Transformation story

It’s finally the weekend, yay!

I mentioned in a couple of posts back that I’ll do a weight loss/transformation kind of story.

The reason I decided to do this story was because this topic was raised in the ‘confidence/self assurance’ section. Throughout my schooling life, I struggled with my weight and eating habits. During that time, I was diagnosed with Grave’s disease which didn’t respond to treatment which lead to the removal of the thyroid. Now I have to take medications for the rest of my life. I used my overactive thyroid to eat whatever I wanted, such as extra portions. When high school ended, I wanted to feel comfortable in my own skin and unhappy with my weight. I desired being slimmer and toned  and even to wear nice clothing like shorts and skirts.

The tipping point was when first university ended and I was at 71kg. The most heaviest that I’ve been. A local gym opened up near my home and I’ve been a member with them since then (and upgraded to visit other gyms). I started out with a PT but then progressed to training on my own. However, I needed motivation and so I tried out the les mills classes and went through a phase of being a les mills fanatic. This lasted around 4-5 years.

I went on a family holiday at the end of 2011 however put most of the weight back on:

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In 2012 I resumed the above but also adding to the start of full time work and Les mills training, I experienced two colds within a 3 month span. The start of 2013 marked a huge change in eating habits. I began eating carbs most meals and adding in protein and vegetables, while still maintaining a flexible eating approach. Before this, I’d cut carbs at nights and honestly, that didn’t work for me.

Doing every single class worked however over time, I wanted to learn more exercises, experienced, sick twice a year and experienced muscle tightness mainly in the neck and shoulders. This was all due to the repetitive nature of Les Mills which focused on high rep based exercises and not balancing other muscle groups. Plus I wasn’t feeling challenged anymore. The classes were also cardio based and I wasn’t achieving the muscles I wanted. I dropped a lot of weight from 2012 to 2013 going from 68kg to 56kg. Looking at the photo, I realised how thin I’d become:

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Then I discovered ‘The Zone’ fitness first, a world first in Dynamic Movement Training from weights, hiit, suspension training and body weight training. It’s changed a lot now since it opened in August 2013. I dropped all the Les Mills and went for those classes and must I say, had it not been for that gym, my body wouldn’t be the same now. From that gym, I’ve developed friendships and been to whatever social events they’ve organised. My body shape was in the best shape ever, so yes it was working.

The Zone still works, but on the other hand, I wanted to improve on skills and reintroduce my own training.My focus shifted to building strength and muscle. In recent times, I’ve introduced Freeletics since September 2015 into my routine and it has been the most challenging program to this date. A hell of body weight training (and recently interval runs) and the time it takes is less than a gym session is what also attracted me to this program. The combination of both these training styles have re-shaped my body more than ever:

So now I feel stronger, fitter, more muscle, flexible, better posture and learned new skills (can even do a chin up now).  I will continue this journey and make adjustments to training as needed.

That’s my story and maybe inspire / motivate those who want to start on their fit journey.

x

Wonderful things to the late bloomer.

Hello again,

This post will be something that’s mentioned on my blog posts previously. I was reading a few articles regarding late bloomers and realise that I’m not alone..

 

I wanted to do my own take of the post above and the things that happened:

1. Going from the Ugly Ducking to Attractive later on in life: 

Sure I didn’t follow what everyone did in high school and university i.e dating, relationships, sex, drinking, partying. The high school me was studious kind, awkward, ugly duckling i.e wasn’t happy in my own skin was me.

I wanted to represent the prefects during the last year of high school but didn’t happen (over a decade ago, hazy memories). People underestimated me in high school. Being in an all girls school wasn’t exactly my place of fun. I did talk to a guy from tutoring however that didn’t develop any further. How fun to talk about these high school days..not. After that, towards the end of high school (mainly tutoring at an end of year cruise), one so called class mate wanted to set me up but I wasn’t clearly interested. Why set me up if i don’t talk to you at all?

Also wore baggy, loose fitting, unflattering clothes during that stage.

Now fast forward to a decade older, I now enjoy going out, partying, drinking and my dress sense has changed a lot. My wardrobe now exists of tight pants, figure hugging dresses / skirts,  shorts, blouses, cropped shirt and heels in moderation. I feel much more confident now that my wardrobe has changed.

2.  Dating late uni life.

I observed my cousin go through a bad relationship for nearly 2 years and that held me off dating. In fact I was with one guy for 6 months and that faded (due to being lead on, and that caused me numbness / confusion). Another guy before him asked me out but was pretty desperate (plus I wasn’t interested anyway). After uni life finished, I decided not to be interested in relationships/dating from that point on.

Working life came after that and 8 months working at my first place, I started chatting to a new co-worker. From that point on we started chatting long and then the next moment, he asked if we could grab coffee together during the lunch break. He then asked me if I wanted to pursue dating but I kindly rejected saying that I wasn’t in the head space / mentality, plus I had no feelings, wasn’t interested and not looking for relationships/dating.  That was 3 years ago.

I’m still not looking for a relationship/dating at this stage which I am totally fine with which leads me to the next point:

3. Having sexual energy later on in life. 

I’ve seen my uni classmates have boyfriends, party, go-out, talk about hook-up. Never understood and appealed to me in my early days. So the guy that I mentioned in the previous point mentioned about sex. At that stage I was hesitant because I’d never thought about it. Plus he was inexperienced too so made me a little nervous. We did start of mostly touching and fondling but then when it came to oral sex, I freaked out (plus it was in the men’s bathroom). That was 5 years ago. So yes, that’s where I’ve kept my pent up energy until now..

In recent times I’ve been thinking about anything of sexual nature. Yes I’ve watched porn (late nights) and seen sex scenes in movies but doesn’t translate to real life. I’m currently experiencing and enjoying things of this nature a.t.m and so far its good (not disclosing any details) :).

4. Independence and no kids.

Even though I still live at home, I’m not currently in a relationship right now. Likewise I’ve seen people my age get married, have kids and I’m not in that mindset right now. Just want to enjoy what life throws at me and see what happens.

I can live without needing at significant other and that’s perfectly fine.

Having not settled down at this stage allows me to explore and self develop myself.

5. Appreciation of University (Second time).

Even though that I have my first degree in a different field, I wasn’t passionate with what I studied. Going back to uni for the second time for a Masters and at an older age. One of managers who went as a mature age student mentioned they appreciate university whilst (or after)  working full time more than those straight out of high school. This is true as my work experience helped me get into the Masters degree of choice. I shall do a post on what is involved in the process of applying for a Masters degree?

6. Patience for things and running my own race.

I’ve developed walls when I was younger for the above mentioned things. Over time I’ve developed patience over things such as the above things mentioned. I’ve seen people that I know of that rush things such as marriage, engagements, having a boyfriend (even my sister has a boyfriend from first year). Even my mum to family friends hint that i should be in a relationship but honestly, this is my life and not wanting to settle into their norms! I’m happy not to give into pressure and glad to run my own path.

So are you a late bloomer too? If so, then benefits have you discovered?

x

Checking in.

Another working week has gone by.  So Chinese New Year was on Monday and the night before I celebrated with my family. Lots of food plus wine as well. Well i couldn’t drink because of work the next day but nonetheless it was good.

Its exactly a month,  I take time off work but with a reason: Uni orientation week. Yeah March will come soon around the corner and I can’t wait! I’ve already sat down with my manager and told what dates I’m required to have off, plus assignments time off too, but that doesn’t start until the end of March.

What’s planned for the rest of this month?? Family celebration at the end of the month (grandparent wedding anniversary) and a surprise b’day the day after.  Nothing really else to report here.

Review: Freeletics App

Today I am doing a completely different post from what I’ve done over the past few weeks. As the title reads, it’s a review of 2 fitness apps (under one company). Let’s get started.

As you’ve known, I have a passion for health / wellness / fitness related things. One of the fitness applications that I’ve taken up in the past 5 months is the above mentioned. I started freeletics coach in Septembver last year.

What is freeletics? Freeletics is a high intensity body-weight only program where it can be done anywhere, from the comfort of your own home, gym to even outdoors.  The company started out in Munich Germany in 2013. The fitness application can be downloaded to your phone, laptop and even computer. When you start out i.e sign up, you’ll get access to the ‘basic version’ i.e half of the complete program. To access the full benefits i.e the coach, you will need to pay for it. You can subscribe in a 3, 6 and 12 month period. It’s like having your own mobile personal trainer. Think function training here.

Why did I start freeletics? Basically I wanted a program that focuses on calisthenics so I can improve on pull-ups, pistol squats etc and to try new exercises. I’m also a fan of the time of  the amount of time it takes to complete the workout. I already weight train 2-3 times (max 4) a week and it’s flexible enough to adjust according to my schedule. Furthermore, I enjoy the challenges that freeletics coach gives me every week (hell days and weeks included.) I’ll explain the later.

What’s the coach? If you decide to purchase the full coach program, you will be asked to fill in your statistics, goals and fitness scales. You will be then asked to complete exercises i.e 10 sit ups depending on the fitness scale and it’s timed. After that, then your coach will tailor your first week depending on the amount of days you have in a week.

Also, you will have 3 types of programs. Cardio, Cardio/Strength and Strength, depending on what you want to achieve. The Cardio program is for those who want to lose weight / tone. Exercises include the beginner versions of the exercises such as sprawls,knee pushups, HH (Hands) squats, lunges etc to improve cardiovascular endurance. The cardio / strength program is a mix of the regular option exercises such as burpees, squats, lunges, pushups. It also includes strength exercises too. It’s a good starting point for those who want to improve on current fitness level and can also be used to aid weight loss. The strength version is the program that is purely focused on building strength and muscle. This can include burpee squat jumps, high jumps etc. Short runs and sprints can be included as well.

There are 6 advanced moves that can be unlocked and coach won’t include them unless you unlock it. These moves are: pull-ups, pistol squats, toes to bar, one hand pushups, handstand pushups and muscle ups. The only ones I’ve unlocked are pull-ups, pistols and toes to bar. Next goal is one handed push-ups. To fully experience the coach and to add variety, I suggest unlocking at least one of the moves.

I started with the cardio / strength program until week 10 and from week 11 onwards, I focused on strength to focus on building strength and muscle. The cardio / strength was good but felt that I wanted to focus towards building muscle and strength, hence the switch.  Being already fit before commencing freeletics helped me progress to the strength. Whatever goal you have, feel free to change it up.

The first week isn’t meant to be easy, especially with Aphrodite (burpees, squats, sit-ups in 50, 40, 30, 20, 10). Oh yes, the workouts are named after gods. I suggest signing up to freeletics to know the name of gods. Some workouts have short runs to 2km run in one workout. I remember doing my first Aphrodite and was wiped out.

So what are hell days and hell week? These are the weeks that are designed to pus h your body to the limit and challenge yourself even more, mentally and physically. Hell days week is in week 7  (and every 7th week of a 15 week block). Hell days are two workouts depending on the amount of days you choose to workout. Hell week (every 15 weeks) however is 7 days straight training of two workouts each day. Hell days wasn’t too bad but was challenging. Having done my first ever hell week at the end of November, I sometimes combined two hell week days i.e 4 workouts in one day as I had day restraints. At the end I have never been totally wiped out during that week and accomplished.

Downsides:  The application has had it fair share of bugs and crashes. I experienced complete closure of the app whilst having Itunes on. When progressing to the new coach we, the time aligns with European time so you have to wait until after 5 days of coach week passed. The cost can be too much for some countries. Honestly, wait for the 30% off coach to purchase first timers. I also experienced sickness before Christmas and I believe it was due to the fact I took on a very heavy freeletics workload, combined with my weight training. Right now I’m down to 2 days a week due to a  new lifting program that takes o up 3-4 times a week. Plus I’m also doing running coach, which i’ll cover in a later post.

To see results, nutrition is the key to results and performance. I believe that with freeletics and my weight training , it’s reshaped my body to a new level. Also, rest and recovery is important. It’s definitely not easy but worth it.

Rating: 5/5. Once my subscription finishes in March, I will continue this freeletics journey.

So, there sums my review for freeletics and if you’re interested, then sign up and start! 🙂

x Lydia

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