Seven fitness influencers in the country were in conversation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday at 12:00pm, in a bid to highlight their achievements and contribution in inspiring thousands of citizens in the country. Amongst them were Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli, model and ultra-marathon runner Milind Soman and popular nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar. The other included Devendra Jhajharia, Swami Shivadhyanan Saraswati, Mukul Kanitkar and Afshan Ashiq, a woman footballer from Jammu and Kashmir.
Prime Minister Modi urged people to join in the initiative to move towards a fitter India. “Are you already a fitness aficionado? Do you intend to make fitness a part of your routine? Bringing to you, an interesting Fit India Dialogue to discuss aspects related to nutrition, physical health, mental well-being and more… See you on 24th at 12 noon!” Said PM Modi in his tweet.
Fitness influencers shared tips on staying fit, how one can start and why fitness can change lives of those around them.
Virat Kolhi stressed on the importance of how fitness has helped the team’s performance in long formats of the game like test matches as skills are not a problem. “I saw transformation in my life,the demands change manifold after a point.The system and routine was not right for our game and it ws important to change that as we were lagging behind in fitness,we always had the skills. It is self realization and fitness which is a priority. I started out on fitness to play well, but when I don’t play, I still make it a point to stay fit, else I don’t feel great.” Explained the Indian cricket captain.
Model and marathon runner Milind Soman with his all women running event Pinkathon, spoke about how his mother inspires him. “After the age of 60 she started trekking. I taught her squats and push ups.”
Soman went on to say “If you want to stay fit, you can stay fit at home. I can stay fit being in a 8ft×10ft room and run marathons. People say we need a lot to stay fit. I run without shoes. You can be fit and healthy with whatever you have. You just need a mental setup.” The ultra marathon-runner’s suggestion to PM Modi was to make sporting events for the 70, 80 and 90 age categories national which will encourage people to realize that life does not stop at 40.
Celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar said in her interaction with PM Modi, how dal, chawal and ghee is now being promoted and that ghee is the most googled word in the United States. “We try to lose weight and in the process lose our night’s sleep and the day’s energy. We should not do anything that will impact our day negatively. We should have more of home cooked food and less of packet food. In 2020, if men work in the kitchen, we will eat less packet food and more of kitchen food.” Said Diwekar.
Thousands tuned in to listen to the interactive session which promotes the Fit India Movement launched in August 2019.
The BJP led Central government has already popularized International Yoga Day on 21st June in the last few years. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW) had also come out with guidelines recently for people recovering from the COVID-19 illness, on how to boost immunity and encouraged people to go for walks amongst other initiatives to stay fit.
The Fit India Movement comes in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for citizens to boost their immune system to tackle the coronavirus, which can lead to fatalities, especially for those with comorbidity conditions like asthama, heart ailments and diabetes. The country has seen 86,508 new cases and 91,149 deaths in the last 24 hours. The overall tally has shot past 5.7 million COVID-19 cases in the country with the global toll being over 31.7 million people, while 975,163 have succumbed to the virus.