Monthly Archives: September 2012

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Fitness Journal: Last workout for this week before I’m off to Bali!

 

2.02 mi run in 19:05 min (pace: 9’27″ / mi)

Music: International Departures with Myon & Shane 54 Episode 147

***

Notes:

Total mileage of the week:

2.26 + 3.26 + 2.02 = 7.54 miles

Total account of my progress:

Week 1: 1.52 mi
Week 2: 3.79 mi
Week 3: 5.86 mi
Week 4: 6.93 mi
Week 5: 13.28 mi
Week 6: 7.34 mi
Week 7: 7.54 mi

Woohoo! It’s only a little bit of improvement, but it’s still an improvement. I also feel that it’s much easier for me to last longer now. Honestly I can still go on for about half an hour or so just now, but since my current day-to-night schedule is pretty much hectic, TIME IS MONEY.

Like I said, I’m off to Bali tomorrow morning at 05:30am. That means I have to wake up at 04:30am in the morning. This morning my maid woke me up at 05:30am. Last night my mother woke me up in the middle of the night because she wanted me to switch off the phone. Some random hoax talked about the sun radiation and it always makes my mother believe that it’ll really affect us. There’s just no evidence to back up the information you get from BlackBerry broadcast messages.

Anyway, I’m pretty much a panda face right now and not thinking as straight as I’m supposed to be. But at least I released a bit of stress today. I was tempted to skip the gym, as I need time to SLEEP.

I literally just finished packing up my stuff. So, yes, it’s hectic.

Just a reminder, I will be participating in two 10k runs in November. They are:

  • 4 November 2012 Jakarta Heart Run 10k
  • 29 November 2012 Standard Chartered Run for Sight 10k

 

 

So that’s the reason why I’m so disciplined about my weekly routine. But the main reason is because I’m highly motivated challenge, and especially driven by progress.

 

 

My target mileage this week is 7.8 miles.

 

 

 

Again, I know it’s not much of a progress, but it still is. I don’t think the distance really matters: Last week, I left most of my mileage during the weekends. This week, even though I’m highly stressed out, often burned out, and get very little sleep, I managed to become stronger during my runs. I was able to endure. I thought I couldn’t.

In other news, my all-new black Honda Civic has arrived yesterday. I didn’t get the chance to take a picture of it, or else I’ll really faint.

That’s how crazy my schedule is ever since I started working. At any given time, I daze and stare at things a lot. Like a really, really tired person.

So now I’m going to sleep. Promise to upload lots of pictures!

While I’m away, check out my body of work so far on Sribu.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Muchaluva,
Stace

Fitness Journal: Are you crazy?!

3.26 mi run in 32:19 min (pace: 9’54″ / mi)

Music: International Departures with Myon & Shane 54 Episode 147

***

Notes:

I don’t want to admit that I’m stressed out. I refuse to.

The fact is, I’m starting to be concerned about a lot of things I sacrificed just to be ambitious (and to protect my pride). I won’t share much for now, but there’s too much that I’ve sacrificed for a little over a week – including my own sleep, daily food, other prestigious job offers, good relationship with my mother, and daily care for my boyfriend.

After all, it’s humanly impossible for me to go behind someone’s back, because I’m a really bad liar. Once I’m committed to someone or something, I just can’t keep all those unpleasant feelings for long. I was asked to cheat on my boyfriend with multiple guys by a trusted person, which I won’t disclose who. Why? Because the person wants me to be with the best of the best guy in the world, which I don’t think I even deserve to be together with because I’m not “perfect” yet, probably will never be. I told the person: I will feel guilty for the rest of my life. It’s like holding extra belly fat in your stomach, and that flab will never go away no matter how much you workout.

I realized that there is absolutely no area in life where you have to be perfect. You just have to balance it all.

I’m stuck-up stubborn and I’m taming that part of my personality right now at my first job. The only way to do that is to keep running hard and running long, never giving up and stopping halfway.

One of the best advice I got is from my boss: Once you’ve made a decision, don’t ever look back.

I don’t care how others think when I ran with my jeans and polo earlier just now at the gym. I couldn’t get in touch with my driver, and I left behind my sports apparel in the car. He didn’t wait up for me. Instead, he dropped me at the gym and went straight home, and he decided to come back again when I told him I would be done. So I worked out with my work attire, which is a simple pair of skinny jeans and a Ralph Lauren navy polo. I was without my iPod and I’m 100% aware the whole time that it looks ridiculous. Faces turn toward me, and they were like, “Are you crazy?!”

What was I supposed to do? Wait for a whole 45 minutes and stare into blank space for my driver, also known as wasting my precious time?

I’ve already planned out my weekly mileage and the days I want to run those miles. I was planning my dinner after I’m back home from the gym, but turns out my driver came down to the gym and gave me my clothes. The security I talked to earlier told him there was a girl frantically looking for a Fortuner and its driver, and she forgot to bring her gym clothes with her. So, that was it: My driver has to wait for me to finish working late and wait for me to be done some more at the gym. After he gave me the clothes, he waited again until I’m done.

I asked my dad to pay him extra.

He deserves it. I know he’s much more exhausted than I am.

The lesson here: You have no excuses. You are responsible for your me-time, your favorite activity, your hobby – whatever you want to call it – otherwise you’ll keep yourself stressed out and you’ll never wake up feeling refreshed again for the rest of your life.

The way I think of it is – since I’m officially a writer now, it’s my responsibility to keep my brain healthy and running, so that the contents I produce becomes self-explanatory – it must continue will be quality work. That’s what I’ve committed myself to do for a lifetime.

Anyway, I do realize that I’m pretty vague about everything I said today, and that’s my intent. I’m just having my PMS and staying emo in the meantime.

Cheers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Muchaluva,
Stace

Fitness Journal: Self-management is the key

2.26 mi run in 21:13 min (pace: 9’23″ / mi)

Music: International Departures with Myon & Shane 54 Episode 146

***


Notes:

Learned one or two things in the working world today. The only thing I can do right now is to stay committed and strengthen myself everyday.

Self-management is the key to success.

 

 

 

 

 

Muchaluva,
Stace

Fitness Journal: What is circuit training?

2.3 mi run in 21:50 min (pace: 9’30″ / mi)

Music: International Departures with Myon & Shane 54 Episode 144

***

Notes:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_0avYw54WWE]

 

 

 

Great voice, great song. Aruna‘s vocals always give me the chills.

Which is why I especially love Episode 144 of the International Departures podcast.

Today, I ran more than I aimed for (I set a goal to run 2 miles yesterday), and my weekly mileage of the this week adds up:

2.01 + 3.03 + 2.3 = 7.34 miles

Great. Improvement so far ever since I keep count of my progress:

Week 1: 1.52 mi
Week 2: 3.79 mi
Week 3: 5.86 mi
Week 4: 6.93 mi
Week 5: 13.28 mi
Week 6: 7.34 mi

Hmmm…

 

 

 


As I’ve reviewed
, the mileage goal I set in the beginning of the week was a bit unrealistic. I honestly doubt whether I could achieve it. Factors affecting whether I can make it to the gym or not:

 

  1. Traffic jam - a notorious characteristic of my beloved hometown.
  2. Work demands - still getting adjusted to job workload; still in transition from school assignments to earning a living.
  3. Quantity of sleep - whether I have time to sleep more than 6 hours or not.
  4. Availability of transportation - does my mother need to use the car, or does my brother? I’m still waiting for my car to arrive next Tuesday.

 

 

Gotta solve problems now and complain no more. Hopefully our new and seemingly collected governor will sort out the problems in Jakarta. For one, our daily congestion.

In any case, I need to sleep longer. My quantity and quality of sleep determines whether I can think efficiently at work or not.

I don’t have a say on availability of transportation… I will have to better communicate the importance of my job to my mother, whose philosophy as a woman is still quite traditional.

This weekend, from 29 September until 1 October, I’ll be off to Bali! I promise to update you will loads of pictures :) I take this mini-getaway into account to think of how much I want to run this week, and…

 

My target mileage this week is 7.5 miles.

 

 

 
That seems achievable. This time, I’m actually confident that I can make it. It’s only a bit of an improvement, but it’s still an improvement. I can almost feel my spider-sense tingling. Ha.

Last week, we touched up on the principles of resistance training and the benefits of cross-training. A quick recap: Resistance training is any type of exercise that involves pushing or carrying an extra load. This requires the exertion of extra effort against any sort of resistance to strengthen and elongate the targeted muscle groups. The concept of cross-training is just adding any type of exercise other than your area of discipline into your routine. It’s as simple as that. By working different muscles, you can actually improve your overall performance in your sport.

I also brought up the term circuit training and how you can get creative about your workout when you do this type of exercise. But most would wonder: What is circuit training?

Circuit training is basically a time-efficient workout that is designed to work all of your muscle groups. Yes, it’s a total-body workout that requires the least amount of time to get you all toned up and fit.

In circuit training, you normally go to multiple stations to perform a combination of resistance exercises with frequent repetitions, along with short bursts of high-intensity aerobics. Most of the time, trainers and instructors will ask you to do active rests in-between each station.

Sounds challenging? It should be.

You should aim to go up to 60% of your maximum heart rate in order for the workout to be effective. It’s possible to do a whole circuit-training workout within 20 minutes, but remember:  With less time you have, the more challenging those exercise have to be for you.

And that means, always target your weakest spots.

For me it’s always around the lower abs, hips, butt and thighs. I also slouch a lot during the day, so my back is stiff too.

Let me illustrate an ordinary day of how I do my circuit training at the gym, followed by 10 minutes of stretching and cooling down:

 

 

 

15 reps of back extensions
25 reps of leg press
20 reps of combination shoulder press and bicep curls with dumbbells
15 reps of triceps extensions
12 reps of squats

10 reps of side-to-side squats (or forward and side lunges)

15 reps of back extensions
25 reps of leg press
20 reps of combination shoulder press and bicep curls with dumbbells
15 reps of triceps extensions
12 reps of squats

10 reps of side-to-side squats (or forward and side lunges)

15 reps of back extensions
25 reps of leg press
20 reps of combination shoulder press and bicep curls with dumbbells
15 reps of triceps extensions
12 reps of squats

10 reps of side-to-side squats (or forward and side lunges)

 

 

 

As you can see, you can pretty much design your circuit training using practically any kind of move. The most important thing is to have little rest and keep moving the whole time you are working out.

Anyone can benefit from circuit training.  The only disadvantage out of circuit training is if it’s performed by a bodybuilder.

Circuit training aims to build muscle endurance and cardiovascular fitness. This means it doesn’t bulk you up the way bodybuilders want their muscles to look. Instead, you work all muscle fibers, both your fast-twitch and slow-twitch muscles, to achieve maximum benefits in all dimensions of fitness: strength, agility, speed, endurance, and flexibility. This explains why circuit training involves more repetitions using moderate weights, whereas bodybuilders normally lift heavier weights but in less repetitions (which only works fast-twitch fibers of the targeted muscles).

Personally I find that circuit training strengthens my mind by, literally, “pushing” away those negative thoughts I always load my head with and keep working on battling with those thoughts until I win.

Winning, to me, means never quitting. Winning means you solve your problems by facing it, dealing with it, and never back down from it.

 

“The best way out is through.” - Robert Frost

 

 

Overcoming mental blocks like that requires anyone to look at fear right in the face, so it helps if you train yourself to become stronger everyday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Muchaluva,
Stace

A gourmand’s parlor

Nice seating to fit a whole family.

That’s me, posing.

Onlooking the ground floor.


Upscale yet cushy. Casual yet classy.

***

Escargot: This is what I came here for. My hip and modern mother who’s always about town told me that if you want a good escargot without the trouble of gripping giant tongs to extract the flesh, go to Porter House. So here it is: Big, fleshy, and juicy snails to indulge in, nicely coated with a thick and creamy, cheesy and garlicky sauce. It’s so sensitizing. Not recommended for those who are watching their diet.

Creamed spinach balls in melted cheese: I suspect everything on this dish was prepared ahead. Whenever there’s an order, it will be taken straight into the microwave or something. However, they do taste good. You can never go wrong with a combination of spinach and cheese. A unique bite that I haven’t seen elsewhere in other Western eateries. Sprinklings of carrots provide a teeny-tiny bit of sweetness to taste, which is pleasant. A little goes a long way.

Poached fish with red potatoes: My opinion is as blatant as the picture – this dish is obviously stingy on fish quantity. The main ingredient should have been the fish, but it’s overly embellished with the cheesy, creamy sauce, topped with big slices of lemon, and frilled with even bigger shares of red potatoes – everything in an unbalanced contrast with the tiny fish cutlets. Though taste good, they don’t go well temperature-wise. Fish is complacently fresh and warm, but the sauce and potatoes are, I think, prepared ahead (same problem as the spinach balls). I do not enjoy the warm and cool mix, though my sense of vision particularly enjoy the nicely decorated palate. Too much thought on presentation? Perhaps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Porter House
Pantai Indah Kapuk
Jl. Marina Raya, Rukan Crown Golf Blok B Unit 38-40
Muara Penjaringan
Jakarta Utara 14460
(021) 4463 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Muchaluva,
Stace

Fitness Journal: 2 common terms often used in sports

3.03 mi run in 29:35 min (pace: 9’47″ / mi)

Music: International Departures with Myon & Shane 54 Episode 137

***

Notes:

 

Andain’s “Promises” (Myon & Shane 54 Summer Of Love mix), playing at 132 bpm (beats per minute), always pumps me up. Every once in a while, the beat triggers an unexpected energy, and I can suddenly dash from all the heavy huffing and puffing.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgcjjdSOjf0]

Honestly, I enjoy running longer better than faster but in intervals of walking/sprinting. I used to run a well-worth of mileage per week a couple of years ago, and I’m slowly remembering those memories I keep to myself when I wake up to greet the morning sunrise along the San Francisco bay.

Since I’ve decided to shift my focus from building a strong body to a performance that lasts longer, I decided to focus on never stopping to walk until I reach my goal distance. This builds endurance, not speed. I think speed will eventually follow once my body is used to running greater distances. I want to focus on increasing mileage volume per week now instead of being a watchdog of my pace at each workout.

Just 2 workouts and I’ve already built this much mileage:

2.01 + 3.03 = 5.04 miles 

I think, previously, I couldn’t even go as far as 2 miles in a single workout. I pushed the idea of immediate gratification (to unleash my inner moxie) away, and instead save it for later to push me at the last mile of a workout. It is desperate to run faster at the first mile after my warmup, but I said to it: “Calm down, my dear. You’ll be able to run for me in a minute.” And another minute, and another minute. From the outside, it might seem crazy to talk to yourself like that, but as human beings we need to tame our ego so that we’ll be able to run better for long-term success (though in this case, long-distance).

So, for the sake of persevering, I should’ve been more realistic… -_- Last week right after I finished my 10k race, I set a goal to run a weekly mileage of 13.25 miles. This week is also my first week being hired post graduation. I no longer hold 100% control of my time and it didn’t occur to me that I’m going to have to set more achievable goals as of right now.

The weekly mileage I ran 2 weeks before was a good 6.93 miles. I think I can make time for another 2 miles tomorrow to add up to a total of 7.05 miles this week.

This is what I’ve crossed off from my plan so far:

In addition to the 3 miles I ran today, I also added a 24-minute cross-training workout on the elliptical machine for my resistance training.

I know I’ve mentioned the term resistance training for quite a while now, but most non-runners are not very familiar with the concept. Same goes with the term cross-training.

Let me explain.

Resistance training is a form of strength training. That said, the goal is to build muscle strength on the targeted spots in which you perform your resistance exercise. An important component of resistance training is pushing against added force, or as most would say, “carrying a load”. This is completely different from running, where you completely rely on your body weight to move forward against the air.

Because I am shy at the gym (though it doesn’t seem so), I don’t like to perform my resistance training in the weight room (i.e. using dumbbells to perform certain moves for 24 minutes while L-men models are wondering what the heck is this little girl doing in the same room as they are), and I always use the exercise machines that are closest to the corner.

Anyway, that’s irrelevant.

The point is, there are many ways to perform resistance training besides on a single exercise machine. But I find that the elliptical machines especially work from your toes all the way up to your lower abs. Those are the muscle areas most women are weakest at, and it was effective for me to activate the dead muscles I have on my butt whenever I sit down for hours (or sleep) and read too much novels.

That said, you can actually get creative when planning to do a resistance training workout. Another term normally used in sports terminology is something called circuit training, which I’ll explain next time. But that is the creative part of designing how you want to do your workout. Ideally, it should be challenging enough, but the most important something is that you enjoy doing it.

My resistance training today is, simply, playing up the resistance levels on the elliptical machine. Let me give you a clearer picture of my workout just now:

00:00 – 05:00 - Level 7
05:00-06:00 - Level 14
06:00 – 07:00 - Level 7
07:00 – 08:00 - Level 14
08:00 – 09:00 – Level 7
10:00 – 11:00 - Level 16
11:00 – 12:00 - Level 8
12:00 – 13:00 - Level 16
13:00 – 14:00 - Level 8
15:00 – 16:00 - Level 18
16:00 – 17:00 - Level 19
17:00 – 18:00 - Level 9
18:00 – 19:00 - Level 25
19:00 – 20:00 - Level 24
20:00 – 21:00 - Level 23
21:00 – 22:00 - Level 22
22:00 – 23:00 - Level 21
23:00 – 24:00 - Level 20

It’s proven an effective way to build and maintain muscle strength for my lower-body. By adding this weight-loading exercise into my routine, I enhanced my overall running performance through working out the weakest parts of my body.

Working different muscle groups from the ones that you normally work is the most basic concept of cross-training. For swimmers who normally swim, it is beneficial for them to run once or twice a week, which will further improve their swimming performance by working more muscle groups than the ones they routinely use when swimming. Same goes for biking and hiking, golf and soccer, yoga and dancing, and many more combination of activities.

I believe every single person in this world loves a certain kind of activity. Be it for relieving work stress, giving you confidence, spicing up your sex life, or just making you feel good, I always encourage the people around me to go out and do it.

For me, it’s running – It’s a means to enjoy my time, to discipline myself, to clear my head, to liberate my mind, and free my soul.

I believe most hobbies and activities do the same for every one, and I sincerely urge you to get up from your desk and do it now, for health’s sake.

Muchaluva,
Stace

Grooving sushi platters

Complimentary salad and miso soup: For something gratis, salad is actually fresh and appetizing. However, I’d say meh to another bowl of this miso soup, which tasted like any other instant miso soup mix you can easily find in Japanese grocery stores.

Salmon lover: The palate does its name justice. I particularly love the soft and cheesy combination on the far left, just because of its consistency and how all those flavors blended well together – Creaminess of an avocado, softness of raw salmon, and the milkiness of the cheese.

Tako okonomiyaki: So-so. A bit stingy on tako and too much dough (and sauce) for an okonomiyaki, though worth another try if I’m in the hood again.

 

 

SushiGroove
Mal Taman Anggrek
Jl. Jen. S. Parman Kav. 21, Level 4, Slipi
Jakarta Barat 11470
(021) 560 9800

 

 

 

 

 

 

Muchaluva,
Stace

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