Monday, January 30, 2012

YEAR OF THE DRAGON

during CNY, my family headed up north as penang is my dad's hometown. sadly, he hails from the mainland and not the island, so the mainland was mostly where we were. however we did cross over to the island once, for lunch at my dad's friend's apartment.

 with uncle chee keong and auntie lay hong at their place.

sis and i.

both of us dyed our hair using liese dye, but with different colours. hers is chestnut brown, mine is dark chocolate. the colour didn't seem obvious AT ALL when i'd just dyed it, and i was rather disappointed. however it brightened considerably after a few washes, so now i'm satisfied with the colour and i'm glad i didn't go any lighter.

mum, sis, me, bro.

another shot of sis and i.

bro and i in the car.

we went to town after that for some sightseeing. one thing that my dad really wanted to do was get tau sar peahs, or as they are otherwise known, dragonballs. so we dropped in at him hiang for their tau sar peahs.

i didn't know that Burma Road Gospel Hall was only a few doors away from Him Hiang biscuit factory!

standing at the entrance of Burma Road Gospel Hall. :)

dad also took us to ghee hiang to get their tau sar peahs, unfortunately they were closed.

after penang island, we went to kepala batas to visit some of my relatives who own paddyfields there.

night time slowly falling, transitioning the sky from day to dusk.

 



   

Sunday, January 29, 2012

BE GONE!

happy happy :)

finally got my hands on these, and i hope that they'll be the solution to my ailing knees.


chondritin - repairs wear and tear of the joints.
glucosamine - promotes new growth of cartilage.
msm - reduces inflammation and joint degeneration.

knee pains, be gone! 




Friday, January 27, 2012

HECK YEAH

hi guys!

i've been away for a while ; was in penang / ipoh for chinese new year. this year, CNY had me quivering like a leaf in the wind.

mention penang, automatically char koey teow, penang laksa, curry mee and other frightening dishes come to mind. ipoh too, is associated with tambun biscuits, chicken rice, chee cheong fun, and so on. that, coupled with well meaning relatives who gave their best attempts at stuffing me to the gills every single day that i was with them, spelt out potential doom for my healthy lifestyle.

yes, it would be a challenge. but hey, that's life, isn't it? you can't expect not to encounter bumps in the road. if you only attempt to get things done when conditions are peachy, don't expect to go far. so, i squared my jaw and got ready to take on the challenge. 


i wasn't going down without a fight. for my trip, i packed my workout clothes / shoes, and exercised almost every day that i was away.

the chalets that we stayed in had a gym, but it was only available from 9am onwards. if you know me, i like my runs much earlier than that. so with the help of my smartphone and a very handy running app, i was able to venture out on my own without fear.

btw, the app i use is called endomondo, if anyone wants to know. besides tracking the distance you've covered, calories burnt, and time taken, it shows you your location using GPS so you don't have to worry about getting lost.

***

dad also took us to the beach a few times, so i was able to run there. 
running along the coast was really awesome!! 

the first beach that we went to, was just along the butterworth-kulim highway. so it was really nice in the sense that the track was smooth and even, with soft grass to run on.

soft trail ftw! it's always better to run on trails rather than road / concrete / other hard surfaces as softer trails are easier on the knees - something i have to be more careful about since my experience in the past.


all flushed and sweaty from running. :)

we also went to robina park. the beach there only consists of huge rocks, so running there was a nay. instead we walked on the narrow track. but hey, any exercise is better than no exercise at all.


this was a candid shot ; i'd noticed a large pipe extending farther out to the sea, so i walked out on it. on the pipe there were many barnacles and shells stuck to the surface. at the time of the above photo, i was bending down to look at the tiny creatures which were scuttling around, and my bro snapped without me knowing.


looking out to penang island (i was in butterworth.)

***
yes, i did let loose a little in penang and ipoh. after all, i only see most of my relatives there once a year, during chinese new year. and besides, what's CNY for if you can't enjoy the food and fellowship around the dinner table, right? 

however i still made sure to be mindful of my intake, and get my exercise. 

when i came back, i hopped on the scale and...

i'd lost half a kg.


however, i'm not gonna revel in the moment - this only motivates me to work even harder and melt off the remaining fat!

so, you see guys? festive occasions doesn't automatically equal piling on the pounds. 

you CAN make a difference, you just have to work hard! :)


Friday, January 20, 2012

WHEN YOUR LEGS GET TIRED, RUN WITH HEART.



as some of you who read my blog regularly may know, i suffered from a knee injury otherwise known as runner's knee in august last year due to overtraining, not getting enough rest, and lack of proper nutrition. my condition rendered me unable to run for 4months, but with ice therapy and other forms of treatment, i've pretty much healed and can run again.

however, somewhere throughout the whole ordeal, i realized that maybe my injury wasn't such a bad thing after all.

how is it even possible for me to say so?

***

firstly, runner's knee may have put me off running, but i was still able to walk. and for those 4 months, that was what i did. i was unable to run, but i was determined not to let that affect my weekly number of kilometers per week (i logged in a minimum of 20km at that time, but now i do close to 40km.) so what did i do? well, i did the same distances i did running, only this time i walked through it.

that meant waking up much earlier as distances i used to run in half an hour, now took double that time.
it took self-restraint for me to keep myself from running.
i also had to exercise self control, and discipline myself to rest enough, eat well, and plan out a proper training schedule.

all of this brought to my mind one phrase ;

"YOU WILL NEVER KNOW HOW STRONG YOU CAN BE, UNTIL BEING STRONG IS THE ONLY CHOICE YOU HAVE."

i look back on the obstacle that i'd dealt with, and although it might have been a challenge to me, what i do know now is that i had the strength to face and conquer it. how would i have discovered the depths of my determination, and hammered home my commitment to stay fit if i had just thrown in the towel? i could have made excuses, i could have felt sorry for myself - indeed, most people would have told me that i had every right to do so. i could easily have given up and told myself that that was it, i was never going to run again.

but if i had given up, what would that have done for me? i'd just have felt worse and dug myself deeper into my hole of depression, and probably slid back into my old ways of not exercising consistently.

as i go on my usual runs now, i'm glad to be able to look back and know that lest there be more challenges, i am able to go through them, and that i will NEVER stop running. at least, not for a long while yet. :)










Thursday, January 19, 2012

SHOE HAUL

in less than a week, i have substantially increased the size of my shoe cupboard.

most of my buys are pictured here. there are actually a couple more, but i was too lazy to go dig them out. 

flats, bata.
they were on promo, two for the price of one or something like that.

sandals, neckermann's.

wood wedges, modani.
love these cos although they're super high, they're really really comfy!

patent leather flats, larrie.

wedges, vincci.

 that's it. no more buying shoes for at least half a year.








Tuesday, January 17, 2012

WHY IT SUCKS TO BE A GIRL TAKING PUBLIC TRANSPORT

the other day, i was waiting at the bus stop. although i was alone, it was late afternoon - broad daylight, so i was pretty comfortable sitting there on my own.

suddenly, this alfa romeo pulled up and the guy rolled down the windows.

him : hey, where are you going? need a ride?
me : no thanks, i'm fine.
him : don't worry about it, i can help you out! where you headed?
me : i said i'm fine. i don't need a ride.
him : come on, it's on the way, let me take you there!
me : *how the hell would you know it's on the way when you don't even know where i'm going?*
me : nope.

ignored his continued nattering, and after a while he drove off.

then, this other car, a wira, stopped right in front of me. the dude inside gave me a glance, then just sat there. i figured he was waiting for someone, so i didn't bother. however, some time passed and he was still there. i happened to look in his direction again, and oh gawsh.

he was sitting there, pleasuring himself.
how annoyingly pathetic.

*rolls eyes in disgust*

these losers really need to get a life.





  

Thursday, January 12, 2012

THEN ; NOW

just mulling over the past year, thinking about what i've done and how i've changed. 

one of my biggest, most important moments of 2011 was definitely when i decided to make the transition to living a healthy life. i still remember being very depressed about gaining so much weight. 

in 2010, i'd just graduated from high school and i was moving around a lot. due to my constant travelling, i flung all caution to the wind, telling myself all this was OK since i was on holiday. i ended up eating whatever i wanted and not exercising. the pounds piled on, my clothes grew tighter, and i positively ballooned. 

however the shocker came in 2011, when i woke up to just how ludicrous my circumstances had become.

dug up some pictures from the past, and i shocked even myself. how did i ever let myself get so large? how could i have fooled myself into thinking, that my situation was 'not that bad'?

yes, these photos do make me wince with humiliation. but i want to share them here, for everyone to see and as a reminder to myself, to never, NEVER, go back to that stage.

i'll smack myself in the face if i do! not only that but i give you, every single one of you reading this, the ample and indisputable right to do the same and throw me a punch in the jaw!

***

THEN                                            NOW

THEN
  • bad skin
  • difficulty in falling asleep
  • way overweight
  • flabby
  • not fit
  • always exhausted 
  • ate lots of crap processed food
  • unhappy

NOW
  • relatively clear skin save for the odd zit
  • i fall asleep like a baby!
  • lost all the weight i’d gained plus some more ; clothes which used to fit in high school are now too loose :D
  • energy levels are through the roof!
  • eat clean, wholesome, foods
  • and i’m the happiest i’ve ever been!!



    
                           

dear me,

if you ever get frustrated, or feel like giving up, look at these pictures. remember how grouchy and uncomfortable you used to be when you weren't eating right, sleeping enough and exercising consistently. 

conversely, you have never been happier, you have never felt more proud of yourself, than when you saw it through to eat clean, get enough sleep, and make exercise a constant in your life. 

IT IS WORTH IT. every single minute of it. it was, is, and will be worth it! aren't you glad that you now are able to run hard, you aren't dragging yourself from bed to class, that you don't feel sluggish and tired all the time? aren't you proud to have definition in your abs, to have the ability to work longer and be more active? aren't you proud to have your leanest body yet, to have the confidence and happiness you now own? you've worked hard for it, so hold on to it jealously, and do not let anything take it from you.

don't EVER let anything stumble you, and drag you back down. yes, you will fail. time and time again. but that's ok. learn from your mistakes, and come back stronger than ever. take pride in how far you have come, and have faith in how far you can go!

***

watch me, i'll go far.



Tuesday, January 10, 2012

I WILL


i think i look rather pissed off in the picture below, don't mind me.

10.30pm, and i'm sitting here in my running gear because i'm waking up early to go 8km at it tomorrow morning. when i know i have a run the next morning, i always sleep in my running attire so i can head right out the door upon waking up.

in case you're wondering what's that i'm holding, it's a bowl of oats. oats are a runner's (well, this runner anyway) best friend because they're a good source of complex carbs, which release energy slowly. it's also a plus that i LOVE oats, so i eat them twice a day.

it's raining now, so my run tomorrow morning should be lovely. fingers crossed for it to be misty and chilly, the air still infused with the smell of rain.

***

with us being just a few days into 2012, here are my new year's resolutions, health / fitness / nutrition-wise! they may be a tad late because i was busy posting about penang before, but better late than never.

HEALTHY LIVING
- eat clean
- train mean
- get enough sleep
- lose more fats, gain lean muscle

RUNNING
- take good good care of myself and my body
- proper nutrition
- follow a proper training regime
- rest enough! (it was overtraining + not enough recovery time between runs that brought on the problems with my knees in august)


Races for 2012 that i want to WILL join
Jog for Hope (10km)
Standard Chartered KL Marathon (10km)
Adidas King of the Road (16.8km)
Nike Run KL (10km)
Penang Bridge International Marathon (21km)

here's to getting fitter, faster, stronger, and better in 2012!










Sunday, January 8, 2012

PEARL OF THE ORIENT : PENANG HILL Pt.2



blogging from where i left off in my previous post (click!)
***
so we decided to go to the monkeycup garden. or rather, zac was the one who wanted to go and seeing him so enthusiastic about it, i was up for it as well.

at the start of the trail, they were offering buggy services to people wanting to go there, but we chose to walk. it was quite a bit further than we expected and took us a substantial amount of time.

but it was still really nice to leisurely walk and talk, at times veering off the path to take a pause and look out upon penang island from above where we were, and then continue on our way.

took a number of random pictures as we went on our way.

zack ; me.

mirrors were placed at sharp bends in the road for buggies to have a better view round the corner. 

got tired of taking pictures of /by myself. 
thus, i yelled (yelled because he'd wandered off some distance in front)

"hey zac, get back here! let's take a picture!"

he responded to my orders by photobombing me.

at one of the lookout points.

because i was unable to get a full shot from the road, we climbed onto the rocks, where i was successful. 

a spider and its web.
charlotte, is that you?

found a very english-looking postbox.

i like how he looks so happy in this picture. would have done the same, but 
1) copying someone is lame and 
2) he might look cool, but i'd have looked retarded anyway.

so i did my own (albeit boring) poses with the postbox.



found a hibiscus flower on the ground, probably had already bloomed past its prime and fallen there. picked it up and put it in my hair.

:)

you can see penang bridge in the background.

butterfly and its shadow.

***
finally, we reached our destination!

sign at the entrance.

couldn't help thinking of these as we wandered round the gardens.

can't believe i still remember their names - bellsprout, weepinbell, victreebell.

yup, i played pokemon when i was younger. it was an awesome game!

signs like these were placed around the area as well.

part of the gardens.

you can see my funny-looking socks. ehh, whatevs.

flytrap plant! 
we had fun poking it with some twigs, just to see if it would close as though an insect really had landed on it. 

a big monkeycup plant.

***

flowers that we saw along the way.

forgive the injustice my unprofessional camera does to their beauty.






ok this is not a flower, but i have no idea what it's called.



aren't God's creations so magnificently exquisite?