Sorry for the lack of updates the last few days as I was away in Hong Kong for a family trip and didn’t have time to blog in between. Hong Kong is a lovely getaway destination for shopping and eating. I have returned with much lighter pockets and a heavier belly but I’m happy. Now I need to be more focused on my quest for a fitter me.
I can’t say I’m fat as I’ve been lucky enough to have good genes that allow me to eat more than the usual portions of meals. However, a body analysis earlier this year revealed that I was lacking of at least another 8kg of muscles for someone of my size and built. I always had the nagging feeling that I was pretty unhealthy and this analysis became the pushing force for me to do something. After I passed my 30th birthday, some sageness can be seen around my tummy, arms, thighs and butt as I’ve put on about 7 to 8kg in the last 4 years and not much of it is muscles.
Here are some comparisons over the years (I’ll try to use swimwear pics as far as possible so you can see my body changes clearly) :
In Aug 2009 : Super underweight
In Feb 2010
In Aug 2011: You can see more flesh on arms and legs and I just reach ideal weight
Early 2012 : Perfect weight
Aug 2013: Rapid loss of metabolism and tummy starts to be fleshy and saggy
September 2013: I think you can see how much more curvy I became in the last 4 years.
If you have followed my blog from years ago, you probably realize the changes as its quite gradual but if you compare my Sept 2013 photo with my Aug 2009 photo where I’m all bones, you’ll see that I’ve gain a tremendous lot. I’m still rather petite and within my ideal BMI zone but all the weight that I’ve accumulated through the last few years are literally fats and I am still extremely weak physically. Gaining another 8kg of muscles, toning my tummy and lower body as well as increasing my bone mass seems like a really daunting task for someone who loves food and haven’t been exercising regularly. But I guess we all have to start somewhere.
To be honest, I hate to exercise which is why finding a form of exercise that can hold my interest for long and allow me to integrate it into my lifestyle is very important. After exploring a whole lot of different options, it was my trial class with Updog Yoga Studio that finally caught my heart.
The photos below (pardon our sweaty, right after an intense hot yoga faces) of us at Updog Studio are taken courtesy of Elaine and her hubby. It was Elaine who introduced me to Updog Studios and her regular handstand photos are a constant inspiration!
I did a trial class with a group of blogger friends (Elaine, Nadia and The Cambelles – Carrie & Rachie )that were looking to (or already had) prioritized fitness in their daily regime. Updog Studios has 2 branches and I had my trial at their Grandstand branch even though now I usually attend classes at their Big Splash branch.
It was an intense class and I learnt how extremely inflexible I am! Coupled with the lack of muscles, it took full concentration for me to even make it through the class.
Luckily the teacher could vary the same pose for both beginners like me as well as for the more advance students in class.
I was relieved when my first class was over and comatose the moment I reached home, waking up the next morning with aches and pains. Yoga wasn’t as simple as I thought it to be. Despite all that, the high I got from completing the class, the inspiration I received from seeing how strong and flexible the teachers and some of the students are as well as the dull ache in my muscles showing me how out of shape I am lingered far longer in my mind and I strangely couldn’t wait to go to another class.
It didn’t take me too long to decide that Updog Studios was for me and I’ve been attending yoga classes since a month ago. My early exploration with incorporating a fitness regime in my lifestyle is not completely smooth sailing. I had to make a conscious effort to fit it into my routine and when I finally did, I fell sick for 2 weeks and didn’t do yoga. Getting back into routine again took a little self reminder not to be lazy but then I started to travel which is really disruptive to new routines. But in my last recent last trip to Hong Kong, I returned back eager to get back to classes at Updog. This shows that I no longer find it a chore to exercise and that a leaping change in my book.
I have a long way to go before I can even do half of what some of my class mates can do but the journey is enjoyable and the peace that comes from full focus during yoga clears my mind. After a month of on and off yoga at Updog Studios, I think I’m still pretty weak (muscle-wise) but I have noticed improvements in my flexibility. It’s these small little improvements that keep me going because I know I’m on the right track.
I won’t go all preachy on you to do some exercise because you already know its good for you and I personally believe that fitness needs to be a personal choice. But if you do want to give yoga, especially hot yoga a go before deciding if it’s good for you, you can try Updog Studio‘s trial lesson with no obligation.