It's the season of giving and here are a few tips to gift wellness and health to your loved ones.
Seeing a happy smile on someone's face when they unwrap a present to see just what they wanted inside makes the giving so totally worthwhile. This season, make that smile wider, happier, fitter. Give someone the gift of wellness. You don't have to buy them a brand new treadmill. Although you'd love to, it could be way beyond your budget. Still you could give them something special. More so if their middle looks like it will spread some more in the coming year.
A gym membership with a few personal training sessions thrown in will do nicely. An annual one may cause quite a hole in a not-so-deep pocket. But quarterly or six-monthly memberships are manageable. Once they get into the habit and see the difference, they will renew it themselves.
But make an informed choice. Here are a few pointers to make sure it is a good gym. It must be close enough so that your friend can get to it easily. Check out the staff and equipment. Ideally, the floors must be manned by qualified trainers. The equipment must be of a high quality and made for commercial use. Many gyms use home equipment, as it is less expensive but ‘home' equipment is made for limited use and could become dysfunctional when used in high footfall places
Another option, within a small budget and very practical, your fitness oriented friend could do with is a pedometer. It will record the number of steps taken, heartbeat, distance travelled, calories burnt. The more sophisticated one, called the Wellness Monitor, will even record sleep cycles, calories burnt when not exercising, etc.
For the feet
For someone who has it all, fancy treadmill with an attached TV included, give them something they will definitely use and think of you. Calorie burning shoes. Yes, they do exist. Many brands promise the shoes work out the legs more than normal walking would. You get even normal footwear that promise to make the wearer fitter. Just using them is like having a mini workout. Ah well. I'm sure everybody would love a pair or two. Get the size right, though.
Your loved one is addicted to exercising outdoors, come rain or shine. The chill in the air leaves you stressing about their health. It's winter, after all. Give them a hooded flannel-lined wind jacket that will keep them warm and dry through their workout even in the rain.
She's stylish and she knows trends. Every bit of her makes a statement. Except her gym bag. Get her a new one – or two – that will go with every outfit. I'd suggest one in black and the other in her favourite colour. Purple seems to be hot on feminine lists these days, as opposed to the super-girly predictable pink.
His interest in working out is waning. He needs a new challenge. Kettleballs are the answer. They are not easy to use, so make sure he is a seasoned strength training expert. In their defence, Kettleballs are trendy, stylish and give a great workout. To add a little more to your gift, give your loved one (or friend) a DVD with a few Kettleball workouts.
A brand new swanky-looking digital glass weighing scale will help the gifted stay in touch with happy losses or sad gains. You could get the scales that show only weight or go for one that will display details like BMI, etc.
Rujuta Diwekar's Don't Lose Your Mind, Lose Your Weight is written for the Indian body. It's a great resource in the motivation direction in a style that is simple and appealing. Granted, she throws in a lot of Hinglish and is a little too strict with her recommendations, but her book is sensible and many people swear by it. Not convinced? Gift them an appointment with a good nutritionist. She will work out a diet plan that work.
How about a great looking exercise mat for the yogi in your house? The come in different colours and can be bought at different rates. Depending on where you get them from and the brand value they attract. The funkier, the better. They will cheer the user into doing a happy workout every morning.
Don't rack your brains thinking of something for someone who has it all. Simply buy them a brand new stainless steel steam cooker. It cooks healthy: steam is the best form of cooking, uses less oil and saves on your gas bills.
These are all just ideas. When you hit the stores, you will find a whole host of fitness-related gifts that fit your budget. If you would like to have it, get one for yourself too. This is after all the season of giving – even if it is to yourself too. Love begins with the self. Happy New Year!
As told to Ameeta Agnihotri.
Ajit Shetty is Managing Director, Score Clubs, Chennai.
Keywords: physical fitness