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Tuesday, Aug 20, 2019

Be the change you want to see around you

Of course you can change the world, but it starts with changing yourself. By being a better you. By moving.

other-sports Updated: Jul 21, 2018 12:40 IST
Rajat Chauhan
Rajat Chauhan
If you aren’t a good manager of your own self, how do you expect anyone else to do that for millions of other lives.
If you aren’t a good manager of your own self, how do you expect anyone else to do that for millions of other lives. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
         

We all sit in the comfort of our homes or offices and crib on social media all day long about everything wrong with this world and the people in it from politicians, cops, lawyers, doctors, teachers, drivers, students, engineers, mechanics, maids etc. without actively doing anything about it.

In the same breath we excuse our own selves assuming we can’t do anything about it as it’s too massive a challenge.

Of course you can change the world, but it starts with changing yourself. By being a better you. By moving. If you aren’t a good manager of your own self, how do you expect anyone else to do that for millions of other lives.

George Carlin, my all time favourite stand-up comedian, nailed it in 1992 during his first ever Live HBO TV special “Jammin’ in New York”.

“We’re so self-important. So self-important. Everybody’s going to save something now.” He goes on to say, “Save the planet, we don’t even know how to take care of ourselves yet.”

Indian traditional education system had figured this out thousands of years ago. In both Ramayan and Mahabharat it is repeatedly suggested that in gurukuls being physically fit was as important as academics.

This actually holds true across all ancient cultures. It was unlike the approach we take today where mental fitness and physical fitness are exclusive to each other.

To me anyone who respects themselves, will respect others too, and hence will be a good human being. That respect for yourself comes from being active, doing justice to your one life that you are sure about. In any case, if you want others to do good to you, you need to start with yourself first. Get moving.

Getting functional with squats

We don’t get started because it seems to complicated and too much to do. Lets go back to the basics yet again, breaking it down to the smallest unit.

Your exercises need to help you in your life functionally. Squats is one such exercise that is immensely helpful in day to day activities.

Everyone ends up not doing them because they assume squats to be very difficult without realising that they all do them every day. Many many times.

Get up from a sitting position on a sturdy chair. Shuffle your feet forwards by half a foot. Now slowly sit down again. Without waiting for too long, slowly get up again. You just did your first squat. Don’t bother too much about the right technique yet.

Just move. Remember, form will follow function. Lets get functional for now. Now repeat this a few times, maybe 3-5 in one go. Do this 3-4 times a day. Soon enough you’ll want to do this each time you sit or get up from a sitting position.

Runner of the week

Rajeev Chawla is one such runner who realised very early on the benefits of running were far beyond just health or for an individual alone.

He has been at it for last 13 years, first throughout his corporate life and now as co-founder of ‘One Race SuperSikh Run, a sewa inspired half marathon event.

A run with a ‘real’ heart, SuperSikh Run partners the global charity Khalsa Aid to raise Aid for its projects across the world.

The run also supports various other national charities across the year besides raising funds for key initiatives. He also coaches beginners to take up running and has been instrumental in organising free all year round Training sessions for new runners as part of the One Race community building program.

Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world”, so start with it today.

(The writer is a Sports-Exercise Medicine doctor who has been running for 34 years)

First Published: Jul 21, 2018 11:20 IST

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