So I'm sure you've probably already heard that Angelina Jolie did a double mastectomy (surgically removing the breasts) recently to reduce her risk of getting breast cancer. She said her doctors estimated she had an 87% risk of breast cancer and a 50% risk of ovarian cancer. Angie's mum died at the age of 56 after nearly a decade of battling cancer.
Now, her chances of developing breast cancer have dropped from 87% to under 5%.
What touched my heart was Brad Pitt's support and response about the matter:
"She could have stayed absolutely private about it and I don't think anyone would have been none the wiser with such good results. But it was really important to her to share the story and that others would understand it doesn't have to be a scary thing. In fact, it can be an empowering thing, and something that makes you stronger and us stronger."
Amazing souls those two.
Here are some interesting info about her pre and post surgery schedule that just goes to show how strong and dedicated she is to her family and work commitments:
-1. She started the process on Feb. 2nd
2. Less than two weeks later, they took Vivienne and Knox to Los Angeles' Natural History Museum on Valentine's Day.
3. Two weeks later, she went in for the major removal surgery, which can take around 8 hours.
4. Less than a month of recovery later, she visited the Republic of Congo with U.K. Foreign Secretary William Hague! They visited with a rescue camp for women to raise awareness of war-zone rape. She had NO signs of pain or discomfort!
5. On Easter weekend, she took Maddox and Knox to get some art supplies in Santa Barbara.
6. A week later she was at the World Summit in New York on April 4th.
8 A few days later she was at the G8 Summit in London with Hague on April 11.
9. She then has her final reconstruction surgery with breast implants… just nine weeks after the initial surgery.
That schedule is INSANE for someone who isn't recovering from major surgery, let alone someone who is!
1. Potatoes (323% more satisfying than white bread)
2. Fish (225%)
3. Porridge/Oats/Oatmeal (209%)
4. Apples (197%) and Oranges (202%)
5. Wholewheat Pasta (188%)
6. Beef (176%)
7. Beans (168%)
8. Grapes (162%)
9. Wholemeal Bread (157%)
10. Popcorn (154%)
...popcorn? Seriously? Crunchy air... Who likes popcorn?
Last week I had to see the doctor because I couldn't sleep for a whole night due to intense pain in my stomach. It was so bad that I even got up and ran to the toilet because I thought I was going to throw up when my mouth started to water all of a sudden. At first I thought it was food poisoning so I figured I might feel a lot better after throwing up so I stuck a finger down my throat but nothing came out. I tossed and turned the whole night and barely got any sleep.
The doctor concluded that it was a case of acid reflux. The causes?
✓ Eating too much spicy food ☹
✗ Too much fatty or oily food
✗ Too much coffee and/or chocolate
✗ Skipping meals in between for too long and ending up eating a big meal in the end
✓ Eating 2 hours before bedtime
✗ Drinking excessively
* * * * *
Besides the medicine the doctor prescribed and avoiding the causes listed above, this would help too:
☛ Eat smaller portions and never skip meals
☛ Sleep with your head in an elevated position using 2 pillows
☛ Make it a habit of chewing gum or cough drops as this would create more saliva in your mouth which helps to wash down any left over acids from your esophagus and throat
☛ Drink more water
☛ Sleep only 2 to 4 hours after having your dinner
☛ Losing weight
* * * * *
I really hate that I have to cut down on spicy food. I also have this bad habit of having a little snack before bed. I mean, your body's going to fast for 6-8 hours while you sleep so you gotta give it something, right? Wrong.
Anyway, last night, I was stubborn again and was at a Thai restaurant for dinner with some friends. I already had a Subway sandwich for dinner and was meant to catch up with them but I couldn't help myself when it comes to spicy tom yum soup. It was one of my vice! I had a small bowl and faced the consequences the same night. My stomach hurt so bad, I was up every 2 hours. It wasn't as bad as the first time but it was hell. Got up at 6am for a morning call (work) and went straight the gym for 40 mins of cardio.
My body feels good but my stomach is being a bitch. Damn you, tom yum soup.
*A couple of friends recommended Nexium (40mg) or Omeprazole (20 mg). Might check that out at the pharmacy later if this becomes a fuss.
The last time I worked out was before Christmas! Had been down with cough+flu and my body was so weak that I even fainted in the train once that weekend (it didn't help that I skipped breakfast AND was on my period). It was the worse feeling EV-ER.
Been starting to feel a little flabby and this persistent cough+flu is definitely taking its time to go away. That didn't stop me from hitting the gym yesterday though, finally! My first workout of the year! Did 10 mins cardio, shoulder workout and 12 mins rowing. Woke up this morning with my body thanking me with soreness.
Question of the day comes from Sophie:
She asks: What is the best exercise to flatten belly?
The best way is less carbs, more cardio and overall resistance training. Abs workouts should be a primary exercise while you work on the more important muscle groups such as legs, back and shoulders. Check out the Explode Program and you will notice that I didn't set a day for just doing abs. You need to work on your whole body to flatten your tummy. Ever seen a guy with flabby arms and a flat tummy? Nope. Best exercise? Ab workout of the month for October. If that's too hardcore for you, try using the workout ball.
It's interesting to read some of the visual statistics on VisualEconomics.com . From 'Financial Habits of The American Youth' to 'How The World Spends Its Time Online', the simple graphs show a clear perspective on what and how much we consume in our daily lives. While some of the statistics are somewhat trivial and less important than others, I couldn't help but share this rather predictable statistic on how much food and beverage the average American consumes over the course of ONE year...
I am surprised that we consume more dairy products than corn/corn syrup and cereal products combined. After watching 'Food Inc.', you would think we drink more soda (aka corn syrup) than milk. I am surprised they didn't include 'Beer' in a separate category on the graph. In short, this diagram (especially the summary at the bottom) is trying to tell us that Americans consume a lot of french fries, pizza, ice-cream, soda and caffeine in our daily diet. Interesting, isn't it? I'd really like to see a graph on 'How Much We Exercise/Spend Our Energy' next.
When you’re in love, you tend to let go a little. Sure, that’s okay in the beginning, but skipping a workout and ordering a pizza for DVD night too often could lead to gaining the love chub – also known as the ‘boyfriend layer’.
I’ve gained about 10lbs since I’ve got in a relationship 4 months ago. When I shared my contempt about my weight gain on Twitter, the first reply I received was “You’re in love!” It’s almost like a normal thing that happens to just about everyone else.
The first stage is 'feeling' the weight gain. You feel restless and too tired to do anything at all. Continue putting off your workouts and 2 months later, you’ll soon realize unbuttoning your favorite jeans feels a lot more comfortable after a meal.
Once you’ve gained the initial 5lbs, weight gain can take off like a runway and you’ll immediately realize that you’ve obviously been neglecting your body and have gotten used to some habits that were once an occasional treat. So how do you get back into the healthy cycle and keep the boyfriend layer at bay?
Here are 3 things you need to do and remember:
1. Be Happy And Stay content – Love Your Partner, Love Your Body
Contentment is what you hope for after the elation has worn off. Being in love makes you feel happy and whole. Putting on the love chub doesn’t. Feeling insecure about your body and yourself is not a healthy attribute in any relationship. To stay content, you need to feel good about yourself and that begins with a body you can be proud of. Research shows that people who are more active and happier with their bodies have more satisfying sex lives. If that's not motivation, we don't know what is.
2. Fun and healthy activities don’t just happen in bed or on the couch
Staying up late on a DVD night and spending more time in bed sounds more appealing than a date with the treadmill. Make gym time part of your quality time together. People who do things together are more likely to stick to it and you have each other for motivation. Take Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake as an example; they both maintain a healthy relationship by having each other as gym buddies. Exercise your hearts together, a healthy heart is essential in every relationship.
3. His & Hers
Suddenly, your appetite grew. Your boyfriend eats twice as much as you because guys have more muscle mass, so they require more calories. Women burn 26% fewer calories than men do, so it’s best to stick to your regular petite portions and avoid stuffing yourself with those extra spoonfuls. It’ll eventually catch up with you.
If your boyfriend has a habit of eating chips from the bag or opts for a pint of ice-cream after dinner, it may be hard to resist a treat. However, keeping quantity control can prevent a diet disaster. Serve yourself a small portion of his snack in a small bowl or have a cup of delicious berry yogurt instead. It’s guilt-free and if they’re so good, who knows, maybe you’ll convert him.
Some fun activities you can do as a couple...
☑ Pick up a new sport together (i.e. Surfing)
☑ Working out together
☑ Muay Thai
☑ Getting a group of friends together for beach volleyball
☑ Catch some sun
There are still a few activities we have yet to do together and the list includes:
☐ Golf/ Mini Golf
☐ Tennis/ Squash
☑ Hot Yoga
What activities do you share with your partner? Feel free to recommend some!
29 May 2010 – I am proud to say that I have taken part in the largestmoving flash mob in Singapore! It involved a total of 400 participants, all who moved to create an anti-smoking awareness and to celebrate World No Tobacco Day (31 May 2010).
“A flash mob is a large group of people who assemble suddenly in a public place an unusual and pointless act for a brief time before quickly dispersing, leaving unsuspecting by standers bewildered and surprised.”
Inspired by Improv Everywhere’s Mp3 experiment, Breathe, in partnership with Mediacorp 987FM, organised Singapore’s first Great Audio Experience.
It started at 3 key locations along Orchard Road – The Heeren, The OC and SMU and rallied in a moving flash mob all the way to Plaza Singapura.
Participants were given free radioheadsets, which we used to tune in to 987FM and follow the instructions directed by the Voice (who was truly Mister Young).
My friends and I kicked it off at The OC and I was giving live updates via Twitter about what was going on and what we were doing!
We were lucky that it didn’t rain, the beautiful sun was out but Singapore was as humid as ever on that day and it didn’t help that I had 2 layers of clothes on (a dress and a t-shirt over it)!
There were live band and dance performances at Plaza Singapura and the turn out was great! Thank you to everyone for participating and big ups to those who followed me on Twitter to get the updates. Hope you guys had fun!
For beautiful skin and a fit body, I Live It Up Without Lighting Up! What are your reasons for being smoke-free?
I can relate to the aggravating struggle to get off your bed or office desk and making your way to the gym. Even worse, the struggle to keep up with your workout routines while at the gym (this is even even harder when you don't have a personal trainer to motivate you. It's frustrating.
So how do you keep up? The answer: A pre-workout fuel - Caffeine.
Although I am not a huge fan of coffee (Why would I be? It stains your teeth and gives you the jitters...), I do believe that caffeine is a helpful stimulant that enhances your mental and physical performance. Caffeine enters the body and forces the working muscles to utilize as much fat as possible. When you're doing strength and endurance training, it's a challenging effort to keep your mind focused as every rep gets harder. Having caffeine in your system is a pre-workout fuel that provides you with the extra boost you require to complete your sets and push your body to the limits, thus ensuring a more satisfying after-work out feeling.
Most 'fat-burning' diet pills contains caffeine and this was what I took in replacement of a regular cup of coffee to stay awake at the office and still have some energy for Muay Thai.
Lipo-6 is my better alternative to drinking coffee as it does not stain my teeth, it does not give me the jitters either. Results may vary with every individual but so far, both Charles and I agree that it's our essential Starbucks in a capsule.
It is important to know that I don't recommend consuming a pill each day as this allows for the tolerance levels of caffeine to decrease, thus making the body susceptible to caffeine when consumed. It is important for you to understand their caffeine limits. If you have never used caffeine for sporting enhancement, then you are unfamiliar with caffeine's affects on your body. Make sure that you have used caffeine in a variety of training conditions to understand your limitations.
Basic Rules of Thumb That Follows:
FOOD and REST
- Eat a meal within 3 hours before your workout, with at least 15g of protein.
- Eat a meal within 1.5 hours after your workout, with at least 20g of protein. If you can't eat a meal until later, make sure to eat a protein bar / protein shake within 45 minutes of your workout's end, and eat a full meal as soon as you can, no later than 3 hours later.
- Get plenty of complex carbs and veggies.
- Never be hungry, never be full. Ideally you are eating 4 small-medium, balanced meals a day.
- Get 7-9 hours sleep a night.
- Drink 2 litres of water a day, don't be afraid of bloating!
(This article is not intended for any advertising, sale or marketing purposes of the brand(s) mentioned.)
Just a personal reminder to myself. It's funny to look back at my old photos and think "Wow, I can't believe I used to look like that and thought it was okay at that time."
This is me at my heaviest (55kg):
And lightest (44kg):
This is me now (52kg):
I'd like to point that I may not look as chubby now as when I was 55kg even though there's only a 3kg difference because I've been weight training so bear in mind that muscle weighs more than fat. Ideally, I'd like to be 48kg and up my strength and tone up by doing more resistance and weight training. This is my 2nd week in the 'Explode' program. I'm feeling great but my clothes could definitely fit a lot better!