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Category: Wellness & Workout

the bikini body guide (BBG)

the bikini body guide (BBG)

cheesing so hard after 24 weeks
cheesing so hard after 24 weeks

I will be starting my 3rd round of BBG on Mon, Feb 22. Do you care to join me? I liked my experience with this program, even if my progress was slow. I’m so proud I was able to stay committed! It really helps that there is a set workout and that it was do-able at home for a majority of the program. I won’t be sharing any progress photos here, since the lighting and timing is not consistent, thus change is really noticeable, haha! This is the timer I use at home on my laptop and on this app my Android phone.

bbg 12 week exercise program e-book

BBG (Bikini Body Guide) is a 12-week program by Kayla Itsines . It has 30 minute workouts for Mon, Wed, and Fri that target all parts of your body. The off days are for you to do cardio, light intensity, high intensity, and stretch. (You can obviously switch the days around that work into your schedule.) There is also a separate guide for Part 2 (weeks 13-24) and nutrition.

I started on August 24, 2015 after my cousin received it from her friend. It has been 24 weeks since the beginning and I did the entire 12-week program twice, ending on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 (no break in between). The first 8 weeks were done at home and we video chatted. The last 4 weeks were at the gym since we needed Bosu Balls and more steps. Great timing because I got a one-month pass for her!

Are there results? Yes. I am stronger arm muscle weight training. I can do 10 push ups in a row. My arms aren’t exactly at 90 degrees, but I can do it. And I can do sit ups. (Surprise surprise, I was never able to do one without my feet being held down by something). Just for background, before this program, I went to the gym often and took a bunch of group fitness classes (Zumba, total body training, etc).

Did I lose weight? Maybe. My weight fluctuates a few pounds. In Sep 2015, I was 110.1 pounds and in Feb 2016, I am 107.8 pounds average. Here is my weight chart based on a 7:25 am weight measurement almost every morning recorded in my Fitbit:

winnie’s fitbit weight graph

I also didn’t take any measurements of the rest of my body because I am not trying to shrink into a smaller clothing size. Maybe I’ll do that this time around just to blog about it, ha.

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36 pictures to see what muscle you’re stretching

36 pictures to see what muscle you’re stretching

I saw this article floating on Facebook yesterday and wanted to plug it on my blog as well! Going to keep this as future reference when I am super sore.

You should all know that you need to stretch, whether you are a chronic sitter, a weekend warrior, or a daily exerciser. Stretching helps your blood reach your muscles and your joints move through their full range of motion, but it also improves your posture and athletic performance and reduces the risk of injuries and pain.

How do you know which muscles you are actually stretching or if you are performing each stretch the right way while you do yoga or the flexibility routine?

Well, here is a little knowledge on the topic, and having this in your back pocket, you can opt for the best stretches that best fit your goals. In case you start feeling pain, and not the regular, good pain, but the stretchy one when you know that something does not feel right, you should pinpoint the muscle that gives you the trouble and change the technique you have been using in order to avoid getting injured.

These stretches should be felt in the belly of your muscle. However, you should not feel pressure or strain in your joints, and if you do, it means that you are pushing too far. During the stretching, concentrate on your breathing and make sure these movements are as natural as possible.

36 Pictures To See Which Muscle You’re Stretching

Stop thinking about the time you are holding the stretch, but instead, start concentrating on feeling your muscles relaxing and returning to their natural, resting length. This may take about five to thirty seconds. If a stretch does not feel like it is doing something for your body muscles, change it and try another one.

The beautiful illustrations we present you are made by Vicky Timon, a yoga expert and author of “Encyclopedia of Pilates Exercises”, and James Kilgallon, CSCS, creator of Mazio’s Body Maintenance Program, contributed by giving the expert commentary.


1. Camel Pose

Muscles emphasized: Rectus Abdominus and External Obliques. This stretch is though most appropriate for people who already have a good flexibility. Sitting on your heels, put your hands behind you, pushing your hips up and forward. Do not put too much pressure on your lumbar spine. Also, in case you have problems with your neck, do not drop your head back.

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fitness rewards apps

fitness rewards apps

[EDIT: Sep 2017] Pact App has discontinued as of mid-July 2017. No more rewards for working out 🙁 . Also, Wellcoin was buggy for me since Jan 2017, so I have NO IDEA if the app is still active. I couldn’t reset my password on both the app and desktop site.

If you’re into fitness, wellness, or need some motivation to be more wellthy, here are two apps I think are awesome because you get rewards for working towards your best self:

Pact App

In summary, you wager $5 for each activity you will complete, whether it’s gym or fruit/veggie. If will earn $ for the promises you keep and lose $5 for each promise you break. Ex: if you promise to do gym 5x and veggie 5x, but you only did gym 4x, you will owe $5.


In summary, you log all your wellness activities, from sleep to food to exercise to buying groceries, etc. Each activity belongs to one of the five categories. Each category has a max # of wellcoins you can earn each day. You redeem wellcoins in the marketplace (granola bars, fitness classes, retail discounts, etc) and get entered automatically into weekly and monthly raffles for Amazon/Target giftcards.

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my fitness journey

my fitness journey

This is a long post about how I went from loving group fitness classes to being a group fitness instructor, thanks to the Shape Up NYC program!

I don’t know when it started, but I live for group fitness classes. Okay, that’s an exaggeration–more like group fitness makes me feel awesome. And happy.

I tried many chain gyms (Ballys, Crunch, Dave Barton, Equinox, NYSC) through free day or week passes or monthly trial deals. I used to go on group fitness deal crazes with my awesome workout buddy. We even took turns booking the classes.

We ♥ pole dancing class so much, we bought the deal three times, and each time, the price per class rose (still below retail). I bought a Pole-X cause I thought I would practice more that summer. I would teach myself inverted tricks. None of that happened. I didn’t have a spotter. My sister made use of the pole (climbing up in a week what took us 10 weeks).

I tried many different classes: kickboxing, Jazzercise, burlesque dance bikini boot camp, trampoline yoga, dahn yoga, and hip hop… Everything was just a lot of fun!

In the summer of 2013, I decided to go for a certification and did research on the different ones available. I saw AFAA had their APEX deal in September… but a month and half of study wouldn’t have cut it.

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