Sunday, June 29, 2014

Running Everyday for a Month: What I learned, Tips and Tricks and Why the heck am I doing this?

"Run, so you can eat them cupcakes" 

Oooh, boy! I've been running everyday for the past month now. I didn't skip a day at all and it feels great! Yeehaw!

Don't make other people motivate you to do something about your body. Exercise because you want to be a better version of yourself. Don't exercise because your boyfriend/husband told you to. Don't exercise just to impress people with your tone body. If you exercise with just those reasons in mind, the motivation won't last."I am doing it for myself" should be the main reason and for sure, whatever exercise you want to be in, the motivation would last forever. I can attest to that!

Note: I am not, in any way, expert when it comes to the world of running. I haven't done any competitive running. This post is just base on personal experience and how running can be a great, frugal exercise. The trail is our gym. Personal trainer and gym membership card, please step aside.

I mentioned in one of my posts that I love running. I've been running 2 days every week,12 miles total ( Saturday=6 mi., Sunday=6 mi) then everyday, I have a exercise routine that I follow. (See post here). Yah, I was fat most of my life, envying those who can show off there small arms but now, I can totally rock racerback tops! I feel confident and it feels good to feel good about yourself.

Why did I "try" running everyday?

One day, I was just bored with my exercise routine and decided to try running everyday for a change.

Note: I still do my exercise routine on top of my running, but I do it 5-10 minutes instead of the usual 15-30 minutes.

My total running miles recorded in the Nike App, but I have been running way before I decided to try this app

I feel good! I've been doing 6.6 miles every day for less than 50 minutes. I don't feel sluggish during the day and running everyday is kicking my insomnia in the butt, helping me sleep at night.

Tips and Tricks:

  •  Do it first thing in the morning. Get up an hour before you usually wake up. "But I  go to work every day :( ?" you might say, but "hey, I go to work, too". It's doable. If you aren't a morning person, do it after work. If there is a will, there is always a way.

  • Coffee, coffee, coffee.

  • I was born a non-pooper, so for those of you who does: take a dump before running. I mean, go poo. Gross to mention it, I know. When you run, your intestines get to work out too, the up and down motion,plus the coffee,makes you want to run into the nearest bathroom which can be a problem.

  • Ladies, get one, great sports bra. "Invest" in one, just one. Your sisters, you know what I mean, are going to hurt because of the "bouncing motion" while you run. Even flat-chested women needs sports bra. Trust me, I know.

  •  A music that pumps you up is a must. I personally listen to Red Hot Chili Pepper coz I am crushing on John Frusciante. hehe.

  • Running app is a must,too. I use Nike app ( it's free). It gets me motivated seeing those mileage. It has those prerecorded voice that cheer you up. If you are one of those people who post random stuffs on Facebook, you can definitely let your Facebook friends know how awesome you are in running coz it has an option to automatically post your running mileage straight to your Facebook account.

  • Stretch before you run. I learned my lesson long time ago and I don't want you guys to experience it. Let's just say that those pain I got from not stretching prior to running made me think of giving up running. Yah, it hurt that much so stretch your heart out.

  • Whatever floats your boat. If you are a beginner, expect that you will be out of breath in just one minute of straight running. I know, been there,done that. I have been running for years, I can go 3 miles straight then rest for 30 seconds to drink water then another 3.6 miles but, that didn't happen overnight.

If you really can't do running and you really want to be good at it, try brisk walking first. I did brisk-walking for 3 months before proceeding to brisk walking-run-walk-brisk walking-run-walk (in the order).It took me a long time to be able to run like a boss.
What things I do/tell myself when I feel so tired to run

Some are so embarrasing to tell you guys coz most of the times, what goes in my head is embarrassing. Hey, whatever motivates you, right

- "One more song and I'm done, one more block and I'm done, one more lamppost and I'm done,100 more steps and I'm done." Repeat 500 times.

- " This is all in your head. You can do this. You can do this" . Repeat 590 times.

- I count my steps 1-100 , back to 1 till 100. 

- Looking down at my feet while running and not ahead. 

- Ahhhhh, I know I will feel good after this. I know it, I know it, by the old gods and the new (wherever I got that. Told you I'm crazy) Repeat 480 times


It is important to practice a proper breathing to prevent side stich- that annoying pain in the side of the abdomen. Personally, inhaling deeply while making my abdomen muscle tight for second then exhaling help prevents side stich. Inhaling when your left hand go up then exhaling while your left hand go down helps,too. I know, it's a pain in the neck remembering these,but you will get use to it. I promise.

After-run meal

It is important to remember that protein should be taken maximum of 30 minutes after every work-out to feed those hungry muscles. Protein aids with muscle-building and it will also kick your cravings in the curb. A popular kind of after-workout meal is a protein shake but, for someone who is too cheap to buy protein shakes, I opted for peanut butter coz I looove my peanut butter.

Easy protein  suggestion:

• hardboiled eggs (1 or 2 )

My usual after-meal workout
Organic peanut butter over toasted whole wheat bagel and ass-cold water infused with cucumber and lemon

Are you thinking of trying running as an exercise? I hope this post helps.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

My Mantra on DEBTS

" If going into debt is the new normal, then I'd rather be weird." 

This includes:

• Car
• Mortgage

If I can't pay it in cash,that means I can't afford it.

Are you weird, my friends?

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Is Reaching Your First Million Pesos Harder than the Next Million?

It took me almost two years to reach 1 million pesos and 7 months to reach 2 million pesos.

How did that happen?

Note: Working abroad and earning in dollars really help me accelerate  my savings and my goals. My salary now compared to a Philippine minimum wage has a big gap, I must say, but the cost of living here is outrageously expensive, don't forget the taxes! You might think I am earning a lot of money here but truth be told, my  current salary is small in an American standard but I still manage to save unlike most 28 years old here who are neck in debt. One of an advantage of us immigrants, we know the value of money and we aren't picky with what kind of work there is.

"Sus, your one million pesos is pang burger lang ni Henry Sy or pang snack lang ni JGS" as some may say but for us who needed to start building wealth from scratch I dare you to start saving! I have a friend who has been here for 24 years and she doesn't have anything whatsoever! She doesn't even own a house back home. I am not looking down at her, it's just that most OFWs don't think of their futures. We aren't going to be strong forever. Our body will eventually give up. Save as much as you can then pack your bags and head home. There is no place like home!

Anyway, back to the topic. When I first started to really focus on reaching the first million pesos, there were a lot of adjustment to make. It helps that I already know the value of money and how it feels like to have no money at all, but I still struggled. There were a lot of experimentation with how to do this or how to do that. In short, my mindset needed some hardcore tinkering. I was in  the state of discovering myself, discovering how frugality really means, studying how compound interest works with you rather than against you. Investing was a foreign world to me, ( I am the first in my immediate and extended family to dive in the stock market world) I needed to get my feet wet and study more at that time. I needed to know how 100 can eventually turn in to 1,000, etc.

When I hit 1 million pesos ($25,000) it was a struggle but 7 months later, the second million came and I was shocked coz it didn't really require so much effort than the first million! 


It occurred to me that the journey to my first million was a training ground. It was like a battle I set for myself, a battle I decided to win. The second time around? It was easy. The third? A breeze! 

It's all in the mind. Don't underestimate the Power of Focus. If you found yourself stumbling down or giving up on your way to your goal, think of it this way: this whole journey is teaching you something, the more you do it, the more it'll become easy. The more it becomes easy the more it will eventually becomes automatic.

Best of luck, my friends. May you reach your goals. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

No Smartphone: What I learned from not having one

My Actual Phone

  • It taught me the art of patience . Whenever I have some spur of the moment thought that needs further research aka Google, I wait until I get home to do so.

  • Having no smartphone taught me how to "carpe diem". I love the feeling of having to walk around without having the need to check anything online or having to stick my face on any gadgets. 

  • The feeling of freedom I feel when I know I am not in bondage with my phone is priceless.

  • IPod  Touch "is" my smartphone coz it allows me to listen to Podcasts, record my running mileage, listen to music, take pictures, etc. Just what I need. I don't need to be online 24 hours a day. I don't have a big business to monitor 24/7.

  • Above all, it saves me tons of moolah. I only pay 10 dollars every two months for my minutes and frugal girl like me, that's sweet! 
I know, with this day and age, taming the urge to buy the latest gadgets out there is hard. It took me years and a lot of getting-to-know-myself-more to overcome spending temptation. I know that if I want to, I could afford to buy 10 iPhones like  that *snap fingers* but I chose not to coz having the latest gadgets is not aligned with my life's plan.

"You can't judge someone's worth base on what phone they are using" 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Frugal Tip for Women : No Pepper Spray? Try this

The only self-defense I know is "hit them in the balls and run".

When I was new here, I was working like a horse, I would go home 12 midnight or later. My senses would be on high alert until I was safely home. My phone would always be in my hand with the "9" ready and my fingers in the number 1 so can dial 911 right away and my other hand would be holding a....

... travel size bottle of hair spray.

Yes, you got that right, a hair spray! When you don't have a pepper spray, hair spray will suffice.

When assaulted, pepper spray is meant to be sprayed in the eyes giving you a time to run (see pictures below). Hair spray can also sting someone's eyes giving you time to run.

 Though I was given a real pepper spray years after I've been using hair spray as a pepper spray, I still rely on my hair spray tucked away in my bag just in case.

My unopened pepper spray

A girl needs to find a way to be safe.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

E-reader VERSUS Real Book

Should you buy an E-reader? If you have been thinking of buying one, read on as I give pros and cons of an E-reader and an actual book.


My Kindle. It was given to me two Christmases ago.

  • It can get stolen
  • You can download thousands of books without having to carry all of them at once. It's like having a mini-library at your fingertips!
  • Once you download an e-book, you can't sell it. You are basically stuck with it. I don't support piracy so I am happy to buy e-books full price.
  • It ain't waterproof  so girls, e-reader and bubble bath aren't a great partner.
  • E-readers are quite expensive
  • I have this weird habit of reading under the covers with my lights off. With Kindle, I don't have to position my flashlight over my head to be able to read in the dark under my covers. Yah, I'm weird like that.
  • Don't know that word? Press on that word and a meaning pops up.
  • You can choose which font to use.
  • Amazon, which is the maker of of Kindle has thousands of free e-books you can download. I am actually downloading my e-books free at my local library which tends to have newer e-books than Amazon. I am currently reading: A Feast for Crows: A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin (Game of Thrones)
  • You have to have an Amazon account to be able to download e-books and that means you may have to give credit card or debit card information so take this in consideration.

Real Books


  • I love to feel and run them pages through my hands while basking on their scent. Yah, I am weird like that.
  • Ahhhhhh, the satisfaction I get when I see how many pages I've read. *That* thick already? Cool!
  • You can shove them in your bag without having to worry if it get's broken.
  • It wont run out of battery, like ever.
  • You can use it as a makeshift umbrella when it's drizzling out or you can put it above your head so you can train yourself to walk straight. Who knows, you can be the next Megan Young! Haha
  • You can sell,swap or let people borrow it.
  • The possibility of the pages getting yellow. I hate that!
  • You can buy used books, no such thing as used e-books.

I love my Kindle. You can read outside without glare. The battery life lasts long and this really help me lessen the amount of books I owned as I am trying to paddle my way through a life of minimalism.

I love my Kindle but sometimes, nothing beats the feeling of having a real book in my hand.

For those who have e-readers, do you feel the same way?