.

Home Gym:

Today we are in a better place to understand what is needed by the body and can plan accordingly. We have many forms of workouts suiting different body types. At your place and at your pace is the new mantra.  I have a home gym set up which has some dumbells, barbells ( Bar and plate), a mat and a will to workout.

What is your workout routine? How do you do it? Would love to know.

Top 5 Summer Drinks for Kids:

Top 5 Summer Drinks for Kids:

Summer is here well almost and the heat is on. The days are longer and hotter, but fortunately the nights are pretty cooler and the dawn is cooler too but this is not going to last long. Come April and Chennai will be scorching hot. My daughter has already started asking for some cool sharbat along with her school water bottle. Instead of going for some aerated drinks, I plan to give her something which will cool her down in the hot summer day school.

  • Lemonade
    • This is our favorite due to its tangy and refreshing taste. Our dear Nimbu pani with a tinge of sugar would just wash away your summer blues with its freshness. Nimbu pani with soda is just a no-no if you really want to reap the benefits of the drink. I remember the summer afternoons where we used to play carrom with our cousins and at 4 o’clock we used to be hungry and thirsty too. My grandma usually prepared the nimbu pani with black salt known for its digestive properties. It used to be fun then.
  • Aam Panna
    • Green mangoes have made their way to the market. Most of the households have been introduced with season’s first mango by now. Aam panna (Mango Pulp Sharbat) is the most common beverage in north India and South India too. My mom used to cook the mangoes in the cooker and take out pulp. Then she used to mix it with sugar and keep it for making sharbat when needed. We used to literally thrive on that Aam Panna  and used to drink it often. It is said that the Aam Panna protects us from the hot wave which is prevalent in the northern India.
  • Buttermilk
    • Buttermilk is a staple in many Tamil Households. I have very good memories of buttermilk. My sister got engaged in 2014 in the month of April. Me and her MIL were prepping for the wedding. Usually, I used to drop in to see Amma just around noon after finishing my office work. The moment I used to step in she would ask me, will you drink a lil buttermilk Snehal? Well, I could never avoid it, and I used to relish every bit of that amazing buttermilk topped up with small green mango chunks. Buttermilk is mixed with rice instead of curd in south india as it is a coolant.
  • Coconut Water
    • Coconut water is a perennial drink in Chennai. It is available at every nook and corner of the city. My FIL takes the little one for a walk in the morning and gets her a dose of Coconut water everyday. He usually insists to have coconut water in the morning instead of evening.  Coconut water is the best for pregnant ladies and is the purest form of water even for Babies.
  • Khus Sharbat
    • Khus is called as Vala in marathi and Vetiver in tamil. Just putting khus in water would make it the best drink. It has coolant properties, it is diuretic and has soothing effect in summers.

I belong to Nagpur and the summers in Nagpur are horrible. For many years, I used to relate Khus smell with summers of Nagpur. After coming to Chennai now, it is more about coconut water and buttermilk. What are your favorite drinks for summer?

5 Super Food To Swear By

5 Super Food To Swear By

Weight and food have inverse proportion in my life. I could not couple both of it successfully. Some way or the other my resolve gets dissolved 😉
Trying to figure out whether strength goes well with food. So far it does. No matter what is the weight or the BMI, good food equals good energy and hell a lot of good work throughout the day. It is always good to have food which is sustainable instead of having something which you can not have on daily basis. India is known for the variety of foods. While being at home, it is just not possible to avoid food which is hygienically made to taste amazing. My quest to find some super awesome foodstuff has just started and here are some gems.


We as a South Indian household eat rice regularly. I have been on and off it since last few days, but I have realized that there is nothing which calms my stomach like rice.
I am talking about boiled rice which is brought from our farm. This rice has been processed but to the lowest level and brought for consuming. We cook it with the old traditional south Indian way in which we take out the excess water from the rice. We do not use cooker for rice cooking, and it has served the best. As a North Indian now, I have started liking the “Vedicha Sadam” which is nothing but rice made without a cooker. Rice is a super food, I have told the reason already. I suffer from IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) eating rice has calmed my gut down, and now I can be without any medication. As a Maharashtrian, my staple food was always rice, dal, and ghee which stands true till date.


This is pretty new to my kitchen, but South Indians use it quite often concerning Kanji or Ambil ( In Marathi). Bajra roti is used in Maharashtra especially in the western parts of Maharashtra. Bajra roti with ghee and jaggery is the staple food of many Maharashtrians. As I researched its nutrients, I found out that a 100 gm of Bajri has approximately 67 gms of carbohydrates and 12 gms of protein which is the highest among this food group. Bajra Kanji, Roti or Khichadi is a must have in the summer. In Maharashtra, the central part we have Jowar or Sorghum for making stew and roti called as Bhakri.

Ragi or Nachni:

The goodness of ragi is to swear by. We gave Ragi Sattva which is the purest form of Ragi to my daughter during 5-9 months of her age which were the formative years. She never had cerelac or similar food. Ragi is again an excellent source of protein and carbohydrates. 100 gms of ragi contains around seven gms of protein. As my dad tells, ragi helps in reinforcing the strength of bones and is a must-have for ladies of all ages. Instead of any store made health drinks, Ragi kanji one time a day would be a great thing to do.

Jowar :

Sorghum or jowar has a special place in my heart. My grandma used to make amazing Jowar Rotis or Bhakris for all of us when we were young. My dad usually tells me to amp up my food with a Jowar Roti. Grown up with the goodness of Jowar he feels that I lack a proper eating habit ( while saying that he has turned a blind eye to my BMI). But yes whatever he says has a meaning, so I have successfully incorporated Jowar in my diet at least two times a week.

Kulith or Horse Gram :

I am not used to this grain, but it is used in most of Maharashtrian as well as Tamil cuisine. In Tamil cuisine, they make a tamarind stew called Kozhumbu, and in Maharashtra, they make a different kind of curry with Horse Gram Powder. We can also use it as a salad coupling with other salad greens. Have you used any of these grains in your daily food? If yes, then please let me know how. Would love to know more.

The article is written as part of the #SuperBloggerChallenge2018 by #Instacuppa conducted by HealthWealthBridge.comFashionableFoodz.com and AllAboutTheWoman.comand should not be repurposed, republished or use otherwise. The content herein is owned by the blogger. SuperBloggerChallenge2018 is not responsible for any infringement caused.

A musical ode to the day

A musical ode to the day

It has been a week that my routine had dwindled due to a viral infection. Following a routine is very easy for me because routines are no-brainers (true to my Taurean roots), put the bull in a changing situation and it would get annoyed for sure. That’s what happened over the whole of last week.

Come Monday morning, I stepped out of the bed listening to “Kausalya Supraja Rama Purva Sandhya Pravartate” MS Subbulakshmi at her best to wake up Lord Venkateswara in all his glory. Thanks to my neighbors, who start their day well before 5 AM. I mostly get up to the Suprabhatam and the smell of sambar which mami makes for their household.

Morning Raga:

My sister’s Mother In Law routinely listens to songs while she is cooking. She is a Carnatic music connoisseur and loves to go to musical retreats held in the city of Chennai in Margazhi Season and otherwise. Listening to songs in the kitchen is all about taste I must say. These songs which amma listens are not any way disturbing the peace of the household, it, in fact, mingles with the chores and the morning humdrum of the kitchen. This makes it more desirable. There is a harmony of filter coffee smell, Carnatic music, and her own so-hum.

I listen to a variety of songs in the morning which brings in a lot of positivity and goodness. Being in Chennai it is mostly Carnatic because Chennai Mornings are magical. The sunrise, kolam ( rangoli ), filter coffee, sambrani smell and mallipu smell. It all creates a space which needs to be filled with Carnatic renditions.

Starting with a swag:

As the day starts gripping everyone, I start my work and all I need is an upbeat song of Salman Khan mostly the trending one is “Swag Se Karenge Sabka Swagat” incidentally this is the favorite song of my 7-year-old along with “ Selfie Le Le Re”. It just takes you out of the sluggishness of the day.

Rocking Afternoons:

Afternoons can be swept under the Justin Bieber/ Miley Cyrus songs. Little K is a fan of JB and as she comes back from school she likes to listen to all JB songs. I surrender myself to the new age music connoisseur and admire the freshness of the songs. 

Melodious Evenings:

Once the tone of the evening sets in it is all about the melodious 90s. The “ Wadaa Rahaa Sanam” or “ Sundari Kannal Oru Sethi”.Rakamma Kaiyya Kattu” of Rajani to “Manram Vantha” of Mounaragam. The pehla nasha of JJWS or “Rang Bhare Badal Se” from Chandani.

Soothing nights:

The sky darkens one more shade and the evening slips into the night, the time when one can easily go to memories of the 60s. I usually set up Binaca Geetmala on my system and complete the remaining work. Switching on the radio and listening to 104.6, on a viewer’s choice program I often listen to Norwegian Woods by The Beatles or “The way make you make me feel” by Michael Jackson. Sometimes it’s Pink Floyd, or Top of the world by “The Carpenters”. Music soothes the soul and purifies it. I am sure you guys must be having your favorite songs which bring you back to life. Would love to hear about them.

The article is written as part of the #SuperBloggerChallenge2018 by #Instacuppa conducted by HealthWealthBridge.comFashionableFoodz.com and AllAboutTheWoman.comand should not be repurposed, republished or use otherwise. The content herein is owned by the blogger. SuperBloggerChallenge2018 is not responsible for any infringement caused.

A2Z Blogging Challenge – Theme Reveal – BlogChatter

A2Z Blogging Challenge – Theme Reveal – BlogChatter

Fitness occupies at least 40% of our day. Here I also would like to mention my co-author Shrilekha Arun, who is a fitness enthusiast and an amateur runner. Out of 40%, 20% goes into planning the timings for our workouts and food. We are having different goals for fitness. She loves running, and I love lifting. We both workout at least five days a week.

We are excited to be a part of A2Z Challenge by BlogChatter. And the theme is 

“Barbell before breakfast” i.e Fitness.

In these 26 posts, we plan to elaborate on different exercises that a person can quickly do at home in a matter of 20 minutes with the basic setup of dumbells and a mat. There is no standard way of working out; it is about loving what you do, who knows you may find your love while seeing us working out or reading our posts.

A month is a long time in the life of bodybuilding enthusiast or a runner or a fitness enthusiast. A workout which is evenly spaced throughout the week would be immensely beneficial. We hope to create a difference in your lives by our small posts.

In case you have any specific preference or would like to know more about exercise and workouts let us know. We will surely get you the most authentic information on the planet 🙂

-The 5 AM Mommy