Hello everyone! I haven’t updated this blog in a while, but now here I am – writing about something I’ve been working on this quarantine.
I have always been inspired with body transformation stories, starting from watching The Biggest Loser, to stories from The Fat Kid Inside. I never thought I would need to go through one, I thought I was generally healthy and fit. I go to the gym regularly, I can still do 10k fun runs, do yoga, among other exercises. I’ve done a lot of diet methods like intermittent fasting, cutting carbs, eating one meal a day, etc. With all of these things combined, I thought I really was doing well.
Fast forward to my 30th birthday. It was an amazing celebration- a lot of laughter and fun, catching up with friends, and love all around. Then I looked at the photos after, and realized, I really have changed, emotionally, mentally, and physically.
I went through a lot in the past year, finishing a new associate degree, switching careers, going through an emotional roller coaster with love and life, moving houses and designing it, with little events in between. I guess all of these things took a toll on my health, and I wasn’t paying proper attention. While my BMI was only a little overweight, I looked so much bigger in photos, stamina was down, I was having digestion issues, and other little things that I could have prevented, if I had known better.
In the photo above, you’d see how much I’ve changed in the past 7 years. I gained so much weight after reviewing for my board exams last 2014, which actually explains the big difference in photos. :)) The eat-study-sleep lifestyle really showed. Almost all of my friends taking the board exam with me couldn’t fit into our school uniforms on the day of our board exams,that’s how much we’ve been stress eating!
Anyway, I managed to get some of the weight off after. I lost a lot when I was maid of honor to my bff’s wedding last 2017, but slowly gained it back. Then I went back to school in 2019, then all of the craziness all happened as well, so it snowballed from there.
So now, no excuses. Finally, I have time to really focus on myself. My 30th was a wake up call, and this quarantine gave me the opportunity to act on it.
My primary goal was really just to lose weight, and also find a way to maintain it. Goal weight range would be between 50-53kgs, and to get fat percentage to 25-28%. I also wanted to be able to take control of my bloating, hyperacidity, stamina, and build a better digestive system.
Before I got to this point, I already tried a lot of things. While they used to work before, they didn’t work the last year. For example, when I wanted to lose weight for my bff’s wedding in 2017, I only had sweet potato for carbs, worked out 5x a week, and did intermittent fasting. Those actually worked wonders, but as most fad diets, as I soon found out- was not sustainable. During my 2013 and 2014 Laboracay trips, I remember jogging when I could (in between hospital pharmacy internship shifts), crash dieting for a week, and poof, I’d have a beach ready body. Again, not sustainable.
I had heard about The Architect from my younger brother. He was one of the 1st few people who tried out the programs a few years ago, as the head coach was his high school friend. Around December last year, I had heard a few more friends doing the program and having amazing results. After reading some of their transformation stories, I reached out for the free initial consultation. That December, I was 29 years old, weighed 133.82 lbs (60.7kg), BMI 25.3 (Overweight), with 40.7% body fat.
Because I was still transitioning to a new career – from pharmacist to marketing professional, I couldn’t commit yet to getting the nutrition plan of The Architect. Then my birthday came around, and you already know how that went.
Just before quarantine was announced, I finally signed up for The Architect’s program. I got a nutrition plan for Php 2499 per month, and during the initial assessment, Timothy (the head coach) recommended that I do the program for about three months to get to the goal I had in mind. At that point in time it was perfect, I had a Bali trip scheduled for the end of June, and the recommended program would cover just until that.
When I started my program on March 16, 2020. My starting weight was 131.9 lbs (59.82kg).
What I love about The Architect Nutrition Plan was how it was customized to every person. More than calorie counting, I also loved how the plan changes every month to shake things up a bit.
There are three things you would need to be able to follow the nutrition plan properly:
- Weighing scale – for the food
- Weighing scale – for the human
- Willpower – compliance is key to a successful program!
Is it hard? At the beginning it was, options are limited since the recommended food are usually what you would eat when you say you are eating clean. Carbs were sweet potato, corn, quinoa. For protein it was chicken breast, lean beef, eggs, white fish. And for snacks, almonds, yogurt, and fruits.
My first week results were instantly noticeable. (Progress photos later!) I could feel how lighter I was, I didn’t bloat, my stomach felt great, and I wasn’t craving for chips or fast food!
One of things I struggled with was eating at the recommended frequency. I wasn’t used to eating six (6) times a day. I used to just eat two meals – lunch and dinner when I was still going to the office.
I made a tracker just so I would remember to eat!! On the days that I had to work from home, and get swamped in meetings, I would forget some meals, so this tracker helped me follow the plan well.
I was also told to work out at only 3-4x a week. This surprised me because I used to work out 5x a week, or more. LOL Coach Timothy would explain later on why my previous methods didn’t yield the results I wanted.
I had to be creative with cooking my food or else I get bored with the standard salt and pepper grilled chicken breast. I already knew how to cook, but I learned new recipes like chicken tikka masala, beef kebab, hummus (from scratch!), and a lot of other things. Most of these recipes were either Korean, Mexican or Mediterranean, as I found these cuisines used healthier ingredients. As opposed to my favorite carb heavy cuisines – Italian and Chinese.
Since gyms were closed I resulted to workouts on Youtube. On my first month I did Emi Wong’s workouts, and on my 2nd and 3rd month I did Chloe Ting’s. Little did I know, Chloe Ting’s workouts actually did not help me. lol. I learned too late that her workouts didn’t work for people like me. Should have stuck with more Emi Wong workouts (she’s a certified fitness instructor) and KKardio dances instead! Also going to try out MadFit and Pamela Reid’s (also certified) workouts next.
And now, I present to you, progress photos!!!
From Day 1, March 16, 2020 up to Day 77
Day 1: 131.9 lbs
Day 77: 122.2 lbs (Week 11)
I lost 4.6 lbs on Day 7! My biggest weight loss in this whole journey. It astounded me how much one week made such a big difference!!!
I was actually most compliant on my 1st month. While on my 2nd and 3rd month I had a lot of hiccups because of my brother’s birthday, Mother’s day, and some cheat days. hahaha That would explain why there wasn’t much change. Anyhow, I still renewed my subscription because I could still feel the difference in my body even when I was not exerting a lot of effort.
I’m currently on Week 13, and I’m hoping I’ll reach my goal by the end of the month, wish me luck!!!
Side note: I put a lot of watermarks in my progress photos because I didn’t want my photos to be used by random people. Let me know if you see people using my photos for unrelated things like diet pills! I have seen some of my friend’s transformation photos being used by sketchy diet drinks sites. huhu