Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is Running Damaging For The Knees?
Running per se is not damaging. Done correctly, it can be fun and challenging, requiring very little investment as an exercise. However, it is a high impact activity and needs to be approached with sense. Start slow and gradually build endurance and speed, like with all other activities or sports. Be aware of the condition of the surface selected for running. Regularly participating in a holistic training/fitness program that targets various parts of the body to build strength, can greatly help improve performance and reduce incidence of injury. A well designed running program will help one run better and achieve sensible targets in terms of distance and time. Most injuries and damages happen when people try to do too much too soon. If you have any health issues or issues related to foot, ankle, knee or hip it is always advisable to get the doctor’s clearance. Train smart, run well.
Can I Lose Weight By Diet Alone?
Yes and No! Diet plays a very big role in weight loss and management. However, there is a difference in “going on a diet” and making a lifestyle change related to eating. How often have you (or people you know) lost weight with a diet and gained it back again after a period of time? A good diet plan will aim at not just making you lose weight for the time being but in educating you in making correct eating choices over a period of time. It will teach you to control what goes in and also give you cheat options that you can enjoy. But the results of any diet become more effective and longer lasting when complimented with an exercise/fitness regime suited to one’s current health conditions- another component of lifestyle change. Exercise helps regulate and increase body metabolism that cannot be achieved by diet alone. Not to mention, a fitter body burns calories more efficiently. It’s easier to create (and maintain) a caloric deficit by choosing this combination than by constantly restricting food intake alone. Being on a diet all the time is certainly no fun either. Keep up an active lifestyle that allows you to say “yes” more than a “no” to food!
Don't Like Going To The Gym! What Are My Options?
Plenty! Calisthenics, Yoga, Pliates, Boot camps, Martial Arts, Group Classes, Dance, Walking, Running, Sports.…there are so many formats you can choose from that can be done both indoors and outdoors. Look around. You will find more options than excuses.
Does Barefoot Training Mean Running Barefoot
No! Barefoot Training is not restricted to running alone. It does not simply mean kicking off shoes and doing whatever it is one does. It can be incorporated in different ways in training programs that can cater to ANY sport or physical activity, even those like football that need to be performed with shoes on and Golf, where it’s difficult to see the obvious connect! Barefoot Training can be used to train and strengthen all age groups, used in a rehab setting and also be used to design an intense cardio workout class that burns mega calories
Is There A Way To Lose Weight / Get Fit Without Controlling What I Eat And Exercsing?
Catch the Hogwarts Express from Platform 9 3/4th to Hogwarts School and mount the first broom available.
How Fast Can One Lose Weight And Get Toned?

It depends on how serious and sincere you are towards the goal. It also depends on your existing health condition (diseases, medications etc) which affect your ability to follow any fitness plan and which impact metabolism and heart rate. To lose weight, get toned and sustain results, one needs to follow a well- balanced program of exercise and diet/nutrition.* More regular one is, the faster the progression. Genetics and body structure too can have an impact. So does lifestyle. Somebody with an overall active lifestyle will generally see better results vis a vis someone with a sedentary one. One should not go by baseless claims and set unrealistic goals. Just losing weight and flab is not enough. You need to keep it away for good. An assessment of all these factors will give a truer picture and help quantify the answer.

*Toning cannot be achieved by dieting alone. This fact is borne out by people who lose weight rapidly without any complimentary physical program and are left with sagging skin. Constant dieting only slows down the metabolism making weight loss more difficult.

Is It Alright For Kids To Exercise?
Absolutely! Kids are meant to be active, play around and if possible, follow a sport of their choice.Obesity is a new age disease and unfortunately, quite common in the younger population too. Games and an active lifestyle should be a staple for children. Should the child need to follow a structured program, it should be one well suited for their age group based on their stage of development and what excites them enough to elicit adherence. Following a regimen not adapted to their age and developmental stage could be injurious and counterproductive. Activity and active lifestyle should be cultivated young and encouraged.
Is It Safe To Exercise During Pregnancy?
Unless advised to the contrary by a doctor, it is generally safe and even recommended to exercise through pregnancy. Before embarking on a pregnancy workout it’s important to get a doctor’s clearance. A safe and well-designed exercise program will take into account unique demands and physiological changes that occur with each trimester. Exercising and staying active during pregnancy has multiple benefits. It prevents excess weight gain, makes a woman feel more in charge of her body, contributing to a happier pregnancy and might even contribute to an easier/more comfortable delivery. Post delivery (again based on doctor’s advice) an active woman will find it easier to get back into shape and cope with the demands of motherhood.
Can One Exercise Despite Injury?
You will need to rest the injured area and follow the recommended treatment protocol, including exercise prescription. However, it could be possible to follow an alternate exercise plan that does not load or involve the injured part(s) but engages the rest of the body. For e.g. if there is any injury in the lower part, one could still exercise the upper body (say seated) and vice versa. Your trainer must be competent to know the impact of injury and design a workout around it. As always, it’s best to listen to your body. Anything that gives discomfort to the injured part should be avoided till it heals. Ploughing throw injuries does no good. Chose a safer alternate and help your injury heal faster.
What Is R.I.C.E ?

A) It is generally the first protocol followed immediately post getting injuries :

R: Rest the injured part
I: Ice the injured part (applying an ice pack)
C: Compression of the injured area (such as bandaging)
E: Elevating the injured part

Is It Safe Tt Exercise If One Has A Medical Condition Such As Arthritis, High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Heart Disease Etc?
There are enough studies that support the fact that it is safe to exercise in health conditions such as these. In fact, regular exercise and physical activity is known to benefit people suffering from these and similar conditions in terms of improving longevity and quality of life. You may want to talk to your doctor before and accordingly follow a program suited to you.
How Do I Find Time To Be Active?
You can try exercising first thing in the morning before getting busy with the day’s routine. You could also try to club some form of exercise with your daily tasks that make it easier such as walking the dog, doing household chores, going shopping or picking groceries etc. If taking out time in a chunk is difficult, try splitting it into more manageable periods throughout the day.
I Don't Have Any Equipment Or Access To A Gym? How Do I Exercise?
Body weight exercises are challenging and super effective workouts. These can be done practically anywhere. They effectively target strength, cardio and flexibility.
Is It Safe For Older/Aged Adults To Exercise?
A well thought out program that addresses the unique requirements of this age group can greatly contribute to the health, strength and independence of the older population. Balance training specially is of immense help to prevent falls and getting hurt. Barefoot Training is an excellent way for seniors to reap benefits of this along with much needed neuro muscular proprioception which diminishes with ageing. Follow the doctor’s advice in case of any conditions.
Is Walking Sufficient Aa A Form Of Exercise?
Most people tend to stick to one form of activity and walking seems to be a preferred option. While walking definitely has benefits, it may not be enough. It’s recommended to target all 4 types of training – Endurance, Strength, Flexibility and Balance – for all ages, as each form imparts different benefits. It makes the body stronger in a more holistic manner. The body quickly adapts to any stress put on it through an activity. Keeping variety ensures progress and reduces chances of injury and cuts boredom, an added benefit.
Will Muscle Turn Into Fat If I Stop Exercising?
Well, muscle does not turn into fat and vice versa. When you exercise you loose fat and gain muscle (not necessarily bulk). You create more muscle tissue but fat cells don’t “turn into” muscle cells. Likewise, when you stop exercising muscle cells will not morph into fat cells. What will happen though is that the muscles will shrink. Over a period of time the muscle mass reduces to adapt to altered (lower) energy requirements. This myth of muscle turning into fat could be driven by what is apparently visible – that when muscular people (weight training) or those who are avid exercisers stop exercise, they begin to look “soft” around the edges. Another culprit often is the changed caloric imbalance. People may not cut down on their eating after giving up their activity to adjust to reduced energy demands. There is a definite loss is fitness and strength that follows giving up exercise, which should be the main concern.
Is Spot Education Possible?
When fat loss happens, it happens from the body, not just from the area where the muscles seem to be doing most work. Weight loss and strength gains are experienced by the whole body in general. Doing endless crunches doesn’t promise a flatter belly. Many people experience fat loss in areas other than the one they are actively aiming to begin with! An exercise program that targets the entire body with special emphasis on problem areas is likely to deliver better and longer lasting results.
Does Strength Training Make Women Too Muscular?
This is one of the biggest myths related to women’s exercising! Women do not have enough testosterone (the responsible hormone) in the body to create big, bulky muscles like their male counterparts. Women have smaller skeletal size and muscle mass then men and their tendency towards osteoporosis is relatively higher due to their biological makeup. This in fact, makes it a must for women to do some form of strength training to preserve the health and density of their bones which otherwise have a tendency to become weaker and porous with age! Not to mention the toning that comes with strength training.
What’s Right For Me?
Depends. A plan is successful if designed and followed to achieve a goal. So it depends on what your target is. It would also need to take into consideration your current health and fitness status, medical conditions/ health limitations and your lifestyle.
I Am Not Overweight. Do I Still Need To Exercise?
Weight loss is just one of the reasons to exercise and follow a physically active lifestyle. Regular exercise is the key to maintaining good health and limit health risks. Exercise helps maintain good bone and muscle condition, increases energy levels and helps one cope with stress better. Inactivity increases chances of acquiring diseases like diabetes, heart disease, hyper tension etc. A fitter body is a healthier body in all respects. And this becomes more important as we age.

Ask Vani