When the going gets tough..

When the going gets tough, the tough get going!!




Vivek Hande



Stay fit; Burn fat. Kill the calories. Eat less, exercise more. I am a staunch believer in fitness and one has to strive hard to be fit. But, there is no point overdoing things. I am also a believer in the principle of moderation. Everything is good in small portions and good measure.  I agree with some proponents who say mental fitness is more important than physical fitness. In fact , there are some who also say that running late should be considered exercise. There may be something to it.



But living in an environment, where everybody is so fitness conscious and burning calories as if there is no tomorrow, one does get swept away. There are two very well appointed gyms close to where I stay. They are teeming with folks sweating away, pumping iron and what have you. One of the gyms is called “Serendipity”.  I ventured into the gym deciding I needed to emerge after a couple of hours with a set of six packs and a well toned physique. The trainer swooped down on me and prescribed a set of warm up exercises.  After fifteen minutes of warm –up, I would have liked to gulp down a glass of chilled beer along with some roasted peanuts perhaps. The trainer had different ideas. After pushing me onto what he called were graded exercise sets on a series of equipment that seemed to have emerged from “Star Wars”, he seemed to have an unbecoming smirk on his face. Because of my mental toughness, I was somehow surviving and managed to keep my heart within my chest cage and was not asking for an oxygen cylinder. It is to my credit that I stumbled through some more time on the “fly” and the “lat pull down machine” without needing a stretcher and inspite of the trainer’s diabolical intent to see me erupt in flames!



An hour seemed like an eternity. I staggered out of the gym with a solitary thought in mind. Why have they called the gym “Serendipity”? I am good with the etymology of words and in my oxygen starved state I recollected the origin of the word. First used by Horace Walpole in 1754 in a book titled “The three princes of Serendip”, old name for Sri Lanka. In the book, the heroes are making discoveries by accident or sagacity of things they were not in quest. Serendipity;  noun. Luck that takes the form of finding pleasant things that are not looked for. The occurrence or development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.



 Well, my bursting lungs and stiff back and muscles and wobbly knees and hypoxic brain were certainly not pleasant things I had found by chance. There seemed nothing serendipitous about the whole thing. I slowly dragged myself home, crossing the other gym on the way. By the way, the other gym is called “Utopia”. Utopia, noun.  An imagined place or state of things in which everything is perfect.


Author: vivekhande

A gastroenterologist who writes from the gut. an observer ; a learner ..

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