The best fitness advice Malaika Arora has to offer

When Malaika Arora was first starting out as a model, she was told she was “too hip-heavy”. Yes, take that moment to laugh out loud. “I’ve been through my fair share of being told ‘oh, she’s too short’, ‘she’s too dark’, ‘she’s too hip-heavy,’” Malaika recalls, proving that time did exist before Kim Kardashian West. “But I just thought ‘What the hell! If I have large hips, I’m not going to be ashamed and try and hide them’.”

Two decades later, Malaika’s gravity-defying curves have attracted a paparazzi following of their own and too many self-respecting women (yours truly included) will cop to having disappeared down the rabbit hole that is her Instagram account. Damn you, #fitnessgoals

“Fitness has always been topmost on my list,” says Malaika, “I’ve been a state-level runner, I’ve had formal training in dancing. My mother kept pushing me to stay in sports, even through that awkward phase of puberty when girls get uncomfortable with their bodies.”

Malaika Arora

“I tell my son too, if you’re fit today, you will thank me 20 years from now. That’s the most important skill I can give you.’”

“With every passing day, I’m amazed by how much I can push my body”

Completing the yoga club whose permanent members include Kareena Kapoor Khan and Amrita Arora, Malaika confesses her love for the ancient practice. And she’s teamed up with Reebok and the Ministry of AYUSH to spread the word. “Some people practice yoga purely for meditational purposes, some purely for the asanas because it helps to correct posture and tone the body. I genuinely look at it from a more holistic approach. There’s a lot of wear and tear in my profession, and yoga helps in recovery better than any kind of physical activity.”

5 fitness and beauty secrets Malaika swears by

  • She’s a smoothie fanatic. “Put the veggies you don’t like into a smoothie, that helps to camouflage the taste,” she offers helpfully.
  • Her day is incomplete without dates, jaggery, honey and ghee. “I don’t have a sweet tooth, but I need these in some form because they’re all natural. I add ghee to food, dates to my smoothie and the honey to my drinking water.”
  • “I am somebody who believes in eating local fresh produce. I think for one, you are promoting your local farmers, and it’s also healthier. We stay organic as much as possible.” 
  • She’s figured out the secret to taming those 4 pm hunger pangs. “Have three main meals every day, interspersed with two smaller snacks — never keep your body hungry.”
  • “I eat my last meal of the day by 7.30 pm or 8 pm. Even if I go out after that, I won’t eat.”

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