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Monday, June 27, 2016

Personal Training @ Genesis Gym, Singapore :: 1 Year Later

It's been a year since I signed up with Genesis Gym for my personal training program and started my ongoing fitness journey. Yes, I actually stuck with it for a whole year!!

For those of you who have been following along, you'd probably remember how difficult some parts of the journey has been. There were a few downs, but a lot of highs too. Especially when I progressed in my fat loss, conquered my doubts or learnt a new exercise technique!

When I first started, my main focus was on weight loss. I hoped in losing weight I would get fitter, and be more energetic to keep up with our busy lifestyle and with Lil Pumpkin, who is only going to get bigger and faster too. And of course, let's be realistic, I wanted to look better too hahahah #typicalvainpot

With that in mind, I told Coach Jon {founder of Genesis Gym and the guy who I had my first consultation with} that I wanted to lose 10kg. He didn't agree or not, or even give me a timeline.. but he did tell me that to lose fat efficiently and to keep it off long-term, I had to build muscles too.

Fantastic. I'd love to be stronger and have some muscle definition in my body too!

1 year later.... I have not lost 10kg. Is that a total loss? Did the program not work for me? Did I not achieve my goal??

Not really. I still reckon that my personal training experience so far has been successful. You can see from my photos what an obvious physical change I had gone through!! Other than putting a B&W filter, adding some text and blurring some of my tattoos, I've not photoshopped my body and this is what I look like in real-life at this moment in time #whatyouseeiswhatyouget

When I first started, I was 62.2kg and had a body fat percentage of 32.12% and lean body mass of  42.22kg. One year later, I now weigh 58.7kg and have a body fat percentage of 17.01% and lean body mass of 48.72%.

Honestly, my 1-year results could be better if I had really stuck to the nutrition plan but I'm such a weakling when it comes to delicious food and I had a very *ahem* goooooood break in Japan a week ago haha. I hit 16% body fat & 50kg lean body mass before I left for the holidays actually.

For the first time on my blog, I'm even going to show my frontal shots *shy*

It is kind of embarrassing to bare my fats and all on the internet but I'm pretty proud of what I've achieved and really want to show you how my body transformation went. I earned every bit of that fat loss and muscle gain with sweat, blood and tears.

Let me just say upfront too though that even when I had 32.2% fat, I still loved myself and my body.

It is precisely because I love myself and my body, I want to take better care of it by letting it get stronger, healthier and nourishing it with better food as much as I could.

The techniques and know-hows of which I've learnt through my personal training program, and the extra reading I've done because I was motivated from what I was being taught from my trainers.

It's not just a physical change, but a mental shift in perspective too. After a year of training and learning more about fitness, I'm not so obsessed mindful about losing weight or the number on the scales. I didn't lose 10kg and that is fine. I want to be strong, not skinny. I'm even more interested in getting fitter and getting a better body composition.

Anyway being fit doesn't have a deadline. It is about being fit for life. Healthy for life.

The next few months will be even more exciting as I set out to reach new strength targets, start regular Muay Thai training again & complete my Crossfit Level 1 Trainer course. Stay tuned and hope you'll be inspired to start your own fitness journey too, if you haven't yet.

Thank you to those that have been with me on mine and showered me with encouragement whenever I was down or feeling weak xox Happy Gym-versary to me and I'm gonna give myself a pat on the back for thriving in the gruelling, yet oh-so-rewarding fitness year I had!!

P.S. I think some of you are wondering - is Genesis Gym or even personal training suitable for you? Well, if you are like me and need a little extra push from professionals to get you going, maybe! But really, I wouldn't know and if you'd like to find out, make an appointment for a consultation with them. Their personal training program worked for me but I know some folks who thought it wasn't suitable for them too.  

Have a look at my posts below to see what I've been going through the past few months. I can honestly say that I love the trainers that I usually train with for their patience, experience and generosity in sharing their strength-training and healthy-living knowledge with me. They never hard-sell any of their gym packages and their focus at the job is purely to help clients reach their fitness goals. 

If I didn't enjoy my time at the gym so much, I wouldn't be there so often and keep at it for so long, that's for sure haha.

Weekly Personal Training Updates:
The Beginning - Signing Up for Personal Training
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored or paid post. All views expressed are my own.


Friday, June 3, 2016

Back to Japan for Summer Hols / 夏休み! ☀

I quite miss my Muay Thai birthday trip to Thailand and am suffering from some post-holiday blues. Well, I guess the only way to get over the post-holiday blues is to go for another holiday so it is a good thing that we are away in Japan now for summer!! Woohoo!!! (*⌒▽⌒*)θ~♪

I won't say it's been a while since we were back in Japan since we traveled there last year for the Sakura season {see the cherry blossoms at a park in Nagoya, Yoyogi Park, Ueno Park etc.} but I guess it has been some time since we were there during summer.

Usually we'd try to avoid this period since it's the peak travel period {more expensive, more crowded etc.} but nowadays I guess there's no choice since we can only take longer family hols during the school holiday time. No more just whisking away at whim anytime throughout the year...

The boy prefers to travel during summer actually as we can travel lighter and there's more clothes suitable for our own tropical weather on sale there. After our crazy fun-but-tiring trip to 7 Japanese cities last year, I'm quite happy to just stay in Tokyo this time and it's a good thing that Tokyo doesn't get overwhelmingly hot during summer.. unlike Kyoto.

I've nothing much planned except to go to some of my fave Tokyo haunts, eat all the Japanese food I miss so much, meet up with some friends and bring Lil Pumpkin to Asakusa Hanayashiki Theme Park.

The boy wants to go check out some Japanese CrossFit boxes though and work out there. I might join him for one or two sessions too. It will be cool to see how they conduct it in Japan!

If you'd like to keep up with our Japan travels, do connect with me on Facebook, Instagram and even Snapchat. Enjoy your June holidays too and see you all when we are back! xox

P.S. I did not forget about posting on my Muay Thai training camp experience hahaha.. will do that when I return to Singapore! Have a look at my shopping haul post + video for that trip if you missed it! (☆▽☆)


Monday, May 30, 2016

P1 Parenting: First Parent-Teacher Meeting for Sem 1

Last Saturday was our first Parent-Teacher Meeting {PTM} in Lil Pumpkin's primary school!! Oh goodness.. has half a year really passed by since she started Primary 1??? It seems like just yesterday when we had her orientation...

In her school, the PTM is called 3-C Dialogue Session where it is a time for parents, teachers and even the students to connect, communicate and celebrate the learning of the students.

I like that the kids were involved too and the teachers got the students to reflect on their schooling journey for the past semester, to think about what they did well, and areas which they can improve too. Then during the PTM, the students presented on their reflection to the parents (∩_∩)

For Lil Pumpkin, she told us that she enjoys learning new things in school and playing with her classmates. However, she needs to work on being able to give the speaker her full attention and to be able to listen wholeheartedly without interruption. We were told that sometimes she gets so excited by what she hears that she immediately wants to respond with something.. but if she's not called upon to speak, she would just turn to her friends and tell them! (≧▽≦) Oh dear!

Our appointment was at 9am and we arrived about 15 minutes before that. While waiting, her teachers got the parents to write a word of encouragement to the kids, and for the kids to write a thank-you note to the parents. After which we can display it on the classroom whiteboard when we entered. Such a thoughtful initiative!

As usual, the boy and I weren't really worried about Lil Pumpkin's academic progress. Well, not yet anyway. From the school work she brings home and from the results of whatever mini assessments she has {not many, really}, we know that she is able to cope relatively well.

This was confirmed by her teachers as well who were quite impressed with her Maths and English language & writing skills. Her form teacher showed us some of her English writing work and I must say, I was pretty impressed too! I didn't know that they started writing in paragraphs haha..

For Mandarin, her written skill is strong but speaking still needs more work.. well, no surprise there and something we really, really need to work on (ᗒᗨᗕ)

What the boy and I were most concerned about was how she was doing socially in school. Is she interacting well with her friends? Any relationship problems we should be aware of? Lil Pumpkin is a very sociable person and is someone who treasures friendship very much. However, sometimes she will come home crying about this friend or that. It hurts me to see her like that.

Her teachers have noted that Lil Pumpkin has a "sensitive soul" {exact words used} but there's no friendship problems we should be worried about now. In situations where Lil Pumpkin may have been upset with her friends, it's because they picked up undesirable behaviour or words from older siblings or people they interact with outside of school which they used on their classmates, but the teachers are aware of it and have addressed it with the relevant parents too.

Overall, Lil Pumpkin has adapted very well to her new school life and her teachers are very pleased with that. From our perspective as parents, we can see that too - although Lil Pumpkin wakes up rather groggily most mornings, she doesn't cry and is always happy to attend class and talk about what goes on in school.

This semester the boy helped to give an occupation talk to the Primary One cohort on his job as a vet {oops I haven't written about that yet!!} and we told the teachers as well that if time allows, we'd be happy to volunteer in other areas if they need us too.

I'm pretty excited to see what Semester 2 will bring! But for now, we're just going to have fun this June holidays together as a family and let Lil Pumpkin rest and do what she enjoys most... playing haha.

I did ask her teachers if there was anything we needed to work on at home during the holidays and they said no... the kids have done a lot during school time. It is time to let them relax..

True that. ヽ(ヅ)ノ

For more of  Lil Pumpkin's Primary 1 journey:

For more tips on P1 preparation:


Friday, May 27, 2016

Thailand 2016 | Shopping Haul from Chatuchak, JJ Mall & Local Bangkok Markets

I'm back from my 32nd Muai Thai Camp birthday trip!! #YOLO It was an amaaaaaazing experience. Much more satisfying than I expected and I can't wait to share more about it with you. And I will, I will.. I promise!!! ੧(❛▿❛✿)੭

Right after I sort out all the photos, videos and notes I jotted down about the trip. My trainers took some photos for me too and I'm waiting for them to send those over as well. 

If you've been following my on-the-go updates on Facebook, Instagram and also recently Snapchat {add me at @AiSakuraHaruka}, you'd see that most of the time, I actually stayed in camp to rest and relax since I had early runs each morning and 2 Muay Thai training sessions each day. Pretty intensive.

The training site was rather out of Bangkok city centre so not near any of the usual touristy attractions or shopping areas at all. I didn't intend to go there to shop, eat or massage as I usually do when I'm in BKK though - just train - so it was ok.

There were some markets for the locals nearby which I bought some stuff from and it was a really nice, authentic Thai experience. There was none of the "touristy" stuff and most of the stall owners did not speak English actually. Thank goodness I'm rather good at communicating with others who don't speak any of my languages {good practice from all my travels & previous work}.. and charades haha

Only during the weekend, I made my way down to Chatuchak Market to shop as a special birthday treat (⌒▽⌒)☆

Overall my shopping haul from this trip is {relatively} small but thought I'd share it anyway since I haven't made a shopping haul video in ages, and it serves as a reminder to myself of what I bought too haha. I had time to make the video on the last day before I flew off...

I'm kinda mad over cute rompers now and bought a few this trip. Wore this one on my birthday.. the first time in that week I was actually out of my fitness clothes and probably the first time in many years I wasn't actually wearing a dress on my birthday haha

Check out my shopping haul video above or on my YouTube channel if it isn't showing properly. If you've seen my previous shopping haul / vlog videos you'd know that I usually do it in 1 take with little / no editing so they might be a bit long. Sit back, relax and watch with some popcorn hahaha.

I'd be posting my Muai Thai training videos too so subscribe to my YouTube channel if you don't want to miss them! Stay tuned to the upcoming blog post on my Muay Thai training camp experience at Khongsittha, Bangkok too! xox

Other Shopping Haul videos: