India's premier luxury lifestyle women's magazine
Sports & Fitness
December 05, 2017

This New Year, Exercise With The Trainer Behind The Sculpted Bodies Of Katrina and Deepika

Text by Sadaf Shaikh

Yasmin Karachiwala allows us a peek into her workout diary

Tell us about your journey into fitness and founding Body Image
“I practically stumbled upon my career when a friend forced me to join a gym with her. She did weights and I opted for the aerobics class as it looked fun. I believed I was really good but soon realised that I was doing it all wrong. Eager to get it right, I kept going back and soon mastered all the routines. One day, my instructor informed me that she would be travelling and requested me to fill in for her. I was thrilled as I loved doling out fitness tidbits and was good at all the routines. It hit me like a ton of bricks then that I had found my professional calling. I set up Body Image 26 years ago when I started leading group fitness classes from the terrace of my home. After a brief stint with personal training, I went to the U.S and got certified as a Pilates trainer. On returning to India, I started my own studio and called it Body Image.”

3 best exercises for burning post-festive fat
“Don’t skimp on cardio when you’re training for strength. Squats, push-ups and planks will whip your body into shape faster than any other form of exercise.”

3 ways to motivate yourself to hit the gym
“Dedication, determination and commitment are the key qualities that anyone with fitness goals should possess. Firstly, you need to set your objectives, then devise an appropriate plan to achieve them and finally, be dedicated and consistent. Once you see progress, you will automatically be motivated to chase your target. A positive attitude is indispensable.”

Easy ways to lose weight if you don’t have access to a gym
“Bodyweight workouts like squats, push-ups, lunges, crunches and planks don’t particularly require any equipment so you can get down to those in the comfort of your home. Just go for walks and watch what you eat. Swimming is gentle on the knees and a great way to work with the entire body simultaneously.”

Healthiest food options for breakfast, lunch and dinner
“Eggs for breakfast, rice and veggies for lunch and fish and sabzi for dinner.”

A few workout blunders to avoid
“I don’t really have any hard and fast rules — except that balance is very important. Fads like starving to lose weight or working only on the muscles are not part of my practice. I believe that each individual is unique and what doesn’t work for one client may be the perfect solution for another. Do not neglect your overall wellbeing. Pay attention to your physical form but also pay attention to your soul. Be kind to yourself, work hard, play harder. Eat what you like. Dream and be what you want to be.”

Recommending Pilates to fitness-seekers
“Pilates strengthens the core and works the body from the inside out. It helps prevent injuries. I suggest using it as a complementary routine along with any other form of exercise and observe how it makes you perform even better. I even have a stipulated amount of days that you should dedicate to different types of training. For example, train for flexibility three times a week and work on your strength about 3-4 times a week. The body requires cardio five times a week so that’s when you build endurance.”

Workout essentials
“Shoes, headphones and a positive attitude.”

A few celebrities who train with you?
“Katrina Kaif, Deepika Padukone, Alia Bhatt, Sophie Choudry and Bipasha Basu amongst others. All of them work extremely hard. It’s not always easy with their busy schedules but they are all dedicated to being fit and I am very proud of them. Katrina is our country’s dancing diva and while almost everyone strives to be her, her workout routine is extremely strenuous and ranges from Pilates to functional training to cardio intervals. Deepika is lean and really enjoys doing Pilates, which works wonders for her body. Alia, on the other hand, is young and energetic and loves doing something challenging every day.”

Your favourite celebrity transformation
“It would definitely have to be the time I worked with Katrina Kaif to achieve her Sheila Ki Jawani look. Getting Alia Bhatt ready for her bikini scene in Shaandaar and Deepika’s training for her Hollywood film xXx: Return of Xander Cage also paid off beautifully. We infuse fun into our workouts as it helps us stay young. That being said, while there’s a lot of laughter at the studio, there is unbridled commitment to achieving one’s goals when the music begins to play.”

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