Saturday, July 6, 2013

About Fitness and Losing Weight

I used to love junk food and supper so much that I was almost 60kg in my high school days. Then a year ago, I decided to change how I look and start exercising regularly and change how I eat. Now I lost 11kg and have maintained 49kg ever since.

There are four important things to keep in mind if you are serious about losing weight or becoming fit. I'm no expert but I would like to share my experience.

FIRST THING FIRST.
 Set an inspirational figure for you to look upon to. Sometimes, you may not achieve the results you desire which then causes you to lose motivation. Hence it's important to keep inspiring pictures in your laptop or on your pin board to get you back on track. Or simply get a gym partner with the same goal or interest to keep you motivated. I myself have a boyfriend who influenced me the most in my fitness journey.

Jamie Eason. If she's too muscular for you..

Jung Da Yeon. Can you believe that she is a 46 year old mother with kids?

How about someone more local?
Fay Hokulani. Isn't she sexayy?

SECOND. FOOD.
The most essential part of your weight losing journey is FOOD. There's even a 90% diet 10% rule in the weight losing community which in my personal opinion only applies to losing weight but not building muscles. To build muscles you need to exercise more for sure. Nevertheless, what goes into your body will surely reflect on the outside. Even if you exercise daily, not eating the right food will only waste your effort and all the hard work. So what is the right food to eat?

WHOLE FOOD

Eating whole food is the key to healthy and lean body. By ingesting whole food, you get all the essential nutrients without the unnecessary processed carbs. Whole food means food in its natural and original form such as vegetables, fruits, lean meat/fish, nuts, eggs, brown rice, whole grain, sweet potatoes. This means that white rice, noodles, bread are not whole food as they are processed carbs (bad carbs) and will not do any good to your body.

Another thing is you have to eat more to slim down. Yes it makes sense. If you eat more meals per day your body needs more energy to digest the food hence results in increased metabolism which helps you to lose fat. But the portion of each meal has to be petite and light. Eat about 3 main meals and 3 snacks/light meals per day which makes it a total of 6 meals in one day. My daily meal plan will be something like this:
Breakfast: Honey Lemon juice, Omelette/Hard-boiled egg/Cereal with low-fat milk, yogurt and fruits
Snack: Fruit Smoothie/Oatmeal cookies
Lunch: Meat/Fish + Vegetables
Snack: Protein pancake/Fruit Smoothie/Sweet Potato (I love Japanese Sweet Potatoes)
Dinner: MeatFish/Tofu (Smaller Portion) + Vegetables/Salad
Snack: Green tea with low-fat yogurt

Of course, you can be creative with your meals by coming out with your own recipes as long you include lean meat, fresh  fruits and vegetables in your main meals. You can also include flaxseed, psyllium husk in your meals to increase your metabolism. Nuts are good too as they are high in heart-healthy fats and proteins.

Here are my breakfast, lunch, dinner and some snacks in between.
 A glass of warm honey lemon. Cereal. Berries. Almond nuts. Greek Yogurt. Drink a glass of warm lemon juice first thing in the morning can help lose weight.

Spinach, Cucumber and Carrot Smoothie with low-fat milk and greek yogurt. Usually I use fruits like banana, berries, pineapple or orange to make smoothie but this time I decided to go green by using fresh vegetables.

 Grilled eggplant stuffed with Monterey Jack cheese (the cheese is brought by Hubby's mother from Canada!) and Korean soy bean paste. Didn't know eggplant can go so well with cheese before this.

 Grilled chicken breast with Monterey Jack Cheese and frozen veggies. You can substitute the cheese with cottage cheese or some low-fat cheese.

Banana Protein Pancake. My fave. And my pancake making skill is getting better with practice.

Hainanese Oatmeal Crumbed Chicken Chop with baby asparagus and soy bean sprouts.

I've also come out with various recipes which I have posted in my previous posts. Sometimes, you can just eat salad or tofu to replace meat. Eat scrambled egg or hard boiled egg for breakfast can be satisfying as well. Just experiment with different ingredients and recipes to avoid from eating the same thing over and over again. For instance, I don't always boil my sweet potatoes. Sometimes I make hash brown using sweet potatoes (so delicious!) or even mash sweet potatoes. Grill or bake the chicken or make meat loaf using ground chicken meat for a change.

We all have cravings so you get to eat one cheat meal per week to satisfy your human cravings. Indulge in fried chicken, pizza, cakes basically everything you've been craving for. It's also good to have one cheat meal per week to give a shock to your metabolism in case your metabolism slows down as a result of adaptation. My favourite cheat meals will be Korean food for sure! Just look at the number of posts about Korean food in this blog. Haha.

THIRD. EXERCISE.
In contrary to the popular belief, doing weight training actually loses fat faster than doing cardio. Cardio exercise alone sure can help lose weight but you need to do A LOT of cardio before you can start losing weight. Instead, weight training will help you to lose weight faster and build nice looking muscles and sculpts your body. Weight training for girls is also very important if you want to get rid of the sagging skin or fat. Just to clarify one thing: weight training will NOT make you look like Dwayne Johnson or Vin Diesel. It's incredibly hard to look like that and it takes a huge amount of effort and discipline to achieve that physique. 

Train the 10 major muscles group including:

Chest
Quads
Hamstrings
Calf
Biceps
Triceps
Deltoid
Back
Abdominal
Erector Spinae

Any type of weight training exercise is fine as long as you do your exercise consistently and put all the focus on your muscles in your mind while training. Do simple cardio every week such as 15 min jog or even some High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). I train different muscle groups everyday. I don't have a fixed workout routine but I just make sure that I train all the major muscles every week. You can split your workouts throughout the week. An hour a day is more than sufficient.

Me in the gym!
Me at Sports Toto Fitness Gym.

Me at my neighbourhood gym. Just RM5 per entry. I was hesitant to use the Smith Machine before because it looks intimidating but now I'm able to conquer it and it has been my favourite machine to do squats ever since. Girls normally avoid these bulky machines because they tend to think that the machines are for guys only but not me. Girls can definitely use the machines to build muscles and become stronger. Don't worry about people staring. Most of the times, people stare because it's not a norm for a girl to use machines in Malaysia. However, I don't really notice people staring when I'm using the machines in the gym. So girls, feel free to use any machines available in the gym.

LAST BUT NOT THE LEAST. PATIENCE.
It takes time to adapt to a new lifestyle and see changes. Be patient and believe in yourself. Don't give up halfway easily. To get the results you desire, you need to finish the thing you started. Of course, fitness is a never ending journey so be active and love what you do.
Working out and eating clean should be something that you look forward to and get excited about.

Cheers!

by
CSY

1 comment:

*JacQueliNe* said...

Like this post!! Aww really wish we can archive these kind of body figure!