Exercise And Eating Clean

Before I share what I cooked again, I’d like to share with you some of my many accounts in my Journey To Fitness.  Just in case my posts on food and nothing-to-shout-about dishes bore you to brink of death 😀

All food and no exercise spells trouble for your body and I kid you not. Exercise is good for your heart, mind, body and soul.  You may not feel the difference now if you are still in your 20s or 30s. But once you have hit forty and lead a sedentary lifestyle, you’d most likely begin to notice the differences in your body.

People who do regular activity have a lower risk of many chronic diseases, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and some cancers. Research shows that physical activity can also boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy, as well as reducing your risk of stress,depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Given the overwhelming evidence, it seems obvious that we should all be physically active. It’s essential if you want to live a healthy and fulfilling life into old age.  I want to be able to still run around and travel the world even when I am 84 years old or 90 years old.  There’s this 84-year old grandmother at my condo who is fitter than I!  She wakes up at 5am everyday and works out for several hours at the pool area, practising her sword and fan tai chi movements, brisk walking  and does body stretching. She then sits at the gazebo  by the pool and chats with her peers until 10ish am each day. She gives me so much inspiration whenever I chat up with her or simply just by looking at how spirited and sprightly she works out each day, with so much energy bursting in her.

At the same pool area too each morning is a 78 year old grandma who moved in 2 months ago.  She walks with the support of a walking stick and an Indon helper.  She looks like she is into her 90s.  When I chatted up with her, I found out that both her kidneys were removed. She can only eat plain vegetables and nothing else as she is not undergoing dialysis. She is currently consuming Chinese medication.

So the conclusion is eat well, eat clean and exercise regularly and you could be like the 84-year old healthy grandma.  Put crap into your body and you will suffer in your later years. No joke. Love your body for you only have one.

 It’s medically proven that people who do regular physical activity have:
  • up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
  • up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
  • up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer
  • up to a 20% lower risk of breast cancer
  • a 30% lower risk of early death
  • up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
  • up to a 68% lower risk of hip fracture
  • a 30% lower risk of falls (among older adults)
  • up to a 30% lower risk of depression
  • up to a 30% lower risk of dementia

If exercise were a pill, it would be one of the most cost-effective drugs ever invented!

This weather this morning was one of gloomy, breezy, chilly and a dark sky with a looming thunderstorm.  I wasn’t in the mood to swim in such compromising weather but with a determination as strong as steel, I went ahead.  The moment I went into the water, my body froze. The key to combat the chilly water and strong wind is to quickly dip your body inside the water and start swimming immediately, as fast as you possibly can, to generate heat in your body.  My body would normally be warmed up within 5 laps of swim on a cool morning but today, it took me over 13 laps to finally feel warmth. It didn’t help that it was extra windy today. *shiver!!*

I was the only person swimming this morning, which makes the pool looks oddly gigantic and creepy. Have you ever tried swimming alone at 6:30 in the morning under the threatening dark skies with no one else in the pool except you? Add the strong howling winds and chilly water and you’ll feel like you are in one of the scenes from Nightmare On Elm Street.  This morning, I felt and saw the currents of the pool water each time the strong wind blew and howled.   I soldiered on and after 30 minutes, I managed to complete 28 laps continuously, complete with body stretches and aqua cycling. It poured just after I completed my 28 laps.

It is hard to explain to you the awesome feelings one gets after exercising. If you haven’t started on an exercise regimen yet, why not try it today?  Yes today! It can be as simple as climbing up and down the stairs in your house or walk up the stairs to your unit if you live in a condo.  I used to jog outside the house at 5am with a baton in my hand and another round of running at 7pm when I returned from work.  Rain or shine, I would exercise, even if it meant running whilst holding an umbrella. I was and still am that determined and no one can break my will power.

Getting regular exercise aside, eating clean is just as important. Whether you are a carb-cutter, carb-loader, paleo warrior, or intermittent faster, your golden rule of clean eating should be to include as much fresh produce in your daily diet as possible.

Ok, enough said and I am stepping down from the soap box 😀

Here’s one of my home-cooked dinners last week  – baked Halibut steak from Greenland.  It was the first time hubs bought this fish and the meat was very smooth and creamy.

I baked the fish in two different styles – two pieces were lightly seasoned with sea salt and black pepper and another piece coated with wholemeal bread crumbs.

Verdict – the breaded one won.  And my conclusion is to bread the fish each time I bake fish in future.

Baked Portobello mushrooms with garlic.

Stir-fried organic cabbage with shredded carrot, garlic, onions and eggs.

 

I got a thumbs up from my most persnickety and critical daughter over dinner that night 😀

 

Health And Fitness Ideas For The Busiest Moms

Lots of men and women everywhere complain that their physique and healthy lifestyle ended when they had children. No parent would ever prioritize themselves over the needs of their children. But surely there must be a way to take care of them and you in those few hours we have each day? It’s not easy, and there will always be sacrifices to make when you’re a mom. Thankfully, there are plenty of ideas out there that can work for you when you find you’re too busy for a workout.

Parenting is tiring. This is the reason so few of us feel like getting off the sofa when we put the kids to bed. But if you can peel yourself from the comfort of the cushions, your workout could actually boost your energy levels. We all feel like the kids run us ragged. We all wish we had the stamina to keep up with them. That workout that feels like the hardest thing to start could actually make you feel just as energized by the end.

Exercise improves your overall fitness. It increases your stamina and builds your strength. And most importantly, it makes you feel more positive about life. It can help you have that can-do attitude that those supermoms on the PTA seem to have. But we all know it’s hard just to get that time and that motivation to fit in a workout. So how do we do it?

Moms are incredible at making schedules and getting organized. Sure, some things move right from time to time. And there will always be that little something that crops up to get in the way. But if your workout time isn’t on your daily planner, it’s time to make it happen. Here’s how. Get up thirty minutes earlier. Or go to bed thirty minutes later. Batch cook and microwave the family meal one night a week to reclaim that thirty minutes cooking time. Run with the dog. Walk the kids to school instead of driving. The list goes on. Sure, it takes a little creativity in some cases. But you’ve made the move toward prioritizing your health just by looking for a window of time for you.

Most of us have a slot or two of time for catching up with friends each week. But if you and your friend sign up for a fun exercise class together, you’ve managed to socialize and workout in that same slot of time. Best of all, working out together motivates both of you to stick with it. You’re having fun, so you get more than just a great workout. You get good mental health and emotional well-being.

Most of us have heard of home workouts like the max workouts program. The trouble is, when you’re at home, you always have household chores to do instead. But if you get your kids to join in, or invite that willing friend around, you can all have fun working through the exercises together. You also get extra quality time with your kids or that fun social date with your friends. And if you workout with your husband or partner, you know you’ve had a fun activity that benefits your relationship.

Of course, good health is about more than exercise. Healthy eating is another problem area for busy parents. Kids can be fussy eaters. Before you know it you’re cooking two or three different dishes every evening, or eating something that only satisfies them. To be sure you’re getting all the nutrition you need, it’s important to include the fresh stuff in every meal. It can be hidden in sauces or soups to avoid mealtime arguments.

It’s often tricky to make sure you’re eating enough fresh fruit and veg. It’s so much easier to opt for the takeout or convenience food. Batch cooking can get you a healthy meal in a jiffy. Whip up extra portions of healthy dishes packed with veg. Then freeze them individually to microwave when you’re too busy to cook. This can work for lunches in the office too. And it will be hot on your plate quicker than a delivery driver can get to you!

Fruit is easy to take with you for healthy treats on the go. Veggies like salad often require a bit more preparation. You could prepare your healthy snack or lunch the night before. It won’t spoil in the fridge overnight. And there are plenty of fun treats that are pretty healthy too. Homemade oaty bakes can be packed full of all your favorite dried fruits, nuts and seeds. They’re really filling, entirely natural, and easy to take with you whenever you’re out and about. Pop a couple in your purse to make sure you’re never caught short. If you’ve got something with you, then you’re less tempted to pay the vending machine!

Lots of health gurus recommend integrating more activity within your regular lifestyle. This makes sense, but it can be tricky to figure out how to do that. One of the easiest ways is to leave the car at home if your journey is shorter than two miles. You might think this will take longer. But when you consider the traffic and the hassle of parking, it might not take any longer at all. Pop your heels in your purse and use comfortable shoes for the walk. This will avoid aching ankles and blisters.

If you like to unwind on the sofa in front of your favorite TV show, you might be able to get your workout done at the same time. If you know your exercise routine, you can work your way through the exercises in front of the TV.  Treadmill or exercise bike in the garage? Make soap time your new exercise time.  Pop a TV in front of your workout equipment and enjoy your favorite show on the go.  Exercising this way is hugely beneficial because you are distracted by what’s on the TV. You’ll get through your thirty minutes without even noticing!

Extra workouts and healthy eating can be accessible for busy parents. Take some time this weekend to see if you can fit them in. Be well. 🙂

 

No More Excuses! Get Fit Without Joining A Gym!

Many of us think that fitness depends on our ability to own a gym membership. If you don’t join a gym, you can’t get fit, right? Wrong, there are so many ways to get fit without joining a gym. And, I’ve listed some of the most genius ideas down below:

Start Running
Running is an excellent way to stay fit, which is why you see so many runners everywhere! The great thing about it is that you get to go outside. You can run, and feel the fresh air in your lungs as you do it. Plus, it;s something you can do at any time of day. Early morning before work, or late at night before bed. There’s really no excuse, apart from when the weather’s bad. And, even then, some waterproof running gear is all you need. My biggest tip is to buy proper running trainers. This is because you need the right support when you run. Otherwise, it can be damaging to your joints.

Create A Home Gym
One of the main reasons people think they need a gym membership is because of the equipment there. But, there’s an easy way to work around this and save a load of money. You can create a gym in your home with ease. Especially if you have a spare room or garage that isn’t used as much as it could be. These are the perfect places to set everything up. All you need is the best home gym equipment for fitness workouts. I’m willing to bet you won’t use every machine in the gym, so, you’re wasting money. Most people will only need five machines maximum to get a good workout in. Things like treadmills, bikes, etc. Get some weights as well, and you’ll be sorted for all types of exercise. It may cost a lot to start with, but, you’ll save so much over time. Plus, you have more motivation as your gym is right by you at all times. No excuses, just go to your home gym and get fit.

home gym

Play Outside With Your Kids
Believe it or not, but playing with your kids can get you fit. I know, it sounds funny, but it’s true. Anyone with kids will back me up here and tell you all about it. Head outside to a park and play with your children. You’ll find it difficult to keep up with their endless energy. They’ll get you running around and joining in with their crazy games. Before you know it, you’ve worked up a heavy sweat! The great thing about kids is that they love playing sports too. No doubt your children will always ask you to go into the garden and play with them. Kick a soccer ball around with your kids a few times a week, and you can get fit.

Image result for image of mom plays soccer ball with kids

Of course, you should combine these ideas with a healthy diet. There are plenty of fitness-friendly food ideas for you to enjoy. Regular exercise, combined with a balanced diet will get you fit in no time!

 

Healthy Tuesday – 2 August 2016

I woke up feeling zombified today. I’ve not had a single day of sleeping in the whole of last week.  Monday through Sunday started at 4:45 am for me, with each day ending around 11-ish pm.  When I don’t get a day or two of catching up on my beauty sleep for that week, the following week spells trouble for me.  But I still went for my pre-dawn brisk walk today, interspersed with running up ramps.   I swam 26 laps in the pool yesterday morning and ended my day with 30 bicycle crunches (image below) on the bed last night 😀

bicycle-crunch

After 40 minutes of outdoor workout this morning, I downed a packet of Izumio hydrogen water, which gave me an instant power boost.  Since I felt rejuvenated, I did some back stretching and Swiss ball crunches (image below) on my fit ball. Suddenly, I didn’t feel sleepy anymore!

 

Excercise-ball-crunch

When our muscles are fatigued, lactic acid is released and our body produces hydrogen to compensate. When we pump in more hydrogen into our body, the hydrogen which is a natural antioxidant neutralizes the over production of lactic acid in the blood stream very quickly. Thus we recover quicker and feel rejuvenated.   Try it!!! If you are active in sports, do away with whatever you’re drinking now and try Izumio. You can email me at shireenyong@gmail.com to inquire more.

Breakfast was sugar-free and additives-free plain yoghurt with organic chia seeds, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sugar-free peanut butter and a swirl of palm sugar.

 

Lunch was pork porridge with shredded carrot strips and sweet potato, seasoned with pepper, sea salt and spring onions.

The big girl just announced that she needn’t have to go to school this Saturday, wooohoooo!!!  Finally I get to sleep in this Saturday, can’t wait for that!

 

Top 4 Bodyweight Exercises For Building Muscle

Most people think that bodyweight exercises are pointless, and you should only lift weights. Well, I’m here to tell you that they’re completely wrong. There are some great exercises out there that will help you build muscle and increase strength. To help prove my point, here are four of the best:

Push Ups
If you want a basic bodyweight exercise, then the push up is for you. It’s not hard to do one, and there are variations to make them easier or harder to do. This exercise will target your chest and triceps, depending on how you do it. The closer you have your hands together on the floor, the more triceps activation you get. A typical push up will be done with hands at shoulder width, so you get a great bit of chest activation going on. You can also do clapping push-ups to make the exercise even harder, and grow bigger muscles. Plus, you need no equipment for this movement, all you require is enough space to lie down!
File:U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Brandon Stout performs pull-ups.jpg

Pull Ups
The pull up is the greatest test of upper body strength there is. By doing this exercise, you’ll be working a whole host of muscles against the weight of your body. Primarily, pull ups will target the lat muscles in your back. Also, you get considerable activation in your trapezius muscles, most notably the lower traps. As a bonus, pull-ups will also work your forearms and biceps; it’s an all round muscle building masterpiece. Most people think you can only do pull-ups in the gym, but this isn’t the case. You can do them on a door frame or the back of some stairs in your home. There are also companies like PullUpMate that do portable pull up stations for indoor use. I strongly recommend you find a way to do this exercise at home, as it should be done every day to maximize muscle growth.

Dips
As far as triceps bodyweight exercises go, dips are the best for building muscle mass. The reason for this is that you’re in a suspended position when doing them. So, your triceps are working hard to keep your body stable, while also moving it up and down. And, you can also alter the angle of your body to target your chest more. This means you’re essentially doing a suspended pushup, and can get serious chest growth. You can create your own dipping station at home by using two chairs or the corner of a kitchen counter. So, they’re great to add to any home workout.

Handstand, Evening Sky, Beach, Sun, Summer, Sunset

Handstand Push Ups
The final exercise will target your shoulders and make them burn like crazy. Simply do a handstand against a wall, and lower your head to the ground then push up using your shoulders. If you can’t do this, then pike push ups are a good alternative. Get into the downward dog yoga pose and lower your head to the floor then push back up.

All of these exercises can be done without any weights at all. And, each can be modified depending on your experience and strength levels. Add them to your workout routine today!

Three Strategies To Get Your Health On Track In 2015

In a world where debilitating diseases are becoming increasingly prevalent, many people are seeking health solutions that will empower them to lead positive lives free of illness. If this is your health objective, it’s important to know that there are several wellness strategies you can implement to start living in a more enriching way. Here are three of them:

1. Find A Holistic Doctor
The first strategy you can employ to start leading a healthier life is to find the ideal holistic doctor. Rather than placing primacy on the administration of medication, holistic doctors seek to facilitate healing and restoration in the patient’s mind, body, and spirit. There are a wide range of health services that these doctors can offer to realize this objective. Some of them include medical hypnosis and acupuncture. Holistic doctors will also oftentimes place emphasis on offering nutritional counseling services that help the patient eat the foods that promote optimal energy levels, mood regulation, and weight management. You can access information regarding these types of services by visiting the following website: www.drbryanmd.com.

2. Invest In Personal Training Services
In addition to finding a holistic methods doctor, it’s a good idea to invest in personal training services. Doing so can facilitate health optimization by ensuring that you’re in the habit of exercising effectively and regularly. Personal trainers specialize in developing and consistently optimizing exercise routines that empower people to accomplish their fitness and health-related goals. Whether you’re attempting to lose weight, increase musculature, or develop a more toned physique, personal trainers can help you realize your objectives. Moreover, getting in the habit of exercising regularly will promote cardiovascular health and help you attain a new level of wellness.

3. Optimize Your Diet
One final strategy you should employ to get healthy this year is to optimize your diet. Although many if not most people understand that a sound diet is the foundational pillar of great health, many of these individuals procrastinate about changing their eating habits. Don’t make this mistake. Instead, start taking steps towards diet optimization by replacing coffee with green juices and salty snacks with healthy trail mix.

Conclusion
Individuals who are ready to take their health to another level should understand that there are several ways to make it happen. By finding a holistic doctor, hiring a personal trainer, and optimizing one’s diet, you will likely find that you start operating at a level of physiological efficacy and excellence you never thought possible!

Random Things On A Friday – 31 July 2015

As July 2015 ends today, I ended the last day of the month  by embarking on a new fitness regime this morning!  With creaky and achy knees that give way whenever I run on the road, I have decided to give running and brisk walking a break to heal my aging knees.

Inspired by the mil who swims for half an hour every morning (she’s 70 years old this year) and advised by the hubs, I have decided to swim every morning to give my knees a good break.  I have never been a fan of swimming as I prefer to sweat it out on the road or gym but I have no choice but to go through a hiatus to  heal my knees. Today, I found a renewed love for swimming!  I swam for 45 minutes starting from 6:30am and felt really good after the workout in the water!  The only thing missing is a swimming cap to hold my waist-length hair in place.  In a few minutes, I  will be driving to Mid Valley Megamall with the mil to shop for a swimming cap and a pair of goggles. Swimming, here I come and conquer the pool from now on!

Happy Friday peeps! 🙂

 

 

 

Awesome Rawsome Lunch – 2 April 2015

Yesterday was awesome rawsome lunch day for me.  I do that twice or thrice a week, for lunch.  Today is yet another day of going raw for lunch, well almost, but I will be adding an egg to increase my hemoglobin levels.  I am anemic, caused by heavy menses, which in turn is contributed by a tiny fibroid in my uterus.

My awesome rawsome lunch yesterday was Pesto Salad.  The salad  composed of alfalfa and onion sprouts, walnut, almond, pecan, sesame seeds, organic Japanese kyuri, organic cherry tomatoes, green grapes, seasoned seaweed, fried shallots, Japanese Yuzu plum dressing and homemade Pesto paste.

 

 

 

Before lunch, I downed 2 glasses of raw smoothie, consisting of orange, apple, green grapes and alfalfa and onion sprouts.  The kids and the hubs had orange and apple smoothie, sans the raw sprouts.

 

 

 

**BURP**!!  That was so so filling and enough to sustain me till dinner while giving me the fuel to slave for the kids and household 😀

Can anyone eat such healthy stuff just for a day? Tell me you can! They are good stuff you’re pumping into your body alright! 😉

 

 

 

BaNaNa Fitness Special Bootcamp Exercise @ Plaza Damaz

Hear ye hear ye all you fitness buffs and those who intend to melt away your belly fat to have a fabulous bod!

A friend of mine is organizing a BaNaNa Fitness Training (special bootcamp exercise) and has asked my help to spread the word around. My hubs has been attending this bootcamp at our neighborhood for almost a year and it is very intense. If I have the time, I will attend too. I am all for fitness but unfortunately, time is not on my side for now.

Here are the details of the BaNaNa Fitness special bootcamp exercise:

Venue: The Space, C1-3 (above Dynasty Club), Block C, Plaza Damaz, 60 Jln Sri Hartamas 1, Kuala Lumpur

When: every Monday & Wednesday,

Time: either 10am-11.15am or 8.30pm-9.45pm by Rapid Fusion Fitness

Price: RM299/mth (Early Banana Rate at RM799 for 3 mths).

For more information, you may send all enquiries to thespacekl@gmail.com or call 016-217 1060.

The organizer is offering a FREE trial if there are 5 or more people. So gather your friends, colleagues, husbands, wives, siblings or your boss to try out this fitness bootcamp for free! Don’t let this opportunity to jump-start your health and fitness regimen slip away ok! 😉

Preventing Cancer as a Family

“Prevention is better than cure”, we have often hear this, but how many of us actually practice it? All of us are aware of the threat posed by cancer, and there are actually many simple ways that we can practice together as a family to lower the risk of getting cancer. Adopting a healthy lifestyle together with your family members not only keeps you healthy, but can be fun too! 🙂

A new initiative by AXA AFFIN, in collaboration with National Cancer Society Malaysia (NCSM), aims to increase awareness and will be supporting cancer patients currently undergoing treatment. AXA AFFIN will fund the NCSM daycare usage to one cancer patient for every blogger that links back to AXA AFFIN 110CancerCare website in their effort to care for cancer patients. So, it’s really time to raise the awareness of cancer prevention starting from your own household. Here are 4 simple tips:

1) Do not smoke
Tobacco is the major cause of lung cancer. The best way to prevent lung cancer is to never start, but if you do, it’s never too late to quit. Adults in the house should know that second-hand smoke can cause lung cancer too, so establish a smoke-free policy at home. Also, make sure your children understand the danger of smoking since young. Many people first
started smoking due to the influence around them. So make sure your children are able to make wise decisions when the time comes.

2) Maintain a balanced diet
According to statistics, obesity among children is on the rise. Obesity should be treated carefully as it can cause many health problems, and is one of the factors that lead to an increased risk of cancers in adults.  Our dietary habits are formed since young, so the best way to maintain a balanced diet is to make it a habit for your family starting from your children. Avoid having too much fast food; instead, eat more veggies, fruits, and grains! Reduce the intake of salt, sugar, alcohol and red meat. Sometimes we might go overboard with these “feel-good” foods. You can search for fun and healthy recipes online, healthy diet need not be boring and bland.

3) Be active
Be physically active at least 30 to 60 minutes per day. You can think of fun activities to do as a family. It doesn’t have to involve heavy workouts like running or rock-climbing, just a simple walk or a fun outdoor game can achieve the same effect. Regular exercise improves digestion, allows for stable level of hormones, and bolsters the immune system. And for the mums and dads, it’s a great way to maintain a lean and healthy look too! 🙂

4) Take Supplements
Nowadays, there are many supplements to choose from, and they are available for all age group as well. Folic acid, Vitamin D, Iron and Multivitamin are recommended to lower the risk of getting cancer. Do consult your pharmacist for the ones that are most suitable for your family.