Fitness & Vanities, Looking Good

This Is How A Perfectionist/Procrastinator Goes Back to Exercising

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I probably had my mouth agape while sleeping last night. And I probably was snoring. And it seems like I was stuck in place like an immobile statue to the bed. And I am aching all over. It’s especially brutal when I go down the stairs.

Whatever!

I’ve put it off for long enough …

I am finally exercising again! (Squeal!)Β  πŸ€— πŸ€— πŸ€—

I didn’t think it would be such a feat, but now that I think about it, my worrying about what to wear, where to exercise, how to exercise, how long to exercise, how often … that was just the perfectionist me procrastinating. I didn’t get it at first because I love to exercise. And I have no problem doing it at home. But I guess the body is a sneaky little thing, it likes to be lazy.

Well, lazy won’t get rid of my kangaroo pouch 😀 I’ve lost some post-baby weight already but, this pouch out front that’s just ruining my silhouette, it won’t go away without some deliberate physical activity.

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First I had to get me a drill sergeant whose role was to tell me motivation started with getting off my fat assΒ πŸ’₯ (she actually said it like that!) and that, if it’s proving to be such a gargantuan effort to do something, that I should just start with blocking off the time. It didn’t matter if all I did was walk in place. Just honor that time as exercise time. Rinse and repeat until momentum builds up.

Well that’s what I did but the standing in place was a 5 min warm-up video by my favorite exercise team Daniel & Kelli, because as I stood there I thought “might as well”. And I followed that with a 5 minute cool down video because, having already warmed up I thought, “might as well”.

I allowed the first couple of days to not be perfect. To spend time tweaking stuff including creating a routine that would include feeding time for my baby. By Friday I had it down patΒ πŸ‘ Which brings us to today’s glorious muscle soreness 🀩, proof that all I needed was to start where I was and improve from there.

So what’s the lesson here?

For fellow perfectionists/procrastinators it is this:

  1. Get a coach/cheerleader/drill sergeant (whatever works) to motivate you because it really starts with your head. And if there’s nobody in your life that fits the bill (or you don’t want to spend the money) there are podcasts. I first had to sift through a few podcasts before I found Corinne, and her no-bs style of telling it like it is was just the kick in the arse I needed.
  2. If necessary, start ridiculously small. So small that you tell yourself, “Oh what the heck, I can do more than that”.
  3. Keep doing it and build on from there. You’re looking good, sexy thing! 🀩
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Home & Heart

Last Minute 2017 Goals

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Hi everyone! How y’all doin? πŸ‘‹

There’s only about 2 weeks left of 2017 and I guess everybody’s gearing up for maximum holiday enjoyment, right? Unfortunately for us, we have to stay in sleepy Batam for Christmas since the baby has no passport yet ☹️☹️ This really is a bummerΒ  for me who, unlike the eldest and the hubs who get a break from school and work, could really benefit from a change in pace & scenery.

Oh well, all the better to make up for this in 2018 then.

The urge to mope is very strong but I’ve chosen instead to end the year strong by doubling down on some goals for the remaining 2 weeks:

  1. Break-fast like a champion

This book said that if you find yourself procrastinating on a goal, chances are, that goal is too big and must be broken down into smaller pieces. So wise! 😏

For weeks now I’ve attempted in vain to do something about my diet (or lack thereof). I am saddled with post-natal weight (& cellulite! 😱😱😱) that I am anxious to be rid of. Unfortunately, all my strategies and tricks in the past just won’t work – sleep deprivation, breastfeeding and buying food from the outside (instead of hiring a nanny I chose not to cook instead) undermine my efforts.

But there must be something I can do, right? If only to feel some semblance of control?

My initial goal was to start cooking again so I’d have more control over what we ate.Β  But this is just not something I want to take on at this time with the baby basically running my day. Then IΒ  thought of cutting out carbs later in the day and well, anybody who’s breastfeeding probably knows how crazy that is. I think I thought of cutting out junkfood too but I don’t really eat that much of it so the move didn’t feel like enough …

Anyway, I finally had the brilliant idea of focusing on one meal instead, and doing that right. And since mornings provide the most self-control and sets the tone for the day, breakfast was a logical choice.

So the goal now reads: eat a solid breakfast before feeling ravenous every single day.

2.Β  Do Post natal abdominal-muscle-recovery exercises every Monday, Wednesday & Friday

I’m already past the 2-months waiting period for getting back to exercise and I’m rearing to go.Β  Luckily, I came across the idea of post-natal abdominal strengthening/recovery exercises before starting anything (well, this isn’t 100% true! πŸ€₯) or else I’d have set myself up for some self-inflicted damage.

I’m not a big fan of 1) slow exercises and 2) those that you do lying down, so this is a real challenge for me. But I want to get back to my original shape and this is standing in the way so … big girl panties on!

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3.Β  Seriously Bond with Eldest

I’ve been nagged by a feeling of having neglected my eldest since the baby’s arrival and still feel that I can do better in this area. A recent incident at her school (we’ll talk about this in a separate post) drove this goal to the top of my priority list.

Fortunately today marks the start of a 3-week school break which gives us plenty of time to bond. The bonding activities might be partially motivated by something juicy (like I said, I’ll tell you later!) but it’s there and I’m taking advantage of it.

So for these 3 weeks, Eldest gets a lot of spotlight.

 

Aaaaand yes, that’s all for now. Wish me luck! I better do those exercises while baby is still slumbering 😁 Updates in the next upcoming posts! Mmmwah! πŸ’‹

 

Fitness & Vanities

New House New Strategy

front-doorNothing like a new environment to upset the old and bring in the new! πŸ˜ƒ I’m talking about my diet-n-fitness regime here which went through some sort of upheaval last week when I decided to do intermittent fasting, quitting ALL sugar and carbs cold turkey and … hoping that the seas would part for me as it did for Moses 😡😁

Oh and, I also tried butter in my [black] coffee 😬😬😬

Now I’ve NEVER even tried black coffee before. My coffee has always had cream and enough sugar to take most of the bitterness out. But nope, I had to be the madwoman that I (sometimes) am and do everything at the same time! Including buttered coffee o_O

So OF COURSE I had almost zero energy and couldn’t even make it halfway through a Fitness Marshall dance video without feeling totally deflated 😩

(I think the absence of my bats, rats and roaches has gone to my coconut! πŸ™ƒ)

Fortunately I’ve since gathered my marbles 😁 and decided to just focus on ONE thing this week and up until that ONE thing becomes second nature. I’ve decided to focus on intermittent fasting (IF), which for me is until 11AM (the equiv of a 16h fast).

Since this week is already my second week of IF, the struggle is a bit less and black coffee (sans the butter, thank you!) is optional. I just make sure to drink plenty of water and keep myself mentally engaged.

I’m still doing my workouts but I’ve scaled down the intensity and make sure to just do about 30 mins per day.

Why am I doing this, you ask? Good question! 😁

As the title of this blog implies I’m also a vain creature. My vanity is mostly expressed through weight management, looking good in my birthday suit and enhancing the natural. (Nurturing great skin as opposed to wearing lots of make-up, for example).

IF falls into the weight management category obviously. Not that I need to lose weight – although there’s always those pesky last 5 pounds πŸ˜’πŸ˜’ Just that anything that I think will simplify weight management for me is worth the exploration.

And there you have it, my little adventure of the week (or maybe month).

Have any of you guys tried IF (intermittent fasting)? What is/has been your experience of it?

Fitness & Vanities

Flat Belly Made Easier πŸ˜‰

Happy Monday beautiful people! ☺️

Sometimes (because most times I use musicπŸ’ƒπŸ’ƒπŸ’ƒ), when I need to get myself motivated to exercise, I scour the net for nutrition or fitness infographics. A few days ago I found this and thought you’d find it interesting too – might not be new information but a little reminder can’t hurt, right? ❀️ πŸ˜€

Oh and, I’m all for the dark chocolate advice. You too?! XD XD

Have a strong start to your week, peeps!

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Fitness & Vanities

Why SAHMs Should Exercise πŸ’ƒπŸ’ͺπŸƒ

Several days ago I confessed to feeling bored and that, because I’m also a SAHM, this has triggered some sort of specific research into this notionΒ  of ‘housewife boredom’.

I’ve since discovered that housewives’ schedules run the gamut from not having enough time to even comb one’s hair to just twiddling thumbs until it’s time to prepare dinner o_O I found out as well that ‘housewife boredom’ also stems from a need to occupy time with something productive, challenging and self- nurturing ❀

Every housewife will have her own preferred solution to this predicament, but one that I (and obviously a lot of other health and wellness proponents) strongly recommend is ⭐ exercise ⭐ ❀

Exercise has given me a wealth of benefits, more so as a SAHM, and I cannot imagine life without it πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ Here are my reasons:

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  1. It gives you something to do ⭐

If the lack of structure and/or the abundance of idle time is the culprit, then establishing a regular exercise schedule is a life-saver.Β  This solution is furthermore scalable in terms of time, effort and interest required:Β  you can join a gym, take a walk, jump rope at home, do 15 minutes of flexibility stretches in your PJs or start with a plank for 1 minute each day if this is all you can do.

      2.  It releases feel-good endorphins ⭐

Being cooped up at home for most of the time and the lack of adult conversion can get us SAHMs into a funk o_O We therefore need a readily available source of feel-good hormones handy – exercise!Β  It’s not a secret how exercise can make you feel good.Β  Read more about this here, here and here.

      3.  It gives you confidence ⭐

While I exercise I am constantly reminded of how awesome the human body is πŸ™‚ I appreciate my body all the more when I notice it is responding to all that strength training I am doing (hello, toned midsection!), how much more flexible I have become and how much longer I can do dance fitness videos.

As you get better at your choice of physical activity, you come to appreciate your body more and more and cannot help but feel gratitude and pride for everything it is doing and can do for you.

At appearance level, exercise will make you walk taller and straighter as lethargy will no longer weigh you down. In its place will be ease of movement and vitality.Β  And that’s confidence boosting. And sexy! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰

Β Β Β Β Β  4.Β  It is self-nurturing.

Exercise time is ‘your time’.Β  It turns the focus back on us, we’re doing something for ourselves that will enhance the quality of our lives and by association, our family’s too.Β  It takes away stress and anxiety and puts sparkle and energy in its place.Β  That’s exciting, isn’t it? πŸ™‚

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It’s actually quite easy to establish an exercise routine once you’ve set your mind to it.Β  My tips are – find something that you enjoy doing, start small, and do it at the same time each day.

Know that in the beginning your old self will do everything it can to stop you from doing it, and it is very good at doing so! o_O o_O But just remember that a few days is all it takes to change your internal dialogue and just 3 weeks to establish the habit.Β  Before you know it, you’ll be signing up for an organized run, or a Zumba master class! πŸ™‚

Now log off and go! πŸ’ƒβ€οΈβ€πŸ’ƒ

Blogging, Fitness & Vanities

Gotta Make Up for Yesterday! πŸ˜ƒ πŸ˜„

Hello beautiful people! 😘

This post should’ve gone out yesterday, but I totes forgot that yesterday was Monday (this is a blatant lie, but you can’t blame me for trying)! 🀣

Seriously though, I owe you an update on my 3rd weekly challenge and the revelation of my 4th and final weekly challenge for the month.

So here we go …

… but before that, let’s warm-up to my favorite exercise video. I guarantee we’ll have fun 😁😁

 

 

 

Okay, are we warmed up now? πŸ˜€

So my 3rd weekly challenge is to eliminate mindless snacking. I picked this as a challenge because I’m trying to be vigilant about weight creep … wait, what is weight creep, I hear you ask? Well, that’s when our weight slowly creeps up, usually inadvertently on our part, due to certain repeated counterproductive behaviors that often become habits. Mindless snacking being one of them.

Snacking mindlessly has got to be one of a SAHM’s bane, because the circumstances are just so conducive for it. In my case, the fridge is always loaded because we are a family that L❀️‍VE sweets!

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To me mindless snacking is like weeds in your garden. They grow back, so you have to be watchful and ready to remove them so the garden remains pretty.

When I decided to take this up as a weekly challenge last week what I had in mind was to understand my natural rhythm so I could manage cravings and make better food choices without feeling deprived & miserable.

The steps I took:

1.Β  I first identified the times I felt naturally hungry.

There’s no point working against natural hunger, especially when like me, you’re exercising on most days. Trying to deny it just makes us focus on food all the more.

I was able to identify that I was naturally hungry at 9AM (breakfast), anywhere between 12N-1PM (lunchtime), then again at around 3-4PM (big snack), and around 7PM (light dinner).

2. I also took note of what I liked to eat during these times.

I don’t know about you, but denying myself something because it’s high on the Glycemic index even if it’s what I want at that particular moment leads to baaaaaad, uncontrolableΒ  cravings later on. I’ve experienced this SO many times already that I’m now schooled in honoring my tastebuds. I found out I needed simple carbs (like rice, bread, pasta) and protein in most meals or else I just wouldn’t be satisfied.

Oh and, a sweet treat from time to time is also a secret to success. (Ladies don’t be in denial, when that PMS rears its stubborn head, hell knows no fury …. Am just keeping it real!) πŸ˜„

3. Plan accordingly without sacrifice.

With information on when and what, I am able to plan my meals accordingly. Eating at designated times, even if I wasn’t really that hungry (but adjusting to my level of hunger), kept most cravings, mindless snacking & even over-eating at bay.

I noticed in the past that if I didn’t eat at regular intervals and just waited for my stomach to snap at me, I’d graze on readily available convenience food. I would end up eating too much empty calories and still over-eat at the next meal 😒

coffee and cinnamon

So that was my 3rd weekly challenge for April. How about you, do you ever take on a self-imposed weekly or monthly challenge? Tell me about it! πŸ˜ƒ

And now the 4th weekly challenge is a blogging challenge; a 3-day Quote Challenge which I shall begin tomorrow.

I hope! πŸ˜‰

But before I let you go, places everyone! All that talk about meal planning has gotten me in the mood to dance – let’s get our money now, shall we? πŸ˜„

 

Blogging, Fitness & Vanities

Weekly Challenge Update!

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“You don’t need a New Year to make a change.

All you need is a Monday” πŸ˜€

Hey everyone! IssanotherMonday as you might have noticed already and here on OSB&V I usually dedicate Mondays to positive changes and fitness. For April I had the hilarious idea of taking on weekly challenges and so here we are, with week 3 begging for its ration XD

But first, a quick update on the 2 weekly challenges I took on for last week:

Challenge #1:

Improve my wheel pose by investing time in practicing it, preferably on a daily basis.

The pros:

I did get to improve my wheel pose in the sense that it is much easier for me to heave myself off of the mat than ever before, as well as being able to stay longer in the pose enough to make a full mental review of my form.Β  My wrists are getting on with the program as well, perhaps sensing the solemnity of my intention πŸ˜€ And, I was able to practice for 4 days, thank you very much!

The cons:

I found out my lower body is ready and willing to cooperate, but my upper body is not – in particular, my arms and upper back.

I realized I need to invest more time in exercises for opening my back and shoulders. I did this video on some days for warming up:

And it would be a HAPPY day indeed if I can do this ❀ ❀ ❀ (see video below):

Can I possibly get any crazier?! XD

BTW I hope you guys aren’t expecting a before/after picture because then I’ll have to disappoint you – I’m just not there yet LOL! XD XD

Challenge #2:

Finish an online work-from-home course.

I picked this challenge for 2 reasons.

A) It must not conflict with challenge #1 and

B) to broaden my horizons instead of working off of what I already have.

The course I took is Work From Home – 5 Ways To Work From Home and is a free and introductory course on Udemy. It provides an overview ofΒ  5 legitimate ways (or business models) to earn income from home and walks you through the personality types suited to each business model, the key elements related to each, and ends with showing the potential income range for each.

But The Mind Does Wander

During the course however, I found myself straying several times to other sites looking for crochet patterns XD XD

That is NOT to say the course is boring! As a matter of fact, I find the instructor very affable and the course easy to follow. At some points during the course a sliver of inspiration would cross my mind that I could earn enough money from home to cover my yarn-sprees πŸ˜‡ πŸ˜‡ πŸ˜‡

And There Was This Promise

But I would immediately recall the promise I made to myself that if ever I should work again it will be for fun, something that will not come with me to my home at the end of the day, cause me to put too much salt in my Bolognese sauce, nor haunt me in my sleep.

Now for those of you who don’t know it yet, I used to have a corporate job in Marketing in my previous life. Here’s why I left. And I’ve never been happier πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

I heard a loud clap of thunder and that was that πŸ™

What I learned:

Home is a sacred space I do not want to associate with ‘work’ just yet, or maybe ever.Β  As well, I’m still “detoxifying” – unwinding from the stresses of my previous life, having a ball rediscovering my crazy-playful side, enjoying each day emancipated from time and deadlines, immensely appreciative that my dreams are filled with colorful yarn, gracefully effortless backbends, and copious amounts of heavenly brewed coffee ❀ ❀ ❀

We shall thus move on …

Challenge # 3:

Eliminate mindless snacking on unhealthy food.

Join me back next Monday for updates πŸ‘ πŸ™‚