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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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Arm of the Tiger

Arm of the Tiger

This is such a lame amount of progress but oh my goodness I did not have this much of a curve a month ago! Before, whenever I posed like this, my arm would just be straight which I really hated because I felt like a cartoon character. Now I have bigger arm muscles, YAY! Today is upper body day so I’ll be sculpting my guns even more. Woot woot! (Excuse my strange-looking clavicle, haha!)

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The Other Kind of Travel

Active travel. Why have I heard of it only today? It’s probably because I don’t know of anyone who does it–travelling in other people’s books entails simply going to a place, taking pictures, sightseeing, discovering the history behind geographies, and having a taste of local cuisine–and that to me is a tad bit disappointing. I don’t know if it’s because of the lack of physical activities in people’s lives today or the tight hold of city life on them telling them to be wary of Mother Nature and her array of threats in the form of cliffs, wild animals, and poison berries; whatever the reason is, it has to disappear from the face of the earth. To date, my only active travel experiences are 1) hiking a mountain for four hours straight and then going down for several more hours in torrential rain and ankle-deep flood threatening to wash us away into an untimely death, and 2) island hopping to swim and snorkel among schools of fish addicted to pieces of bread. Aside from monetary problems, like I said earlier, the thought of active travel has not crossed my mind until only a couple of hours ago when I read about cycling in Death Valley (an instant addition to my bucket list). That led me to researching about physically challenging local trips and, ultimately, to the term which makes me giggle like a schoolgirl in excitement.

Active travel. Doesn’t that sound beautiful or what?

I spoke with my mother last night about our spelunking and trekking trip to Sagada and she reluctantly agreed to give me the money to make it happen. She thought that I was going to ask for a converted amount of $232 which I was appalled at. First off, her inexperience in travelling has seemingly led to her overestimation of the expenses for a trip. Secondly, she does not know that she has passed on her being a cheapskate to me. And third, well there’s no third but I felt that coming up with just two things wasn’t right. Anyway, I quickly explained that I needed less than half of that amount and that it included everything. She wasn’t able to protest much after that. So, my third active travel adventure will definitely happen soon, and I plan on making the most out of it.

In preparation, I will be training harder starting tomorrow. I have less than three weeks to get into a much better shape in terms of strength and endurance. I am the one who planned the itinerary and made the budget so I only hope that my friend will be able to do all the activities with me. She’s trim but she doesn’t exercise due to her schedule as a grad student and I’m worried that, like a lot of the people who have gone on the same journey, she’ll be too tired and sore by the third day to do anything else other than walk around and go on a food trip. I might have to ask her to jog or at least walk for a minimum of thirty minutes a day every day before our trip. Cross fingers that she’ll agree to do it.

My goal is to be able to partake in more active travel trips in the near future. I want to swim, climb, trek, dive, pedal, and row my way across the world. I already have one adventure in mind: climbing Mt. Pulag, the third highest mountain in the country. I’ve read about people awakening to a sea of clouds and that, to me, is something worth seeing. Oh, and I would like a photo of me doing a handstand on the summit, haha! I’ll be working hard on my yoga to be able to do that little number. Nothing is impossible!

I need to get a job soon. ;;;

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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.