Food Trip: Grilled Lemon and Garlic Chicken

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I’ve been inspired to do some cooking in order to spruce up my eating habits. Healthy eating can get you stuck in a rut if you don’t unleash your creative side and try new recipes.

This morning I made a new meal, under the guidelines of the 3333 plan. It was actually quite simple and quick to prepare!

For my fruits, I had half a large pear.

For my vegetables, I tossed some spinach leaves and tomatoes.

For my protein, I grilled a chicken breast marinated overnight in lemon juice, chopped garlic, salt & pepper and 2 tbsps olive oil.

The olive oil made the chicken moist while the lemon made the chicken tasty, versus just grilling it off the bat.

For my carbohydrates, I ate a whole wheat bagel.

It was quick and easy and the preparations were simple. Looking forward to more recipes!

Thirty Things: Become A Teacher

Barely a month after I completed my teacher training (four days of lectures, 50 hours of apprenticeship and a 200+ point exam), I auditioned for a slot to officially become part of the Beyond Yoga Teaching Staff.

Cara de Ocampo, owner of Beyond Yoga, invited the trainees who completed all requirements to audition in front of a sample class for them to assess if the trainee’s ability to teach in their studio.

My “class” for the audition are the yogis and yoginis of Yoga For Life. They were a tough bunch of experienced Anti-Gravity students and teachers from different fitness backgrounds such as yoga and dance.

I only taught for about 45 minutes, about half of the class time, but it was one of the most terrifying experience of my life. For one, we were dealing with the BHS Studio. During our teacher training, I mostly conducted practice class in the Quezon City studio. The room dynamics of the BHS studio is much different that QC. Two, there were about 15 students in attendance. In practice class, we had maximum of 8 students. And three, it was another thing to be observed by your students, mentors, peers and future employees – absolutely nerve wracking!

But in the end, I was happy with my experience to teach these fantastic group of people. I learned so much from them about myself, about teaching, and the yoga community. It was definitely a fun experience and boosted my confidence into teaching. They gave good feedback and complimented on my knowledge and confidence. I just needed to practice the other side of teaching, which was connecting with the students and other little tips.

With my co-teacher Mark Mizal

With one of our mentors Paulo

Class picture

And officially, as of January 18, less than a week after the audition, I was officially given slots to teach starting for the month of February.

Come join me in my classes starting February 2013, 8.30pm in Beyond Yoga Bonifacio High Street Central on Tuesdays, and 9am and 7.30pm in Beyond Yoga Quezon City on Wednesdays.

Thinspiration: Beyond Sculpt

As part of my of my goals for fitness in 2013, I had the pleasure to try for the very first time Beyond Sculpt, one of Beyond Yoga’s signature classes.

Get the best of strength training and yoga through Beyond Sculpt. This brand new fitness-based approach to yoga is targeted to strengthen the body as well as the mind with the use of weights in your yoga practice. Get rapid results, have fun, and sculpt your body into the shape you want through this program designed for anyone who is up for the challenge. (60 minutes)

This class is taught by the lovable Paulo Leonido, a yoga and fitness instructor in Beyond Yoga. This classes uses weights and the class moves through aerobic and yoga fusion steps that really strengthens your arms, core and legs. Paulo also loves playing upbeat music that really gets you into the groove.

You sweat buckets, and you may feel like you’re in boot camp in class, but you come out refreshed and stronger, with happy hormones circulating the body. I really felt the difference in my body especially when I did Rianna’s class after for Vinyasa. My arms were a lot stronger especially in doing the chaturangas.

I really enjoyed my first class and looking forward to more.

With the Beyond Yoga teachers after Paulo’s class

Beyond Sculpt Classes are available at Beyond Yoga Quezon City and Bonifacio High Street Branches.

Thinspiration: The Work Out Begins

2013 barely just begun and I’m back into work-out mode to keep myself fit.

Began my day subbing for Maitri, one of our regular teachers, for her Anti-gravity Yoga class at 9am. It was a last minute call and I was the only available sub that was contacted.

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It was great to get back into teaching mode and I only had one student so it wasn’t as stressful even if the situation was.

And I followed it up with back to back mat yoga beginning with Power Yoga with Anna Man and later on Vinyasa 1 with Rachel.

Despite doing 20+13 suryas and then some, it was just great to work out my body and get rid of all those accumulated weight from the holidays.

I plan to stick to a similar routine this year focusing on mat yoga and teaching Anti-Gravity Yoga.

My fitness goal is to do a headstand an handstand (without assistance) within the year.

Powerful indeed.

Namaste!

Anti-Gravity Teacher Training

Early September, Beyond Yoga opened its doors to the next batch of Anti-Gravity Yoga teachers for an intensive training happening in November.

They are opening three types of training – AGY Fundamentals + Flying Fitness 1 training, Flying Fitness 2 (open only to certified AGY FF1 teachers) and AGY Pilates (with mat certification):

If I’m not mistaken, the AGY Pilates is going to be the first in Asia.

And guess who signed up?

Yup, as of last October 5, I have officially enrolled to become an Anti-Gravity Yoga Teacher Trainee.

Even before the posters of the teacher trainings came up, I knew I was going to take this. My instructors and friends at Beyond Yoga have been telling me about this and so the possibility has been in my head for a long time.

As soon as the posters came out, all my actions gravitated towards it – I filed for a leave early on, i hit my quotas for the tuition, trained like crazy and even made a bunch of new friends with some of the regular yogis and other fellow teacher trainees!

I even invited a couple of my friends to try it our for themselves:

This to me is such a big deal because it’ll be the first time I am seriously gunning for a teaching/leadership role.Its the first time in ages I will ever take on a challenge such as this where my intention is already set and the end point is exactly what the program is designed for.

I have so much love and faith for this practice. It was where I got my strength, flexibility, balance, discipline and one of the factors for my fitness goals.

I’m quite nervous but my excitement outweighs my nervousness. I’m so looking forward to November!

Thinspiration: TRA Week 8

Time flies so fast and I’ve completed two whole months of the TRA program!

I measured myself last Saturday and was pleased to see that although my weight remained the same, my body fat still went down a few decimal points and so did my BMI and subcutaneous fats, while my skeletal muscle increased.

I was to be quite honest, relieved at the results but also not satisfied with it. I was relieved that I was right on track, however not at the speed I wanted. There was a very slight change from my last measurement two weeks ago and also not much different from my one month marker.

To be honest, its probably due to how I behaved that past month. I cut myself a bit loose that July and started accepting invitations to eat out with friends since I was already comfortable with the program and adjusting well. However, eating out is a bit trickier when trying to stay healthy because there is more temptation to stray (you just have to sample the restaurant’s dessert) and you are not familiar with what is in the meal. I have also welcomed traveling for a few days, and some times you cannot help but sneak your hand into that bag of chips when you’re having a laugh with friends by the pool. Due to these changes in schedule, my work-out schedule has also became sporadic and I just went maximum of 2 times a week.

But as much as possible, I kept to the 3333 meals throughout day. It became my guiding light throughout the journey. People are beginning to notice how I eat and thus I get to influence them to eat more fruits and vegetables.

The program also helped me exercise my amount of self-control. The lessons have already bore into my subconscious that I refrain from having more cake, drinking alcohol (despite peer pressure), and staying up late.

I am looking forward to my third month with excitement, adventure and curiosity. Every day is a new challenge, and every day is a new beginning. Every day is a step closer to my goal.

Thinspiration: TRA Official One Month Update

This is my official one month entry update.

Just to give a refresher and to inform new readers and friends, last July 2, I started with a health program called The Right Approach or TRA.

My journey to losing weight began last year, when I noticed I was packing the pounds after a losing so much weight due to stress and an episode of my anxiety disorder in 2010. Despite numerous efforts, like enrolling myself in the gym, taking l-carnatine and orlistat supplements, eating salad instead, I noticed my weight wasn’t going down. It was either increasing or remaining flat. It also didn’t help that I was eating out a lot with my friends and family.

Come June 2012, I gave myself a deadline that I had to seriously go on a diet come July up to the end of the year. I researched and observed what were the best things out there that was most effective, and came across this program from my friend Kristine Alcantara-Javier. Know more about Kristine in one of my previous blog entries to know her journey.

She introduced me to the program and by some stroke of luck, I was able to get a good deal that worked for me and was able to jump start my program by my targeted date.

After one month on the TRA, I have my official photos and results:

Upon seeing my picture, I was very happy with the result. You can see that my stomach has flattened and my back grew thinner. Even my boobs seemed to have taken shape and so did my ass! And this is only after one month. It might not be seen in the pictures but I definitely felt the difference in my thighs as I could now easily fit into my jeans, whereas previously it was a struggle to put them on.

I also am so proud of the fact that my strength has improved a lot. As an avid yoga practitioner, I find myself doing the poses more fluidly and I’m able to carry my body weight while suspended in the air doing Anti-Gravity Yoga. My teachers noticed the difference as well.

Doing the program isn’t as easy as it looked and I had to make so much adjustments to how I ate. I discovered I’ve been eating so much excess calories and my food choices weren’t as healthy. It wasn’t just eating a fruit, veggie, protein and carbs, but there are also certain foods that you should avoid. It was also a challenge especially when my schedule is thrown off, like my travels out of town or I am suddenly invited to a dinner or meal with friends or clients, but the coaches offered a lot of tips to help us with adjusting like bringing your own fruit, etc.

Here are some of the things I like about this program:

  • I can eat normally – There are no meal plans that require you to eat something else from your friends or family, or starving yourself from a certain food group for a period of time. The only things that I go out of my way to bring are apples and veggies but it doesn’t make you look like you’ve sprouted another head just because you are on a “diet”.
  • I can still exercise regularly – In fact, it is encouraged to do some light cardio exercises every day. I still keep my yoga schedules and in fact it helped with my yoga poses. I could bend and flex better and also built muscle strength easily. I am a lot more stronger now.
  • Fits my schedule – You just eat 3 times a day every five hours.
  • Convenient – each pack comes complete with a pillbox for your supplements and a shaker for the trimshake.
  • In a system – with the food diary and classes, i can easily track down what I’m eating and it serves as a guide for me to follow so I don’t go astray.
  • Has a support system – dieting is hard to do on your own but I’ve got someone like Kristine and the other coaches to keep you in line and can easily consult if I have any questions. The month long class also gives vital information to help you with your program.
  • Flexible – I can have different meal combinations as long as I follow the 3333 rule.
  • Longevity – since this is on a period of 3 months, you definitely gain habits you can apply for after the program.
  • Guaranteed results – I’ve seen a lot testimonials from real people who have done this. My friend Kristine is one of them and I’ve seen how much she’s lost and is still losing months after the program. And from my results, it really can happen.
  • Gradual but effective results – The results don’t happen overnight but the period of loss is quick enough for me. According to them you can lose as much as 12 kilos in the period alone (that’s about 2 pounds per week, the healthy way to lose weight).
  • Health benefits – With the testimonials I’ve read the program helped people lower their hypertension, fight obesity and the like. I hope this could also help stabilize my PCOS, one of the main source of my weight problems.

I am looking forward to my results for the next months to come. 🙂

Thinspiration: TRA Week 4

Hi!

I am still alive.

I am just not as online on my computer as often as I would like as: 1) I don’t have internet at the office or a mobile wi-fi and 2) I sleep earlier. Usually when I get home from the studio, I immediate prepare for bed.

I am on my 4th week on TRA and completed my 1 month.

My results are the following (as on Aug 1):

  • Gained .6 kg in weight (but 1kg less that before I started TRA)
  • lost another kilogram of body fat, lost a bit on subcutaneous fat, esp in the legs and arms and trunk.
  • gained more muscle

I’m quite happy with my result and super proud that I’m losing more fat. I am not happy about the weight gain, perhaps this is due to muscle development.

I am more conscious with what I eat but I noticed I felt heavier for the past few days. Probably from what I’ve been eating. I vow to cut down on more in between snacking.

Again what I like about the program:

  • no starvation – you always feel full
  • you are more conscious in choosing the food you eat
  • guaranteed results
  • on a scheduled/system that puts you in a habit
  • easy to follow
  • no weird side effects

I hope this continues for my second month!

Thinspiraration: TRA Week 3

I completed my week 3 of the TRA program last Sunday. Due to the heavy rains last Sat, our TRA Class 2 was cancelled and instead became a Skype call, with my very own friend and mentor Kristine leading the class.

Just a little background, Kristine was my blockmate in college. Although we ran different groups, I considered Tin to be a very good friend since we were both active in college politics and had a lot of classes together.

When we were in college, Tin lost a lot of her baby fat due to diet and exercise. However, when we started working and when she had a baby, she gained a lot of weight and it placed her in a precarious position when she was about to give birth. She developed hypertension, which caused her to undergo emergency caesarian.

This is her weight loss journey:

7 years off my body age.
4 inches off my waist.
3 levels down the killer visceral fat.
20 lbs off the scale, 11 lbs of which is fat.

All in 3 months without starving and exercise. 🙂

It was this testimonial that made me join the program for a healthier me.

Class 2 taught us proper nutrition such as the proper classification of foods (did you know cherry tomatoes are fruits, while tomatoes are veggies; corn is carbs but baby corn is veggies); right proportions; healthy ways of preparing food; tips on how to decipher nutrition labels; healthy food choices; etc.

Although I was already in my 3rd week, 2 weeks ahead of my classmates, Tin gave some tips in advance and with my diligent posting of photos on our FB groups, the other coaches were able to point out to me the proper way of eating. The class was still an eye-opener and got so much tips.

But here’s the real test on my result:

  • Weight: increased by .1
  • Body Fat Weight and Percentage: lost 1 kg and 1% respectively
  • Body age: decreased by 1
  • BMI: same – bordering normal-obesity
  • increased resting metabolism
  • Visceral Fat: same – normal
  • Subcutaneous Fat: Decreased by 1kg
  • Skeletal Muscle: Increased by 1kg

Over-all the results are very good and right on track. The weight usually depends on the time of day or if you just ate a meal (which was my case since I had lunch less than 2 hours before). I am crediting this result due to increased strength training from AGY Flying Fitness and the CrossFit trial last week and more conscious choices with regards to my food choices like fresh fruits and veggies, properly cooked meals and avoiding as much as possible fatty foods.

My goals for the week is to: further decrease my weight, body fat – subcutaneous and visceral fat and increase skeletal muscle.

  • Weight: decrease by 2 kg
  • Body Fat: decrease By 2 kg
  • Subcutaneous: decrease By 2 kg
  • Visceral: decrease By 1 pt
  • Muscle: Increase by 1 pt

Over all, I am really getting the hang of this and really conscious to buy good food like fresh veggies and fruits. I noticed I also watch how I eat, like now I eat 10 minutes longer giving time for me to chew my food and eat it properly. I also noticed how it affected my work-outs as now I go deeper into my yoga poses for bikram and can go longer and jump higher with my AGY. My coaches and teachers also noticed it. I also like to admire myself in the mirror as I can see my waist shrink and my thighs grew smaller.

Happiness!

Thinspiration: Fit All You Can

07.21.2012

Despite the heavy rains caused by Tropical Depression Ferdie, fitness enthusiasts from around the metro converged at the Rockwell Tent for Fit All You Can, the first ever fitness event, bringing together the country’s top gyms, fitness centers, yoga studios, equipment providers and other related suppliers under one roof.

They called it a smorgasbord of all thing fit. Where else can you pay a minumum fee of P500 and sample different kinds of exercises?

As a fitness enthusiast, I was very interested in attending the program because not only did some of my favorite studios like Beyond Yoga and Yoga+ were participating, I could also get to try out work outs from the other places/workouts I am interested to try such as PlanaForma, 360 circuit training and CrossFit for only P500 for all of them. That’s value for your money because a class is usually P500 or may require you to pay certain minimum trial fees at a much higher cost. And you get to sample them all in one venue!

I rounded up my co-fitness buddy Ria, and coined ourselves the “social-exercisers” because we love attending fitness events such as running events or things like this.

Here is the list of classes lined up for that day:

I had an appointment at 4pm so it was best to sample as much classes as we could within our timeframe from 10am-3pm.

First thing we tried was Crossfit, lead by the coaches of CrossFit Insurrecto. My AGY/Yoga Teacher Rianna Gatus, Ria and I all decided to join in. I was really scared because I’ve heard that this was such a killer work out but I decided to let my fear go and just have fun. Hey, its a trial after all.

Rianna, Ria and I warming up

Coaches from CrossFit Insurrecto explaining the Work Out of the Day (WOD)

Coaches teaching us how to do proper squats

After our intense workout, Ria and I took a quick lunch at the mall before heading back to the event. When we came back the Zumba class headed by Teacher Julie of PlanaForma was on its way so I jumped right in at the side with the Beyond Yoga girls Iza and Cathy since this was a very full class.

After this, Ria and I headed towards the other tent to do Absolute Hot Yoga (Hot A) with Teacher Dinah from Yoga+.

I was thrilled to have done this because I’ve been curious to find out what Hot A was all about but never got to try it because I usually stick to Hot B (Bikram) at the Studio. Its a lot similar, but Ria’s correct to say that there are a lot more transitions into the poses. Will definitely try this at the studio soon!

In the middle of all this, I hung out mostly at the Beyond Yoga booth, where they offered free trial of Anti-Gravity Yoga.

My usual seat

Ria’s first time on the hammock and got to do the vampire pose!

It was such a great day and endorphins were running high through out the day. I just wished I could’ve stayed all day and tried out the other exercises and class such as 360 circuit training, yin yoga and Plana Forma.

I commend the organizers for such a job well done. It was very organized, and despite starting the program late, everyone else kept the schedule. I’ve heard great reviews and people very much enjoying the event. There was a sense of camaraderie and fun as the different fitness groups tried out each others work out and not compete with each other.

I will definitely be joining the next event and hope to see more of you fitness fans there!

Photos courtesy of: pinoyfitness.com, The List Group, Beyond Yoga and Yoga+