Holidays are known to be a time for you to relax, eat heaps and do nothing (besides sightseeing and shopping). For as long as i can remember, that's how most people i knew treated their holidays and i was definitly down with that - until recently.
Whether it's some public holidays and family time or an actualy destination holiday, i no longer see the point in being sedentary or eating tons of food that doesn't make me feel good.
For christmas this year, my family decided a trip to Bali was in order. And i decided this trip could not be another sendentary holiday. Of course, the hardest part of planning an active family holiday is making sure everyone else is happy doing what you want to do as well.
The easiest way to go about working out on your holiday it is to just bring a yoga mat, your runners, activewear and workout in your room for about 20 minutes each day. But that's not always practical. Some of us have holidays planned to the minute with as many things squished into a 24 hours day as possible. I know how that feels, and I know having no rest time in your hotel/villa also means no working out there.
So let's do what i did - suggest an active holiday.
My family agreed on 2 active things which made me happier than you could imagine. (If you remember, my family isn't exactly the most active). We decided to add a hike up Mt Batur and 2 hours of whitewater rafting into the itinerary for this christmas holiday.
And there we have it - one active day completed!
Wasn't too hard was it?
Thankfully, my family also planned down time in our villa so technically, even without the hike and rafting, I could have easily fit in short workouts during the day. But that just isn't as fun as this is!
Plus, the pictures are way better!
The next morning we got ourselves out of bed at 7am so that we could make it all the way to go whitewater rafting. I'll admit, the walk down to the river before we went rafting was the hardest part. Step and narrow steps just aren't anyone's friend.
Still, we managed (except my mum who tripped and hurt herself unfortunately) and pushed through a very cold 2 hours of whitewater rafting. I'll admit it was more fun than a workout, but isn't that what all workouts should feel like?
I realised that because i was thinking i wanted to do these things so i could stay active on this trip, I definitely looked at both activities as more of a chance to stay fit and not lose momentum - we all know how easy that is! - but i didn't walk away from them disappointed because it wasn't good enough or because i didn't feel sore the next day (something i crave when i know it's a new activity)
As i said earlier, bring a yoga mat and activewear to workout in your hotel is always easier than planning actual active activities, but it's more fun this way.
You can be active on your holiday, or go on an active holiday.
I know which one i wanna keep doing.
Yoga is a calm yet challenge practice. It helped me compliment my workouts, it's changed how I see my health, It's made me feel better as a person and most importantly, It's showed me a whole new world.
Being on Instagram, posting yoga photos, never happened with the intention of getting many followers or trying to get "IG Famous" or showing off. I started an account after being away from social media for years - i didn't have anything except a tumblr account and facebook where I rarely (if ever) posted and mostly used to see what other people were doing. I started my account after a suggestion from a friend when I started living healthier. I followed a whole bunch of active people and yogis for inspiration and then found yoga challenges - which i joined by the dozens!
I learned, i met a few people, i found a cool community. I loved it. And i never tried to make it anything else. Eventually I got more followers, people seemed to like my captions and my photos and everything else. It keep growing to the point where it went over 1K and 5K and 10K and then people were asking me questions and wanting me to write more. So i did. I loved sharing my ideas and thoughts, putting up my practice or my workouts or what I'm doing and I LOVE the community around it all.
I met people just like myself who were on their own journeys. Then fast forward to now where I seem to have a larger account, my blog, my IG friends and all that. I keep getting DM's and emails of people asking me how they can get more followers.
What should I do?
What should I post?
Do you have any advice?
How do you know what your followers like?
Should i ask for followers?
Can you promote me?
I don't know really how i ended up in this position and i don't know what someone else should do it get more followers. I just did what I always do. I posted what i liked, what i wanted, what i was happy with. And this just happened to happen.
I know how appealing it can look to have a certain number of followers. Even i go wow at some accounts when i see they have 100K followers. But here's the deal. I'm not sitting here trying to change what I do so I can get more followers. I don't want to change who I am, what I post or what I represent just for a bigger number.
I want to be me.
I could easily post more selfies in sports bras and tights. I could probably put more effort into making pretty food or buying the coolest workout clothes and then posing in them. After all, I'm not an idiot - I know people like those photos. I like those photos too. But i don't wanna take those photos.
That's why i only post recommendations if i like the ideas too. 1000 people could ask me to post a photo of what i'm wearing to gym each morning - but if i don't feel like it, i'm not going to enjoy doing it (and i'll probably forget). But 1 person could ask me to post how to do an asana, and i know i'd love to share that. So i'll do that immediately.
If that means eventually I have 1 million followers or I always stay where I am now or I lose every single follower i have, that doesn't matter. I'd rather do this in my own time and make myself happy than focus all my energy on something that isn't my whole world.
And that's what I want you guys to remember.
STOP thinking about numbers.
STOP thinking you need to get more followers.
What you need is to BE YOU.
Post what you like, not what you think is going to get you more likes. Write what goes on in your head, be real. Don't spend hours thinking of a "fancy" caption just cause you think it'll work. And maybe no caption is your style - so do that!
Do your yoga practice or workout and if you wanna post it, go ahead. But don't turn into someone that does something just for a photo and numbers.
It's not worth it. It doesn't make you real or relateable and frankly, those are not the accounts I personally like to follower. I want real people, sharing their lives, their ups and downs and being who they are.
There may be thousands of people who just wanna see a ripped girl or a flexbile yogi, and there are tons of accounts where these women are so happy to do that. But if that's not you - don't do it and don't force yourself to pretend it is. If you're a workout video person - do it. If you're a yoga photo person - do it. If you're a fancy food person - do it. And if you're none of the above and you just wanna post photos of your pets or your socks or your tv shows - DO IT!
Don't get caught up in numbers and in hype. Be you.
Always be you.
Photo via @EatWithFingers
Grocery shopping is a buy-whatever-you-want experience, but when you eat out at cafes and restaurants, that's something completely different. You're paying for food, drinks and service and I have always expected it to be on par with what they're charging and what it's really worth.
Of course, people will always overcharge in fancier places and some are always going to be absolutely ridiculous - and that's your choice to make when you spend your money. But is it really worth spending some extra money on sliced avocado or chia seeds? I think maybe not. I have my list of foods i would never pay extra for and some that i would consider so lets go through it and you can decide for yourself if this makes sense where you live as well.
NEVER PAY EXTRA:
I love my bananas. Absolutely love bananas. But I have never - not even once - come across a place that uses ripe, spotty bananas in a smoothies or acai bowls or dessert or anything really. And that bugs me. I don't want to eat a yellow banana. I want a ripe, spotty one and unfortunately, the lack of ripe bananas in cafe's and restaurants really turns me off. If it comes with the item i ordered, then fine. But many places charge $1 extra for these unripe bananas, and that's NOT worth it at all.
When you live in a country that has access to drinkable tap water, why would anyone charge for it? Living in Australia, getting free tap water at any restaurant or cafe was a thing. In Singapore. Apparently not. I can ask for bottled water, or a glass of water, and I'd still get charged. Some places, thankfully, do provide free water, but what is with these places that don't? Tap water costs barely anything in Singapore to fill up a glass and considering the number of people who will still want to pay for a bottle instead, I don't see why this is something every single cafe adn restaurant cannot manage to provide. So lets stop paying for water (unless you desperately need it) and bring your own water bottle everywhere instead.
MAYBE PAY EXTRA:
I love me some avocado. Love getting it on my toast, in sandwiches, salads, everything. The thing about avos is that they are not cheap in general. I go crazy when i can get 2 for $3 or 3 for $5 somewhere, but when they're normally $2.90 each at the supermarket i just walk away. And it kinda works the same way when I eat out. I can justify paying $2-3 for some avoocado on my meal. But some cafes in Singapore have charged up to $8 for half a sliced avocado. That's nothing short of bullshit. There will never be a half avocado that tastes like it's worth $8
Cafe's can charge what they want, but I will refuse to pay nearly double for my coffee just cause dairy is bad for us. Let's stick to soy or almond milk for now and save the cows, their calves and ourselves shall we?
Frankly I'm just tired of ordering food and having them tell me to get what i really wanted in my salad (like avocado) means i have to pay more than the already expensive $12 that salad is without it. But i don't like adding more to satify a certain craving. But even though i have my mini list oh foods i wouldn't pay for, I am always going to suggest you come up with your list and decide for yourself what you want to spend your money on.
For most Mondays to Fridays, I wake up at 5:30 am to attend a 7:30am F45 Class
and on Saturdays I'm awake by 7am to get to a 9am Class.
This is what I've been doing since September this year and what I plan to continue doing for the next year (and maybe even further). It's enjoyable, it keeps my mood up, it makes me feel healthy, like I am all set for the day and I don't see why I would want to stop it.
But for many, this is absolutely crazy.
Working out is great for your health, and getting it done in the morning, before work or uni or anything else that's going to take up time is a fantastic idea (and in fact something many recommend). You get it out of the way and the rest of your day is ahead of you, this is especially great if you don't look forward to working out and feel like you still "have" to do it. I know what it's like to work out during any part of the day and this is definitely the easiest and most beneficial (at least to be) by a long way.
But just talking about isn't the same as doing it - trust me i know. But I've been doing it now for nearly 3 months and I love it. So if you need some help getting your bum out of bed when the alarm right, maybe this will help.
1. Prepare Everything The Night Before
I don't care if your workout session is scheduled for 5am or 10am. If you have anything in the morning and it is making you want to stay in bed longer, then make sure you can. Pack your gym bag the night before, lay out what to wear out the house, have your shoes and socks at the door, prep breakfast or make sure you have something easy to eat in the morning.
I do this every night before and it gives me easily an extra 45 minutes in bed. Easy and quick - i'm awake, change, brush my teeth and out of the door with my toast all in 20 minutes.
2. Schedule a Class
This may be an obvious one, but planning to go to the gym at 5am is a lot tougher than going for a scheduled class or PT session at 5am. Why? Because you're committed.
I can't count the number of times I've said i'd go for a run at 6am and just didn't. But i only skip my classes when i haven't slept enough or I feel sick.
No one likes to let people down, and you know your trainer or workout buddies will have a few versions of "what happened?" "Did you oversleep?" "Everyone was waiting for you to start!"
Don't try to be a superstar right away. Make a commitment with other people first and you will be more likely to get that bum out of bed and out the door.
3. Only Do Classes You Love
This might not always work out the way you want it to but picking to class you enjoy the most (or the one you hate the least) will go a long way. You are more likely to follow through with classes you like - no matter how hard they may be - and keep that routine going.
What you don't want is to be lying in bed at 5am wondering why you're getting up for a class you don't like doing. You should hear that alarm (maybe press snooze once or twice) and then feel ready to conquer that workout and start your day on the right foot!
4. Know Why
I've noticed many people who get into fitness then drop right out of it again had no real idea of why they started it or why they wanted to do it. You "wanna get fit" "wanna lose weight" "change myself" but why. But this time you need to know why you truly want to do this workout AND why you want to do it at this time of the day. Why not after work? Why not during lunch? Know why this works for you and you will not be unhappy with the decision.
This means so many things. Once you know why you're doing these morning workouts it's easier to prioritise it. But also know that when you need to, prioritise sleep or a rest day or just not working out today for the shit of it. Because forcing yourself to do things when you body is not ready or not healthy enough to do it will ruin your mood, your health and you will not want to keep doing these workouts in the morning.
Now that you have my little tips - which have definitely gotten me on the right track to working out - how are you going plan your workout schedule? Still gonna sleep in or are you gotta get your bum out of bed at 5am (or 6 or 7 - whatever works!) and get yourself to that workout class and absolutely smash it!?
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