Hill repeats: 30-minute incline treadmill workout


Disclaimer: The information below is for informational/educational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional help. Before beginning a new exercise regimen or making any other changes in your lifestyle, always consult with your physician and/or a certified coach.


It’s been a while since I last shared my workouts, so here goes.

06177a53c50379c6dc0b3b0f24c7f487The day of the week when I give it my all in terms of fitness is mostly on Saturdays. That has been the pattern since I was still living in Frisco – my long runs (6-mile [9.7km] or more) mostly fall on Saturdays, and in terms of fitness, that hasn’t changed today, except for certain technicalities.

These days, my protocol actually consists of minimizing my weekly mileage while still maintaining the strength and stamina for long-distance runs. Why? Because I’ve learned to better prepare my runs and eliminate junk miles, and pardon my jargons from hereon.

In addition to getting more intentional with my runningthere is such a thing as too much of a good thing (ergo the importance of cross-training, i.e. doing other sports that are not running aren’t your primary sport), particularly when your run feels forced. In spite of all this, running has been my main mode of meditation for the last 6 years, and still, nothing else in the world feels better than to just sprint your way through the anxieties in your head and release all the stress you’ve built up throughout the week. Do that in a secluded area with fresh air, greens, and breeze – tension is gone.



More power, less effort

This morning, I just want to share this effective hill workout that will surely jazz you up by the end it (get your hill workout 101 here and here). It’s a straightforward way to simulate the perfect terrain indoors with the singular goal of improving your lung capacity.

Also, running uphill is actually easier for your joints, and for someone bruising easily around the knee area, it’s an ideal way to build strength without squeezing in too many sprints. I’ve been doing a lot of hill variations for the past few weeks, and they vary depending on my mood. They don’t necessarily make you become faster, but what you’ll get out of it is ultimately rewarding: You’ll breathe easier. This makes you run on a steadier cadence, and with that, you’ll be much more efficient with your energy on level grounds.


Should I try it?

Before I move on to the workout, I want to give a heads up again that this is just my personal routine. In general, it’s unsafe to do any hill workout before you’ve got a good base of long runs before you (and no, the ones where you stop doesn’t count). I shared this 40-minute workout that includes slight elevation a while ago that you can also refer to, but for the most part, please consult with your healthcare provider before attempting to do this.

Alrightey then, let’s get on with it. If you put your mind into it and give it time, and you can certainly do this.


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You up for the challenge? Do come back and let me know how those big, sexy lungs are working out for you.


P.S. Yoga and Pilates are fantastic ways to practice breathing on days you’re not running. I’m not particularly disciplined on stretching *guilty*, but here’s 3 everyday ways to amp up your lung power. Have a great one ;)



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14 cute gift ideas for the unique friend in your life


Today I’m celebrating my 39th menoversary with le boyfriend, who gave me the best surprise gift ever. I teared up a bit when I realized it’s not just any ordinary cartoonish pig – it’s my own pig character :) I just thought it’s an irreplaceable gift, such that no amount of dough in the world can exchange for what it’s worth. This got me inspired to come up with a collection of unique finds to inspire you to get that special someone in your life a little something that most peeps can’t find …

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 Water-resisant, bookbinding-crafted, hardcover Lolita iPad case (classic)
☑ Polaroid’s Z2300 digital camera that prints pics right away
 Centerpiece mangkok ayam table lamp from Artes Living
☑ Cute bluetooth-functioning blue cordless landline phone handset
☑ Super cute sail napkin holder to cutefy any dinner table
 Charlotte Olympia’s signature kitty flats
☑ Batwing black bag from ROMWE
☑ Bubblegum pink structured shoulder mini bag from Givenchy
☑ Blue Random Crap notebook for compulsive scribblings of random crap
☑ Cutest log pillow ever
☑ That pull toy slinky dog from Toy Story
☑ Unique iPhone case of No-Face from Spirited Away
☑ The essential coffee table slash book rack from TRE Studio
☑ Himalayan Mountain spice shakers from Monkey Business


I can’t decide whether my favorite’s the log pillow or the table lamp. Which one are you getting for your bestie?



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Required listening: Great music from before you were born



I must admit: I haven’t watched MTV in over a decade. I’m serious. I used to be the kid who keeps up with the charts when I was young1, all the way through the time I was studying in Singapore (circa 1994 to 2004). I felt that music has gone stale since the turn of the millennium, and I’m sure it isn’t just me. You see hits that top charts, but don’t quite stay there as long as the hits from the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s used to.

I also felt that there isn’t much newness to the current melody. You can basically replicate the pop 4-chord structure like an app to new releases and call yourself a musician. Don’t get me wrong – I still think great music exists today, just that it’s getting rare because pop music no longer win over hearts by their records alone, but also things like your personal fashion style, your fame outside of your professional field, and your overall reputation in the showbiz. For this (and many other reasons), I don’t keep up with the charts anymore and has gradually turned to alternative genres (trance, new age, jazz, chillout, etc). Bottom line, what’s now considered good music is just never going to be the same again.

Now I’m glad the latest Marvel tentpole Guardians of the Galaxy, which became the highest-grossing film out of all previous MCU movies (excluding The Avengers), has inspired Millennials to dig through the timeless vinyl records again – yes, the ones our parents keep somewhere in the garage.

Peter Quill’s Awesome Mix, Vol. 1 was a joy to listen to for me, and there were some favorites I want to continue listening to everywhere I go now.

That’ s why I came up with the playlist below. I consider these essential hits that my kids should listen to in the future if they’re ever going to listen to anything. While there’s no way I can stop Miley Cyrus or Nicki Minaj from twerking, the next best thing I figured best doing is to provide this handy list of top-charters that people actually still listen to today, then put it up right next to 21st century pop music for the kids to compare. We’ll see if the current chart-toppers are still going to ring in the public’s consciousness when they’ve grown up.

In the meantime, here’s ear porn for you.



Any favorites?


P.S. Marvin Gaye’s kids vs. ‘copycat’ Thicke. Hmm.



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  1. Yes, I could tell what song is playing within a millisecond of the opening of a music video. []

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