Recent Posts

Home Workouts : Workout with Water Bottles

Home Workouts : Workout with Water Bottles

I’m a big fan of home workouts. They offer me the convenience of choosing when to workout, and the ‘where’ is taken care of. This is particularly helpful on days when lethargy rears its ugly head. Working out at home means I don’t need to […]

The High Priestess of HIIT

The High Priestess of HIIT

Meet Protima Tiwary — HIIT junkie, fitness blogger, and ab goals for every woman out there!

Get Your Greek On!

Get Your Greek On!

Being a belly dancer in a rather conservative society can get lonely. As a result, I try to connect with fellow belly dancers across the world using social media, Twitter and Instagram being my favourite platforms. It was a series of Twitter connects and #FFs from mutual followers that led me to  connect with Greek belly dancer Amartia, from Baltimore, Maryland.

Amartia and I have enjoyed a great deal of Twitter conversation, and some really terrible puns (most of them were my doing, I confess). Amartia was also the very first international (translation: non-Indian) participant of the TwitterGetsFitter movement, and a super dedicated one at that. She has since also started teaching some of my routines to her belly dance students, whom I’m guessing now know/hate me as “the Indian lady who brought Goal Posts into our lives”. (Yay?)

 Greek belly dancer Amartia

A Baltimore native of Greek descent, Amartia has been Greek folk dancing since she was in elementary school, and belly dancing for the last 14 years. Her first tryst with belly dance happened when she stumbled upon a belly dance class at a local gym. But when classes at the gym ended and Amartia found herself willing to drive out to a church in Baltimore county to keep taking lessons, she knew there was no looking back. Having never been someone to approach anything half-heartedly, Amartia soon mastered the moves, and began teaching and performing. She has since raked in awards and accolades for her dancing, and was also among 23 dancers chosen for the reality show Project Bellydance.

Being a belly dancer myself, I had to ask Amartia — given that belly dance has been a rather misunderstood art, did she too, face societal pressures when choosing to pursue it as a career? There have been moments where people misunderstood what bellydancing is and in Greek culture it is not always looked upon in the best light”, she says. “But I try my hardest to push past that. It just fuels my fire to showcase it as a beautiful art form even more.”

She does, however, add that there are plenty of more light-hearted moments that come with the territory. Take, for instance, the time her dancing earned her a marriage proposal! “I was proposed to by a patron while performing”, Amartia laughs. He was inebriated, but the whole hookah lounge stopped and became quiet as he loudly announced that he was going to marry the bellydancer, and got down on one knee. I pretended to go along with it and fanned myself, but it was only a moment or two before the bouncers escorted him to a coffee cup.” 

Well, who can blame the man? 😉

I look forward to the day Amartia and I could dance together. Perhaps soon! In the meantime, she was subjected to the TDF Rapid Fire (as are all the dancers I love).

The Dance Floor: Mykonos or Manhattan?

Belly dancer Amartia: Mykonos.

TDF: Name a dancer you would love to dance/perform with.

Amartia: The Greek belly dancer Boubouka.

TDF: Veils or swords?

Amartia: Veils.

TDF: One thing most people don’t know about you.

Amartia: I have a Masters of Science in molecular and cellular biology. (All this, and brains too!)

TDF: Pizza or pavlova?

Amartia: PIZZA!

TDF: Tom Cruise or Tom Hanks?

Amartia: Tom Hanks.

TDF: Your greatest fear?

Amartia: Disappointing my mentor. I don’t ever want her to not be proud of me or feel like I’m not giving this art my all.

TDF: If you weren’t a dancer, you would be…?

Amartia: A scientist. But I do that as my day job, so…

TDF: Beaches or mountains?

Amartia: Beaches.

TDF: Your guilty pleasure.

Amartia: French fries. I love everything made of potatoes. (I knew I liked this girl!)

Belly dancer Amartia is based in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. Get in touch with her at . You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Photography: Stereovision Photography | MUAH: Christine Beck-Millan

The Accidental Yogini

The Accidental Yogini

Ashwini Kaikini’s journey took her from Kathak to Yoga, and she couldn’t be happier. This is her story.

Healthy Options When Eating Out : The Breakfast Club

Healthy Options When Eating Out : The Breakfast Club

It’s a common saying — ‘Abs are made in the kitchen’. While it isn’t quite as simple as that, one can’t deny that diet is a massive factor in your fitness journey. Your HIIT workout can easily be undone if you eat pizza 3 days […]

The Quest For The Perfect Body

The Quest For The Perfect Body

“The perfect body”. Something we all want, but only see in movies and on social media. The quest for the perfect body is one we can all relate to. There’s only one problem, though.
What exactly is a “perfect body”?
The Perfect Body Is A Myth
I’m going to let you in on a secret — well, less a secret, more just a chunk of wisdom that took me forever to learn —  there’s no such thing!
If you’re looking to find your happiness in a dress size or on the weighing scale, you will remain forever miserable. Your body shape and size is determined by multiple factors — genetics, lifestyle, diet, ethnicity. You know what the idea of the ‘perfect body’ is determined by? Society.
There was a time when women compromised their breathing in order to corset their insides into a teeny tiny little waist. Then came the era of Marilyn Monroe, a gorgeous Size 16 whose curves were the subject of many male (and perhaps a few female) dreams. Years later, along came Kim Kardashian, Kendall Jenner, and Cara Delevingne.
All gorgeous. All different.
But here’s where I feel the media — social media included — plays with our self-esteem and our body image. Every day, we’re bombarded with tonnes of visual information, and every day, it etches its way into our brains. We see images of sculpted abs, bulging biceps, slender waists, and jiggle-free thighs. And we start to believe that that’s the way we should all look.
And yes, men are affected by the myth of ‘the perfect body’, too! And no, they don’t deserve it either.
Men Should Be Free Of The Perfect Body Myth Too!
Now, don’t get me wrong. I am by no means saying that people who have worked hard to get their bodies toned and muscular are doing anything wrong. Nothing of the sort. What I do feel is wrong, is how everyone else is made to feel inferior. More often than not, this isn’t even at the hands of the aforementioned muscular people. Rather, the bullying and bashing comes from a nameless, faceless entity whom we can neither pinpoint nor identify. Because it’s within us.
We have been so intensely conditioned to believe we need to look a certain way to be attractive, we automatically believe we’re unattractive. After all, let’s face it, how many of us look anything like Angelina Jolie or Chris Hemsworth?
Not Me!
When I started TwitterGetsFitter, I received several messages from participants, telling me the reasons they were doing this. While a few of them simply wanted to get healthier and stronger, the vast majority were fighting body image issues, some of them crippling. Several are still not comfortable taking or sharing selfies, because they hate the way they look.
And it pains me. So much.
So to everyone reading this, I want you to know — Please, please, love and accept your body. It doesn’t matter what it looks like, it matters what it can do! Are you healthy? Hormones, digestion, everything works fine? No joint issues? Can you hold a plank? Or climb 5 flights of stairs without feeling out of breath? Are you happy? Not depressed? Have good relationships with your family and friends?
These are what’s important!
Remember, your body will never look the same for all your life. It’s normal, it’s natural. Things will get saggy, or a little dimply, or a little squishy. And that’s okay. As long as you’re healthy, and happy.
That’s a perfect body.

error: Content is protected !!