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Untitled (Hello, Laziness)

I’ve been MIA for a few days but only because I’ve been busy with life. Sort of. I was supposed to write an entry regarding my trip to Sagada (which was awesome, by the way) but I’m feeling pretty tired at the moment so that will have to wait. A mini update will do for now although I can’t promise that it’s going to be exciting or whatever.ImageToday I used my cousin’s Polar watch to check how many calories I burn during my workout (weight lifting + HIIT). The number surprised me a little because I had no idea that weight lifting really does burn a serious amount of calories despite being seemingly more laid back than cardio exercises. My right knee became haggard again and it’s starting to worry me. I should figure out a way to strengthen my knees.

Yesterday, I binged on cookies. I have no idea why. I wasn’t stressed or anything and the cookies weren’t even vegan. This morning, my sinuses got worked up and I really think that the dairy I consumed has something to do with it. I am never going to touch dairy again. And I need to learn how to bake vegan cookies.

Although I am still traumatized by my previous company, I applied for an English tutor position this afternoon and will be coming in for an interview tomorrow. I hope this one goes well because I seriously need to start working for the sake of my second degree. I guess if this company still isn’t very good, I’ll have to suck it in and endure it until I have enough money saved. I am doing my best not to end up at a call center.

When we went grocery shopping two days ago, I bought buckwheat flour which is so exciting because I’ll finally be able to make buckwheat pancakes! Problem is, I don’t have baking powder so I have to search for a recipe that doesn’t call for that ingredient. I’m not one for experimenting in the kitchen because I don’t even know the basics of cooking. I don’t even know how to tell if a pan is hot enough to cook things on; it’s all a matter of trial and error for me.

So there you have it. Not a lot has happened but at least I finally got out of the house. I’ll try to write that Sagada trip entry ASAP. I know how helpful travel-related blog posts are for people who plan their own itineraries so I want to give my own small contribution.

Have a great week, guys!

 

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Raisin’ the Numbers

Good news! I was able to deadlift 80 lbs. and squat 90 lbs. yesterday! Woohoo!

I know those aren’t ridiculous weights yet but hey, 90 lbs. is only 12 lbs. away from my current weight. I was almost carrying one of me while squatting, haha! Those weights, by the way, were the highest I did because I weight train in a reverse pyramid: I also squat using 80 lbs. and 70 lbs. and I do deadlifts with 70 lbs. as well. I think I should add another weight to my deadlifts but it was only yesterday that I started doing them properly (during the first time, I had the wrong form and wrecked my lower back, ugh, newbie problems) so I was only in the experimental phase. Next week, I’ll only be able to lift weights once because I’m going on that Sagada trip which will serve as my three-day long workout, teehee. I’m already so psyched for it.

I think I may have pulled something in my knee during yesterday’s workout but hopefully it will be all better by the time my friend and I are spelunking. But either way, I won’t let a tiny injury get in the way of an awesome physical activity.

I’ve been reading up on losing fat and gaining muscle at the same time. Apparently, I’m a lucky dog because beginners are capable of doing both. My goal is to lose fat and maintain the muscles that I currently have but not necessarily bulk up (not yet, at least). I want a body that’s between that of a marathoner and a sprinter (though the latter is much more ideal in my eyes hahaha–fast twitch fibers all the way, baby!). Gotta keep the diet and workouts in check.

Today is Saturday a.k.a. Don’t Give an Eff About Calories Day. YAYYY!

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Hobbit Legs

Hobbit Legs

I tried my new weight training routine which was a full body workout instead of an upper body/lower body split. I changed it (again) because I found out that a full body workout benefits beginners more. It was EXHAUSTING. I had barely gone through the lower body exercises when I had to drink a glass of water in between sets. Still, I pushed through with it and made some adjustments. It was way too long–an hour and fifteen minutes–and that doesn’t include the 18-minute HIIT bout right after. Of course, with pain comes endorphins and I was on a major high when it was over. As you can see in the photo, my legs remain pudgy so I am far from reaching my goals. Tomorrow is rest day a.k.a. anxiety and less calories day. I am not looking forward to it.

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Smile Though Your Shoes are Breakin’

Whenever I look at blogs of people who exercise, I often see that they have nice workout clothes, most of them signature ones like those made by Nike and Adidas. I, on the other hand, use these babies:

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ImageI’ve had them for two years and I first used them during a school field trip where we did a lot of trekking. The next time you have the urge to get new shoes because you know that everyone at the gym or in the streets will be mesmerized by them, think about me and my smiling shoes. I can’t afford to buy new ones, not even a cheap pair, but that doesn’t stop me from working hard everyday. No excuses!

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I Refuse to Be a Rabbit

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This week, my workout routine went through a major overhaul in my desire to stop being a frickin’ cardio bunny. I am now more focused on weight training and have split my days into upper body days and lower body days, which I have also split into upper body day 1 & 2 and lower body day 1 & 2 when I saw that the workouts were too long. I still do steady-state afterwards for the sake of endurance but I do it for only 15-30 minutes. I also managed to do HIIT after my lower body day 2 (Thursday) since the exercises I did didn’t seem to be that taxing (I found out the day after, however, that they were actually as tough as my lower body day 1 exercises when I could not do a single Russian Twist due to my glutes hurting like hell) and I will do another HIIT round later afternoon.

So now my schedule looks like this:

Monday – Lower Body 1 + Steady-State

Tuesday – Upper Body 1 + Steady-State

Wednesday – Off

Thursday – Lower Body 2 + HIIT

Friday – Upper Body 2 + Steady-State

Saturday – HIIT

Sunday – Off

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I think that what’s amazing about weight training is, while you’re doing it, it doesn’t feel like it’s going to do that much damage because it’s not steady-state cardio that’ll squeeze all the air and sweat out of you. It’s fun and almost relaxing at some point. But then, the next morning, your muscles prove you wrong by being sore and stiff to the core. The pain slowly sneaks up on you and I prefer that a whole lot more than feeling death looming over me while I’m on the elliptical.

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I expressed my desire to do yoga in my last entry and I’m glad to announce that I have began practicing the beginner poses and am loving them. I don’t do yoga for a long time, though; I just do it whenever I feel like it. My favorite poses are the ones that stretch my calves and hamstrings nicely such as the downward-facing dog pose and the wide-legged forward bend. I’m hoping that my gargantuan calves will slim down in the future.

As for other, still-somehow-related-to-health updates, one of my close friends asked if I wanted to go with her to a place here called Sagada. It’s a tourist spot that’s pretty far from the capital where I am, around 14 hours. She suggested that we take a packaged tour but when I made my own itinerary, I found that we could decrease the expenses by $30 (the tour costs $130) while doing more activities. The trip will involve spelunking and generous amounts of trekking, a.k.a. fun exercise! I have yet to ask my mother for money (I’m unemployed and not looking and I’m not sorry hahaha) but knowing that I could plan a cheaper, more action-packed trip on my own makes me feel really good. I may not be well-traveled but I will be in the future. I have to start practicing my backpacker skills if I want to be a successful wanderer. 🙂

Happy weekend, everyone!

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Bored to Cardio Death

Steady-state cardio. I thought I could learn to love it; after all, I have a friend who practically lives for running hours at a time and has found that it helps her clear her mind. I, however, am simply not a cardio baby. I know that steady-state cardio has benefits but man, it is boring. I have no idea what my friend thinks about while she’s running but by my tenth minute on the elliptical, my brain is already going, “Stop, stop, STOP. This is pointless. You have forty more minutes, what the hell. This is a waste of time. I want a fucking nap. Give me a nap, woman!” I swear, I feel like a hamster on a wheel while I’m doing steady-state. And yes, I’ve tried the treadmill, and goodness gracious, using it is even duller than being on the elliptical–at least in the latter, you have three poses of choice, but that doesn’t add a lot of excitement.

Perhaps the only cure for this is to do HIIT instead. Months ago, that was my cardio of choice. Twenty minutes of huffing, puffing, and sweating torrents felt awesome, and boy did I lose weight. Still, I think I’m not yet fit enough to handle HIIT again (I’ll probably do it once I finish the 30 Day Shred), and if I remember correctly, doing HIIT and weight training on alternate days wore me out to the core, which led to me quitting exercise altogether. I don’t want  that to happen anymore. I want to exercise six days a week, eat healthy foods, and improve my body image forever and ever. I have to figure out a routine that I can stick to in the long run.

I’m thinking of doing yoga to add variation to my exercises but my number one problem about it is the time. When do I practice yoga? For how long should one session be? Can I do it before weight lifting or cardio? I don’t want to take yoga classes because, well, I can’t afford it and I might not be able to commit to it. Hmm, I have a lot of research to do. I took yoga for PE for one semester when I was in Korea but other than that I am an ultimate beginner. Though I’m also interested in Pilates, I’m not sure if I can acquire the equipment needed for it.

Writing this post has been triggered by the fact that even listening to Welcome to Night Vale (which I have recently fallen in love with) did not keep the almost suicidal and homicidal thoughts away while I was on the elliptical. Ugh, the road to fitness is a true bitch on a stick.

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Tiny Lifestyle Update

I’m rejoicing because we have apples, bananas, papayas, and jackfruit in the house. I usually just eat apples and bananas (which is a sucky way to live, by the way) so the additional variety is awesome. I was also able to buy soy milk yesterday to use for post-workout nutrition. Hopefully this week will be better to me than the last one. I’ll be alternating cardio and strength days with my rest day being Sunday. Cardio alone just doesn’t work for me. Also, a high raw vegan diet has given me the fastest weight loss results. That’s how I reached 96 lbs. before, and that was without exercising. That was a bad idea, though, because I ended up being kinda skinny fat. I’m not sure what the results of cardio + strength + a high raw vegan diet will be but I’ll keep you guys updated.