Traveling to a country with a lot of good food, giant portions, unlimited supply of dairy, decadent desserts and sweets really led me to gain weight. And the fact that I had zero exercise, I lacked sleep, and had a bad diet prior to that added to the cause why the needle in my weighing scale just went up. This was my dilemma about a year ago when I got back from my vacation in New Zealand.
It was such a struggle trying to fit into my small-size clothes. I had to accept already that I had to wear medium-size (or sometimes large!) and that most of what I wear aren’t that flattering anymore. I had to find a “good angle” when I or someone was taking my portraits just to hide my flabs. I also felt sluggish and always tired.
The challenge: Go back from medium to small!
I returned to Philippines last January 2013 and I was at my heaviest at about 115 lbs. (or even 120?!) with my 5’1″ height. It was only until late February that I decided to really do something about this weight gain. I missed my small frame self.
How I lost the holiday fat
1. Barre3 classes – It’s a combination of Pilates, Yoga, and Ballet in one powerful workout. I enrolled in a class in The Spa, Alabang. Since it was my first time to exercise again after a long time, I had to embrace the Barre3 “earthquakes.” It’s that sensation in which my muscles were shaking! But this is said to be a good sign of burning calories and building flexibility and strength.
2. TRX suspension training and Circuit training – TRX uses a Suspension Trainer tool which leverages on gravity and your bodyweight to perform different kinds of exercises to target different areas. I thought Barre3 was difficult. Not until I enrolled in our company’s TRX / Circuit training class after 6 weeks of Barre3. Our coach also combined it with circuit training with high intensity interval exercises. My heart rate was surely through the roof but it felt good each time I discover that I was already getting stronger.
3. Fitness apps and YouTube videos – I downloaded Nike Training Club app and followed Jillian Michaels‘ You Tube videos (or just search for other exercises and it would give you hundreds of results). It’s a good alternative if I don’t have time to go to a fitness studio/gym. Recently, that’s just what I’ve been doing–working out at home after running outside.
4. Diet (high protein, low carbohydrates) – Don’t do crash diet. Just eat HEALTHY to boost metabolism and lose those extra pounds. Switch to fish, chicken, red meat, eggs, tofu, high fiber like rolled oats, whole wheat bread or red rice, fruits and vegetables. Good thing I’m not into sweets or sodas so giving up on that wasn’t a problem for me. But I loved those quick snacks though like Lucky Me Pancit Canton or junk food like Chicharon ni Mang Juan or those processed foods with preservatives like corned beef. They just had to go.
5. No to fast food! – I have to emphasize on this because this was one of the culprits why I started gaining the pounds. Before, I used to eat out for breakfast at McDonalds or I always gave in to my cravings for Coke float or sundae and french fries. Before I knew it, I was getting heavy. So I had cut this one out.
5. Jogging – I hated running. Always have. But I tried to give it a chance. 3 times a week, I jog and it’s starting to feel good as I see myself progressing. It’s also my time to pray and just reflect on things.
6. Motivation – Have an inspiration and keep focused. My first motivation was that I was traveling to the States on the 2nd half of 2013 and I wanted to be in shape by the time I get there (perhaps look fit for someone too ;)). Second, I wanted to boost my metabolism so that when I eat there, I won’t gain weight that fast. Third, I’m doing this for myself. I’m adding years to my life. :)
Mission accomplished–but it doesn’t end there yet
And so I did manage to return to my small-sized frame after doing all those strategies. I must admit though that when I got back from the States, my fitness routine dwindled down due to certain reasons. But everyday is a new start and now I’m on the road to staying fit and I’m pushing myself harder to get those elusive ABS. Haha! :)
Here are some fitness motivation quotes that pushed me and keep my eyes on my goal whenever I felt like straying.
(Note that this is not a professional advice. What worked for me may not work for you as not all exercises are suited for everyone.)
Good luck! You can do it too!