VJ turned actress Navin Waqar talks to Instep about her healthy lifestyle choices.
Navin Waqar shot to fame with popular drama serial Humsafar. Since then the VJ turned actress has appeared in a number of television dramas including Saya-e-Dewar Bhi Nahi, Kuch Na Kaho, Mah e Tamaam, Tajdeed e Wafa and the recently concluded Bewafa, that featured Ali Rehman Khan and Ushna Shah in prominent roles. Navin Waqar is gearing up for her next, titled Challawa, which according to her is a supernatural thriller with lots of screams and scares. Recently the actress took to social media to share her workout routine and diet plan and how the two have helped her achieve her body goals.
In a bid to know more about her healthy lifestyle choices, Instep got in touch with Navin to ask how she stays fit along with managing a hectic work routine.
According to Navin, she is not a health freak but tries to eat clean and take care of herself as much as possible. “My health routine includes cutting out on junk food. However, I don’t deprive myself; if I want a doughnut I’ll have one,” she shared.
As for her fitness goals and how she manages to achieve them, Navin informed, “My fitness goal is being fit and active. I aim to increase my strength, stamina and endurance, but exercise alone doesn’t help; diet plays a very important part in that. Also, exercise makes me feel great and results in amazing skin.”
As far as how she maintains a healthy lifestyle with such a hectic schedule, she explained, “It’s very difficult because sometimes it leads to exhaustion. However, I plan ahead whenever I can. I prefer taking my own meals to work. If I’m traveling I’ll eat cleaner than normal. If I can’t eat right, I’ll do a tougher workout to burn it off.”
Talking about her workout routine, Navin revealed that she works out three times a week. “I don’t lift heavy weights but do strength training instead. I do a lot of circuit training, tabata training and High-Intensity Interval Training (HITT). We use light weights between 3 to 8 kilograms when required. Basically there is very little rest in between exercises and I burn more calories in lesser time,” said Navin, adding that the idea is to keep her heart rate up.
She further went on to say that she had a trainer when she was kickboxing; however, it’s the first time that she has started training with Ammad Qadir at the gym. “It’s only because I don’t have the kind of knowledge other people do with training and the fact that there is so much confusion about what needs to be done. Also, I get bored easily so I need a lot of pushing and my trainer knows how to mix it up so I keep focused. He guides me regarding what I should eat with the kind of workout I’m doing and it’s helpful.”
When it comes to a healthy diet plan, the Bewafa actress eats three meals a day and snacks just a little bit. “I don’t have a super strict diet; I just watch my portions and swap unhealthy foods for healthier options. For instance, I eat brown rice instead of white. I will pick garden salad over fries. It’s the little things that help and I’m still learning. But my biggest battle is with sugar. I’m a sucker for desserts and really have to control myself around chocolate.” She continued, “I go for a high protein, low carbohydrate (carb) intake. I’ll include good carbs like blueberries (excellent antioxidant) and chia seeds in my overnight oats. Raw baby spinach (loaded with vitamins) and a dusting of flax seeds on my salad. For protein I opt for chicken breast, fish and eggs. I eat good fats like nuts and coconut or olive oil. So it’s a bit of everything but within balance.”
When asked whether she incorporates juices or shakes into her diet, she said, “I don’t like shakes as such, but I do love a good berry smoothie. It’s loaded with antioxidants but I keep that for the weekend cheat sheet. When I do opt for juices, it will be something like a pomegranate or a detox mix depending on what I want.”
“Being in the kind of industry that I am, my mental health is very important to me,” she said. “There is so much pressure whether it’s about your physical appearance or work performance. I would get upset with what people said about me on a personal level but not so much anymore. It took me a long time but now my strategy is simple: I have no room for negative people in my life anymore. My stress management is all about spending time with my family, friends and my pets. Doing things that make me happy and above all counting my blessings to stay sane.”
On how she keeps herself motivated for this lifestyle, Navin shared, “It’s not easy. I have bad days where I just don’t have the energy to get up at 8 a.m., head to the gym and then work till 10 p.m. But seeing results is the best motivation. I think about how I will lose all the progress I’ve made so far and that quitting isn’t an option. I push myself a lot but that is because I enjoy it.”
To attain a healthy lifestyle the actress suggests starting with small changes. “It’s not as hard as it sounds. All you have to do is lower your junk food consumption, take your vitamins and walk for 20 minutes a day. Start small and be consistent, that’s all. If you fall off the wagon, it doesn’t matter. Try again the next day and work harder. Remember, hydration is the most important thing. Don’t eat after 8 pm, if possible, and have an early breakfast. And above all, have fun,” concluded Navin.