Posts for Vitamin D

The Running Essentials: before you Train

Fitness, Fitness related, Marathons, Running Related Injuries - Anupriya kapur - September 29, 2016

The views expressed are guest author’s personal.

Most of us have had phases of quick 5Ks to Ultra-marathons, cycling obsession/cross training, DNFs through which we’ve fumbled, injured, been through pain, fallen into the ‘No Pain No Gain’ culture and more often gone through phases of confusion interacting with runner turned Gurus in addition to a lot of running theories and information on the web and books.

In an era of information sans knowledge and wisdom, it only makes sense to take a pause and give a thought as to why a primitive and natural activity like Running has been made so complicated? Or is it really so complicated that we need to ponder over it so much? A three-year old runs all-day without talking about recovery, training programs, compression gears, dry-fit clothes, recovery drinks etc. but for us adults running becomes rocket science.

So what happened to the natural runner within us then?
1. The dysfunctional breakdown of the Human anatomy due to the culture of new smoking (sitting) in front of TV, phone, computer, and most often in wrong postures.
2. The era of modern day food taking over the real food we ate “those days” depriving us of essential nutrients and pumping in excess glucose, sugar, and carbs leading to overweight issues, poor absorption ability, and obesity coupled with nutritional deficiencies.

Naturally with the above issues, poor postures leading to under usage and over usage of a certain group muscles and shortage of those important vitamins and minerals it is not surprising that running has become a complicated study. As a running and fitness coach with integrity at the core of my approach and factoring the longevity of my trainees it is my responsibility to ensure running and fitness experience is simple, holistic, realistic, and sustainable. To achieve these goals we first need to look into the essentials of fitness and running before getting into the training and injury loop.

1. Understand past and present fitness, health conditions and lifestyle.
2. Determine future fitness goals and draw a line between short and long-term goals.
3. Understand the nature of job, stress-levels, no of hours available per week for fitness, and food habits.
4. Perform necessary tests: BP, Insulin sensitivity vs. resistance, Vitamin (D, D3, C, and B12 importantly), zinc, magnesium, potassium, iron etc. I’m surely able to connect a lot of dots here!
5. Perform an in-body analysis to determine the BMI, muscle, fat, and visceral fat %.
6. Based on the information work on basic fitness essentials through:
a.) Strength and flexibility training
b.) Cardiovascular health
c.) Yoga and meditation for better mind and body connection
d.) Design a diet based on test results to bring a balance in the body
e.) Correct postures through a series of posture correction and improvement exercises
f.) Achieve ideal weight based on age, body-type and height
g.) Monitor progress time to time.

When the body sets right it evolves back to its true nature and form running efficiency comes a bit more naturally. Without addressing what I call Running Essentials no amount of running specific training will help become a better runner but can back-fire and damage the body further.



Shreyas Karnad is a running, weight loss, and fitness coach at Runners360 with an experience of 8 years in the running and fitness world. In the process he has lost 57 kilos overcoming obesity, run a number of marathons and ultra marathons, cycling long distances and raising funds for several causes. Currently, he coaches a group of over 50 people through his fitness venture Runners360 in Bangalore and virtually for marathons, weight loss, and general fitness as strives towards bringing in culture of Holistic Fitness for Fit, Body, and Soul. Besides, he practices Yoga as a part of his Hatha Yoga teachers course and works with an MNC as a Content Engineer. 

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Rib ho na ho!

Fitness, Fitness related, Marathons - Anupriya kapur - July 30, 2015

A couple of posts/queries that I recently read on one of the moms’ forum prompted me to share my experience.

A couple of years back when I was in Philippines, I was training for one of the long distance runs. And during one of those training runs, I felt a sharp pain on my ribs. I ignored it, thinking that it might be a stitch. But after a couple of minutes, I found it hard to walk or even breathe. The slightest movement hurt. The cause was misdiagnosed for 5 months and by that time the pain had spread to entire rib cage and an MRI showed a healed fracture on one of the ribs. I used to be irritable and in constant pain.


Rib rahey na rahey!

Long and short of it is that a full body check-up revealed extremely low levels (fatal) of Vitamin D. I got two back to back shots and it didn’t take too long for the pain to subside. I was so traumatized by the pain that it took me almost two years to start running again. But when I did, I took a 50 km trail run (my first such distance) challenge head on, half the time worrying that I will come back with a broken rib! I completed the run (with a huge grin on my face) and have done several half and full marathons since then. I have also been getting my regular annual check-ups done and taking Vitamin D supplements as per the doctor’s advice.

This also led me to start urging all my friends (mostly women) to get their levels checked. I wasn’t surprised that all of them had low levels. All of them also admitted having unexplained aches, pains, general fatigue, numbness, lethargy and mood swings. Despite ample sunshine that our country gets, as per some reports, 80% of Indian population has this deficiency.

As women, especially mothers, we tend to forget that we can only take good care of our families if we are healthy and strong. And we need to invest in our well-being too. I can’t reiterate that more. And the good thing about Vit D deficiency as my doctor had pointed out that, “It’s a wonderful problem; when treated it disappears completely”.

  • You should definitely get your annual check-up done once you are 30 plus. All good diagnostic centers offer packages and are only a phone call away. Do it now.
  • Don’t shy away from supplements (as per doctor’s recommended dosage of course), if required. Because there’s not too much a typical Indian diet offers which has plenty of Vit D.
  • Try to get 15-20 minutes of sunshine between 7am-10am.
  • Exercise to strengthen muscles and improve bone health. There is plenty to choose from and it doesn’t necessarily have to be rigorous. Take time out for 20 minutes yoga routine, a 10 minute simple weight training (3 times a week) at home, walk for 30 minutes every alternate day.
  • Eat well and in moderate portion size. I don’t think I need to elaborate much on this. Eggs, mushrooms, cheese and salmon are high on Vit D.

Good health brings us a freedom that only some of us realise, until we longer have it. Hope this helps. I would be happy if you can share your experiences and advise on comments.



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