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I had the best times of my life in 2015. I had the worst times of my life in 2015. Hopefully, in the long novel that my life is, this year could be considered the chapter where I hit absolute rock bottom, only to find a way out and resurrect some broken things. As I write this, a lot of things are still broken, but at least I am walking down a constructive road, and not a destructive one.

Joined GQ

The highlight of this year for me was joining GQ, which is like the Mount Olympus for any upcoming journalist. Additionally, I have also felt really good about managing to be a lot more disciplined and hardworking than I was before. Touchwood.

*I have shared the couple of stories that I did here later in this article.

Started smoking, and lost all the hard work done on my body

In 2014, I did something which I thought would help me save a lot of money and damage to my health – I quit smoking. Unfortunately though, I couldn’t maintain my unbeaten streak any longer than one and a half years, and had to resort back to the extremely expensive and unhealthy habit that I had started to abhor. In my defense, I was really depressed and on the verge of insanity, and needed a vice to calm things down. Stupid excuse, I know. But then, life is hard when you’re not a child anymore.

Another thing that I am disappointed about is losing all the progress I had made on my body. The journey had started around June 2014, and I had managed to grit it out and continued intense weight training until the early months of 2015. The result – I gained almost 14 kg, and was starting to find my biceps cling to T-shirts that I once found loose. I enjoyed it a lot. The pain, the soreness, the endorphins that rush through your body after you’ve killed your workout – I loved it all. I became so good that I could bench press a lot more than my own body weight. On a smith machine. I was too chicken to risk it with free weights. I ate healthy, drank green tea, got regular massages and looked the best I had done all my life. Then came one of the knocks that completely knocked the gas out of me and shattered my self-confidence. Slowly and steadily, the number of exercise days in the week reduced. Then the number of exercises I did reduced. Then the number of sets and reps. At one point, I became content with just giving my muscles some sort of stimulation.

It’s been weeks since I visited my gym. The last exercise I did was doing 15 push ups to get rid of some lethargy. At one point, I could do 200 within 15 minutes.

That said, I am proud of making these healthy changes, and having done it once – I know I can do it again! Hopefully, in 2016 – I find an opportunity (and motivation) to go through the grind again.

Reading and writing

After joining GQ, the writer and the reader in me gained a lot more confidence than before – and once again, I find myself with the same hunger to express that I had when I decided to renounce commerce and tried to make a career in writing. I did manage to do it in 2014 itself, but somewhere along the road – I got really jaded, and wasn’t enjoying myself at all. Things have changed now, and with the presence of all these great and established people around me, I am positive about keeping the hunger alive in the future as well.

Inshallah, 2016 will be a year where I get to better myself as an artist, and who knows – maybe the post that I make exactly one year from now will be a lot better than this one.

Cooking

I have also started enjoying the process of cooking a lot, and can now claim to cook any rice preparation or curry – as long as I have the ingredients and a link to the recipe. I am not bad at it either, and as they say the proof of the pudding is in the eating. My brother and my mother – they always want more than normal, and on more than one occasion, we’ve run out of food despite me increasing the quantity. My favorite chef? Harpal Singh Sokhi. I like his jovial nature while narrating a dish, and even though his recipes are complicated (he says that he has simplified it) to cook, they turn out really really tasty!

List of things I wrote in 2015

Anyway, since this blog is all about me and my writing, I will end with a list of 10 articles that I am really proud of doing. Unlike a lot of other list makers, I am listing them in the order of preference.

  1. ISL Final: Three things to watch out for (GQ India)
  2. ISL 2015: Players we could watch all day (GQ India)
  3. Ronnie Coleman’s interview (THS)
  4. How Amit Makhija lost weight and transformed himself/Subhojeet Roy’s story (THS)
  5. Virat Kohli’s diary entry (CC)
  6. 8 songs on food (this blog)
  7. Marijuana – what’s it like in a stoner’s world (THS)

Wish you a happy and a prosperous new year! What is my single biggest wish in 2016? More money!

 

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