Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mumbai attacked again

Mumbai is a city of dreams, financial capital of India, city that truly never sleeps. This city has given countless number of people opportunities to realize their dreams. People even from the most remote places of India, wish to visit Mumbai once in lifetime.

As I write today, this part of the world is under attack, but is it the city under attack or state of Maharashtra or India. No, it's the humanity under attack, few terrorists who barged into the Taj hotel asked for British and US national to take them as hostage. When they killed people they were looking for Indians not the Hindus not the "Marathi maanus" not wealthy nor poor.

We have seen lot of terror attacks over past couple of years. But, I fail to see any concrete step taken to prevent these. Every now and then attack happens and some xxx Mujahidin crops up, claims responsibility and mocks us. Our efficient government takes the tooth away from the security agencies by removing tough terror laws as in TADA, POTA or MOCOCA. Otherwise misuses them for the purpose of settling political scores. Clearly we lack political leadership to tackle these issues.

But, when I think what I, as a citizen of this country, been doing in these troubled times, I don't see any actions. Mostly these events have turned into another topic of discussion for me. As of today, attacks have never affected me directly or indirectly. So, is it that I am going to wait till my ass is not caught in the firing lane. I think it is time for us to stand up to terrorism and support the police. I am looking for what all I can do but at least I can start with:
1. Be alert and vigil about the surrounding.
2. Not supporting anything that promotes discrimination based on religion, race or ethnicity.
3. Not being stupid, something like Rahul Raj, getting a gun and thinking of solving problems in a matter of one day.
4. Not following "Eye for an eye" rule. Less than 24 hrs ago, ATS chief who was still alive then had reported in media that 90% of their energy was eaten by Malegaon bomb blast. When we are fighting enemies from all sides of India, if our resources are wasted with our own people, how are we supposed to stop this?

The gun-battle is still on in Mumbai. But, it is the spirit of Mumbai not to stop, CST (VT station) where first reported incident of firing and blast had occurred is already operational. Should the message to terrorists be more loud and clear?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

1000 Rs/Kg

This is an account of last six months, wherein along with shedding pounds of fat, I learned few life lessons too. These days everyone who meets me after a long gap is wondering how have I managed to lose weight. Well, it has come after a lot of perspiration, determination, failures and frustrating times. But in the end if I could do it, you can do it better :-).

I have always been a "heavy person," and a soft target. After years of half-hearted attempts, this March I fired on all cylinders for one more attack on fat. Started with the "GM diet"; got more attention than actually reducing any weight. There lies the first lesson "Extreme diets and without any workout don't work."

I am 25 and in last quarter century I have heard / overheard as many weight-loss "tontkas" as in
1. Drinking warm water all day.
2. Taking Triphala Guggule (Aurvadic medicine) with warm water, thrice a day.
3. In morning, take honey with warm water.
4. Instead of honey use lemon juice.
But, not even grams were lost because of these. (Lesson 2: Make peace with yourself. Doesn't mean compromise with what you are but accept if this is not working for you something else will. Find it and do it.)

After all these failed experiments, I researched and got to know that weight loss is a game of calories in versus calories out. Thus, I started one more fling with gym. In the initial days my regularity was again in question. I promised myself if I go to gym for seven days without break, I will get new gym shoes. (Lesson 3: Appreciate, reward yourself and be wicked, gift gym shoes which would further compel to the cause). Later on I went on to workout for 30 days without break. :-)

After first three months passed, I became pretty regular and my diet was in line. But, my weight lost was mere 3Kg, so I got few tests done (Sugar, BP, Cholesterol and Thyroid) everything was just fine but 3 Kgs in 3 months wasn't enough. So I grew frustrated, on one such Sunday morning while working out a girl came upto me and told me, "Hey, you've slimmed down a lot since I first saw you around, you look a lot thinner now." After completing the conversation with her, I could not stop smiling. That was my first compliment and truly uplifting moment.

But, still the fact remained that I got to lose a lot more. So I got a personal trainer. He would be there monitoring me all time, scheduling my workout and giving diet tips.

My daily schedule is: In morning have a bowl of skimmed milk with Muesli before gym. After gym, one bread, one cup tea with very less sugar and couple of Marie biscuits. In lunch, 3 chapathis, one bowl each of sabji and daal but no rice. At 5 PM, some light snacks. For dinner very light mostly South Indian. But, it would be a good idea to mix-match the dinner with Soup, fruits and salads.

These six months have changed me a lot not only in physical appearance but my lifestyle as well whether it being incorporation of workout in daily schedule, eating food before bath and many other things. (Lesson 4: If situation demands, change yourself.)

It takes time to lose weight, one needs to be very patient, very regular and follow strict regim. 1 pound of fat is equivalent to 3500 Calories. So one needs to take at least 1000 calories per day and utilize them to burn in excess to lose weight. In the initial phase, as I wasn't losing any weight people around me hardly noticed any changes in me, some even told me that this is my body-type and I won't be able to lose weight, don't fight the one you can not defeat. But, I still didn't budge, I had decided if this wont work, I would take help from the slimming clinics. Apart from this, there was a brief period that required me to break my workout in two and make me visit gym twice a day. Other than this too, I had to battle out many other issues, but I overcame most of them. (Lesson 5: There are more solutions in this world than problems.)

Finally whats with the name of this post? Well I am Baniya, all I can do is calculations and think about profits. I have lost 12Kg in last six months and the rate applicable was 1000 Rs/Kg :-)