Interview with Neha Ghosh

Generally it is assumed that fitness and food don’t go together. Most fitness guides will tell you to give up on food that you love the most, to help you build both your body and character. What is life without good food though? So we bring you a blogger who is a fitness trainer, adores food and abhors fitness fads with the same gusto. Don’t go by the name ‘Put That Cheeseburger Down‘, because Neha Ghosh could live on French fries if she could! We caught up on a personal chat with the award winning blogger to bust some fitness myths! The interview is quick, to the point and with zero extra fat, just like Neha’s blog!

Neha Ghosh

Q. What got you interested in health and fitness?

My family has a history of diabetes and from a young age I saw lot of illnesses in my family. That got me motivated to stay fit and avoid any ailments.

Q.Why ‘Put That Cheese Burger Down’? Do you consider it an enemy of good health or some other reason?

Haha! No just because it’s a funny name and I say that to people a lot.

Q.How did the idea of a fitness blog come about? Did you have a particular set of readers in mind for whom you started blogging?

I kept myself as a reader. I like simple and easy to comprehend information so I designed the blog and its content accordingly.

Q. Your blog focuses on all areas of fitness, while most trainers focus on one school of fitness. Why is that so? Is there a risk of diluting the message?

Fitness is not just about weightlessness and a lean body. For me fitness is focused mind-body synchronization and harmony. I want people to get mentally AND physically fit otherwise there’s no point. I don’t think there’s a risk of any message getting mixed up. After all, fitness is not a one way road.

Q.What are the biggest challenges you have faced in your career and how did you overcome them?

I faced many ups and down. I overcame them with meditation. Lots of meditation. And crossfit.

Q. On a scale of 1 to 10, how fit would you rate yourself to be?

Erm…Around 6.

Q. The fitness advice that we see on your blog is quite simple and jargon-free. Is that a conscious effort or your philosophy?

Fitness and health can’t be complicated otherwise it seems like a chore. That’s why I have consciously kept it simple and jargon free.

Q.Which are the biggest health misconceptions that you have seen floating around, which you’d like to debunk?

The only thing that bugs me is the notion that a fit body will change your life. It really makes me laugh because it’s utter crap. A healthy mind along with a healthy body can do the trick. There’s no other way.

Q.Fitness blogging is still a niche. What kind of future do you see for it in the coming years? Any particular trends that you see rising?

Lol. I honestly have no idea. We are still as lazy about fitness as a country. I would like to wait and watch.

Q.Tell us some of the best and worst conventionally Indian health and fitness practices that you’ve seen.

I hate the detox diet. I absolutely hate it. I am a big fan of the Ayurvedic practice for maintaining health because it works every time.

Q.What kind of changes have you seen in the Indian health and fitness environment in the past few years?

People participate in marathons more. I am not sure why because as soon it ends, it’s back to eating vada pav for snacks.

Q. Women are often found to juggle between a lot of responsibilities, what fitness advice do you have for them?

Put yourself first. Always. And get your ass off the couch.

Q. What fitness challenges do you face on a personal front? How do you overcome them and what keeps you motivated?

I tend to burnout since I follow vigorous workout sessions. And when that happens I get zapped of all my energy and then the healing process begins. On the bright side, not falling sick or ill keeps me motivated.

Q. You have a separate section for sexual health on your blog. What kind of awareness would you like to spread about this oft neglected aspect of health?

That it’s an important part of your life so don’t be a fool and pay attention.

Q. 3 simple fitness mantras that you follow and can advise people to follow generally?

1. Take the stairs
2. Walk as much as you can
3. Buy a skipping rope.

Q. How do you promote your blog and ensure that your fitness mantras reach people?

I don’t promote my blog because it’s a passion project for me. People stumble upon it most of the time.

Q. Apart from fitness and blogging, what else are you passionate about?

Running, meditation, travelling, cooking, writing and dogs.

Q. What according to you has been the biggest achievement for you as a blogger and fitness enthusiast?

The first time I completed a full marathon. But on the other hand, achievements are overrated. I just take one day at a time and see how I can optimize the day.

Q. According to you, what’s the relation between fitness and beauty?

If you are fit, your dependency to look ‘beautiful’ reduces. A fit body is the new haute couture.

Q. How do you decide which recipes to post online? Do you try them out yourself?

Yes, I post only the recipes I have tried. They have to be tasty and easy to make.

Q. How can one leverage sports as a route to fitness in India? Can you make some suggestions for people who are not into sports but want to be fit?

You don’t have to be sporty to be fit. But you can’t be lazy either. Move as much as possible, walk, take the stairs and don’t sit too much. It’s really bad for you.

Q. In the busy lives that people lead in cities, their schedules, diet and fitness regimes are constantly challenged. How can they motivate themselves to stay fit?

Take baby steps and set one goal for yourself each day. E.g.: Don’t eat that evening bhel but have a fruit instead.

Q. Do your friends and family ask you for health advice? Do they follow/ give feedback about your blog?

They ask for advice, yes. Do they follow my blog? No.

Q. Where do you see your blog going in the next 5 years?

Hopefully with an e-commerce angle.

Quick Questions:

1. My fitness idol – No one in specific
2. My favourite guilty pleasure is – French fries
3. One fitness trend you’re not happy about – The Detox Diet
4. Fittest celebrity according to you – Akshay Kumar
5. If you could eat something without any of its ill effects it would be – Greasy French fries and cold coffee
6. Your favourite workout tracks – I like to work out with music. Helps me focus.
7. If you were granted 3 wishes, you would ask for? – Eat whatever I want without any side effects, unlimited supply of free cold coffee and a job as an Island keeper

We’ve come away from this interview with lots of insights and we hope this interview was an interesting and healthy bite of reading for you! Tell us what you thought in the comments below.  🙂

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