Thursday, December 5, 2013

Good Day / Bad Day

There are some days where I wake up and I just feel good. Not much could possibly go wrong to destroy my day. Today (so far), has been one of those days.

It started when I got to work and was making myself some tea. I was trying to multitask and moved my cup and ended up with hot water all over my fingers! Under the tap it went for a few minutes. Then on and off during the morning I'd pop it back under the water or apply some ice as and when it felt hot. 

Then, it was lunch time. My colleagues were both working from home today so I diverted the phones to them and headed out. Great! The local sandwich shop had my favourite special - a cajun chicken schnitzel with bacon burger. I place my order and wait patiently for my food to arrive. As I'm waiting, it dawns on me that I have left my keys in the office. The locked office. I text my colleagues to let them know before heading back and hoping that the tenants in the other office upstairs are there. I remember one of them coming in the morning, but I also remember hearing him leave. 

I ring the doorbell and nothing. I send him a text - will he be coming back. "No sorry", says he. What else is left to do. I call a locksmith. This has happened to us in the past. Fortunately, the entire office had headed out for a team meeting and no one brought their keys so the expense was charged back to the business. This time it was just lil ol me and it was going to put me $120 out of pocket. 

"Be there in 20 to 25 minutes" said the locksmith. "Sure thing", said I. And then as I waited on the porch of our office, I decided that despite my mishap in the morning and the fact that I was going to be significantly poorer, I wasn't at all upset or bothered. Both things were bad but the day was also good and it could've been much worse. It was a quiet day work wise, which was great. The sun was shining and there was a gentle cool breeze as I consumed my favourite sandwich special from the local sandwich shop. It wasn't raining and I wasn't cold or hungry. All in all, I want to say, good day.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

[12wbt] 2013 Round 4 Day 11

So just under two weeks into the next round of 12wbt. I can't say my first week has been too positive, being thwarted by travelling for work and then spending the weekend catching up with friends in Melbourne. 

It started with a chicken pie on the flight from Sydney to Melbourne worth a whopping 488 calories. Boy am I happy that I at least enjoy the exercise and pumped out a 60 min run around the Tan with hubby (I did two laps and he did three in the same time, the bugger). Anyhoo, no dwelling because new week = new chances to make yourself proud!

On a positive note, I do feel some changes taking place in my mindset. After travelling back to Sydney on Sunday evening and not being able to get to the shops - we decided to grab some fish and chips for dinner on Monday night. I'm usually a "face-stuffer" when it comes to eating junk food. Perhaps I feel like I'd need to wait too long before I can get my hands on it again, I keep eating, even when I am full. So while Monday night was fish and chip night, I had a small win where I put my food down before finishing it because I was full and really didn't need anymore. Score one for me. 

I didn't track my calories past day two last week as I was hoping to, but here are my stats from this week so far:

Week 2 / Day 1 / Monday's Stats:
Calories Consumed: 2305 (estimated)
Calories Burned: 1350+301 = 1650
Total deficit / surplus: +654

Week 2 / Day 2 / Tuesday's Stats:
Calories Consumed: 1221
Calories Burned: 1350+280 = 1630
Total deficit / surplus: - 409

Week 2 / Day 3 / Wednesday's Stats:
Calories Consumed: 1343
Calories Burned: 1350+350 = 1700
Total deficit / surplus: - 357

While I talk about moving on, I still do feel some guilt about last week and wish that I had stronger will power. But as the motivational memes say, wishing doesn't get you anywhere. You gotta do. Hopefully, I'll do better. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

[12wbt] 2013 Round 4 Day 1

And so we start another round of the 12wbt challenge. It was apt that I would see this picture in my facebook feed yesterday morning. 

I do love this quote - it reminds us that it's not about what we've done, but what we're doing about it now. 

So, there's no need to worry about what I did and could have done in Round 3 of the 12wbt because here we are onto Round 4! 

I have to say - I don't think the first week of this round is going to go well! I'll be travelling down to Melbourne for work tomorrow and will be there for the weekend as well. There's a work dinner tomorrow night, followed by an all day conference on Thursday and working from the Melbourne office on Friday - which probably means takeout. Hubby is flying down on Friday evening, we'll have dinner with the in-laws, followed by a weekend spent catching up with friends over meals.

So the goal is to be good until tomorrow and then to be sensible while I am there. Aiming for about 2.5% loss if I can!

Monday's Stats:
Calories Consumed: 1399
Calories Burned: 1350+397 = 1747
Total deficit / surplus: -348

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

[12wbt] Let's go again!

So we have come to the end of 12wbt 2013 Round 3. Before the round started, a colleague of mine got a DEXA Scan and I thought it would be a great idea to do the same before the round and one more again after the round. Well, today I had my second scan and I have to say that I am very surprised by the results!

I can't say that I've stuck to to food component of the program all that well - even after three rounds, my willpower to say no to stuffing my face with greasy goodness is still pretty weak. But I kept to the training program almost to the T, missing out on couple of weeks due to sickness. It was only in the last six weeks of Round 3 that I really buckled down and tried to stick to the meal plans. Even then, that usually meant being saint-like from Mondays - Thursdays and being pretty lax on the weekends. 

But overall, DEXA Scan says 1.5kg fat loss and 1.2kg muscle gain, which resulted in an overall 2.5% fat reduction (24.9% from 27.4%). Nothing to sneeze at and imagine what could be achieved if I was actually that little bit more disciplined with my eating. 

So, I'm all signed up for 12wbt 2013 Round 4. I have a 4 week holiday squeezed in there so here goes to getting bigger and better results and becoming more disciplined in order to achieve the goal!

xoxo me

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Complain Less - Celebrate More

I came across a post by Joshua Becker from his blog, Becoming Minimalist, titled How to Complain Less. 

In it, he mentions that we all have the knowledge that life is not perfect. Despite this knowledge, we continue to complain about life's imperfections. He tells us more about why complaining is bad and some steps on how to complain less. He talks about:

  • Considering the importance of adopting change
  • Embracing the recognition of an imperfect world
  • Understanding the difference between helpful criticism and complaint
  • Being mindful of the audience
  • Not starting conversations with complaints 
  • Not complaining for the sake of validation ("I'm soooo busy" sound familiar?)
  • Noticing triggers that lead to complaints
  • Embracing the idea of experimentation (Rather than setting a goal of never complaining again, experiment by designating a short period of time to be more mindful and take baby steps to improve)
On top of this, I'd like to offer some additional thoughts. Joshua opens his article with a quote that I really liked and instantly shared on my facebook wall. 
"You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses." - Tom Wilson 
It made me think of what my husband use to force me to do. Right before we went to sleep, he'd roll over and ask "what three good things happened today". At first it was very annoying - him trying to make me think right when I wanted to sleep. But then you start to pick out the positive, little things which actually mean something to you and you realise that no matter how bad you felt your day was, there was always some positive in it. Perhaps it was a particularly good cup of coffee. Perhaps you got a text from a friend that made you smile or laugh out loud. Maybe, it was just that you got to watch TV with your significant other or read the new issue of a magazine you've been waiting for. 

We don't do this anymore, but there are days I return from work, brain dead, tired, just wanting to crash on the couch and all I want to say when my husband asks how my day was is "It was sooooooo busy". But more often than not, I now try to be much more positive. I try to respond with something like, "It was productive" and then tell him something funny that someone said or did at work. Or something amazing that I saw, or an interesting article that I had read. In Sydney at this time of year, the jacarandas bloom and sometimes that's the best story I have from the day - "I was walking home and there was a jacaranda tree in full bloom. A splash of purple in the sea of all those green trees." Maybe it's just be but that makes me smile because it is such a beautiful sight. 

I'm definitely guilty of complaining and my husband's response of "and what are you doing about it?" usually makes me take a step back. Don't complain for the sake of complaining. Do something. And if there is nothing that you or anyone else can do, accept it and move along. 

I'm choosing to celebrate roses, which make the thorns so appealing. And I will set up the experiment of trying to be more mindful about complaining and focus on minimizing it. 

xoxo me

Thursday, October 17, 2013

[12wbt] Drunkorexia?

Saw this article in The Age this morning titled: "Are you a drunkorexic? The dangers of dieting to drink".

The article discusses the dangers what some people put themselves through - skip a meal to keep the calories for alcohol instead. The issue with this is that people open themselves up to alcohol-related disease or injury and also miss out on all the goodies (proteins, carbs, nutrients, vitamins) that comes with eating a proper meal. 

I don't do this, I don't condone it, but I must say that I am guilty of saving my snack calories so that I can have a sneaky something something (Arnott's Full 'O Fruit, Oreos, Ice Cream etc) as a snack after dinner. However, I have been starting to wonder how this will affect eating habits once you move off a plan like the 12wbt. For me, and I'm making an assumption that this would be the same for most folks, it's about doing the plan and creating new lifestyle habits to sustain for the years to come. Things like portion control and eating good "clean" food. I don't starve myself during the day so that I can eat a bunch of snack/junk foods after dinner but I do try to keep the snacking to a minimum. And at the end of the day, if I come under 1200 calories, I top it up with sweet/salty junk food "goodness". 

As a result, I do wonder about developing the habit of always having a snack after dinner. It seems harmless enough if it's only a small treat, and perhaps a good thing in helping one keep on track during the week and not having an "unscheduled blowout" (by that I mean a treat meal other than the one specified on the Saturday after you've done a long workout). I guess it's a matter of keeping the serving sizes to a small snack serve and being disciplined (!!) enough to say no to more food. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

Singapore Day!

A few years ago when I was still living in Melbourne, I was walking home and kept seeing people walking away from the Botanical Gardens with papers bags which said "I <3 SG" (stylised in the "I heart NY fashion"). Being Singaporean, my curiosity peaked and a quick google search told me that there had been a "Singapore Day" held in Melbourne. 

Further investigation lead me to discover that Singapore Day is a Singaporean and family only event hosted by the Overseas Singaporean Unit. It is a way of bringing the familiarity of Singapore to those who are living and working overseas. It is a completely free event and the best part is that they fly up Singapore "Hawkers" to whichever city is hosting Singapore Day each year - and the food in completely free! 

This year, Singapore Day was held in Sydney! Still being Singaporean, I register for myself and Hubby to attend. We make our way to The Domain where the event is being held and then proceed to consume our weight in food. We didn't get everything that was up for grabs but we did manage to score some Singapore Chilli Crab, which ran out two hours after the event commenced! The curry puff, chilli crab, nasi lemak and satay pictured below were just a handful of the goodies on offer. We also managed to get some hainanese chicken rice and kway chap. Unfortunately, we were way too full to eat anything else and missed out on things like Indian Rojak, Hokkien Mee and BBQ Stingray. Mmmm.... Definitely looking forward to my trip back to Singapore at the end of the year!