Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2015 Fitness Goals

I am the kind of girl who always set yearly goals for myself before a new year starts and then look back on how many of them I have achieved by the end of the year - for me it is a great way to reflect on the past year and also to plan ahead on which direction I want my life to go, of course things never go the way you plan them to be (as the saying goes: When you make plans, God laughs) but I still believe that it is important to set goals for ourselves to keep the motivation and determination going, and to better ourselves year after year.

After all, the biggest project in life you should work on is yourself.

Looking back on the past year, I am proud of myself and what I have achieved - I hope this does not come across in an arrogant way as I do realize that there are huge room for improvement but at least I am glad that I achieved/ started to work on what I wrote down on my 2014 goals list, including: travelling to Europe, taking trips by myself (I have never travelled to Europe or taking trips by myself before 2014), quitting my previous job and being able to find one that I like, getting fit, healthy and happy, being able to do sit ups, finishing Kayla's BBG 12 weeks guide and etc
This year, I would like to share my 2015 fitness goals with you here and I would also love to know what are YOUR fitness goals! So we can be each other's motivation to work towards these goals throughout 2015 - and after a year later, let's go through this post again and see how much we have achieved (:

My 2015 Fitness Goals
1. Keeping my clean-eating diet and healthy lifestyle
2. Gaining muscle mass (meaning bulking up a little bit but staying lean)
3. Stronger arms - at least 30 push ups (not on my knees)
4. Handstands
5. Headstands, Crow and crane poses with variations
6. Forearm Stands
7. Splits
8. Pole-dancing (since I just started, I would like to get better at it and be able to do those cool flipping poses on the pole by the end of next year ;p)
9. Lifting at least double of the weights  (hopefully more) I am lifting now
10.  Bigger Booty (LOL I know this sounds pretty stupid but I am seriously going to work towards this by doing more squats and other butt workouts)
11. Defined 6 packs
12. Plank everyday 
13. Keep up with at least 5 days of gym/ exercises a week
14. Be able to incorporate Kayla's BBG workouts into my own work out routines even after I am done with BBG2.0 (in 3 weeks!)

That's all I can think of for now - let's see if I will add more to the list throughout the year! You can also give me some suggestions if there's anything you would like to challenge me/ see me doing by next year! ;p

Emi x
@stayfitandtravel

Saturday, December 27, 2014

GingerActivO - THE place to get your fitness wear!


Use the code '50%SALE' to get VIP Sale of 50% off on certain GingerActivO products including the gorgeous fitness and yoga tops and leggings on http://www.gingeractivo.com/collections/sales at the checkout from tonight 00.09 pm HK time until Dec 31st, 2014 at 00.11 pm HK time! (Worldwide shipping)

Do you still remember the post I wrote about the gorgeous bright color leggings that I got from GingerActivo - an amazing Hong Kong based yoga and fitness apparel retailer that sell some of my favorite brands such as Liquido, Tonic and Dharma Bums? (http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/12/liquido-autumn-storm-leggings-from.html) Not only were the leggings of great quality, their services were impeccable which made the experience i.e. communications/ delivery/ follow-up and etc extremely smooth and fuss-free.

I am so happy that our collaboration did not stop there - I had the pleasure to be sponsored by GingerActivo for all the fitness and yoga wear for my recent photo-shoot and I have to say it was a great success! The whole process from choosing the clothing, arranging the pick up and etc was made very easy and enjoyable. They always replied my emails within 2 days and there was never a delay in delivery. Their staffs are all extremely efficient with the best customer service.

One of the thing that I like best about GingerAcitvO is that they always include the clothing size of the models in the photos which makes it a lot easier to decide which size to get as you all know, different brands always having different sizings i.e.some run slimmer some run bigger, and this is therefore extremely useful to determine the best fit during your purchase. It is really an excellent platform for those who wish to purchase good quality and beautiful fitness wear - oh and the best thing is, shipping is free for those who are based in Hong Kong and Singapore!
SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?! Head over to http://www.gingeractivo.com/collections/sales now and get those gorgeous fitness and yoga wear by using the discount code "50%SALE"!! (http://www.gingeractivo.com/pages/faq ror more details on how to use the code at the check out)

I promise that you will not regret it (;

Emi xx
@stayfitandtravel

Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart

Healthy Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart Recipe
Another AMAZING recipe that my mum came up with - so I came home with this mouth-watering cheesy smell from the oven and in just a few minutes, my mum came out of the kitchen with this newly invented Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart and we just fell in love with it immediately. Not only did it taste good, it was healthy and also very simple to make - requiring only 4 main ingredients! Perfect for Breakfast/ Lunch/ Dinner or anytime of the day (:


Healthy Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart Recipe
Ingredient
Medium Cauliflower x 1
Light Cheese x 1/2 cup
Whole Eggs x 2
Almond Meal x 1/2 cup (Made from Homemade Almond Milk, recipe can be found at earlier post: http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/11/homemade-almond-milk.html)
A handful of Herbs
Salt and Pepper to taste
Healthy Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart Recipe
Directions
Preheat oven at 475F. Blend Cauliflower (raw and washed, get rid of the stem) on high with a powerful blender until they turn into small bits. Take the cauliflower bits out and then have the cheese blend on high with the blender until they also turn into small bits. Mix the two together in a large medium bowl, stir in eggs and almond meal until combined. Sprinkle Salt and Pepper as well as herbs into the mix. Stir well. Grease a baking pan with coconut oil and line with parchment paper. Pour the mix into the pan and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. TA-DAH this yummy and healthy Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart is now ready! I LOVE IT and I hope you love it as much too!
Healthy Cauliflower Cheese Omelette Tart Recipe
Stay tuned for more healthy and yummy recipes!

Emi xx
@stayfitandtravel

Thursday, December 25, 2014

10 FAQs about Fitness & Me!

Happy Holidays everyone! It's been such a great journey this year and I would like to answer some FAQs before the awesome 2014 ends :D

1. Did you also find it very difficult and tough when you first started the BBG?
YES I DID. The first time I did a Kayla's workout was when I downloaded her free week of BBG trial. I remember doing the legs workout and I almost died (No I think I actually felt like I died) and so I tried the arms workout and "surprise" I also died completely - basically I could not finish most of the circuits because it was just impossible for me to do even some of the MOST BASIC exercises such as push up/ sit ups - that was how weak I was. But I really felt like I wanted to challenge myself to see how far I could get and so I decided to get the BBG. The beginning was..oh god let's just say it's not a time that I was very proud of myself. As someone who never exercised much (and with a very bad drinking and eating habit), I was extremely unfit and even a few steps of stairs I would end up out of breath. You can imagine how difficult it was for me. I was always so nervous the night before a BBG workout that I could not sleep well  - I literally dreaded the workouts so much. My boyfriend was also doing the first 8 weeks of BBG with me and I remember there's one night after he did his Kayla's workout ( I was going to do it the next day), he told me "WOW that was a killer on the arms" and I actually got so angry at him for telling me that because it stressed me even more and it was another sleepless night for me. I know this sounds so crazy but that's really how difficult it was for me - and the thought of giving up crossed my mind EVERY SINGLE DAY, especially when I felt like I could not see much progress for the first 4-8 weeks. Some of you asked me if I have ever not been able to finish the circuits within the time limit - oh yes, ALL THE TIME. What I would do was to sometimes re-do those workouts the next week or sometimes I just let them go......hahaha not quite sure if that's what Kayla would suggest but that's what I did.
The diet was another struggle for me because I was so used to being able to eat whatever I wanted (I was a huge foodie - I still am!) and as I did not want to waste the efforts of my workouts during BBG, I tried my best to eat very very clean and it could be so difficult sometimes and eating became something that was no longer fun and enjoyable. Looking back, now I realized I let the whole thing get into my head too much. It was supposed to be a fun and challenging journey and I made it seem like a matter of life and death. However, I am glad that I did not give up and I kept pushing myself through the workouts, because slowly and slowly, they got better and to be very honest, now they are just part of my daily habit/ routine. I am used to the workouts being extremely difficult and challenging, I am used to that feeling of wanting to just pass out on the floor after every BBG workout, I am used to eating clean - but the best thing is, now I genuinely enjoy this lifestyle so much - I love that adrenaline feeling during the timed BBG workouts, I love the feeling of accomplishment after completing every single workout and especially every week, I love the burn in my muscles during the workouts, I love seeing myself getting stronger and stronger every week, I love how exercises that were impossible for me to do before are now a lot easier, I love eating healthy and clean food to nourish my body (and I am a lot more relaxed with my diet now (http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/12/cheat-meals-okay-or-not.html). I am happier, more confident, and I am extremely satisfied with my progress. I have SO MANY fitness goals that I want to achieve now and my everyday life is driven with purposes and goals. So girls, don't worry if you find the BBG difficult when you first start - if it's not challenging, it's not working right? (: Keep going because you are already on the right track! (and don't let it get into your head too much, enjoy the ride!!)
2. Do you do extra workouts other than the BBG?
Yes I do! I have been doing them since Week 8 and you can find out more details about that on http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/11/my-workout-routine.html - oh and I also do pole-dancing once a week now (:

3. Are you a vegetarian/ vegan?
No I am not. I tried to do vegetarian-only meals for at least 5 days a week during the earlier stages of my journey but it was not so successful (I am a huge meat lover). Now, what I am striving for is BALANCE -  a balance of all the food groups, a balance of nutritions for different food sources. To me, balance also means including cheat meals in my diet which makes my fitness and health journey more sustainable.

4. Where have you travelled to before and where is your favorite place in the world that you travelled to?
Born in Toronto, Canada, I was raised in Hong Kong and I have travelled to
- Japan (Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka)
- Korea (Seoul and Phoenix Park at the outskirt of Seoul for snowboarding)
- Philippines (Bohol, Manila)
- Australia (Sydney, Brisbane, Cairns, Great Barrier Reef)
- Thailand (Phuket, Bangkok)
- China (Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou)
- the US (Texas, New York, California, Las Vegas, Florida, Washington)
- Mexico (Monterrey, Mexico City, Guadalajara, San Luis Potosi, Reynosa, Guanajuato, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Isla Mujeres, Tulum)
- Canada (Toronto, Quebec)
- Tai Wan
- France (Paris)
- The Netherlands (Amsterdam)
- Spain (Sevilla, Barcelona, Madrid, Cadiz, Granada, Mallorca)
- Germany (Berlin, Cologne, Dusseldorf)
- Italy (Milan)
- Malta (Malta, Gozo, Comino)
- Turkey (Istanbul)
- Greece (Santorini)
- Portugal (Porto, Lisbon)
-Singapore
-Malaysia (Sabah)
- UK (London)
- Morocco (Marrakech, Casablanca, Fez, the Sahara, Rabat)
- Dubai
It is extremely difficult to choose my favorite place out of all these amazing places because I genuinely am in love with most of them (sorry to bombard you with my travel photos) However, as mentioned previously in my interview with Salonnieres Apartments http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/11/interview-by-salonnieres-apartments.html, the top three places that have a very special place in my heart would be Andalucia in Spain, Mexico and Malta (and I really want to add Amsterdam too). I had the best memories at these places and I would love to live there one day.

5. What is your height and weight?
I am 164 cm and I never weigh myself because I do not believe it as a healthy and sustainable way to track the progress of a fitness journey. Weight is just a number and it is so easy to get obsessed with it (Not just weight but also other parameters such as fat percentage in the body and etc) - I do not want these numbers to define me. As long as I feel and look healthy, I am happy - instead of obsessing over the scale, thinking what I do wrong to gain/lose a few pounds. Weight can fluctuate a lot due to many reasons but it does not mean you are not progressing/ getting healthier in your fitness journey.

6. What do you do for a living?
I DO have a full time job. Because of my workouts and blogging, I always get the question - Did you quit your job? Are you a full time blogger?
No I am not - I do wish one day I could be full time blogger/ even a personal trainer/ yoga instructor but in the meantime, I am not able to earn a living by just working out and blogging yet ;p so I do have a 9-530 office job Monday to Friday - I work in Talent Management (Human Resources) in the Wines and Spirits industry. I know this sounds very ironic because many of you who have read my story would know that me being an excessive drinking for the past few years, I have now quit drinking completely. One thing I can tell you is it's definitely a daily struggle for me to be working in this industry, not because I am tempted to drink but because I am constantly EXPECTED to drink at many business occasions and it can always come off as rude/ unreasonable when I tell people I don't drink. I always get asked "Why are you even working here if you don't drink?". I have to admit it does affect my socialising in the company but for me, I do not think I should get judged on because of this if I am able to perform on my job. Not drinking alcohol is a personal life choice for me and I am not going to give up on that just because of social pressure. If I cannot advance in my career because I stay strong on my personal life choice to live a healthy and clean lifestyle, any success will not be worth it. Why am I working in this industry then, you may ask? Well I love the company that I work for, I love the trainee programme that I am in, I am extremely thankful for the opportunities that I am given, and I really do hope one day I can build my career in this company despite the fact that I do not drink. so... Good Luck to me!:D

7. How old are you?
I am 22 and turning 23 in January 2015!

8. Do you do your BBG workouts at a gym or at home?
I do all of my BBG workouts at the gym - not because I can't do them at home but because I just love the gym ;p That's where I find motivation, determination, drive, dedication. You can read about it more in details at http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/11/my-workout-gear-protein-supplement-and.html

9. Since when did you start taking protein supplement and adding extra workouts?
I started in Week 8 (: You can read more in details about my protein supplement at http://stayfitandtravel.blogspot.hk/2014/12/protein-and-health-supplements-unique.html

10. So it seems that the BBG worked for you, will it work for me too?
Each of our body is different and therefore I cannot say if we will all achieve the same result with the same timeline - you might see more progresses faster or slower or you might see different results i.e. stronger arms/ better stamina than me. But it will definitely put you onto the right track of working towards a healthier and fitter body and I ensure you your hard work will not go to waste. Maybe it is taking more time/ less time but the fact that you will eventually get to where you want is all that matters x

Hope you find this post useful! Stay tuned to more fitness/ healthy posts by subscribing to my blog!

Emi x
@stayfitandtravel