Being kind to body and self is the key: Richa Chadha

Richa Chadha — the actress who grabbed eyeballs with her badass role in Gangs of Wasseypur in 2012 — proved she is just as dauntless in real life too. Last year, she revealed to the media that she had suffered from bouts of bulimia and recovered only after seeking professional help. But that’s bygone. She is now an advocate of leading ‘the healthy life’.

Richa’s first brush with fitness was, when she was about 15. At that time, she’d taken up dance classes. “At the dance academy, other dancers were older but fitter. That’s when I decided to take up fitness seriously and decided to be really strong,” says Richa. She confesses that injuries often put a comma in the momentum. “But I get back and hardly ever fall sick,” she says.

Daily routine
When I am not busy shooting, I try and get at least eight hours of sleep. I make sure that I indulge in some kind of exercise everyday to keep my body’s metabolic rate high. Also, since I tend to get bored doing the same kind of exercises everyday, I keep varying between different forms of yoga, weight training, cardio, etc. My daily workout regime includes strength training for big muscle groups, cardio in the form of walks, and now cycling and swimming to connect with the element of water. I meditate to attain inner peace — would go bonkers if I don’t get to meditate. It is the best way to calm and soothe our nerves. For internal strength I do yoga. Regardless of what I am doing, however, I make sure that I always challenge and push myself.

Top of the game
There’s a particular workout style I stick to — it’s called doing whatever you can wherever you can. If you’re in a park, run; if you’re on the beach, do handstands; trek up a hill, walk or cycle to the shop; if you have no time to train, do crunches in your vanity van. It’s all about the will and the intent at the end of the day. ‘No time’ is no excuse at all.

Also, to remain at the top of the ball game, I avoid sugar as much as possible. I am a strict vegetarian and eat clean and fresh food heartily, never compromising on the amount of intake.

Cheat bit?
I do it when my body is exhausted — I rest it out. I even indulge in junk food once a week. But, there is no excuse for becoming a habitual cheat. I never cheat on my schedule either. Never let cheating your schedule turn into a habit.

The mantra
No amount of inspiration is enough unless you ‘want’ to live a healthy lifestyle. No one can egg you on to do so. It is okay to draw inspiration from different people for various reasons. For myself, I mostly go for strength and flexibility, not so much bulging muscles and veins.

My message for fitness enthusiasts would be to be flexible in the strategy of training they adopt. Don’t be guilty if you skip a day of training or eat something unhealthy, just get back on track. Be kind to yourself and your body.

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