I subscribe to the 80% diet+20% gym mantra. But I wasn’t always like this. The gym was the last place I’d imagine myself to be. You couldn’t get me to one even if you paid me. Case in point, check out my Instagram post a few months ago.
So what changed? My family would probably say it was divine intervention (a miracle!), some friends would say I hit my head and a screw got loose, voila, I’m a gym lover!
In reality, I was pissed—pissed when I was told I wasn’t enough. Not sexy enough. Not strong enough, that I wouldn’t last in a gym, that I couldn’t do it. That flipped the switch.
I always get what I want when I put my mind into it, and being told with such finality that I just can’t, I was determined to prove my naysayers wrong. I’ll show you, I swore to myself. Never tell a Virgo it can’t be done because we will prove you wrong out of spite, just so we can have the last word, and rub it in your faces for good measure.
Virgos can be spontaneous and impulsive, but we are predominantly planners and analyzers. I sat myself down, wrote my goals, my timeframe in achieving those goals, imagined the body I want, made my gym playlist, imagined the faces of my detractors. Heck, I even had my bikini picked already. I went online, bought a gym membership, got dressed, went to the gym.
I’m no gym expert but I’m sharing my personal experience on how I managed to get my old body back. We have different body goals, and it is still best to consult a professional to target those problem areas. There are no shortcuts to weight loss.
- Prepare yourself mentally. I can’t stress the importance of preparation. Fail to prepare and prepare to fail. I conditioned myself. I browsed Pinterest for gym motivations. I read up on expectations of gym newbies. I raped the repeat button of Beyoncé’s Crazy in Love, my favorite video of all time. I went looking for bikinis I like. Prepare a gym playlist—your ultimate hugot (slang for gut-wrenching) theme song, your dance anthem, your karaoke hits, whatever gets you to move. When I feel sluggish, my playlist is MoveYourFatAss. Sexy times need SexyB+tch.
- Choose an expensive gym near you. I know how this sounds, but read on. Unknown to many, this isn’t my first gym. Years ago, I actually went to Slimmers’ World SM branch. I stopped because of many reasons—staff weren’t helpful, too far from home, I didn’t have time, etc. I anticipated it will happen again, and my brain would come up with reasons not to go to the gym, so I made sure I won’t be able to use those reasons. Gym too far? I chose a gym near me. No time? I had to go because it’s expensive, I already made arrangements with the trainer (another cost), and I wasn’t going to waste what I paid for. I actually have more yoga pants now than actual pants, so that’s one more reason not to skip the gym. Where else would I be able to wear my yoga pants?
- Get a trainer. I had no idea what to do in a gym. I wasn’t going to make a fool of myself and get injured so I got a trainer. If I was going to torture myself, I figured I might as well do it properly. His name was Rex. He was the nicest, the most patient…the man was basically a saint! But he was also Hitler, who made me do burpees, push-ups, and other torturous routines that tested my pain threshold, pushed me hard, and constantly hounded me to go to the gym via sms and Facebook. Thank you Rex, I couldn’t have done it without you! You were a trainer, a friend, and a cheerleader.
- Listen to your trainer. Just because you are paying him doesn’t mean he follows you. It’s the other way around—you follow him. You paid him to
punishpush you hard. It was like a game of Simon Says, in this case, Rex Says. When Rex says do jumping jacks, I would ask “how high”. He says do 30 secs side planks each side for 3 circuits, I would let out a deep breath, mumble something unintelligible, and do it. Do 10–15 full push ups, I would curse under my breath, ask how I got myself into this situation, but do it anyway.
- Well, hello again, carbs! This was the point I started tweaking my keto diet. It became more like the South Beach Diet. I noticed that I felt very weak after working out when I was strictly on keto so I slowly introduced carbs back into my diet. My heaviest meal would usually be the breakfast or lunch, never dinner. I would eat a slice of wheat bread, 2 eggs, a banana during breakfast, and add a half cup (or less) of mais (corn grits), saltine crackers or a slice of wheat bread and soup during dinner, and of course, lots of water before and after exercise. I usually go to the gym an hour or two after lunch when Cebu feels like one giant sauna (so I’ll sweat more!).
- Exercise even when you don’t feel like it, even for a few minutes. There would be days I didn’t feel like going to the gym for various reasons: I got my period, I was sore, dead tired, no sleep, not in the mood, dying, etc. But I would still do my planks and squats at home, or do yoga. I downloaded apps that would help me and add variety to my routines. There are a lot of free fitness apps. Personally, I like DoYouYoga, 30 Day Planks, Nike Training, Asana Rebel, and Kayla Itsines’ Sweat. Choose the apps that work for you.
- Wear a slimming/training corset. Kim Kardashian did it, and Jessica Alba too. This isn’t for everyone, but if you want to see results and a little vain like me, go for it. I credit this as one of the reasons I got my hour-glass figure back. I wear my corset when I run on the treadmill, sitting while working, or whenever I go out—it helps me limit my food intake. It can be constricting when doing core exercises so choose when to wear it. Slimming/training corsets also help with your posture. There are many online sellers but be careful, not all corsets are created equal, and some may do more harm than good. I got mine from Slimming Corsets Ph. Most celebrities got theirs from them, so I know they were reputable. You can find them in Facebook and Instagram. It’s a little pricey but totally worth it. Consider investing in one, I mean, just look what it did for me.
- Planks, ring rows, squats, burpees, and push-ups. Master these routines and you’d see noticeable improvement in your body if you are consistent, especially your core (abdomen/tummy area), legs, and arms. It’s going to be difficult at first, and you’d feel like you’ve been run over by a truck each time, but at least you’d be one hot wreck. For modified/easy burpees, check out Kayla Itsines’ video here.
- A bonus, if you get lucky—your significant other goes to the gym too. My boyfriend does. He was the gym buff, not me. I have mood parks, not mood swings. When it gets really bad, and I’m having one of my infamous b+tchfits, he tries to motivate me. I don’t know how he does it, it’s his superpower, and I end up going to the gym. Thank you babe. <3
I know body positivism is a very popular concept lately, with the plus size models like Ashley Graham making a splash. I’m all for loving myself in whatever form I’m in, but I realized, to truly love myself, is to take care of my body. Your body reflects your consciousness. Having a positive body image shouldn’t be used as an excuse to be unfit. There is no excuse not to try. Some of these exercises don’t even need equipment. The operative word is try. In this age, there are no ugly people, just lazy ones. Ultimately, it’s all about choices, and stubborn determination. Good luck you sexy b+tches! Just do it.