6 Things To Focus on Every Year (Birthday Resolutions)

I know lots of people do New Year’s resolutions. I do too! However, for some reason, I also have been pretty big on birthday resolutions. I think every year, there are 5 things that I always want to focus on. I’ve never written them down though. So I thought that maybe if I write them down, I can at least keep myself accountable and maybe improve upon it every year.

Last week, I turned 36 years old. Not necessarily such an important number to remember. But that is how old I turned. So there you go.  My husband asked me jokingly “How does it feel to be 36?” My answer was “feels like 35.” Ha…I don’t really feel “old” per say… I still feel very young because I know there are so many things I still need to learn. At what age do people usually feel “wiser”?

Anyway… again I digress…

Every year, I feel like I can improve on the things I list below. So every year, I would like to make them my birthday resolutions in no particular order!

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1) Cherish Family Time

Sometimes, life can be so busy that it’s hard to enjoy family time. A lot of times, my husband and I wait for 6:45pm to happen so we can start the kids bedtime routine. Before that, we go through the motions of picking them up and feeding them and then watching them play while we wait for the clock to get to 6:45pm.

There are seldom days where we actually play with them during the weekdays because we are both just so tired. So this year (and every year), my resolution is to make it a point to play with them without distraction while they still want my attention and affection.

The same statement goes for other family members… and friends. I have a friend whom I admire because she actually makes it a point to make sure she hangs out with old friends. Sometimes I am so tired, I just want to veg out at home. And that’s perfectly ok! But continuing to build relationships with loved ones is also important.

2) More Time With the Spouse

It’s so easy to neglect each other after a loooooonngggg day. After we put the kids down to sleep, I either sit and blog or sit and watch tv while Andrew continues working the rest of the night or go play basketball (his first love ;-)). Sometimes when we drive to work together, we both either haven’t gotten enough sleep or are worried about the rest of the day – it’s hard to just spend time and talk to each other.

So this year, my resolution will be to make it my mission to get to know the hubs again. Yes, we have lived together for such a long time, shouldn’t we already know each other like the back of our hands? People change. So I want to keep getting to know Andrew as he changes and I want him to keep getting to know me as I change. This way, when the kiddos grow up and fly the coop, we may still know each other =).

3) Get Fit/Healthy

Exercise: Every year, I tell myself I’m going to exercise. I do try and then I get into a slump and it’s hard for me to get out of it. This past year, I realized I could do more than I thought I could (with proper motivation). I’m proud to say I was probably at my healthiest after high school.

I did fall into another slump a month ago though. Injuries and then getting sick made me feel lazy and not motivated to do things myself. Going to Orange Theory helped because it helped to have other people there doing the same exact thing you’re doing so it helps you to keep going. But my resolution this year is to exercise 3-4 times a week. Doesn’t have to be hardcore all the time. But just to keep it moving!

Eat Healthy: I ate tons of junk food during the month of May. I think when I am in a funk, I like to turn to junk food. They just taste sooooooo good! I guess I’ll have to curve those cravings. My resolution is to make sure that I don’t over indulge. No, I don’t have to eat the whole bag of cheese puffs at one time… who? me?… moving on..

Sleep: This is something I struggle with all the time. I sometimes choose “me time” over sleeping because I feel like I barely get any privacy during the day. But I know that sleep is also important, so my resolution this year is to find a happy medium between the two.

4) De-clutter The House

I don’t know about you… but I feel like I can get rid of 50% of the stuff we have in our house. There’s just so much clutter and I think we can make do with less clutter in the house. So I think this year, my resolution is to slowly start to either donate, sell, or throw away some of the things that we don’t need anymore.

5) More Time with God

If I’m going to spend time trying to get physically fit, I feel like I also need to spend time to get fit mentally/spiritually. This is probably the most important thing on this list for me. I know in my heart and mind that I am more at peace when I have a good relationship with God – as in reading my bible, praying, doing devotions regularly. This could be during good times and/or bad times.

I struggle with keeping this consistent however, because it’s something that I just kinda try to do at the end of the night when I’m in bed. So this year, my resolution is to try to read my bible or do devos and pray before I am in bed. That way, I am not always so sleepy when I try.

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Praying before bedtime

This is probably the hardest thing to do every year. But every year, it’s something that I need to push myself to be better at. I’m writing it down so that I can keep myself accountable with it!

6) Be Kind

Ok ladies and gents… I mean real talk. Sometimes I judge. Like in my head, I know I think thoughts that if ever said outloud, would probably cause an uproar. Sometimes I can’t help it because some people are just real jerks. But over the years I’ve learned that people go through a lot of crap daily. So maybe the jerky person isn’t really just a jerk but is someone who just had a really bad day.

I know that’s not an excuse and some people are just real jerks but I can definitely try to better control my judge-iness and side eyes. So my resolution this year is to try to be more understanding of people’s situations. I feel like just being kind and compassionate also makes a person feel good as well. So really this goes both ways – being kind to others makes them feel good, and it will make you feel good as well. It couldn’t hurt to try right?

What About You?

I guess I have more things in my head really but I think these 6 main things are what I will try to focus on.

What about you? Do you have birthday resolutions? Are there things you want to do every year that you just want to keep getting better and better at?

Thanks for reading and have a great rest of the day!!

(all gifs are from giphy.com)

My Fitness Journey (Before and After Pregnancy)

My fitness journey is not complete. I don’t think it’ll ever be complete if I want to live a healthy lifestyle. I don’t even really know where to start this. Hmmm.. so I think I felt the most “fit” when I was a senior in high school. I was (am) 5’1 and some change and in high school, I weighed around 105 lbs. At the end of my junior year, I miraculously made the Poms squad without prior dance experience. I secretly think they thought I was a freshman with potential – yay for looking younger! 😉 Anyway, because I was in Poms senior year, I felt like that was the fittest I ever was, we worked out a lot and for the first and last time ever (so far), I had some abs definition haha. My arms were also pretty toned – yay for doing those arms clinics.

College/Grad School

College was different. I didn’t live on campus since I lived nearby. There was definitely a lot of walking, but as far as working out, I wasn’t consistent. I’d go to the gym for maybe a month or two, then not go for months, then go again for a month or two. That cycle went through my whole undergrad. I was also eating whatever I wanted. But when I felt gross, I would crash diet for a month or so until I got back to the weight I wanted, and then would do the whole cycle again. My weight at the end of college was 110 lbs. I guess not a bad weight gain. Yay for good metabolism if that’s even a thing.

In grad school, I worked out a lot less. I would go to the gym in spurts (but not equaling months), then drop off for a long time. I just couldn’t find the rhythm. Then I got engaged during my last year, and that’s when I went a little more consistently. Nothing like a pending nuptial to get someone like me to go to the gym. Went to the gym 2-3 times a week and ate a little healthier. On my wedding day, I weighed 112 lbs.

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Married Life

Ok, so here’s the deal… like I had no set goal after the wedding as far as fitness went. I totally pigged out at our honeymoon and my weight steadily increased. What kept me from going above 120 lbs was the fact that I didn’t want my family and in-laws talking about me behind my back. That, and I was also self-conscious. I refused to buy anything larger than a size 4 at the store.  So I would squeeze into my stretched out size 2 jeans or buy a size 4 and feel slightly guilty for doing so. Please don’t judge… this was my own self loathing… size 4 is fine. It was where my mindset was at the time. I didn’t want to go above that for some reason.

For exercise, I told myself that as a PT, I was on my feet every day working on people. That was exercise enough for me. I would walk or jog on the treadmill once in a while, but again, not consistently.  If there was an event that I had to go on, I would workout and not eat a lot a week or so before the event so I could fit into the dress I wanted to wear. That was pretty much the cycle of my fitness journey then. Before I had my babies, my base weight was 120 lbs.

During and After Pregnancy

When we got pregnant, the first thing I felt, other than being ecstatic about the baby, was relief. I was relieved that for the first time in my life, I wouldn’t have to worry about gaining weight. I knew I still had to be healthy, but if I put on a couple of pounds, I didn’t feel so down on myself. The only exercising I did was walk around the neighborhood with my husband. That’s. About. It. At 41.5 weeks pregnant, I was 160 lbs.

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After my first child, I did not work out for like a year. I was way too exhausted and I didn’t even think about working out at that time. After a year, I went to the gym for a month or so (like 1-2 times a week), and then felt like life was too busy and stopped going. Before my second child, my base weight was 127 lbs.

During my second pregnancy, I felt awful. I was nauseous all the time, and I didn’t want to eat anything. I was also afraid of the swelling that I had during the first pregnancy that I walked a lot during my second pregnancy. At 39.5 weeks pregnant, I was 152 lbs.

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Diastasis Recti

After my second child, I also didn’t work out right away. I found out I had diastasis – recti since both of my babies were on the large side. Click here if you want to know more about diastasis recti. Basically, it’s when the bands connecting your abs muscles rips down the middle and therefore causes your abs to separate, giving you a pooch or a bulge in the middle of your stomach. Yayyyyy pregnancy!

Six months later, I bought a fitbit and tried to just walk 10,000 steps 2-3 days a week. Then I bought an iWatch but I mainly used it for trying to find my phone – don’t lie.. you do that ;-). Thanksgiving 2017 I weighed 130 lbs.

Turning Point

At the beginning of November 2017, I felt sluggish and was feeling pretty down on myself. My primary care physician stated that for a person with an Asian descent with my height, I was basically obese. Great thing to hear from your pcp. I was always tired and I couldn’t stop eating junk food. My favorites were Pirate’s Booty, Sour Belts, and CHOCOLATES. I am convinced that chocolate is addicting because man… I must. have. chocolates.

Since I felt so crappy, I decided I needed to make a life change. I would need to be more consistent with exercising and I would need to curb my junk food intake. But first, I will feast during Thanksgiving… AND I must eat all the junk food in the house. Ha! No, I was not going to throw them away! Hello! I mean I was desperate to get healthy, but not THAT desperate. Give me my booty! Pirate’s booty that is!

I also needed motivation… something that will make me want to keep working out. After a bit of thinking I came up with one.  Every Christmas, we have a huge family reunion and being a filipino – well, Filipina to be exact – came with a certain… what shall I call it… curse? Every time there’s a family gathering, filipinas will always be subjected to the comment “tumataba ka na yata!” which translates to “you may be getting fatter!” Doesn’t matter if you’ve been the same weight year after year, you will not escape that comment. Who knows, maybe it’s a term of endearment? Whatever it is, I made it my goal to not receive that comment.

BeachBody App

None of the things I mention on this blog are sponsors by the way. I am not trying to sell anything. I am just letting you know my journey.

This app was pretty cool because it is full of a variety of programs you can choose from. Yoga, P90x, 21 Day Fix/Extreme, Hip Hop Abs, etc. There’s enough to keep you occupied if you get bored with a program you’re using. I mainly did Total Body Cardio workouts because I felt like I got the most workout from there. So 21 Day Fix/Extreme and Hip Hop Abs were my daily routines. Each workout from the 21 Day series are around 30 minutes and Hip Hop abs would be around 40-50 minutes. I would choose one per day. I would also make it a goal to walk 10,000 steps everyday.

The hardest part for me was the first week. I could barely finish the 30 minute workouts but I mastered walking 10,000 steps by walking on the treadmill while watching TV. I just kept thinking of the phrase “tumataba ka yata” when I don’t feel like working out and it was enough to get me off that couch.

After two weeks, the workouts got easier for me. I also found that I was able to push myself a little harder and sweating more and more as I kept going. I felt that I had more energy during the day and I wasn’t sluggish in the afternoon when I usually would be.

By the time Christmas came, I weighed in at 123 lbs. I fit into my size 4 pants comfortably, and I know for a fact that my chipmunk cheeks looked smaller. I went to reunion confident and proud. And no, I did not get that dreaded comment at Christmas! Woohoo!! I got that comment a month later at another family reunion… when I was 121 lbs.  Ha! Oh well.. what can I do?

Present Time

These days, I don’t work out every day. But I try to work out 3-4 times a week. It’s harder to workout everyday while blogging as well. But this way, I feel like I’m working out my body and my brain. I started to get bored of the Beachbody App a little so I went ahead and tried out Orange Theory. Click here to see my review on Orange Theory. I loved it and now I go twice a week. I then try to do my own workouts twice a week as well outside of orange theory.

My weight fluctuates between 122-126 lbs depending on the time of the month. I still care about my weight but for once I actually feel more confident in my own skin. Yes, there are days when I feel frumpy. There are days when I feel my clothes are getting tighter again. But because I feel like I’ve created some sort of habit in working out, I feel mostly ok. I say “ok” because I haven’t met my ultimate goals – toned arms muscles, and as flat a stomach as I can get with diastasis recti. But I’m happy to be where I am right now. And that, I think, is what is most important when it comes to my fitness journey.

Here’s my progress so far. On the top is myself in October 2017. On the bottom, May 2018. I tried to smile the same way… ha! Yes, I’m wearing makeup in the second picture, but you can’t hide them cheeks.

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My fitness journey continues…

Thanks for reading and have a great rest of the day!