Tag Archive | walking

How to manage stress and keep yourself healthy

Last week was pretty intense for me. My work in the office particularly the writing of contents for our website was finally in the homestretch. Writing solid contents for the website of a subscription-centric business takes a lot of brain power. Especially during crunch time, stress level goes to the roof.

Content writing is a big job. For one, it is very important that you truly understand the product you are writing about. And with a huge number of topics I needed to finish, my creative juices ran dry. I was running out of fresh ideas and my brains felt too stretched out.

Challenges in the personal aspects of my life was also piling up too. My head seemed to start to split.

I take pride of the work that I do. But I very well know that when stress starts to whack the reasons out of me, I won’t be able to deliver the best output I always wanted. Plus, when stress level is too high, my body just automatically tells me I’m hungry. Whoa! I can’t go back to stress-eating.  It is a total bad habit that packs the body with too much calories it cannot burn for the day and eventually store as fat. I’ve spent a good amount of time and I worked hard to get in shape. I can’t go back to my 180 lbs self. Definitely not.

I needed to give myself a break. I needed to keep my stress level in control.

4 techniques in managing stress while keeping yourself healthy

1. Brisk walking. Nothing beats the smell of good sweat on my skin after a 45 min to 60 min of brisk walking and the feeling of successfully overcoming the desire to take in food that I didn’t really need for the moment.  Add to that the instant gratification of seeing calories burnt and my legs getting firmer. Brisk walking helps my body to burn calories fast and consequently, I can eat more good food than when I do not exercise.  This week, I successfully went back to brisk walking at the Burgos Circle and at Tierra 28 in Bonifacio Global City.  The 45- min to 60-min per session that I did thrice that week definitely helped me manage my stress.

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I burnt 197 calories after a 45-min brisk walking last week

2. Play music.  There is a good reason why Taylor Swift and Jennifer Lopez make extremely good amount of money out of making music.  It is not just about how beautiful their voices are  and how beautiful and sexy these two music icons are.  Music in fact soothes every pent up emotions of every person who just wants to relax. Music releases pleasure triggered by the brains pleasure hormones called “dopamine”.  The pleasure is increased when you listen to music that you already like or when you listen to new songs that you instantly get excited about. People buy what can give them pleasure. And music is pleasurable.  No wonder, every time I go out to walk and run, I put on my headset and plug it to my MP3 player. Walking and running become more pleasurable with music on my ears.

3. Get on the phone and talk. Talk on the phone.  Reach out to the people who matter in your life.  Start with a “hi”, a “hello”, and a “how are you”.  Just go ahead and start a conversation. Catch up. It is always satisfying when a familiar voice is on the phone talking about things you both are interested in.  This week, I spent time talking to my mom, my sister, and my 5-year old niece on the phone.  It is great way to connect with my family who stays in different parts of the country. Hearing their voices and listening to them is therapeutic. Family love is always a soothing therapy for a stress-filled week.

4. Get social.  Connecting with friends on Facebook can never be more fun than when your stress level is extreme and you just want to talk to your friends. Before Facebook, connecting to my friends was easier when I send them SMS or when I call them on the phone.  But these days, they are more active on Facebook than on their phones and more practical than sending them SMS and waiting for them to respond that may take forever. Just watching their photos and videos and reading through the comments in their walls can give you and instant feeling of being connected.  It is a fantastic way to satisfy the part of our psychology that makes us human:  the sense of belongingness. Visiting my friends’ walls and the news feed was a staple to break last week’s work monotone.

That week is over and we finally finished all the website contents we needed to complete. What an accomplishment!

I am starting a new week now with new challenges ahead. I know that stress will pile up again as the week progresses.  My walking gears, my MP3 player, my headset, and my phone are ready to help me ease the stress away.

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The benefits of walking

I’m back to my walking and jogging.

I found this photo in FB and it reminded me not to stop walking.

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I am 3 lbs heavier now than my lowest weight when I was still following my sweet potato, vegetables, and fruit-based diet together with my 3x a week of walking and jogging plus gym visits.  Currently at 131 lbs, my goal is to be at 125 lbs by September 30, 2015. For my 5 ft and 3 inches frame, I just need to work out 6 lbs of unwanted weight in 3 months.  It certainly is very achievable.

In June 2014, when I started following a healthy lifestyle, I weighed 180 lbs (81.81 kg). I successfully got rid of a total of 52 lbs within 11 month. In that 11 month journey,  I made it to the 128 lbs mark. I surprised my friends, my family, my colleagues, and even my coaches in the gym.

I’ve cut my gym membership already since the month of June. The overwhelming traffic in Manila and the distance of Makati to Eastwood has prevented me from going to the gym regularly.  For the last 2 months of my membership, I was only able to go there twice. It was time to stop.

May and June proved to be difficult for me in terms of following my 3x a week of walking and jogging routine. I also started going back to eating rice. Wow. Dinorado rice is just so good. The smell of freshly cooked dinorado rice is too much of a temptation.  Working at the graveyard shift also contributed to the change of my eating habits. I’ve started eating spaghetti and fried chicken again from the house of the big fat bee. And add to that my love for the neighborhood doughnuts and cheese bread. Wow! I gained 3 lbs for the last 2 months.

It’s time to go back to good shape.  Last week I completed my 3x-a week of walking and jogging. It felt good. I went out to Pasig Mega Market and bought yellow fin tuna, maya-maya fish, apples, pears, and pineapples. I also bought vegetables in our neighborhood market.

No more junk food from the house of the big fat bee. No more rice. Ah, the smell of dinorado. 🙂  I have to say good bye to the neigborhood bakeshop’s doughnuts and cheese bread. It’s time to eat good food again. Fruits, vegetables, sweet potato, and fish.

I’m gonna make it. Onward to 125 lbs. Onward  to staying fit and healthy.

Let’s do this! 🙂

 

 

Cheeseburgers and milk shakes at Sweet Ecstasy

Damn!  This is the best cheeseburger and milk shake I’ve ever had.  This is going to be difficult to resist.

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Ecstasy Cheeseburger and Coffee Oreo Milk Shake @Sweet Ecstasy

My boss brought his management team in Sweet Ecstasy. I wasn’t prepared for what I was going into.  Haha. It has been over 8 months since I last had my piece of a burger and over 9 months since I had a sip of a milk shake.   Damn. This milk shake is made up of milk-vanilla ice cream, coffee, and loads of Oreo cookies. That’s what I call ecstasy! 😀

fries

The sweet potato fries and Ecstasy fries

And the calorie overload didn’t stop with the cheeseburger and milk shake.   I had a serving of fries with all the mayonnaise and cheese splatter all over it.  To make myself feel a little better, less guilty, I had a fill of sweet potato fries.

It was a gastronomic affair, one that I wouldn’t do for a long time again. Haha.

Of course I felt so full all throughout the day. I had to don my running shoes and walked, jogged, and run for an hour and a half. It was fun. I found myself in the Mall of Asia in front of the zip line. I was in front of that line I was wanting to try for a long time but was afraid to do so.

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Me in Tagaytay City last December 2014, getting ready for the zipline 

Years back, I felt I was too heavy and the ride might break if I were on it.  I convinced myself to try it in December of 2014 when I have already lost considerable amount of weight.   I felt that when I’m lighter the line should already be able to carry me. My first try in Tagaytay didn’t happen as planned. I chickened out. I got out of the line and gave my ticket to my friend instead.

Today was absolutely different. I felt bold and courageous. Either I try the zip line now, or I will end up imagining forever of how it feels like to fly in the air.

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Me flying in the air at the mall of Asia. My first attempt at riding the zip line wasn’t bad at all. 😀

The loads of calories from the cheeseburger and milk shake and fries that I got from Sweet Ecstasy must have boosted my courage and adventurous spirit.  Today, I finally did it!

I knew I can fly. And so I did. 😉

P.S.   First, let me make this clear. I don’t advocate eating calorie heavy food. Eating this type of food should be done in moderation.  

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But  if you want to try the menu at Sweet Ecstasy, they are located in Jupiter, Makati, Metro Manila, 0916 594 1229.  This is the best burger restaurant in the City.  

How I lost 4 kgs in 5 weeks

Yes. I did it again.  I lost 4 kgs in 5 weeks.   I was 65 kgs back in February 17, 2015.  I am now down to 61.2 kgs.

I have now shed off a total of 46 lbs, almost 21 kgs already since I started my healthy weight loss journey. From 180 lbs in June 2014, I am now down to 134.64 lbs.

running

 

Here I am during my after-work one hour walk and run.

I didn’t think I could lose weight this fast as I only lost a little over 1 kg the month before that. Thanks to the new breakfast technique my boss and friend taught me a week after I joined our Exciting team.  The healthy weight loss is pretty amazing.

So how did I lose 4 kgs in 5 weeks?

1.  My breakfast technique.  I love coffee.  The bittersweet flavor of black coffee keeps me awake and active all day.  Plus, coffee is an excellent source of antioxidant too.  Haha. Coffee is in fact a superfood!

I drink coffee in the morning usually. It’s no secret. However, about 3 weeks ago, I started to add a teaspoon of Cadia Virgin Coconut Oil in my cup of coffee.   It tastes and smell good.  And the good fat from the virgin coconut oil makes me feel full for a longer time and I get less craving for food than when I used to pair my coffee with bread.  Now, I usually eat boiled sweet potato or I eat fruits such as banana and apple for breakfast together with my coffee-vco concoction.  Good fat plus antioxidant plus vitamins and minerals and fiber from fruits and root crops. What a combination!

2)  My lunch.  I usually eat my lunch 5 hours after my breakfast.  I would typically have fish or chicken and some vegetables.  Today, I had fried fish and chinese cabbage. The other day, I had milkfish and monggo.  I dip my fish, chicken, and beef in vinegar a lot too. Vinegar makes the body metabolism really fast and it has zero calories. 😀   If I have time to cook in the morning, I would typically cook boiled sweet potato for lunch and I spread it with 10 g of Anchor unsalted butter.  As long as I have my daily dose of protein from fish, chicken, or beef, and I have my daily dose of vegetables and carbohydrates from unprocessed food, I am all good.

3).  My dinner.  Dinner time is the lightest meal for the day.  I typically would have a piece of Empanada Iloco, a serving of chopsuey, and a piece of cavendish banana.  At times it would be pinakbet and fish.  And sometimes I would have fried chicken from the local carenderia and some vegetables.  Today I had fresh lumpia, a piece of apple, and a small piece of fried chicken without batter. As long as I have my protein and vegetables I am good.

I snack in between meals too.  I would have a small square of dark chocolate at 72% to 82% cocoa which has about 60 calories.  I would also snack with fruits such as apples, pears, and cavendish banana.  And I drink at least 2.5 L of water each day.   Ha ha.  Water is filling, flushes away body toxins really fast, and it has zero calories.

mango apple

My mango-apple smoothie without sugar and without milk satisfies my sweet tooth. Just plain mango, apple, and some crushed ice. 

Of course, I exercise too.  Although I’m busy with my work in business development, I always give myself at least 30 minutes of exercise each day. It could be walking, core exercise, leg exercise, or circuit training in the gym. Exercise makes the body work faster too.  The more our body works faster, the more it burns calories.  Haha. It’s an effective way to make our bodies work for ourselves. 😀

This healthy weight loss journey is pretty amazing. Just keep on eating. No starving.

I am loving this.