Yash Birla on Fitness and 100% Living
Yash Birla has the body that everyone loves talking about in the business and glamour world. He is young, runs a multi-million bucks business and his latest product is the launch of a fitness DVD, 100% Living. 100% Living is a holistic approach to fitness, but what does this imply? We asked Yash Birla, the Chairman of Yash Birla Group, some questions and here's what we learnt...
What does fitness mean to Yash Birla? Is it just exercise and diet? Yash explains his concept of fitness: “Fitness is a very personal term! Fitness is having a healthy mind, body, and spirit to allow you to maximize your potential and help others maximize their potential. Your definition of fitness will be influenced by your interests, physical abilities, and goals.”
This brings us to 100% Living, and what it entails: “Being fit does not merely mean joining a gym and lifting heavy weights, neither does it mean spending an hour on a treadmill. Rather, being fit is a holistic lifestyle choice that one must make. This is what I term as 100% Living, a philosophy that has been my life’s mantra. Over the years, 100% Living has brought me good health, spiritual growth & corporate success all in unison with each other.”
Everyone has that moment that changes them, so how did Yash Birla fall in love with fitness? When studying abroad, Yash did not touch alcohol. Hence it did not make sense to hit the local watering holes; instead, he would hit the gym. He recalls, “15 years ago, first when I was in the University in North Carolina, the gyms there were inspirational and the people working out at these gyms with well toned bodies motivated you to look your best.”
What encouraged him to stay away from alcohol and smoking? “My belief in living 100% and a pure life keeps me away from vices like alcohol and smoking,” he replies.
Getting back to fitness, he lists out some vegetarian workout snacks: “The pre workout meal consists of a scoop of whey protein, cup of coffee and maybe piece of fruit. The post workout meal consists of some branched chain amino acid (BCAA’s) a scoop of whey protein and some fruit of my choice. This is the diet I follow in general. From time to time I make certain changes according to my schedule and to keep looking forward to eating my meals.”
If you are a non vegetarian, you know how difficult it is to convert into a vegetarian. But somehow his wife, Avantika Birla successfully converted to a vegetarian lifestyle. He gives you some pointers, “The basic issue while having veg food is availability of high quality protein. Since I’ve been doing weight training consistently for many years I need adequate intake of protein to replenish my muscles. For vegetarians there are various options to fulfill this. Some of the best available sources of protein are: Low fat cottage cheese, low fat milk, low fat curd, whey protein, casein protein and various other supplements. This also helps me maintain the muscles I’ve built while travelling and my busy schedule.”
The Yash Birla Group also houses Birla Kerala Vaidyashala; and while the healing properties of ayurveda are debated the world over, Yash supports this ancient Indian practice, “Ayurvedic medicine aims to integrate and balance the body, mind, and spirit; thus, some view it as “holistic.” This balance is believed to lead to happiness and health, and to help prevent illness. Ayurvedic medicine also treats specific physical and mental health problems. A chief aim of Ayurvedic practices is to cleanse the body of substances that can cause disease, thus helping to reestablish harmony and balance. I truly belive in the powers of Ayurveda, hence I am very happy to be the promoter of Birla Kerala Vaidyashala – an authentic ayurveda spa.”
He took on a multi-million business at a young age, stays away from vices like alcohol and smoke, yet he maintains his cool. What’s Yash Birla's secret to manageing stress, you ask? His response: “I believe in the power of meditation which helps me handle stress.”
100% Living seems to be the key to Yash Birla’s success and health.
*Images courtesy: © BCCL