Opening Doorz Editorial | March 21, 2018
Tina Desai on her workout routine, eating habits and spiritual quotient…
My fitness regimen is three-fold. I do strength training at a gym 4-5 days a week which means I have a body type with a high metabolic rate. My body type requires only strength training because if I do cardio I lose a lot of weight. Depending upon whether I do two or three body parts a day, I decide on the number of reps and the number of exercises I do per body part. I do cardio just for a warm-up or a cool down. I also do yoga twice a week on Saturday and Sunday. Yoga is amazing for your internal strength, building of immunity and it also makes your skin glow. If I am in India long enough and if I have the time, I also go for kick-boxing classes. It’s something which is very important when you are trying to work in the west. Besides, it’s also great fun. There are also dance classes I go to. So it’s an assortment of physical activity I choose to do depending on my work requirement and my travel schedule.
My eating habits are almost entirely based on what my Mom gives me because when I live at home she does all the cooking and the feeding and when I am abroad I just tend to follow that pattern because it’s now so much of a part of me. I mostly eat vegetarian food. During the weekends, I eat non-veg. I make sure there’s a lot of sprouts and greens in my meals when I am travelling. When I am home my Mom makes juices every day. Sometimes its beetroot, carrots, spinach, tomato, apples, oranges, pineapple, pomegranates… She mixes fruits and veggies together and makes different juices. She also makes salads—tossing in a bunch of interesting ingredients. We tend to eat very healthy but it is also really tasty. You may say its dietary, but it’s really not!
I make sure I have fruits and vegetables in my diet apart from having 3-4 litres of water every day. I have an oily skin and it’s very important for me to have that much water. I don’t really think about carbs, proteins, fiber, minerals and vitamins as some do; I just generally think I need to have pulses, greens, vegetables, wheat, rice, eggs… just the basic things. I don’t pay attention to what each nutrient is. I just know that I have to cover certain important foods. Yes, I make sure I do not eat oily food not because I am diet conscious, but because the moment I eat oily food it shows up on my skin. I stay away from everything fried and if I have to have anything fried then it’s only what is cooked at home. My meal timings are erratic; it all depends on what I’m doing at during that period of time.
I stress easily about the small things: the important and critical things I am calm about. It is the small things that bother me as they are the ones that happens more often! My de-stressing mantra is listening to music: It’s an instant ‘pick me up’. I love going on long drives too. I’ve only learnt how to drive about four years ago so whenever I’m stressed, whenever I have nothing else to do, I just get in the car and go for a drive… anywhere. If someone needs to go to the dry cleaner or if someone needs to run any errands I am happy to do it for them; if not I will just aimlessly drive to wherever I feel like going, while listening to music!
I do not meditate. I have never tried meditation. I did go for an Art of Living class once and I tried it for about 10 days but it’s not something I have been able to continue with. It requires time which I do not want to give. Besides, I don’t feel the need for it. I have two life mantras: “Everything will be alright in the end; if it’s not alright it’s not yet the end.” The other one is this: “Whatever happens is for the best.” This helps me be positive in any situation.
(Tina Desai is an Indian actress and model. She debuted with the 2011 thriller Yeh Faasley, and went on to star in the action comedy Sahi Dhandhe Galat Bande, before making her foreign debut in 2012 in the English comedy-drama The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. She is also known for her main role in the Netflix series Sense8.)