GE Healthcare’s #getfit campaign is a social media initiative to drive cancer awareness and prevention by inviting people all over the world to share what they are doing to stay healthy. Over the past few weeks, we’ve shared #GetFit stories from our Global Research sites in Niskayuna, San Ramon, Shanghai and Germany. Today, I’d like to share with you what my colleague Kumar Rajamani, a Research Engineer at our Bangalore site does to #GetFit!
1. How do you #getfit and stay in shape?
I practice yoga for about half an hour every day. I also make it a point to do longer exercise sessions on weekends. My primary activity currently is running. I also enjoy swimming, biking and hiking. Before major events like marathons, I have elaborate run training extending up to two or three hours. I also regularly commute 8 km each way to work by bike irrespective of the weather conditions. I am also very watchful of my diet, especially in the evenings. Restrained diet in the evening helps a lot to stay in shape. I’ve always been proud of my running times. I have won medals and honors during my college days in 5 km and 10 km races. I then discovered my liking for long distance running during my doctoral studies in Switzerland. I did a couple of 10 mile (16 km) races in Grand Prix Bern 2005 and 2006.
Thanks to the encouragement for running at GE, I was encouraged to participate in a number of races in the past two and half years. I took part in Sunfeast 10K (May 2010), Urban Stampede 5K (Aug 2010), Kaveri Trail Marathon 42K (Sep 2010, September 2011, September 2012) , Midnight Marathon 21 K (Dec 2010), Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon (2012)
As runners are defined by their numbers, my run timings are below:
01:16:00 at 16 km – Bern Grand Prix GP 2005
00:20:43 at 5 km – Urban Stampede Aug 2010
00:40:54 at 10 km – Contours 10K March 2011
03:49:21 at 42.2 km – Standard Chartered Jan 2012
03:49:34 at 42.2 km – Kaveri Trail Marathon Sep 2012
2. Why is getting fit important to you?
I believe that a healthy mind resides in a healthy body. Keeping physically fit brings about a positive energy that I can share with my colleagues. It also helps me handle any situation in a relaxed way. Good physical conditioning also helps me improve my endurance levels.
3. How do you balance leading a healthy lifestyle with your family life?
My family and I go hiking regularly and have done extensive hikes in the Himalayas in Northern India and The Western and Eastern Ghats in the Southern part of India. During our recent Himalayan trek to the origin of river Yamuna, Yamunotri, my father aged 66 caught me completely by surprise by hiking close to 25 km in extreme weather conditions. It was raining for several hours, with freezing weather on the mountains. There was an option to ride a pony, but my father did it completely on foot. The second surprise was our third hike towards Kedarnath. This was a 20 km hike one way, again in adverse weather conditions with landslides and heavy snowfall on the mountain top. My sister did the entire hike on foot and it was a pleasant experience and achievement for both of us. India is also a land of rivers. We also engage in regular trips to nature spots and have fun and exercise by swimming in different rivers and lakes.
4. What advice would you give to others trying to #getfit?
I have understood after some careful insights that there are three important things when it comes to sports training: regularity in training, diet and rest and relaxation. I have also realized that it is very important to do cross-training, by doing a mixture of activities. Primarily I run, but I combine it with regular yoga, swimming and cycling. It helps to exercise different sets of muscles and also helps to build overall strength and stamina. I have realized that yoga helps immensely in building flexibility.
5. And your vice? We all have one.
I do indulge in parties and feasts occasionally. Indian feasts are generally very elaborate but it still has a place in my life as I maintain a general healthy routine.