Nithin Jawali is an internet marketer turned entrepreneur and budding politician. He is an avid runner and swimmer. This is his journey…

“I had ignored my health for a long time. I wasted a lot of money on gym memberships over the years. I had irregular sleep hours, ate unhealthy food, drank frequently and smoked heavily.

My twins were born when I was 40 years old! Only then did I realise that I needed to change my lifestyle. One day my friend Santhosh asked me to join walk. With no specific aim in mind, I just got out there. I started using the Nike app on my phone and boy did that turn things around for me! It was the app that got me out of bed every morning!!!

Walking got a bit monotonous, so I thought I should try running. To my horror, I couldn’t run more than 40 meters without getting out of breath. Then my fitness ‘guru’, Jeevak, carefully guided me on the correct form, stretches, pace, the right shoes and even the fancy gadgets! I started with a slow ‘walk-run’ and soon with Jeevak’s help I was able to run 5 Km without stopping. I pushed myself every day to run faster and longer than the day before. Then there was no looking back. Now I run 10 Km on a regular basis and I’ve run several unofficial half marathons. But it is time to make it official. I ran the TCS 10K this year and finished in under 50 minutes! It was one of my happiest moments. I’m training to run the Bangalore Half Marathon in October and hopefully a full marathon in the near future.

I was told that cross training is important, so I decided to swim. I was so confident that I had built up enough stamina, but after my first 150 m I felt sick. Then it was like learning to run all over again. I started from scratch and pushed myself. I can now swim 1.5 Km.

My food habits improved automatically. I didn’t enjoy feeling bloated while running, so I opted for simple, home-cooked meals. I have incorporated a lot of raw vegetables and fruits in my daily diet. On a regular day I don’t eat anything packaged or processed. I control my portion sizes and eat at proper times. Earlier I used to finish half a bottle of whiskey every night! Now I drink socially; my body has just lost the urge. Smoking is still a challenge though. It’s been really hard to quit, but I’m working on it.

There has been a dramatic difference in self-confidence. I used to be so conscious of my paunch, but now I’m really confident that my overall appearance is better. I feel like I have achieved something great every morning.

My motto has been to just get out there. Even if I woke up at 10:00 and the sun was beating down on me, I still went for my run. When I travel, I always carry my shoes. I’ve realized that once you turn over that new leaf there is no turning back. If someone has to force you or pull you out of bed, it will not work. The motivation has to come from within and you will reach heights that you couldn’t even imagine. You decide what form of exercise you like and you stick with it. For me its running, I love it. It’s time by myself, where I feel like I’m one with nature.

I guess I was lucky that I didn’t have any ailments when I started. But why wait to get sick? I regret not starting even 5 years earlier, I would’ve achieved so much more. So don’t wait because it’s never better tomorrow.”

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