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Monday, March 23, 2015

Blog Hiatus

Aloha readers! 
As you can clearly see, this blog hasn't been active for the past couple months. 
Unfortunately, it will remain this way until summer arrives. 
I'm wrapping up this semester of school, while trying to juggle opening a NEW business (which is very exciting!) I'll put more information and probably a link to the shop when it's open! 
Thanks for supporting me in my journey - I hope to see you again when the blog returns! :) 


Selina :) 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Weekly Update (01/30)

Aloha readers! 
Time for this weeks check-in :) 
I am VERY proud of myself to be able to tell you that this week, I PUT MY FITNESS FIRST. No matter what happened, I stuck to my plan of getting to the gym. And despite the increased stress load from school, I still feel good and my brain gets the much needed break from studying. 

My original plan: HIIT circuit training on Monday, Legs + HIIT on Tuesday, and Upper body on Thursday. That quickly showed that it wouldn't work out. SO, instead of dwelling over the fact that I had missed that day's workout, I rearranged the schedule. Monday was HIIT circuit as planned, Upper body got moved to Wednesday, and today (Friday) was Legs + HIIT. I made it work! And you can too! I'm so glad I came across Steve's article on why it's OKAY to be selfish and put your fitness first, and how that can ACTUALLY have positive impact on all other aspects of your life. If you want to learn more about the article I am referring to, you can read it here (Original article here).  
This is my happy face when working out :P 

Today's leg workout was a BLAST. Not only was I happy to be at the gym after being stuck in a chair for countless hours writing a lab report, but I tried out some new things tonight! 
Here's a quick rundown of the workout:

Glute bridges superset w/ Fire hydrants - 3 sets
Pushups superset w/ Wall sits - 3 sets
pushups were included because I am trying to rebuild my upper body strength, 
and pushups have always been something I struggled with. Did them 
on my toes until I couldn't, then did them on my knees until failure. 
Dumbbell deadlifts superset w/ Curtsey lunges - 3 sets
Hip abductors - 2 sets

And the fun part; new things I tried out!
Smith machine glute kickbacks - 3 sets
Smith machine barbell squats - 2 sets 

Everyone is always saying how they're "at the bar on Friday night"... well, that was me tonight! ;) 

Got my HR up quite high with my supersets tonight - great calorie burn! 

Report deadlines and midterms are quickly approaching next week, so I'll be working extra hard to stick to this "putting fitness first" behaviour change, in hopes that it will help make me more energetic and focused on my school work!

Until next time!


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Why You Should Be Selfish - And Put Your Fitness First (01/27)

Aloha readers! 
Today's post is inspired by the recent Nerd Fitness post

In this week's article, Steve talks about why it's okay to be a bit selfish for the next month and put yourself first - your fitness, your nutrition. What Steve is trying to explain is that by prioritizing your fitness and nutrition, rather than your family and friends getting mad at you for being pre-occupied, or different aspects of your work (or school) life taking a toll, the complete opposite will happen. 

By always doing the workouts you plan and eating healthy, nutritious food, you'll feel more energized than ever. And because of that, this will give you more energy to spend quality time with your loved ones without being "too tired". It'll push you to really manage your time well, not to mention improve efficiency. Sure, for the first week or two, your work load may take a small suffering because you are allocating your time to other tasks, but it will slowly help you learn how much time it takes to do certain things, and how to keep yourself focused and away from distractions. 

The reason I wanted to share this article with my readers - besides it being super awesome - is that I want to let you know that if you WANT to make health and fitness a part of your priority, than after you MAKE it a priority, you have to DO the real priority. I can tell you all day long that getting my exercise and eating healthier foods is my priority, but if I'm not doing it - it's not my priority. ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. 

Here is a brief overview of how you can actually start prioritizing your workouts and nutrition, without all the other aspects of your life taking a hit: 

- Workouts: schedule in your workouts, and stick to it. No matter what happens. Have a lot of work to do at the office? Stop at the time you're supposed to be off, and leave it for tomorrow. Have endless amounts of studying to do? Stop. Save it for later or tomorrow. At first, you might think that puts you at risk for getting fired from the job or getting bad grades on the upcoming assignment. But on the contrary, this will help you improve your time management skills, work ethics, and efficiency. 

- Eating well: Having to spend the time and money on groceries may make you cringe at first, but in the long run the benefits outweigh the negatives. If you plan all your meals, you'll be less likely to buy food on the go, which can add up quickly. You'll be learning new kitchen skills that you may not have had before. It'll help you create a system to get what you need to done in a timely manner. On top of gaining time management skills, you'll be spending the money on things that will benefit you - helping you reach your goal - rather than stuff you don't need. 

- Sleep: when it comes to getting enough sleep, 9/10 of us are probably guilty for not going to bed at the time we set. Why? Because we're doing some last minute planning, or packing lunches, or just simply laying in bed watching Netflix. By prioritizing our workouts and nutrition, it starts a whole chain reaction of events that Steve has pointed out - allowing you to be more productive during the day, and to get things done. 
By choosing to prioritize your sleep over a 25 minute comedy episodes, or two or three, you'll wake up feeling more energized. This cycle then continues on to fuel you for your day, allowing you to feel more energetic and productive, being able to get more things done, and so forth. 

I won't go into and greater depth about the article; if you'd like to read the full article, you can do that here. But as you can already tell, despite the challenges for prioritizing your workouts and nutrition, the after effect of being able to commit to it outweighs majority of the (temporary) negatives. 

I most definitely intend to start doing that myself!! 
Until next time! 


Monday, January 26, 2015

Workout of the Day - HIIT Circuit Training (01/26)

Aloha readers! 
Today I did something different, and by different I mean good! 
For the first time in a while I worked out with a friend! For the majority of the time (since I started really working out again), I've always worked out by myself. Seldomly a friend would join me to workout, but more than often we are working a different set workout that day so we just do our own thing. 

Today, a friend I met way back in junior high met up with me. It was very nice to catch up with her, not to mention having someone work out WITH ME and push me (and I pushed her too) to keep going and not give up. It's been a while where I've had an external source of motivation that pushed me like the way my friend pushed me today - and it felt AMAZING. And by amazing I mean exhausting, haha. 
Here is a breakdown of the workout we did today: 

Round #1: 
Jump squats - 15 seconds work, 45 seconds rest 
Mountain climbers - 30 second work - 45 seconds rest 
Jumping jacks - 30 seconds work - 45 seconds rest 
Side jabs with half squat - 30 seconds work - 45 seconds rest 
Alternating superman - 60 seconds work - 45 seconds rest 

THEN, my friend said let's kick it up a notch. So we took out the rest breaks and had roughly a 2 minute rest break at the end of the circuit. 

Rounds #2-4: 
Jump squats - 15 seconds work
Mountain climbers - 30 second work 
Jumping jacks - 30 seconds work
Side jabs with half squat - 30 seconds work 
Alternating superman - 30 seconds work 
2 minute break 

By the end of the 3rd round, we were having a tough time pushing through - but we verbally encouraged each other, and we made it through the fourth round, drenched in sweat. 

This working out with a friend thing is actually such a blast! I really enjoy (and need) my me time, but this I can get used to. Big thanks to my friend for coming out and working out with me! 


Friday, January 23, 2015

Feeling Unproductive? It Might Be the Mercury Retrograde (01/23)

Aloha readers! 

So after reading the title of this post you might be going "Mercury Retrograde? What on Earth is Selly talking about?" 

Planets in our solar system are always orbiting around the Sun and spinning on it's own axis. Three or four times a year, Mercury's orbital path reaches a retrograde phase - a phase where Mercury appears to stop and and starts spinning backwards, known as Mercury Retrograde. 
In Astrology, Mercury rules communication, clear thinking, truth, and travelling. So when the planet starts going backwards, well, some of these things can start going backwards too. 

So what sort of things would you typically expect with Mercury Retrograde? Well, from personal experience - bizarre arguments, incoherent thoughts, lack of focus and motivation, and electronic issues - are very probably of happening, and trust me, I'm going through all of that right now! 

Not only has it empowered my lack of motivation for school, but it has made me feel extra lazy and unproductive. I'm having a hard time getting myself up out of bed and going to the gym when I'm on school campus. And when I do get there, my mind is all over the place - I just can't seem to focus on doing one thing at a time. 

So what can you do and shouldn't you do during periods of time like this? 
- review your contracts and agreements before signing them; whether it be bank loans, student loan payments, signing on new training clients, etc. 
- pause, take a deep breath, and think about things before saying them out aloud. Remember, bizarre arguments may happen when you least expect it! 
- get your vehicle checked out if anything has looked odd recently, and always give yourself some buffer room for travelling time 
- backup your electronic devices ASAP to avoid losing any important contacts or file information 
- reflect upon some previous commitments you've made, and renew them - rather than making new commitments (this goes back to the signing contract and agreements point) 

- don't sign new contracts or agreements (sorry! looks like personal training client contracts will have to wait a little bit) 
- jump to conclusions on problems or jump into impulsive decisions 
- procrastinate / leave later than planned for scheduled meetings or travelling arrangements 
- starting anything new before thoroughly completely, and reflecting upon what's already on your to-do list 

As quoted in, there is something good to take out of this retrograde 

The silver lining? Mercury retrograde is a great opportunity to handle unfinished business. Most of us start a million things that we don't complete, never realizing how much psychic clutter this creates. The retrograde is a chance to tie up loose ends and create a clear vision for the future. Take advantage of it, and you'll emerge fresh and ready when Mercury goes direct.
So if you've been feeling down, unproductive, or just darn right out of the blue - don't worry, you're probably not the only one feeling this way. But don't let this be an excuse to keep continuing on like this. Being aware of it means you can be proactive and make some changes.

I'm going to use this time to reflect upon why I want to finish studying my Nutrition degree, and what it means to me personally. I'm going to reflect upon what I had to do in order to get to where I am today, and plan out what I can do - and not do - to continue onwards in that path. 
I'm going to reflect upon the big ideas and plans I have for myself in the upcoming years, but rather than letting that overwhelm me and stress me out, I'm going to start envisioning the pieces of bricks I can lay down to get me to those big plans in the future. 
And finally, I'm going to reflect upon how some things I have no control over, and rather than letting it stress me out and fill me with anxiety, I am going to take a step back from whatever it is I'm doing, do some breathing exercises, and remind myself of what I am capable of doing - and give it my best efforts. 

Until next time. 



Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Daily Grind + Leg Day Workout (01/20)

Aloha readers! 
A few of you have reached out to me via private message and on instagram about my last blog post, and I am truly grateful for all your kind words!  Today is Day 2 of back to building the grind for me :) Things have been going well, with the exception of eating - adjusting to this new plan is a rough start! I'm not used to tracking my macros, thus I've been overeating quite a bit. The meal plan will help bring me back to eating the amount of food my body actually NEEDS - which is less than what I eat - so it will take some time for my body to adjust! 

I went to the gym in between volunteering today, and I have to admit it's still a little hard adjusting to this new gym :( When I envision myself going to the gym, I still have the old gym's layout engrained in my head! 

Today's workout was mainly leg focused, with some HIIT. 
Fire Hydrants
Lying Leg Curls 
Leg Extensions 
Dumbbell Curls 

Jump Squats 
Alternating Superman 
Jump Knee Touches 

I used to mix a lot of leg focused exercises and minimal glute focused exercises on leg day, so I'm changing that up as I want to start focus building my glutes :D For me to do work that into my workout schedule, days I have off from school will be dedicated to longer, upper body workouts, and other days will be split among HIIT, LISS (Low Intensity Steady State) cardio, and legs and glute workouts :) I'll keep you updated on how that works out. Until then! 


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Why I'm Struggling To Build My Own Dreams

Aloha readers
Today's post is a little more personal than educational.
I've had quite the unproductive weekend, and it has really got me thinking about why I've been struggling to commit, dedicate, and persevere the past few months. And much of that is due to be quitting early on in the game.
I told myself that I would be working even harder this semester, that I would be working hard to do research and bring good content to my blog - and thus far, I've been trying to juggle both but not really exceeding on either aspects. And don't even get me started on my fitness routines. 

Let's just say that because I'm quite easily influenced by my surroundings, I feel the need to really find something inside of me that can keep me grounded, and not be as easily distracted by my surroundings. Too many people zipping by at the gym? Affects my concentration and makes me less pumped to workout. Too many things on my desk and diverting my attention? Don't feel like studying and usually end up getting distracted. 

I was talking to my boyfriend earlier tonight about how miserable I felt about my body - I told him how I felt that laziness, negativity, and self-pity has taken over my life. Sure, I somehow manage to find the motivation to start up again, but too often I give up too early in the battle. Start my new nutrition plan today, cheat day by tomorrow. Schedule out my studying for the day, get distracted by online websites. Plan out my workouts for the next week, let other things take over this priority and push it to the side. 

And quite frankly, I'm very tired of that. They say that if you're tired of trying again, then stop quitting. And that is what I intend to do. 

 Another kink I've noticed in my habits is that I try to do so much all at once, trying to change too many things at the same time. As a result, I get overwhelmed and either give up on something or everything. What I've failed to realize in my persona life is that change takes time. It takes time to build habits. I didn't get lazy over night, so re-building a good work ethics, positive attitude, and motivation isn't going to happen over night either. I read an article on NerdFitness tonight about the building of things, and quite a few points in the article stuck with me. One is a quote that was embedded. 
"Get obsessed with consistency in the actions that feed the goal. Getting obsessed with the goal won't work and neither does having moderate goals. It's like thinking about laying down the perfect brick after perfect brick rather than going nuts over when you'll see a building emerge."
-Amir Siddiqui
Another was text that was written by the blog founder, Steve 
"Wow that looks amazing, and it look like it took a crazy amount of work...there's no way I could possibly do that." But that's not how great things are built. Great things are built one brick at a time.

By reading this article, I have realized that I keep falling down because I am trying to take on too much all at once, and I'm failing to really see and enjoy the brick laying process because I'm distracted by "trying to see the building emerge". I'm so focused on the end picture that I have failed to learn, love, and enjoy the process. So from today on, I'm going to have ask myself what I think is most important; then, prioritize it, stick to the plan, and start laying down those bricks - one at a time. 

If you're still with me, and you're interested in knowing how I'm going to do it ... 

1. School - In terms of focusing on the present, I just need to find a way that helps keep me grounded and focused, and channel that energy into staying on top of my studies. In the long term, I'm going to have to put aside some time next weekend to plan out the rest of my degree. That's the building emerging. I don't want to get too distracted by it, but I need to have the blueprint of what it will look like. 

2. My body and my health - I need to stop being lazy, and start building a new habit - a new routine. I know that getting myself to the gym every day is not realistic, so I don't plan on doing that. I've used this opportunity to join my fellow friend/coach Michael Morell's MoreFitChallenge. It's a 90 day challenge, where you follow a workout plan and nutrition plan of your choice, and try your darn hardest to build lean muscle while shedding body fat - which is what I am trying to do. Yes, there's a lot of money and prizes involved, but that is not why I'm joining. It's to build a new habit. Having this deadline will hopefully keep me motivated to build this habit, one brick at a time. 

3. My lovely blog - Over the past few years, my life has gone from getting a degree and getting a good paying job to finding something that I really like and am passionate about, that I want to learn more about, so I can do more, to help more people. This blog means a lot to me. It started off as a simple blog - and it still is - that recorded my own journey to health and fitness, but now it has grown to something more. Now, I'm not only building this into what hopefully will be a business in a few years, but a platform for me to reach out to more and more people. 
Today, you might be the only person reading this - ever, and I can choose to let that upset me, or let that encourage me to keep writing and blogging - because I've reached out to one more person that I would have if I ended this blog. So, thank you.
If I'm going to be realistic, with trying to rebuild my fitness habit and trying to focus on school, I don't see the original plan I had made for my blog as realistic. But I had made myself a promise in 2014 that 2015 would be better for my blog, and I intend to keep that promise, by building it one brick at a time. Ideally I'd like to post every day to keep the cyber traffic flowing, but that is too much for me. I'll aim to post a couple times each week with workout posts, and one detailed, educational post on top of that.

If you're looking for a take home message from this post, it's that: There are things I want to do and accomplish in life. But I feel like I'm stuck in a constant loop that I can't get out of. But that's going to start changing. Because I have a damn dream to build. 


Thank you for sticking with me so far. 
Things are going to get better from here :) 
Stay with me, and I'll prove it to you.