Monday, April 30, 2012

Day 6: The Past is Another Land

Monday, Monday... So good to me....

First of all, GUESS WHO RAN MORE TODAY? MEEE! Elaboration shall come later in the entry! :)

Breakfast was another bowl of Kroger brand Honey Bunches of Oats and some 2% milk. I'll be eating my leftovers of last night's rosemary chicken for lunch today also. I'm really looking forward to today's workout already! I hope I still feel the same way when I get off of work today.

On the commute to work this morning, I started thinking about why I never felt this way about making myself healthy before. In the past, I always had a short term reason why I needed to slim down. Most recently, it's been because of the numerous weddings for which I've been asked to be a bridesmaid, but even then, I never took it that seriously with the exception of my friend Krystal's wedding in 2010. I lost 20 pounds for her wedding, only to gain most of it back within 8 months. We had an excellent personal trainer during that time who worked us HARD and gave us a meal plan. Unfortunately, I cannot afford that kind of luxury now that I'm living on my own, but I'm still using a lot of the tools he gave us, and I'm so thankful that I had that experience with him.

It's ridiculously easy to gain weight back when you're stressed out and don't have the motivation to get going, but it isn't just about slimming down for me anymore. It's about being healthy and taking good care of myself so I can be at my full potential for things that don't concern my weight or my figure. Healthy body = healthier mind, right?

Going back way before my bridesmaiding days, I had struggled with my weight since I was in about 3rd grade. Before that I was thin little kid, but only because I was ALWAYS sick, and I rarely ate. When I finally DID start eating, I think my parents were so relieved that I was getting better that I guess they didn't moderate how much and what. They just knew I was eating, and that was a good thing at that time.

I still remember when I started realizing that gaining weight was an issue in 3rd or 4th grade. My mom had come to my school and taken pictures of my class the last week before summer, and she pointed out one of my fellow classmates. She said, "Anak, please don't ever get that big..." Ever since then, it was a constant bombardment from my uncles..."Hahaha, you're fat." Or my aunts..."Oh, she's just healthy! She'll grow out of it..." I remember when I posed for pictures, my mom would always tell me to put my arms down, even though I was...I was just too wide for them to look like they were down.

In 5th grade, one of my classmates called me "thunder thighs." In 8th grade, the boy I had a huge crush on told me, "Yeah, you're fat..." I've been sucking in my stomach since I was in 4th grade. I even wore a girdle sometimes in high school. It wasn't always easy looking so different from most of my friends growing up. I was always about a foot shorter than my tall, lovely friends, and thank goodness the real ones never made me feel self conscious about my looks. Looking back, I get that kids can be clueless and cruel, and that in the Filipino culture it's extremely commonplace to point out your most obvious characteristics no matter how hurtful it can be.

Memories like those can really bring me down sometimes, but my growing knowledge of health and fitness is definitely empowering enough for me to feel like I can overcome anything. Especially if it's just words.

12:29 p.m.
Just returned from picking up my new glasses. I usually don't like to run errands for lunch so I can save gas, but if I don't want to be stuck doing a late night workout, I'm going to have to use my lunch hour to get things done when need be. I tried doing the early morning  workouts by waking up at 5:30, but I just can't get myself to stay consistent with that schedule, so I've decided to just MAKE time after work to get it done. I've done it before, I can do it again and STICK TO IT. Bam.

I finished my leftovers from Carino's and had a 4 oz container of vanilla Activia yogurt for dessert with 16 oz of water.

No need for an after pic. I devoured this.
7:45 p.m.
I just finished my 45 minute cardio workout at 7 p.m., and I'm EXHAUSTED! I have literally been itching to get out of my office chair just so I could attempt to run more today. I just wish my body were as willing as my spirit! I ran a grand total of 10 minutes today! They were at 2 minute intervals with 3 minutes of rest between each interval, BUT the fact that I ran a total of 10 minutes today STILL makes me smile. GO ME! It might seem a little pathetic to some, but for someone who has been terrified and traumatized by running, I'm happy about it, so don't rain on my parade. Haha! I do wonder now if I could run longer off of a treadmill since I won't have to maintain a constant speed at all times. Looks like I've got a new challenge ahead of me soon! 

Gah, I should have gone for 2:60 and 260...
Again, I don't think these treadmills calculate calories burned accurately. I KNOW I worked way harder today than I have the past couple of times I used the treadmills and my past entries showed that I burned 300 calories even though I only traveled 2.45 miles and didn't run nearly as much. Lame sauce.

9:11 p.m.
Woo! Dinner was nutritious and delicious. I made myself some skinless chicken filets seasoned with some 0 calorie Emeril Lagasse seasoning with wilted spinach splashed with lemon juice. I added a tomato splashed with 1/4 tsp of Patis (fish sauce) and some salad with 1 tbsp of raspberry hazelnut vinaigrette. 

Nom Nom Nom Nom
Before 1/3 Cup rice, 1 piece of chicken,
1 whole Roma tomato, and 3 romaine leaves
I...was starving. haha
6 has always been a lucky number of mine, so yay for Day 6! I have choir practice tomorrow night in Fannett, so I'm trying to figure out where to do my workout. Will I go to the good ol' H-F middle school track? Will I use my parents' rowing machine? Find out tomorrow on Day 7! ONE WEEK of fitness, here I come!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Day 5: Applause and a Golden Ticket!

12:15 p.m.

Since I went to church last night, I was able to sleep in this morning and have a nice easy going Sunday morning. At least until I decided to hit the hike and bike trail! :)

I drove out there and hit the trail at 11ish. Today's bike ride was definitely a big challenge for me thanks to the wind. I probably don't have the most aerodynamic bicycle, but I love it for its compact size and convenient folding features. This is the kind of bike I've got:

Like it? Go to & check 'em out!
The beginning of the ride was particularly difficult since I wasn't quite warmed up, but then the funniest thing happened! "I've Got a Golden Ticket" from the 1971 classic Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory came on my iPod...and the words actually inspired me! When Charlie's grandpa chimed in with, "Look at me! Up and about! I haven't done this in twenty years!" I couldn't help but chuckle and think of the same thing about myself. The words of the song automatically made me pedal harder and I was off!

The times when I rode against the wind were the hardest. I had to put the bike in a lower gear just to keep going, but I never stopped! When I felt like giving up, I just looked down so I couldn't see how much further it was until I was able to turn when the wind was at my back. There was another moment I had a good laugh when I turned the corner of the windy lap and a live song played on my iPod. Let's just say the applause was just what I needed at that very moment!

I ended up biking a grand total of 8.5 miles this morning! That's 3 times around the big loop (6 miles) and back and forth on the long curve stretch (2.5 miles).

The proof is in the sweat! 

I know I have not eaten enough today, but weirdly enough, I don't feel weak or on edge at all.

For breakfast, I had a bowl of Kroger brand Honey Bunches of Oats with almonds with some 2% milk.

Lunch..well, I had to leave for Fannett to sing and play guitar at my church for First Communion mass at 2 p.m., so I pretty much just scarfed down 2 pieces of Smart Balance basted raisin bread toast.

5:48 p.m.
That's pretty much all I've had to eat by this point today. I'm very excited because Nick wants to take me to dinner and a movie tonight! I don't get to see him as much as I'd like to these days since he's back in school, so I am definitely taking this opportunity to have a little time with him. He's going to bring me to Cheddar's before the movie, so I've been looking at the menu online to preplan what I order. Methinks some salmon and broccoli sounds DELICIOUS right about now.

So far, I've had about 48 oz of water. I plan on having a big glass with my dinner tonight!

10:01 p.m.
YAY for dinner and a movie! We had planned to go to Cheddar's, but the wait was ridiculous, so we went to Carino's instead so we could stay close to the theatre. I looked only at the items that were marked with a low calorie icon so I wouldn't be tempted. I highly recommend the rosemary chicken!

When it came to the bread and the caesar salad, I only ate 1 small piece, and I did not finish my salad...Nick did. Haha! I gave him all my croutons, too. Oh, to have that kind of metabolism...

My salad before
Nick vs. my salad after.
He ended up finishing some of what I didn't eat. 
I was able to stop myself from getting disgustingly full, too. I made sure I stopped when I was satisfied, and I brought the rest home so that I can enjoy it for lunch tomorrow at work.

Before: Nick's dinner on left, mine on the right
After: Nick definitely did way more damage.
The boy loves his pasta.
In total, I drank about 72 oz of water today! I feel fantastic except for my legs feeling like they weigh 1 ton each, but I'm liking every minute of it.

Tomorrow's Monday! Bring it on, work week. I shall show Day 6 who's boss. 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Day 4: The Double Chinese Buffet Challenge

11:17 a.m. of Day 4...

I just finished my 45 minute cardio workout on the treadmill. This time, I added some "walking weights" (2 lbs each), and I felt far more challenged. Who knew that 4 measly pounds could make things more difficult? I can't wait to feel how much easier it will be when I shed the pounds off my body! I'm not sure if it was the addition of the weights or if I was just fatigued, but I still did my best. I really do not think that the calorie counters on these machines are accurate, though.

I also added something to today's workout that surprised me. I RAN! I actually ran (only for about 5 minutes), but the fact that I was able to last that long without feeling like I was going to die made me feel so awesome! I've always been extremely intimidated by running since I was a child. When we had field day in elementary school, I was always dead last by a long shot because I was so much shorter than everyone else, and I had terrible asthma. I pretty much avoided running as much as possible since then. I used to cry when I found out we had to run a mile for our fitness tests in middle school. I remember how embarrassed I was by not being able to run for very long without feeling that sharp pain in my side from overexerting myself....

But that was YEARS ago, and I am now a healthy, asthma free 28-year-old woman who can do anything I aspire to do! It will take some work, but I intend to work up to running more and more every day. It's not about competing with others's about competing with myself!

Don't let this be a waste of time by eating junk!

I have not one, but TWO family/friend gatherings to attend today. Both baptisms, both for adorable baby boys, and both receptions at CHINESE BUFFETS.

Good grief. I feel as if the fitness gods are mocking me with MSG and noodles. I'm both looking forward to and dreading this challenge. We shall see if I can exercise portion control today...


3:54 p.m. of Day 4...

The first baptism was a success! Cute baby brought into Christianity, check. Catching up with good old friends, check. Proxy Godmother/Ninang duties fulfilled, check. Portion control....check????

It's hard to say if I overdid it or not. I definitely got more vegetables than I usually do, but I still got a couple of fried items. I was strong enough to only take small bites of them, though. The worst items I had were 1 bite of fried zucchini, another bite of one of those fried wontons stuffed with cream cheese (which wasn't very good anyway), and half of one of those fried sugary biscuits.  I wasn't impressed with the egg drop soup, so I only ate about 2 bites of it.

• Pictured: 1 fried wonton, 1 fried zucchini, 1 piece of General Tso's chicken, half a plate of broccoli and green beans, half a scoop of jasmine rice, 1 chicken skewer, and 1 scoop of noodles plus 1/2 cup of egg drop soup

I also had a hard time resisting dessert, so I did eat some sweets...

melon, banana, and the evil fried sugar biscuit
I finished bananas, not the biscuit! Woo!
BUT... I also couldn't resist the mocha cake that Tita Wilma so fantastically bakes. I am proud to say I didn't finish the entire thing, though...

Hmm...maybe perspective shots aren't a good idea in this case.


Fast forward to 10:04 p.m.

Baptism number 2 was also a success! I just got home at around 9:30. Adorable baby #2 brought into Christianity, some family catch up time, and another Chinese buffet... Deja vu, anyone?

I waited until everyone else at my table got their food since I wasn't that hungry thanks to the lunch buffet extravaganza. I got much less this time, and I only got one plate. It was VERY difficult for me to resist going back for a 2nd plate tonight, but I just kept having to telling myself, "I'M FULL." I was full, and I just watched everyone else eat their 2nd and sometimes 3rd plates in amazement... I can't deny that I was a little jealous, but I'm encouraged by what kind of will power I had tonight.

Cup of egg drop soup filled 1/3
Clearly, buffet #2's egg drop soup was better than #1's.
Smaller portions for supper. I ate everything but the salmon.
Aaand, I'm a loser for not taking an after pic, but I swear the caption in the before pic is true. (I have witnesses!) The only reason I didn't eat the salmon was because...well, it didn't taste like salmon.

• Pictured: 1 scoop fried rice, healthy portions of green beans and broccoli, I'm guessing about 4oz of salmon, and 2 coconut shrimp

I also shared a piece of cake with my daddy. I gave him 2/3 of the piece...

Overall, I can definitely say I did better than I expected. I used to GORGE myself at these buffets because (with my old way of thinking) "Why not get more than your money's worth on decent food you didn't have to cook?" I still think I could have done better, but I am not disappointed in myself. It's that absence of guilt and regret that makes me know that I did well today. I now know that I can control myself when faced with an excess of tasty offerings. I look forward to being at a place weightwise where I can splurge a little more, but until then, I know what kinds of sacrifices need to be made to reach my goals. 

I think I give myself a B- or a C on this crazy challenge today. I say this because even though I did eat mostly vegetables, they were all covered in sauces and oil with caloric contents I will probably never know. 

Day 4 is done, and I cannot wait to see what Day 5 has in store for me tomorrow! Till then, goodnight, my friends! Here's to a healthier tomorrow! 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Day 3 I Wish the Temptations Were Only Just a Singing Group...


I have READERS! Hello, readers! :) And a very happy Friday to you, too!

I am glad to say that I am still in this fantastic mood that I've been in since Wednesday. I woke up feeling a bit groggy since I slept so late Thursday night making this blog, but the positive attitude was still there with its arm around me to greet the day.

My legs are FANTASTICALLY sore! You know, the good kind of sore that makes you know you're working hard enough to make a difference. To change things up a bit, I might hit the hike and bike trail after work today.  I do like the treadmill since I can have some kind of general idea of how far I've gone and how many calories I've burned, but it's good to have variety.


Skip to 8:56 p.m.
I ended up staying at my apartment complex since I just DID NOT feel like driving anymore today. I'll be honest. When I finally got home, I wasn't really feeling motivated enough to immediately get into my workout clothes and power through like I have the past 2 nights. I felt a tiny hunger pang, so I went for a Pop Tart and a glass of milk. I'm really fighting fatigue today since I got so little sleep, but I knew I had to do my workout or else I would be so disappointed in myself. I got changed, and I chilled on the couch for about 20 minutes. Thankfully there wasn't anything but crap on TV, so I made myself get up, gather my workout gear, and I got moving.

I went to the apartment complex gym again, but both of the treadmills were occupied. Luckily, one elliptical was free, so I programmed it for 45 minutes and I huffed through it!

As soon as I got done, I started walking towards my mailbox when I decided to give my good ol' former roommate Jamie a call to see if she was home. I got to hang out with her and Blake for about an hour, which was simply wonderful! Just like old times. Haha -- I even almost tried to lock their door on the way out! Old habits die hard, I guess! I was VERY tempted to ask them for a piece of candy, but I was able to control myself. This fun size dark chocolate Milky Way was just TAUNTING me in its shiny little silver wrapper and its evil caramel and nougat goodness, but I resisted! GO ME! My former apartment and roomies looked great, and it was so very good to see the them. I'm truly thankful that they still live so close to me. :)

Friday, April 27, 2012

Mood: Positive and Cheerful

• 1 Nature Valley Sweet & Salty Nut Granola Bar
• 1 4oz Activia Vanilla Yogurt
• 8 oz water

Lunch: (Thanks to Nick for treating me!)
• 8 to 10 oz water
• Half a Chicken Panini with a side salad from Jason's Deli + chips and a pickle
 - finished the pickle, did not finish the chips... I should have taken a photo of this one HUGE chip I had...haha
• My salad - their "spring mix" of romaine and other greens plus cauliflower, broccoli, gala apple slices, pine nuts topped with their Italian dressing
 - 1 tbsp potato salad
 - a bite of cottage cheese
• Literally about a tbsp of chocolate mousse and a tsp of banana pudding

I drank about 8 more oz of water at work during the day.

Snack at 5:30 p.m.
• 1 Strawberry Pop Tart with about 6 oz of 2% Milk (I only have one Pop Tart left from a box I bought when I went grocery shopping a couple of weeks ago. I won't be buying them anymore after I finish them. I am not one who likes to waste food).

I drank 24 oz of water during my workout and counting.

I'm not sure if I will eat dinner tonight. I'm just not hungry.

I usually eat dinner even if I'm not hungry, but I am trying to learn how to listen to my body. I actually have to sit and feel how my stomach is acting. I'm pretty bad about this in general because I've been eating because it's "time to eat" my whole life whether I knew my body needed food or not. I want to change this and only eat when I am genuinely hungry and I actually have room for more food.

I will not be posting a daily weigh in photo because weighing myself every single day is just not something I want to do. Honestly, I am not very concerned with the numbers especially knowing that muscle weighs more than fat. I will probably post a weigh-in photo every week or 2.

Things I need to work on:
• Portion control - I had a hard time controlling how much I was eating at Jason's today. I did pretty well, but I wanted to keep going even though my stomach was feeling full. I want to focus on listening to my body better when it comes to its satisfaction levels regarding hunger
• My sleep schedule - I have ALWAYS been a night owl. It's plagued me since I was a little girl, and I never get enough sleep. I KNOW I will benefit greatly if I get a better sleeping pattern.
• Meal Planning - I am still living on food left from my last grocery trip, and I do not want to waste what I bought. I'm on an extremely tight budget, so as soon as I start running low on what I've got, I will definitely make wiser purchases at the store.

And Day 3 is done, my friends! I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend! Tomorrow shall be an interesting test! I have 2 baptisms to attend - the 1st baptism is for the grandson of an amazing baker, and the 2nd Baptism's reception is at a Chinese buffet. CHALLENGE ACCEPTED! Can I control myself? Find out tomorrow!

P.S. THANK YOU to all my supporters out there! You're FUELING my motivation so much! Please keep the love flowing my way! Woo!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Days 1 & 2 - A Whole New Mindset

First of all, I apologize for the length of this entry. I have quite a bit of mind vomit I need to get rid of before my more prompt and to-the-point posts start happening... Bear with me.

On Wednesday, April 25th, I woke up to a strange new mindset. It was as if someone had smacked me in the face with motivation and determination. FINALLY! Something has clicked!

Maybe it's my quarter-life crisis. (Mostly kidding) Maybe I'm realizing it's about bloody time I get up and do something with this blobby bag of bones I've been given. Either way, I'm getting up and doing what I want and need to do. It's time to realize and pursue my dreams, and they won't ever come true if I just sit here wishing and hoping. I have to WORK for them even though I'm still not 100% sure what they are. And you know what? THAT'S O.K.  

I had been kind of down since I moved into my own place all alone for the first time. I can't say I don't love it, though. In fact, it's pretty brilliant having my own privacy and personal space, but I do miss having friends or family within an earshot from time to time. Plus, Nick and I barely get to see each other these days since he's back in school, so I've been missing his company also. There are also some other life events that have brought me down over the past couple of months, but we needn't go there here. For my new FITNESS BLOG!

I only mentioned my being down because I feel like I am actually on my way back UP with the new mindset that Wednesday so graciously bestowed upon me. I gathered a useful thought from something Nick said to me a few days ago. "It's OK to be sad, and it's necessary to mourn, but there's no time for moping." Those weren't his exact words, but it's what I got out of it. He's so right. Life has so many awesome things to offer to waste it moping! This feeling of positivity, possibility, and peace is something I have been craving to feel for years. Honestly, I'm not exactly sure where it came from, but while it's here, I am going to take FULL advantage of its presence!

Whilst I was at work still basking in the glow of my Wednesday morning epiphany, I set 2 major first goals for myself: 1. FINISH MY FREAKING WEBSITE. And 2. GET HEALTHY.

It was during tonight's workout that I was inspired to make a fitness blog. No holds barred. I will not be shy about when I mess up, when I skip a work out, when I eat crap, or how much I weigh. How will I make any kind of significant change if I'm lying to everyone including myself? My superwoman boss lady (Beth) has a pretty fantastic blog I like to read about her amazing fitness journey and other tidbits of life, and I can definitely say her blog is part of the reason why I wanted to start this one.

Another big reason is to hold myself accountable for my actions with reader support. If I have people who may be checking in on my progress, I KNOW I will want to keep at it. Know why? Because I cannot pry the student out of me. I will never be able to stop learning. I will never be able to stop wanting to impress "the teacher" (in this case, my readers). I'm hoping someone...anyone...who reads this will nag me when I'm not doing what I need to do healthwise.  Even if I have just one or 2 readers, I'll still feel like I need to do my best for them AND for me. Did that make any sense?

I'm also trying to be as realistic about this whole thing as I can. Life happens. I will not be able to blog every single day. There will be parties, and friendly gatherings where there will be occasional splurges. There will also be bad days when I won't want to do anything, but my true intentions are to steer clear from that as much as possible.

So here goes:

Wednesday, April 25, 2012
• 1 Strawberry Pop Tart with a small glass of 2% milk for breakfast
• I drank 48 oz of water
• Snacked on 2 prunes
• 1 sourdough English muffin with 1 tbsp 1/3 less fat Philadelphia Cream Cheese with a large salad of romaine, baby spinach, baby carrots, chopped celery and an Italian Vinaigrette for lunch
• 1 scoop of jasmine rice and 4 large boiled shrimp for dinner

• I power walked for 45 minutes on the treadmill at 3.6 mph while alternating between inclines of 0 and 15 every 5 minutes
• I did 12 leg curls on one of the machines. I wanted to do more, but I was starting to cramp
• Walked to the mailbox to cool down
• Did 2 sets of 12 reps of upper body workout with free weights

 TODAY! Thursday, April 26, 2012
Here's what went down:
• Kroger Brand Honey Bunches of Oats with Almonds with 2% Organic Milk was breakfast
• Lunch was a spicy boudain link with a slice of wheat bread with a Coke (LIT had a Food Fest event sponsored by different student organizations) I know, terrible choice and terrible excuse, but hey, I'm still new at this.
• Snack was one baby carrot and 4 celery sticks with light ranch dressing
• I was given a free strawberry cake ball from one of the student organizations. Dang.
• I had half of a peanut granola bar for supper. Honestly, I'm still too full from the boudain and the cake ball to eat a full meal tonight!
• I've had 36 oz of water and counting

I have been needing to buy some new workout shoes for months since I discovered that anything over 5K/3 miles makes my feet blister and BLEED in my old shoes back in October during the Heart Walk. So I went shoe shopping right after work to get me some new sapatos...

I got these bad boys at Academy tonight, and they feel AMAZING. Hah...and it only took me 3 hours to find them! =P And SHOCK! They're NOT purple!? Whaaat!?

Fresh outta da box.

OK, I had throw in purple SOMEWHERE.

I tried them out on the treadmill in the gym at my apartment complex and they were fantastic! I didn't even have to think about my feet, which is exactly what I was hoping for.

Thursday, April 26 Treadmill Stats
• I walked briskly all over campus to hang flyers on all the bulletin boards; I always make sure to run up the stairs when possible lately as well

• When I shared a personal trainer with Krystal, he had us warm up for 8 minutes on the treadmill, do strength training like mad, and then do 45 minutes of cardio. Since I'm just getting back into the swing of things, I'm warming up, doing 45 minutes of cardio, and 3 sets of 12 reps of different strength training exercises. I'm hoping to up the weights as time progresses. Also, I know, only 2.45 miles in 45 minutes? Hey, I've got tiny legs and I probably jog what most people consider a brisk walk. Either way, the sweat and the work still happened. Just at my own pace. 

And finally, the most revealing, difficult, and almost embarrassing thing for me to post, the weigh-in:

Hey, at least I'm smiling. :)

So here's to keeping this up! If I don't want to keep starting over, I've got to stop quitting! Again, sorry this was so long. Kudos to you if you're still reading. Here's to the beginning of my journey to tinier pants!