18
October , 2017
Wednesday

VidYouth

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weighty matters01

Come summer and in the city of Nizams, students really do feel like the king. No classes, no exams, basically nothing to bother apart from the chore of keeping oneself well fed :-) . So after enjoying thus for a fortnight or so, on bending down, they notice a bump sticking out at the place where the flat tummy should be. It’s time to set things right – sad, but true. You need to loose weight!

And this urge to keep fit is the reason why IIIT seems to be in a flurry of activity for the past few weeks, as people sweat it out in the Gym, or spend the wee hours of the morning jogging. Of course, there’s the athletic crowd that prefers to better their reflexes playing some sport. Swimming, soccer, basketball, badminton and even cricket, if one considers the handful of people on the road in front of Girls’ Hostel (newly christened Parijaat Niwas) with a ball and a makeshift bat – it seems almost all the major sports are represented here.

Then of course, there’s the alternative crowd, who choose to follow the less trodden path of Ayurveda. There’s a 10-day ‘Guaranteed Weight Loss’ camp on, open to non-students, from the 5th to the 14th of July and it promises (as the name suggests) to make you feel lighter and more energetic at the end of it. It does, however, require a staunch resolution and a strict control on oneself to follow it through.

The participants are kept on a special diet consisting of boiled vegetables, sprouts and fruits. Unpalatable as it may sound, the fact remains that most of us happily take in a lot more than what the body actually requires and the principle behind this camp, as Yogacharya Vinayak puts it, is that the body gets just sufficient energy, and nothing extra. And after a 2-hr daily session involving breathing exercises, yogasan, pranayam, all you’re required to do is rest for the remaining part of the day. In the camp, Shankh Prakhshalan (expelling food till clear water passes through) and Vaman Dhoti (regurgitation of water) techniques are used to expel the wastage out of the body. Of course, weakness may follow as a consequence and hence the participants are asked to rest.

Camp in progress. Credit: Seargent Arbit

Camp in progress. Credit: Seargent Arbit

Opinions however, on the success or otherwise, of this camp are varied. For instance, Shubhangi , a 3rd yr student, likes to play basketball to keep herself fit but feels that, “It is useful for people, who are interested and can follow it”. Among other things is the issue of timings as the daily session is held from 5-7 in the morning and given the sleeping habits of most of IIIT’s inhabitants, getting up at such an ungodly hour rules out the option for many of those, who are interested. Somya (UG3) echoes this thought and adds that, “It’s better to indulge in some physical activity rather than starving oneself and moreover, the results are temporary”. Padmini, who started out with the camp and lost 2 kgs in 3 days itself, believes that it is effective but chose to discontinue as she felt too weak and found she could not focus on anything else for the remainder of the day. This weakness  though, Yogacharya mentions, is not unhealthy as it’s simply a result of the wastage expulsion and goes away in 3-4 days as the food intake increases and the body becomes accustomed to the diet, as was vouched for by the participants.

Although the numbers have dwindled from 11 on the first day to 5 on the 7th, those who did continue with the camp feel immensely satisfied with the results. Archana, a Ph.D student at IIIT, who has been practicing yoga for several years, feels ‘fit and energetic’ and even the neophyte Chokka Reddy, who comes to attend the camp from 15 kms away, feels his efforts are all for a good cause, having lost 5 kgs in 7 days.

At the end, different methods lead to the same result and though opinions may conflict, if it’s the results that count for, as long as a person is happy following his choice of programme, it does not matter what others may say. After all, it’s your choice to do something. All’s well that ends well, they say, and as long as everyone is happy doing their own thing, there need be no recriminations.

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