Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Dropped 11kg and 2 dress size, darlings!!

Yeay! I should reward myself with something really expensive this week! Too bad I don't have that much money for lavish things now.
Anyway, I weighed myself this morning and yippie I have lost a total of 11kg since February 2014. *Lompat Bintang*

Wore this old kebaya for Zumba Raya themed class at The Curve

It has been a tough journey. This year I took another approach to weight loss. I started attending dance classes seriously since Chinese New Year. I started with 3 Zumba classes each week - on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. After getting some results, I joined Sh'bam class once a week on Tuesday mornings.
After a few months, when I thought that my knees were a lot stronger, I started doing Body Jam classes once a week on Saturday mornings.
So, the three types of dance classes have helped me a lot in this journey. I decided not to pursue running since my knees were not in good condition. Zumba helped to strengthen my core and legs, but I had to be really patient to see the results.
The most effective one had to be Body Jam classes. I used to be a Body Jammer way back in 2005, 2006. Most of the instructors I followed back then are no longer teaching the class. Although the choreography now is a lot different than 9 years ago, the classes are getting a lot better. The music used are remixes but familiar to my ears.
Sh'bam and Zumba are quite new to me. Sh'bam uses popular music, all radio friendly and some remixes. It's like going clubbing early in the morning. It's a 45 minute class but I guarantee you'll be sweating like mad even after the 4th song. A lot of hopping, jumping and 'flying' involved in this class. It took me some time to learn the jumping part. I haven't done any jumping, not even jumping jack for a long, long time.
Zumba is basically latin inspired dance. My stiff body took about three months to get used to the moves. Salsa, mambo, samba, cumbia, cha cha - they're using all the basic steps but not easy for me. I can master Body Combat moves in an hour, but latin dance steps are a huge challenge to me.

Body Jammers group photo June 2014

Sh'bammers group photo June 2014

Zumba classmates August 2014

Zumba World Cup theme June 2014

Zumba class in progress - warm up track - June 2014


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Finally.... an update!

I haven't posted anything here since October 2011! That's almost 2 years of laziness, I know!
So, where should I start? What should I update first?
Perhaps I should start the entry with my current weight. Well, after almost a year of neglect, well not really neglecting my health, I had a bad fall in December 2011 and another fall in December 2012, I look like someone who has been on a yoyo diet. Life has been funny. I was not able to run for quite some time. My gym sessions had been reduced to once or twice a month between March 2012 - October 2012.
My right knee and back were affected after the fall I had in December 2012. It took a few months to recover. I only started exercising again some time in late February 2013.
Between January - November 2012 my weight skyrocketed to a new height. I was almost as heavy as my 9 months pregnant self. It really scared me when I was getting heart palpitations in October 2012. So, I went to see a cardiologist and she did all the necessary tests. Thank god everything was OK.
I quit my job in November 2012 and stayed at home since. Of course, my children were happy to have their mom at home everyday. Early in the morning (or the night before) they would tell me what they'd like to have for lunch. So, I have been sharpening my cooking skills ever since.
The good thing about eating home cooked food, I managed to control my portion and ensure only healthy dishes are served on the table. The results are slow but I'm not complaining - lost 6 kg in 6 months. Not that bad, eh?
So, now after Ramadhan and Eid celebration, I'm hitting the gym on a more regular basis. Although my knees can't handle BodyCombat classes anymore, I'm happy with Zumba and (sometimes) BodyJam. As long as the instructor plays my favorite tracks, that will keep me returning to the classes.




Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Bouncing back!

Yeah, I'm bouncing back to the gym. After more than 2 months of not exercising (yeah, not even brisk walking), I think I've gained enough fat so it's about time to re-start gymming. I was not motivated to exercise at all after fasting month and Syawal. Although I didn't attend many open houses, the pounds were piling like nobody's business.
My work schedule was also quite tight, so we ate out a lot for the past 2 and a half months. The worst thing about eating out is that I feel obliged to finish everything on the plate. Just imagine, the normal nasi beriyani serving at the mamak can come close to 1000 kCal (for those who are counting). So, nasi beriyani plus bandung soda plus papadom can simply total up to 1400 kCal!!
Ok, that's scary when we know how low our metabolic rate is. I should be taking about 1700 kCal perday and my body (with this age) burns about 2000 kCal (if I don't exercise).
If one meal is close to 1400 kCal, 3 meals must have been about 2500 kCal if not more. With that extra 500 kCal, it's not a surprise I gained a few kg within a few months' time.
That's seriously unhealthy.
So, starting from Wednesday, 12th Oct 2011, I started working out again. It was not easy as I had to start slow. I couldn't run as I used to a few months ago. My knees were getting weaker and I was out of breath after cycling for 5 minutes. That's how unfit I was.
Just imagine, 2.5 months of not exercising can do that to my fitness level. What if I stop working out for years? What would happen to my body?
I might get a Personal Trainer this time just so that I'm more motivated and consistent. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

No update means not many activities

Ok, I last updated in March 2011. Since then I've only been to the gym once a week. That's how not frequent and not consistent I was. March, April and May have been really hectic. I have three concurrent projects whereby I'm actively involved in the deployments. Having a Team Leader title is not an excuse to be a generalist. There are still a lot of technical stuffs that I have to have hands on skills. Otherwise, technical certifications won't be put in my appraisal plan, right?
In April, I discovered that my BP was slightly high. Well, let's just say that it was high that the Doctor looked worried after taking the third reading that week. I was actually really frustrated. Having lived a rather healthy life for the past 3 years and cooked at home more frequent than ever and yet the BP still shot up. Even my bad cholesterol level has gone down significantly.
So, I have been on medication since April. The meds made me feel like floating and I couldn't really focus on my work. I stopped taking them for almost a week. After that, I continued with the meds and it was better, no more floating. Because of that, I'd rather go home straight from work and took a short nap before Maghrib. I told myself that I needed extra rest and sleep. I've been neglecting those two for several months.
Early last week, I went for a follow up session with the doctor. My BP has gone down to almost normal level (normal for a 37 year old woman). Although my BP was better during my pregnancy, but the reading now is considered okay and not worrying.
I guess I will start running actively next week (procrastinate.... and procrastinate some more... hehehe)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Trying Outdoor

I've been doing my little runs since June 2010. So far, I've done one outdoor brisk walking session last year and yesterday I decided to run along the roads near my house.

I brisk walked for about 200 meters before started running. Firstly, it was a totally different experience than running on the treadmill in a comfortable, air conditioned gym with encouraging music and TV screens showing ASTRO programmes. I noticed that there was more stress on both of my knees, perhaps whenever I run on the treadmill it helped to lower the impact. Running against the wind was also another challenge. Usually it was not too windy in my area but yesterday, when I ran I could feel that extra effort was needed to bring my body forward. Having these extra kg on my body was another big factor. Big body, bigger friction against the wind? Haha.

I also had to be extra careful on the grassy areas as I could see piles of dog poo left there by the dog owners. Too bad our Majlis Perbandaran never thought about enforcing these people to pick whatever gold their dogs produce. I'm not racist, but somehow this made me feel that the Muslim and Malay sensitivity is being ignored by some quarters.

My runs Sep 2010 - Feb 2011: Not as frequent as I wanted
Besides that, I also realized that there were way too many cars in the neighbourhood. There were also Mat Rempits and children riding bicycles to the nearest playground. These two categories of riders were quite dangerous as they treated the road like their own. They're young, immature (and stupid), yes I knew that. But why can't their parents spend some time educating them on road safety? They're even hazardous to some people who were trying to jog in this area (like me!).

So, it was not a really pleasant experience running in my neighbourhood. I decided to go back to the treadmills at the gym where there's no Mat Rempit and dog poo. 

Friday, January 28, 2011

My 2010 runs

How did I fare in my running in 2010? Well, here's some statistics. Since I only started running in the middle of 2010, so these data were for 6 months period. 


I was so proud to see this. I haven't ran this far since I left school. Although I need to run more frequent than just once a week, I have to be happy to stick to brisk walking on weekends. Slotting in running sessions in my currently extra busy schedule is a real challenge now. A few adjustments need to be done this year if I were to improve on my running. 



My best month was July and I think I know why. We went to the UK in June so being there alone was inspiring enough to start running more seriously. I saw so many people ran in the UK during summer. In fact there were people running as late as 10pm. In my housing area in Puchong many neighbors have started running in the morning and weekends too.  So this year I hope I'll be continuously motivated to run. 


Monday, October 25, 2010

Motivation

Many friends asked what keeps me sticking to my gym routine and the fact that many of my friends have terminated their gym membership made some people wonder why I haven't give up yet. Although I slacked a few times and thinking about it I think I'd slack at least twice a year. Once during puasa/raya and then once again during year end period (Nov-Dec). It's a recognizable pattern now so hopefully next year I'll have a Plan to ensure I don't slack.

I don't have many tips on motivating myself to work out. So, in this entry I'll share with you some of the things that really helped especially when I was down and lost interested to exercise.

Good music
I researched, borrowed, bought, copied songs that can be used for my cardio sessions. Now that I'm more into running, I Google suitable playlists. Sometimes, I go through the old CDs I keep in some forgotten boxes in the house. With iTunes Genius, now it's easier to group songs and create playlists. My faithful iPod has served me for more than 3 years now, I love it so much although now I can't store all of my songs there anymore. So I rotate the playlists to be synced with it.

Good clothes
I invested a lot in gym attire. It started with just 2 Adidas workout pants, 1 Nike Sportsbra and 1 Nike workout top. Whenever I felt that I was about to slack, I'd go to the nearest shopping mall and visited either Al Ikhsan, Nike, Adidas or departmental stores (sportswear section). After about 5 years joining the gym, now I have at least 5 sets of gym attire (complete with headgear). The most important pieces are the sportsbra and headgear. They made me feel comfortable and complete.

Good shoes (oh, what's new... hehe)
I've used 5 pairs of trainers so far. Different trainers for different purpose. When I used to go to group exercise classes, I invested in indoor trainers - suitable for that sometimes slippery studio floor. Lately, I've been investing in good running shoes from Nike (complete with Nike sportsband - for tracking).

Tools and gadgets
Besides the iPod, the Nike sportsband has helped a lot in motivating me to run further, faster and more often. It keeps all my running records and upload them to Nikeplus website. I can monitor my progress and target to become a better runner. I can also track how many calories I've burned since I started running.

New clothes (clothes again... hehe)
I tricked myself into believing that I have a better body by buying clothes that complement my figure. Know what's best for you and it'll make you feel good when you have them on. Most of the times, it's really frustrating when we're not losing any weight even after all those gym session and healthy eating. In order not to feel beaten, I'd shop for new clothes that I know would make me look and feel good. Once I hear three friends give their compliments, that's enough to get me excited to work out again. And harder than before.

Good friends
They're my best advisors/critics. I listen to them. None of them ever told me that they don't see any difference after all those hard work I've done. Perhaps there were results, or perhaps there were none but they always there to tell me to continue whatever I've been doing - work my ass off at the gym.