Aspire to be the best version of yourself: Ms Fitness India 2018 Sapna Khanna | fitness

If you are looking for fitness inspiration then look no further than the recent winner of Ms Fitness India (Classic Category) Sapna Khanna. The 48-year-old won the fourth edition of the competition organised by the FSSA (Fitness and Sports Sciences Association). In a candid conversation with HT City, she reveals how she initially struggled to make it (in the business) and more.

On how it began

Being a fauji kid, it was in my blood to be fit. A state-level junior skating champion and a jack of almost every other game, I had not realised that adolescence would mess with my hormones and turn me into a plump teenager. And the icing on the cake was when my crush started calling me King Kong. Thus, my journey towards fitness started.

To reduce the podginess, I used to hit a thousand skips a day. I used to cycle daily in addition to dancing in front of the mirror and pretending to be Madonna. Within six months, I transformed. And the declaration by my crush — “You look gorgeous. You have lost so much weight”— was a validation.

At a time when gyms were unheard of in India, I stayed dedicatedly on the fitness track… I’ve juggled crazy deadlines; engagements with my little babies, but working out had a definite slot.

On highs and lows

A knee injury pushed me to focus on my upper body. And I took to weight training, which stuck on. For the next four years, I trained with a personal trainer…I moved out of the media sector and decided to become a fitness professional, an entrepreneur. The biggest challenge was balancing my clients’ fitness sessions and goals with mine. And when you end up overdoing physical activities, it starts impacting your fitness levels. Discussions with my colleagues helped me to rediscover my body… During the run-up to Miss Fitness India 2018, all participants engaged with personal trainers to boost their performance. However, I was my own trainer.

Women who look ‘masculine’ are athletes who consciously have worked hard to get there.

On women and body-building

I got into weight training after having been a cardio queen for the longest time. However, I love weight training. It transformed my body. Most women are hesitant when it comes to weight training because they think that they will end up looking masculine. Women who look ‘masculine’ are athletes who consciously have worked hard to get there. Average women cannot look that muscular… There was a time that even if women came to the gym, they stuck to cardio machines. But things are changing fast.

On fat pride

I am not in favour of body shaming, but glorifying obesity is a definite no-no; neither is starving yourself to skinny proportions. People should aspire to become the fittest version of themselves.

On the trend of online fitness

Online apps work well for motivation. These apps tend to make you feel that you are not alone in your journey. But they are limited. You will soon run into a wall or plateau. Also, what works well for one person does not necessarily work for another. You need constant observation, analysis, reviews and personalised programme’s to achieve your fitness goals. So, I’d say that a trainer is required till the time you don’t come to a level where you are your own trainer.

As advice to young girls

Patience and consistency will take you a long way. Good things take time. And never try to fit into someone else’s mould. Aspire to be the best version of yourself.


First Published: Sep 22, 2018 14:58 IST

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