Alright, this one is for all the calorie-counting junkies and it’s straight from the ski slopes of Gulmarg, Kashmir. Now, I assume you count calories because you feel it has an effect on how thin you look and how young you can pass off as.
Well, you are wasting your time thinking about calories while sitting on your recliner or sipping wine. By the way, just some easy effort, down the slope, skiing costs you about 400 kcals, about the same as five glasses of “heart healthy” wine. But then this isn’t about calories, this is about staying thin and looking young and what better way to do that than to take a skiing trip to Gulmarg or Auli while the season lasts (mid-march). What is unmatchable is the amount of money the government spends in making ski slopes reasonable, with world-class facilities: Rs 5,000-7,000 a week.
Skiing uses muscle groups in your legs that have almost never been used by the body. The fact that unused muscles in your quadriceps (thighs) get recruited and newer neuromuscular channels get built in your musculo-skeletal system as you learn to navigate the slopes puts your body through a process of anti-ageing. As an adaptation to learning this new activity on the high-altitude slopes, the body rids itself of the excess fat stores, builds denser bones and a tighter muscle tone.
Knowing all this is what leads to ‘active ageing’. For the uninitiated, it means that you won’t gain weight simply because you got older. Chances are you will get fitter, leaner and stronger as your body adapts to newer stimuli. To cut a long story short, don’t count calories, count your learning.
(The author’s latest book is called Women and the Weight Loss Tamasha)