Tuesday, February 06, 2018

One Hot Stove is a teenager, and Raising the Bar(bell) in February

This week marks the 13th birthday of this blog. Nearly 700 posts. Over 22,000 comments. 6.5 million page views. I started blogging when it was a pretty new thing, I was blogging during the golden era of food blogging and today, years after it has been declared that blogging is dead and people have moved on to twitter and Instagram and podcasting, here I am, still blogging away. What does this say about me? That I'm persistent or that I'm a dinosaur who missed the boat to the next great thing?

Meanwhile, readers have come and gone. Friendships have been forged. There's a lot of my life that has been lived on this little blog! Thank you for stopping by to read it.

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It is somehow already the second month of 2018. My January goal to streamline my sleep habits went extremely well, thanks to the kids who cooperated and slept soundly themselves. Most nights I was able to read peacefully and then get long stretches of sleep- which is such an unbelievable luxury. Even though we had a few rough nights in the last week (ah well, nothing lasts forever), I feel like a new person.

February's goal is to streamline my gym routine. In the last couple of months, I've been doing lots of thinking and planning about how to get my fitness routine in place. I am convinced that regular exercise is a must for me- it is not optional. The benefits are just too numerous to miss out on, and it gave me beautiful results a few years ago. But being convinced is just not enough- there have to be practical, doable, enjoyable ways of fitting exercise into my weekly schedule. It is taking me quite a bit of homework to figure out the what, when, and where of my fitness habit.

The What: I'm already doing ballet twice a week. What I really want to add to it is strength training- lifting weights and doing body weight exercises- to build muscle. It has been on my radar for a while, with friends telling me how strength training transformed their fitness much more than running/ cardio ever had. The research certainly supports these anecdotes. And my own small-framed physique clearly needs some muscle building and bone strengthening. To really get into the mode, I read a few books in December- The Female Body Breakthrough by Rachel Cosgrove and The New Rules of Lifting for Women, to name a couple- and got pretty excited about the whole thing.

The When and Where: The next step was to figure out how to start strength training when you don't have the first clue about it, other than what you've read from a book while sitting legs outstretched on a couch. There are people who do really well exercising in their own home, using their own routine, exercise apps or videos. Others do well with a gym membership where they can walk in anytime and use the equipment. The only thing, however, that has ever worked for me is fitness classes. I need a specific time and place and duration, and an instructor who knows what to do. Monkey see, monkey do, that's what works for me.

I started looking around for strength training classes- factoring in the timing of classes, convenience, cost, and whether it would be too intimidating for a beginner. And last week, I started doing something called BodyPump three times a week. I picked up a barbell for the first time in my life! The hour long class used barbells with weights, and handheld dumbbells, with the instructor taking us through a full body routine set to music- which is sometimes too loud and not my favorite, but it does make the hour go by very fast. Starting a new fitness routine is exciting and very hard at the same time. It is downright humbling when you can't do a single push up, not one. Also I am convinced that I am a medical anomaly because I have no triceps at all, none. But I am signed up for classes through the end of April and will see what 12 weeks of this class feels like.

Planning for stumbling blocks: It is very discouraging to start an exercise routine only to see it fizzle out when the inevitable realities of life get in the way- spouse traveling, busy days at work, house guests, kids falling sick, you falling sick and getting injured. Life has too many moving parts and the fitness routine has to be flexible. I am trying to account for that by joining a gym which offers dozens of classes every week, different styles of exercise and at different times of day. Hopefully, if I miss one class, I can go to another on a different day or time and keep the momentum going. 

My ultimate goal is to make fitness a daily habit that comes naturally, in a "do something every day" way, where that something could be an exercise class, dance class, neighborhood walk with the dog, run, weekend hike, playground time with the kids (where I actually run around and play with them and not sit on the bench and watch), walking for a couple of hours to do errands, and so on. Physical movement isn't something I am intrinsically excited about but I believe it can be cultivated and I am on my way to embracing it fully.

On this topic, here's an interesting article I read just last night on the development of an exercise pill. Spoiler alert: It won't be on a market for a while so don't cancel that gym membership just yet.

* * *
On the food front, there's lots of everyday cooking happening over here- vegetable kadhi, spinach lasagna, all sorts of wintry comfort food. I also made a roasted sweet potato soup on the fly yesterday- seasoning it with warm spices and coconut milk- and loved how it turned out, so I jotted down the recipe at the end of my other roasted sweet potato soup recipe from 4 years ago. Don't miss the great recipe ideas (for sweet potatoes, and for soup) in the comments on that post.

Do you fit exercise into your life? What do you like to do? What are your challenges and goals for being more active? 

74 comments:

  1. Happy birthday and congratulations One Hot Stove! I know I have been reading your blog since 2007 (i started my food blog then as well). I do not twitter or instagram so here's another dino next to you :). I have enjoyed your blog transforming from a food blog to a more life style blog. Good luck with your February challenge!

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    1. It is always nice to see your friendly comment, Sangeetha! Are you still blogging??

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    2. No I do not blog anymore. I keep it as a personal archive for recipes.

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  2. Congrats One Hot Stove on turning into a teen! Congrats Nupur! I have been your reader since your grad school days and growing older with you :)

    Good luck with all your life style changes. You inspire me to work on mine too.

    The consistent work out routine I can keep up is walking every day or most days of the week. Outside with friends or by myself listening to something during the summer months. And on the treadmill during the winter months. I alternate between watching something on Netflix or listening to some talks or to music or audio books, and this actually helps me look forward to my exercise routine.

    I cannot keep up any exercise routine outside of my home as it requires additional time and commitment to get to the gym or studio. So I just stick to what works for me.

    My challenge is to take micro breaks from my sedentary job. It seems you are supposed to get up every 30 minutes, as sitting continuously is bad for you.

    I even worry for our kids who can't seem to sit down for a second when they are young, and end up sitting down all the time as they grow up unless they have a planned activity :)

    Best,
    SS

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    1. SS- Thank you for sticking with me all these years :) Yes, so important to find what works for you, and what makes you look forward to exercising. Walking is therapeutic in so many ways.

      "Sitting is the new smoking"- that's something I hear a lot. Too bad for the millions of cubicle dwellers :)

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  3. Congratulations on the Blog Birthday. I have been reading your blog for many years now and really enjoy the homely look without overly styled photos and food props. Your writing too is very engaging and i love reading your posts. When I click through and do not find a new post i find myself treating myself to a few posts in the archives. May you be blogging for a long long time!

    Shriya

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    1. Shriya- Thanks for the kind words! I like my comfortable little blog with its homely look too :) and clearly I enjoy writing more than photography!

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  4. Happy birthday to One Hot Stove, Nupur! I've been reading you since 2007 and look forward to new posts with the same excitement! The main reason I come back to read you is your voice- I love how honest, realistic and stripped-of-fluff (in the best way!) your posts are. I often read through your archives, for the beautiful narration as much as for the recipes.

    I try to do some stretching and yoga in the morning, for all of 5-15 minutes. I thought 5 minutes was laughable but I had a tough time committing to say, a 30-minute routine every day. Telling myself that it was only going to take a few minutes really made a difference to wanting to do it daily. I don't enjoy exercising outdoors or going to the gym so this is the only way in, for me.

    Wishing you the best in your fitness goals! By the way, how're you celebrating the birthday? :)

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    1. Shvetha- No blog celebrations here! Just getting to update the blog every now and then is a major celebration ;) Thanks for your kind words!

      Every minute does count, and once you have a habit in place, it might transition naturally to a longer routine.

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  5. Wow, congrats on your blog birthday! That's incredible. And good luck on your gym routine. I know that's something I need to work on, but it can just be so hard to get started.

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    1. Thanks Kim! It sure is hard to get started on a gym routine; it is taking me decades. But keep thinking about it and experimenting to see what you enjoy, because this is one habit worth cultivating.

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  6. Happy birthday to my favorite food blog! Can't wait to see what the teen years bring :)

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    1. Niranjana- Thanks for reading! You are awesome :)

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  7. Your blog was the first one I read when I googled food blogs. You had me hooked and I'm still here, always looking forward to your next post.
    You sound eerily like me. Everything about your thoughr process about exercise as well as your goals for it.
    I am feeling quiet defeated in this exercise battle because I cannot find my rhythm. My kids are the same age as you and I am just exhausted by the time the day is done. So , hopwfully your progress and commitment will inspire me too.
    Also love that you are posting weekly this year. The monthly posts were too few for us !! :)

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    1. Archana- I'm trying very hard to post weekly this year! The blog is my writing exercise and I enjoy it so much. Thanks for reading it and for your kind comments.

      Nooooooooo, please don't ever be defeated in this exercise battle. Don't even think in this way. I do completely empathize with the exhaustion of having young kids, though, and how your time is not your own. But it is a phase that will pass, and meanwhile, just keep playing with different activities and schedules to see if something sticks. A big part of why I'm so determined to exercise is directly related to having young kids- it gives me energy to keep up with them.

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  8. congratulations on the blog birthday! This online space has been one of my favorites and I have gathered so may recipes that have been staples in our kitchen. Plus I genuinely feel you are a very nice person, so I keep coming back here. I hope many more birthdays to your little space on the internet :-)
    As far as exercise goes, for the past decade or so I have been pretty regular. I love trekking so that is my motivation to keeping at least a basic level of fitness so whenever I get an opportunity to plan a trek, a few weeks of intense training before that, and I am ready for it. Current routine is kickboxing and martial arts class. I used to do this before my son was born and restarted it last year. Learning a new skill has a very calming effect on mind. That coupled with punching the punching bag during class and I always feel very calm and zen afterwards. I cannot stress more about strength training. I have been doing it for many years now and cannot do without it. It is good you have an instructor as getting the form correct in strength training is of prime importance. Good luck with your new exercise routine.

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    1. Neha- It is always a pleasure to see you here! I'm glad you find some recipes here.

      I love your exercise routine. Trekking and hiking has the additional joys and benefits of spending time in Nature.

      Thanks for the thumbs up for strength training. I do think my instructor is pretty good about correcting my form. It is a struggle :)

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  9. Hi Nupur,

    Congratulations on the milestone. I have been a reader since 2006. I still make some of your oldies but goodies - Tuesday soup, the orange tortilla soup, to name a few. I am so glad you continue to blog and inspire us with your creativity.

    Best,
    Inji

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    1. Inji- Thanks :) You were one of those first gen bloggers! You reminded me that I haven't made tortilla soup in a while. Just made Tuesday soup earlier this week.

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  10. Here's to keep going! I was reading an article about how mommy blogs have evolved from being honest about motherhood to pitch perfect with nothing out of place making it almost impossible for mothers to reach that bar. Your blog has remain authentic through all the transition.

    I think this article might be of interest, "If You Stop Thinking Of Exercise As A Way To Lose Weight, You May Actually Enjoy It "

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/if-you-stop-thinking-of-exercise-as-a-way-to-lose-weight-you-may-actually-enjoy-it/

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    1. Hi Indo :) Thanks! That article is spot on. Weight has much more to do with diet than exercise. Exercise changes the body though- clothes will fit better and inches will be lost even as weight doesn't budge a single lb. Funny thing is when I exercise regularly, I tend to make better choices with food.

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  11. Wow 13 years makes you an old lady of blogging - congratulations on keeping going so long - wonder how many bloggers can claim to be going so long (and I love old style bloggers like yourself who have the pre-social media vibe)

    I did body balance classes for a while and loved them - they were a mix of pilates, tai chi and yoga and made me feel fitter and helped me learn some relaxation techniques I still use. But then work changed and I don't find time but I have been doing more bike riding to work which has really helped with my fitness. Good luck with your body pump - sounds quite strenuous to me but hope it might get easier.

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    1. Johanna- you've been blogging for a long time too, also in the old style, stream of consciousness type blogging. I'm glad we are still here :)

      Body balance sounds wonderful. Biking to work is a great way to fit in fitness into daily life; I wouldn't dare to bike here as car drivers are notoriously careless about watching out for bikes. BodyPump is hard, but the nice thing is that you can use weights that suit you- so I'm currently using very light weight swhich are disparagingly called Barbie weights, but hopefully will gain strength as I go along.

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  12. Congratulations on the teen OHS, Nupur! I'm a long time reader. There are so many things that I am grateful to you for sharing with us on OHS. Your Achari Baingan recipe to begin with (there's no other for me). Then your stories about Dale and the Neighbour Girl. Your sugar-free February challenge. The links to various articles and your reviews of the books you read. And of course, the babies! How lucky that we get to see (in a manner of speaking) the little ones from the time when they were bumps to toddlers to small people and beyond. Here's hoping that you continue to do what you do so well for a long time to come.

    Good luck with the exercise routine!

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    1. Dear Ammani- Thank for being here all these years! I haven't made that achari baingan in a while- eggplant is my favorite vegetable of all time. I do miss Dalu, will post pics of Duncan next week. I don't give him enough airtime on the blog. Thanks for all your good wishes :)

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    2. Nupur, forgot to include, your crucial help with a charity drive I did ages ago, your various craft projects, the gift exchange idea that you once did, your move from one to another, the stand up chair idea...so many that I lose track of it all. My friend Swarna and I adore your blog that it's wonderful that you have kept at it when so many of us (ahem!) have fallen by the wayside.

      As for exercise routine, I've done it for so long that I get grumpy if I haven't worked out for a few days. Anything really, even if it's just dancing silly to some music. I suffer terribly during the dark months and exercise is mainly a mood booster for me. And since moving to Germany and giving up work (I work in a cafe once a week and spend the rest of my time learning German), it has become even more important to exercise.

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    3. Oh gosh, Ammani, there have been so many projects over the years and you remember them much better than I do! I do miss all the old timey Indian food bloggers, there are a few of us still blogging but I think most have moved on to other things.

      I agree with you that exercise is a wonderful mood booster. In learning German, you're exercising that brain of yours :) Alles gute!

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  13. Hi Nupur, 13 years is truly a long time in the blogosphere. I have been a follower for couple of years at least and as one of the readers has commented, love the non pretentious tone of your blog and of course the clever recipes. Wish you all the best.

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    1. Thank you so much for the wishes!!

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  14. Congratulations, Nupur! Happy Blog Anniversary.
    I don't know how many years I've been reading your blog.
    One of the few that I still follow.

    I have struggled with making exercise a part of my routine. Can I ask what time in the day you're planning on going to the gym? That's my biggest struggle. I'm not a morning person so, waking up early is out of the question. Even though here in Houston we have moderate winters, it's still too cold right now for me to go out for walks etc. But, like you said, movement of any sort is good, doesn't have to be a gym. I guess I need to think about adding things in baby steps.

    Just yesterday I read Rujuta Diwekar's post about the importance of strength training so your post is adding to that thought process now.

    I try to do Yoga with Adrienne videos on YouTube but don't have a consistent habit. Will think about this some more.

    -Anu

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    1. Thanks, Anu, for reading this blog and for your always thoughtful comments!

      As for time of day, my gym times are all over the map. On two days I go to the strength training class before work (yes, leaving home at 6:30 AM). The third class is at lunchtime. The two ballet classes are in the evenings after work. So it is different every day.

      Do keep thinking of your options, figuring out your motivations and even experimenting with different options (like trying out classes in different venues at different times of day). In my experience, the exercise habit (a very physical thing) takes a lot of mental energy to map out and fit into one's life! Any movement is good and sometimes you just need to get started in some small way and you'll quickly want to do more.

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    2. Hi Anu,
      Even I am not a morning person. But then I joined a bootcamp style gym for their 5:30 am class. And I am totally hooked. Things that worked for me: Just show up and someone will tell you what needs to be done. Since you are in a group other people will push you to your maximum and encourage you to finish the workouts. You don't have personal trainer breathing down your neck but at the same time you get individual attention when needed. Since its mostly body weight training the workouts differ from one day to another so its not boring like running on a treadmill for ever. I am NOT AT ALL athletic but after every work out I feel strong and accomplished.

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  15. Nupur - I love your blog. It's the first one I started reading and I still regularly read it nad sometimes offer comments. I regularly make samosa puffs because of you! And I love your crafting habit and wish I could have learnt to sew when I see what you make.

    For me - the past year was my first ever success at sustainably managing my weight once I was past my first kid(who is now 19 so that tells you how long I have been at this!). For years I had kid myself that I wasn't really overweight given that I am 5'8" and "somewhere" around 145-150 lbs. But really, I hadn't been under 150 for a few years now and was in major denial. The default state of my clothes was tight and I hesitated to buy new clothes since I hated the entire trial process. Well in 2017, I dropped 20 lbs in 6 months and kept it off for the next 4 - through trips to India, sickness, work stress and festivals. I did this by simply logging my food and eating less. I eat everything just in small quantities and only eat 1200 calories a day. I am now wearing clothes that I last wore 10 years ago

    My 2018 goal is to find a similar sustainable way to be stronger - gain muscle, be able to do one pushup(yes I cant do a single one either). I'll let you know if I succeed.

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    1. Dear Vishakha- Thanks for the lovely note! It is never too late to learn to sew, you know :) Good for you for reaching your weight loss goal! And best wishes for getting stronger this year.

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  16. Dear Nupur, your blog just became a teenager! Congratulations. I love your blog and have been reading and commenting since 2006. As I said once before, I feel great "koutuk" about all your achievements. As for exercise, yes, Sanjay and I go for long walks, to the gym where I have now started a little bit of strength training, I do yoga too whenever I can.
    Keep up the good work Nupur.

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    1. Dear Shubha- it is always so nice to hear from you and thanks for always being so kind and encouraging! Good for you for keeping up with walks, gym and yoga- the perfect trifecta in many ways.

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  17. Congrats to OHS and Happy 13th birthday :-) I've been an avid follower of your blog for more than 10 years now and have enjoyed being part of it Nupur. You and your blog posts are inspiring and welcoming..always :-) Pray God bless you many more years of happy blogging...
    This post reminded me of my fitness journey that started way back in 2006-07 when my boy was 3-4 years old. We got a treadmill as I couldn't find time to exercise and I wasn't even working back then. Even with treadmill at home, taking half hour to myself seemed an uphill task. Every time I start to use the machine, my son would call for something or the other. I tried this for a year and decided that this isn't gonna work unless I enroll him also in a class. Thus began our fitness journey about 11 years ago. I enrolled him in classes and in the same gym, I started attending fitness classes like yoga etc.or elliptical or treadmill uninterrupted for 30 minutes. WOW !! Huge transformation and the journey (touch wood) continues even to this day for longer intervals. Despite me being out of gym due to foot fracture 3 months ago; the moment dr. gave me a go ahead, our routine is back in place :-) I don't do jumping jacks and such, but strength training is mandatory. I avoid lunges and jumps, but do squads and tension bands, planks upper body strength using body weight, dumb bells and barbells.
    The biggest challenge for me is cooking. Maintaining 4 days gym routinely I find it hard to cook fresh meals daily.For few years now, I cook Sundays for the entire week; that way I can workout 4-5 days/wk myself.:-)

    Trust me, once this becomes a habit, you will not regret it even once. Ever.Good luck...
    Meena.

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    1. Dear Meena- Thanks for being a good friend through this blogging journey! I always love hearing people's stories about how the huge transformation they went through when they started exercising regularly- and yours is very inspiring. Thanks!! It is true that we have to manage time the best we can, and using the refrigerator and freezer to be able to have home cooked meals while not cooking them every day is a very smart thing to do. I don't buy the "only freshly cooked food will do" argument, it made sense before the era of refrigeration but not any more.

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  18. Happy Birthday, OHS! Wish you many more!

    Congratulations, Nupur! Your blog was among the very first that I started to follow and I'm glad you are still around. Loads of people are making videos and know many technical aspects, but along with that, there is a lot of controversy and plagiarism. So.... IMO, better a dinosaur than a robot.

    My goals: I also just want to tackle life, one day at a time, plaster a smile on my face and get through it.

    This year is dedicated to my son. He has a lot on his platter and I want to be there for him, every step of the way.

    I wonder if I will ever get over my block with exercising.. hmmm?

    I also hope I can get my blogging mojo back. I start a post and then leave it half way.

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    1. Dear Manasi- many thanks for the good wishes! We did enjoy all those food blog events and there was a great sense of community, right? I still enjoy reading your blog whenever you update it. Hope you and your boy have a great year together!

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  19. Congratulations on your blog birthday! Another long time follower here and I think of all the blogs I started following, this has stayed consistently with me throughout. Loved the pav bhaji recipe and I'll have to go and check out that Achari baingan now :).

    And way to go on the strength training - I love running but as I hit my 40s and my joints started grumbling, I found strength training really helped get back into the groove. Now we do 3 days of running and 3 days of weights weekly.

    We set our routine so we can get the exercise out of the way early in the morning (5:30-6:30 am) and anything else can come after that. That has helped with staying consistent.

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  20. Thanks so much for the good wishes! The pav bhaji recipe is far and away the most popular recipe on this blog.

    Three days of running and 3 days of weights sounds like the ideal routine. I too love exercising early in the morning and getting it out of the way. But right now I'm doing what gym schedules dictate!

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  21. Congratulations on 13 years of ths blog. I have been reading since 2008 and love your writing on food and life.
    Fatima

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  22. Hi Nupur,
    After 13 years of lurking around in this space, now is as good a time as any for me to finally say hi  My first encounter with your blog was in late 2005, when my husband volunteered to do the week’s shopping. He came back with a 2 feet long green monstrosity with ridges, proudly proclaiming: “I found dodka!” As a South Indian married to a Maharashtrian (sounds familiar?), I had no idea what to do with this vegetable. In desperation, I turned to Google to learn more, and one of the results caught my attention: “Have you ever met the ridge gourd?” So that’s what you call it, I said to myself, and clicked on the link. Since then, I check your page at least twice a month, hoping for more updates on recipes, crafts, reading, pets, and your life in general. The A-Z series on Maharashtrian cooking was a godsend for me; I must have tried most of the recipes from that series, impressing the MIL as well! Thanks for being a part of my life through your blog, and wishing you many many more years of One Hot Stove!
    Sindhu

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    1. Hi Sindhu! Thank you for sharing this awesome story, you made me chuckle :) Oh boy I haven't made dodka in a long while. I'm glad you found my blog, and thanks for sticking with me and reading it for all these years.

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  23. Congratulations on completing 13 years of the blog...i have really enjoyed reading it and a lot of your recipies such as punjabi bhaji, gobi manchurian,and salads etc are regularly made in my home. I have really enjoyed reading your health posts as well since this is a struggle we all can relate to. keep up the good work:)
    Rosh

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    1. Hi Rosh- Thanks! Glad some of the recipes here made it into your daily rotation!

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  24. Happy anniversary! Love and cook many of your recipes to this day!

    As for fitness, I really love the Orange Theory gyms. Not sure if there are any in your area, but it's one-hour class that consists of both cardio and strength training. Always varied, and always challenging! It's been the only thing I've really stuck with (other than just plain walking) and not gotten bored of :)

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    1. Amanda- We do an Orange Theory gym nearby, and I considered it when I was gym-shopping. In the end I did not choose it because it is quite expensive. But in future when I'm looking to switch up my workouts it is definitely on my list. Glad to know that you enjoy it!!

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  25. Happy Blog Birthday and so much more, Nupur! I’m a regular reader for some while now :-) and love that I can “hear” your voice when you write. Hugs to all, not forgetting your own dear self. PS Have you read Another Year Younger? Much recommended ...

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    1. Dear Alanna- big hugs to you!!! We do go back a long way, don't we? I need to e-mail you one of these days to catch up.

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  26. Hi Nupur,

    Congratulations! It's huge! Love your blog and have emailed you couple times too. In this time and era of blogs catering to money making, love your honest untainted perspective on things and am very much appreciative of it! Thank you for that. Not that there's anything wrong with money making, but then the focus is tainted, so I appreciate it all the more.
    Agree with the exercise thing.. I'm in search of the minimal exercise to keep me fit. I realize the more I exercise the more it gets used to it and I need to upgrade it further to achieve anything. It's a constant mindful practice. I have been good this year but some days I let me be.. it's the part of the plan. Self-torture hasn't gotten me anywhere.
    Much love,
    Archana

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    1. Thank you, dear Archana, for your kind words! You are so right that it getting to the optimal exercise stage is a process. The upgrade thing is exactly what works for me- starting somewhere and getting a little more confident about it with time and then trying something bigger.

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  27. Happy anniversary! I've been following your blog for several years now. It was a great resource when I was a student in a foreign country juggling studies and meals, and it continues to be one now.

    Your post about bodypump is so timely. I've been trying to choose between bodypump and weightlifting to build strength after going through some muscle issues recently. I'll probably try both, but going to keep an eye out for your bodypump experiences.

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    1. Thanks Riha! So about bodypump and weightlifting, I've done entirely too much reading on the subject :D and essentially, traditional weightlifting (higher weights, lower repetitions) will give you bigger muscles more quickly than bodypump (lower weights, more repetitions). But bodypump is great for someone like me who is not going to stride into the weight room and start lifting with the "bros" and is a good intro to weightlifting, getting familiar with the moves and equipment with a reassuring instructor and music + community to make the hour go by faster. I would have taken weightlifting classes but the times did not suit me.

      I'll do bodypump for a few months and report back so watch this space :)

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  28. hi, have you tried using cold press machine to extract oil at home from peanuts, sesame etc? if tried could you please blog on the same?

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  29. 13 years!!! You started the blog when we were both grad students - I remember turning to your blog whenever I needed a respite from lab (just like now). Wasn't it just the other day when we graduated??? Congratulations on One Hot Stove turning 13 and remaining true to herself (or itself) always.

    Much love,
    Shoots :)

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    1. Shoots- Time flies and all that! Thanks for the sweet note :) This blog is like my time capsule.

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  30. Congratulations on 13 years of blogging marathon. My Pav Bhaji Google search took me to this blog, since then I am hooked on. My favorite recipes are Pav Bhaji and Enchilada.

    This year my goal is to take baby steps in making excercise part of my daily routine. Hope I can make it. Keep writing.

    Sushma

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    1. Thanks Sushma! Yes, the pav bhaji recipe is the most popular one on this blog :) Good luck with your exercise goals!

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  31. Congratulations on the 13 years! I don't think you're a dinosaur to stick with blogging and not moving on to Instagram and the like.
    Strength training has been a huge help for me with feeling good & looking good. I've tried personal trainers, gym memberships, gym classes, apartment complex clubhouse gym and online free videos and/or nominal amount paid programs. The last one has worked for me the best. I tend to have a harder time with scheduling a big block of time for commute+class+shower+commute. I've realized being able to workout at home when I have some time cuts down on the whole mental block of preparing myself to go to an actual gym. Also, the online workouts I do (from fitnessblender.com) vary in length so I can always find something I can do with what time I have. Their search engine for workouts is amazing. I'm able to search for upper/lower body specific workouts, dumbbells/no equipment/other equipment workout etc. I first started with their 8 week fat loss program since I didn't want to think too much about figuring out the workouts but after a few months of that, I found I could branch out on my own and find workouts to do every day for my needs. This is the only plan that I have been able to stick to for almost two years now. All other options fizzled out after 3-6 months. You should look into it on weeks you can't make it to the gym :)

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    1. Nabeela- Thanks!! It is awesome that you tried all possibilities and then found something that works for you. And you've been doing it for two years! Yes, I certainly want options for when I can't make it to the gym and I will look into this. Thanks for this informative comment :)

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  32. I had similar thoughts last year, and joined a sweet, little gym near my home. I got a basic weight training routine from the instructor, and started on it 2-3x/week. I wasn't really enjoying it, but I stuck on. Finally, this year, I decided: Enough. There are a bunch of other activities I do and love: hiking, yoga, swimming, Tai Chi. I simply had no motivation to continue weight training when I didn't enjoy it one bit. That's that. :)

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    1. Lakshmi- That's the way to do it, right? Try different things, see what you like and can stick to, keep moving and enjoying it. Hope you have a great year doing what you love!

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  33. Very happy birthday to One Hot Stove and congrats Nupur! Countless times I have turned to your posts when I had to prepare something nice for guests. It never went wrong when I followed the proportions. Wish you all the best for future and I hope to see many many more posts form you!

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    1. Thank you so much for the sweet note!

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  34. 13 years !Congratulations ! Here's to many more delicious years. . Hugs

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    1. Thanks dear Madhuli and I see you are blogging again- YAY!

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  35. Happy blog anniversary! Are you a vegetarian,how do you manage your protein intake to keep pace with your strength training?

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I am a vegetarian and I don't think vegetarians have any trouble getting enough protein from plant sources, eggs and dairy. There are many vegetarian (even vegan) professional athletes so it is definitely not a problem for the average gym-goer like me.

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