Yasmin Karachiwala, wellness, and fitness all go hand in hand. Karachiwala, also known as the “trainer to the stars,” is the artist behind the bodies of several celebrities, including Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor Khan, and Deepika Padukone, to mention a few. Her Instagram workouts combine HIIT, pilates, and various fitness challenges to make training more enjoyable and less difficult for her fans. With January being the month of cleansing and all things wellness, we spoke with the expert to learn how to start 2023 on a more positive and wellness-focused note.
What are your three cardinal wellness rules?
Yasmin Karachiwala: First and foremost, you must desire it. Make sure you get some type of activity every day of your life—we’ve gotten so sedentary as a result of technology. I believe that mobility is really essential, even if it means using the stairs, walking small distances rather than driving, and walking while on the phone. These are fairly easy actions you can do. People have the misconception that exercise solely entails utilising a treadmill, going to the gym, or going for a stroll. Rather than sitting in one location, we should incorporate these minor motions into our everyday lives.
The second rule is to be mindful of what you consume. It’s not about calories—I don’t believe in calorie counting, but rather in eating to feed the body. It’s critical to me that we consume food that works for us and feeds us from the inside out. Good fat, fibre, carbs, protein, minerals, and vitamins are all required by your body. I don’t eat anything from a package, and I don’t drink sugar since it is poison to the body. Even if you read the nutritional value of a package of low-fat chips, you will see how many preservatives are utilised to make it low-fat. This is harmful to your health.
The third and most critical aspect of well-being is water. It is critical to hydrate and drink water because failing to do so can result in poor skin, indigestion, and a variety of other issues. I believe in the hydration rule—how much you need depends on your environment, activity level, and body type. It depends on how much I drink (I consume more than three litres).
‘Protein’ is the current buzzword. What are your thoughts?
YK: First and foremost, I believe it is critical to understand why our bodies require protein. When you exercise, you cause a lot of wear and tear at the cellular level. Protein aids in the healing of muscle tissue. Your body is built at repose, not in the gym.
Having said that, it is also dependent on your nutrition. Do you eat vegetarian food? Do you eat eggs once a day and then don’t eat anything else? Do you eat chicken three times a day, consuming a significant amount of protein? Protein is required for our muscles to function properly. The muscle will function better once it has recovered. That is why you must consider what is best for you and your body.
I am a non-vegetarian, and my breakfast has a little quantity of protein, as does my lunch and supper. Does this imply that I require supplements? No. But every now and then, I’ll eat a vegetarian meal and protein for dinner—that’s when I’ll add a protein shake in the evening to make sure I get enough protein.
Do you believe protein shakes are a good option for folks looking to reduce weight or eat on the go? Are they a safe approach to satisfy cravings?
YK: The purpose of a protein shake is to provide protein to your body rather than to deplete it. It has nothing to do with losing weight. It is handy since you do not have to chew or eat. We eat it so that the protein can operate as the energy source.
Protein smoothies are filling if consumed first thing in the morning. They’re a terrific alternative to junk food, and in that way, they push you to eat healthily. Your desires, on the other hand, are under control when each of your meals is well-balanced—fibre, protein, carbohydrates and minerals, you’ll prevent cravings.
Do you have any suggestions for protein shakes?
YK: I like vegan and plant-based proteins. Because the others might include a lot of chemicals, I prefer the more natural proteins. Ace Blend is a plant-based protein brand that comes in a variety of tastes.
What are your thoughts on the whole anti-carbohydrate movement?
YK: Carbohydrates are critical for controlling cravings. There are carbs that are beneficial and some that are not so beneficial—but not necessarily harmful. Brown rice, for example, has fibre as well as carbohydrates, and vegetables are high in complex carbohydrates. So it all comes down to understanding them.
What are a few of the most prevalent faults you notice in your customers that you’d like to change—it may be anything from physical exercise to over-exercising?
YK: If I have a customer complete an activity one way, they will want to do it another way. It is, in their opinion, better. But this is because your body isn’t operating as it should. It’s looking for alternatives to where it wants to be. ‘I feel the burn better if I do it this way,’ is the most prevalent response. The point is, it’s true because they’ve trained their bodies to do it the wrong way for so long that the body is unwilling to learn the right way.
People who desire to conduct functional training in Pilates are the second group. They’ve heard that Pilates is excellent for you, but they also want to sweat and burn all the time. You must convince them that just because you aren’t feeling the same burn as you would at the gym doesn’t mean it isn’t working. It acts at the cellular level. Furthermore, individuals believe that doing out more is preferable to working out less—just because you completed five minutes before your hour up does not imply that your workout was ineffective.
Your clientele is celebrities who travel frequently. How do you stay up with their schedule?
YK: I offer them workouts—for example if Katrina is travelling, I’ll build a programme out of exercises I know she understands and three to four routines for her. They occasionally bring teachers with them. With Zoom, online training has gotten considerably easier. Even if my clients aren’t celebrities, I follow the same protocol when they travel for work or pleasure. It is not difficult to continue with implementation.
How do you begin your days?
YK: I got out of bed and looked out the window for five minutes. Looking at natural light as soon as you wake up stimulates your brain and is beneficial to your eyes. It’s quite refreshing. Then I hear a prayer. I do intermittent fasting, so I don’t eat in the morning—if I have a client to teach, I’ll drink a cup of black coffee. I need to ‘leap’ out of bed instead of dragging myself out. I know I’m not rested enough when I’m dragging.