The Experiment

Hey guys! Mara here.

I know, I know. Sorry it's been forever but things have been very busy. School, home, and so many things have just been all over the place! Looking back at how the past few weeks have been, I'm still amazed at how I'm here with you today :p

First things first.

I don't think scheduling posts every ____ day is very motivating. It's weight loss and no matter how we think of it, it's a long process and there's no half-assing it. Therefore, this would be something Emmaleigh and I would post on when the need arises and whatnot.


I'm sorry but to be perfectly honest, I have not been exercising or eating as healthy as I would like lately. I have only been maintaining my weight which isn't really anything to celebrate about but it's not dreadful either.

That being said, after getting into a funk with everything, because of a school thing, I want to get back into losing weight!

It's a behavioral experiment and if you'd like to join, feel free to!

The premise:
Write down a goal that is achievable in two weeks. Have five rewards and punishments. These rewards and punishments must be attainable and/or can be reasonably enforced.

You will need:
A monitor and a table showing the following details: date, behavior expected, actual performance, reinforcement for daily achievement.

My monitor would be my friend Mai as I would be hers. Our goal was to be able to exercise everyday for at least 30 minutes, for two weeks.

But of course I don't want to start without a plan in mind. I have to budget those 30 minutes right.

So now, I'd like to plan it so I don't make a fool out of myself :p

  • Warm-up - 5 minutes. (stretching + dancing a little to some music to get pumped)
  • Combination of forward and side lunges - 5 minutes
  • Forward crunches - 5 minutes
  • Side crunches - 5 minutes
  • Squats - 5 minutes
  • Cool down - 5 minutes. (stretching s'more plus deep breathing and such)
So there's that. I'm hoping to target my tummy, sides, thighs and butt :p I'ma do arm movements with the lunges, too but that isn't really much to mention as it's a little thing (hope I can buy weights this week).

But there's more to it. I'm having my own little monitor sheet for myself :p
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water
  • Eat a heavy but as non-greasy as possible breakfast
  • Eat a nice portion of lunch and a small portion of dinner
  • Have an a.m. snack and a p.m. snack
  • 1 cup of rice is the limit (though I usually consume half)
  • 2 pieces of chocolate is the limit (of those miniature things and or kisses we have at home. If it's dark chocolate, better)
So there's that.

I think we begin Saturday. Here's to hoping I form habits with this behavioral experiment :p

'Til then,

The Value of Sleep

(Go me and my creative Skitch skillz)

Hey Kids, Mara here.

Sorry I've been MIA. Acads = hell and just this morning I realized how tired my body was -- I experienced hypotension. Luckily our morning class was cancelled. When I woke up, I barely turned in bed and felt the world spin, srsly. After a while, I tried sitting up... which wasn't a smart idea... because it didn't take long for the spinning to get really bad and I fell to my side and I gave in, slept for another hour. Soon the hour was over, I tried getting up again, tried walking despite feeling terrible. I went to the electronic blood pressure thing and it read 89/66.

The last time I had low blood pressure, I don't think it reached that low, but it has happened once before. The reason? Lack of sleep.

I haven't been sleeping well and it's never good for the body. But it's sad because I can't avoid it, not with the university I go to, not with the course I'm taking. I worry about what it'll be like when internship rolls along but oh well.

So let's run through WHY you MUST get enough sleep
  • Sleep = time for your body to repair. I think this is pretty self-explanatory.
  • Sleep helps keep your heart healthy! I can attest to this because of my blood pressure woes =\
  • Sleep helps deal with stress. Did you ever feel like everything's just going wrong, that everything's been terrible, that everything's overwhelming? Sometimes sleeping on it could just clear your mind and help you handle it better the next day.
  • Sleep = better memory! I don't know about you, but I cannot function for an exam if I don't sleep. Sleep is equal to your computer saving its files. I feel like it's when I can integrate everything somehow. Otherwise it's just free-floating information that flits away.
  • Sleep = better weight management! I think this is a big thing for me. I don't get enough sleep and along with my other problems leading to difficulty in weight loss. When you don't get enough sleep you get an increase in appetite -- specifically for food high in fat, calories and sugar-y death =\
Those are just some of the many reasons sleep is so important. Did you also know that there's a correlation between sleep deprivation and death? Look it up. Hopefully I'll get better soon, but for now, I have to dash again because I'm feeling weak and dizzy again =\ Really need rest.

'Til the next stop,


Hi bloggie! This is Em and I wanna apologize to you for not being responsible the past week in updating you. :( Both Mara and I had just been crazy busy with our school and sometimes I had to work after classes plus there's some personal stuff going on in my life right now and I can't stay focus. I am sorry once again. (:

Don't worry bloggie, I am back now, I had the full day to myself and just took a lil break from my reading so I can update everyone.

Ok. September is almost over and it's time for me to update everyone about the SEPTEMBER CHALLENGE I had that's open to everyone who wanted to join the weight loss challenge.


Image credits to google images

My goal was to at least lose 6lbs in this September challenge I had, I only lost 2lbs. I think stress is a factor, I have had not been sleeping properly since school started and on the weekend I've been trying to catch up on my sleep and that means my meals are pushed on a later time and I've been lacking exercise too.





But this is a FOR THE WIN blog right?I will WIN the OCTOBER CHALLENGE! I will not let stress and temptations triumph over me! I am Em, I am the other half of TEAM EMMARAH, this is a FOR THE WIN BLOG and I will achieve my weight loss goal for October. That's a promise.

Are there any lessons I learned during the whole September challenge?

- Yes. My goals should not just be focused on how to eat right and trying to cut back on sweets and too much sodium. I also need to plan my time properly, don't and never stay up late if it isn't necessary.

This whole diet/challenge thing is very new to me and as I go along, I learn a lot of things, I fail some, I win some and I will not stop learning until I reach my weight goal.

I will see you guys again on the launching of the OCTOBER CHALLENGE.

It is still Sunday my time 5:56pm, so to some us, let's enjoy the rest of our Sunday and Happy Monday to all of you guys in the Philippines.



Hey guys! Sorry for the late post, but yes, I, Mara, am here.

I was going to post Friday but I wanted to give Em's post its time to shine so I waited a little. But yay! Here I am.

Been hecka busy lately. I now have at least one exam every week. I actually have one tomorrow. I'm so overwhelmed and there's just so much going on that I'm actually feeling down and not so posty. But fear not! I will NOT let my emotions wreak havoc on my journey with whoever's with me and Em in this, be it one guy/girl, five, seven, who knows, right?

First things first, I am sad to announce that I am dropping out of the September challenge =\ I know, it's a disgrace/etc. It's not like I'm scarfing down sweet munchies as I type but from here on 'til the end of the sem I'd be pretty much stressed and I need a sweet treat every now and then to keep me going. Don't worry, I take things in moderation so I'll be alright :) Right now, I'm just going through a tough time is all and I don't want to be unfair by saying "I ate one _____" but I'm still going again and again.

Second of all. HOT DAYUM SOY MILK IS MAKING ME FAT :(( Sure it has health benefits, sure, but it doesn't do good with weight loss, pssh.

Next, I want to go through a detox diet. I'll be frank. And if you don't like TMI (too much info) stuff, then skip this entry. Go on. Click the red X.

Here's another chance.

And another.

Still with me?

You sure?

You can walk away.

Okay if you're here still then here's the thing. I've mentioned that I have problems with digestion, right? Weeeeell, thing is, I don't really have awesome bowel movements. I don't have them enough. Normally one would have it daily but me? Nope, not really. That's prolly one of the reasons I'm this way =\ And it's not good.

That being said, I think I srsly need a detox diet.

The problem?

I don't know much about them yet. Right now I can't do much research but I prolly will after my exam and get back to you guys on Wednesday :)

What's important for me to do now?

  • Know what to eat
  • Know how much to eat
  • Know what I could/couldn't do (like exert to much effort since I'd be on low cal stuff/whatever or maybe I have to be near the bathroom a lot)
  • Know what's SAFE
  • Know what would work for me and my digestion for the LONG TERM.
So there's that. If you know anything about detox diets or can help me in any way, please leave a comment below! Same goes with anything you'd like to see us talk about here or whatever you'd feel like sayin' :)

For now I have to go attend to my scholarly duties (hah :p).

'Til the next stop,


Let's eat healthy food!

Hi everyone! Em here on a Thursday night. ;)

Yes. This was supposed to be an entry for yesterday but I was really tired and senseless so I talked to Mara if I could skip and instead do the entry today.

Yay! I'm here now and ready to talk about EATING the RIGHT food.

I do my own research and I even watch Dr. Oz and The Doctors about their tips on people on a diet and how to be healthy. Yesterday, I did my grocery shopping and I kept in mind of the food that are tempting but not healthy. What are those?

Dr. Oz’s List of 5 Foods to Keep Out of Your Grocery Cart:

1. Simple Sugars and Carbs (like Ice Cream)

Simple sugars and simple carbohydrates cause blood sugar imbalances. You have a burst of initial energy, but this energy high lapses very quickly and you be even more tired. Plus, who wants to wear this on our hips… like Gillian said, we don’t want to look like watermelons, we want to look like pears! So skip the junk food, pastries, pies, cookies and cakes!

2. Meats High in Nitrates & Saturated Fats (like Salami, Bacon, & Sausage)

Processed meats have added nitrates, which is a food additive that is linked to stomach cancer and degenerative diseases. Plus it will add fat to you and your whole family! So try to eat chicken and turkey instead. The gentleman on the show said that he even lost 100 pounds by not eating these types of foods for a year!

3. Ingredients You Can’t Pronounce (like Cheese Puffs)

Have you ever looked at the ingredient list on a food item you are about to buy? Quite often the list of ingredients will have all types of things you can’t pronounce or have never heard of. If you need a chemistry course to read the ingredients, there is a problem! Besides, Gillian says these cause gas and burping.

4. Fake Healthy Foods (like Low Fat Cookies)

Fake healthy foods are what companies use to trick us! The food company’s marketing department knows the trigger words that make us think something is good for us like “low fat,” but did you know that when they say “low fat” they usually make up for it by adding tons of sugar. You won’t feel satisfied when you eat these foods and you will still have constant hunger.

5. Canned Foods High in Sodium (like Canned Soups)

Canned foods that are high in sodium are bad for your arteries and blood pressure, and generally they wreak havoc on your body. Dr. Oz said that most people shouldn’t have over 2300 mg of sodium, and if you are African American or elderly then you should have even less. If Americans can cut out 1200 mg of salt per day, we could save 100,000 lives from strokes and heart attacks.

[source: Dr. Oz’s List of 5 Foods to Keep Out of Your Grocery Cart]

And what did I buy from the grocery store?

Most of it are organics. They are expensive but if I want to eat right I need to sacrifice other things right?Like weekly shopping of cosmetics, shoes and or clothes. I don't need to buy clothes almost every week coz when I lose weight, most of my dresses and other clothing will fit me. I am proud of my food choices now (except for the noodles *ooppss*), I am becoming more concerned and conscious to read the labels and to actually take care of my body inside out. We've only got one, we better take care of it before we regret it.

No more fat Em in 2011, just a fit and healthy one.

What was in your shopping cart? Healthy? No? Well, the next time you go shopping, take into consideration of the 5 foods that you should keep out of your grocery cart.

How's the September challenge going for you guys?

Mine? I fell off the wagon. :( This is really tough, and it's not good if I continue in defeating my goal. I should discipline myself more.

I can still do the September challenge!

Go Em!



Image Credit to Google Images

[Buh. As I write this entry it's Sunday night. The long weekend it's coming to a close, thank goodness]

I hate long weekends, special occasions, holidays, etc.

It's all nice with everyone happy, yeah, but it's not exactly diet-conducive =\

What's harder?

Living under the shadow of convenience.

While I was at my mum's we had pizza hut food for brunch, food from the food court for dinner. The next day, pizza again, burger and fries for lunch, leftover pizza and pasta for dinner. Breakfast for Sunday? Freaking Jollibee (Jolly hotdog =\) and then we had Italliani's for lunch (Sicilian Chicken Salad + Chicken Parmigiana, yay, at least that's semi-healthy, right?)

Update on September challenge? Well... I sort of had a hiccup with the plan =\ You know when they sing at restaurants for birthdays? Yeah... since my bro's having his soon, there was ice cream and without thinking I plunged into the sweet frigid goodness without thought. It was only after the whole ordeal that I realized what I have done.

Damn I made that sound so dramatic :))

BUT I will continue with the challenge. Just wanted to be honest.

Honestly I feel fat. Though my clothes beg to differ, I am not getting on any damned scale until next week.

What do I have planned?

I'm sick of fast food. I really am. I am sick of convenience eating. After the September challenge I wanna try a MONTH without FASTFOOD. Which would be pretty big since every Sunday, it's pretty much always a fastfood breakfast and it's fun at times but not really a whole majority of the time.


What do I need to do about it?

I'm trying to establish a routine.

First, I'll try to always have some sort of veggie in my meals, or at least one of my meals per day. I'm not a big veggie fan but I'll try. So far I thought of having tuna spinach omelette every day.

Next, I have a BIG problem with digestion. I swear, it's one of the big reasons why I'm this =\ so on a whim I will also try to:
  • drink a glass of soy milk at least once a day
  • drink at least two cups of tea a day
Right now my problem is snacks. I'll figure things out as I go. Another problem I have is that I'll have at least one exam per week starting this week =\

Sooooo, wish me luck :)

'Til the next stop,

[PS I'm sick =\ Got a cold buh :((. Pray for me and my exams, 'kayyy? :p]


Hello everyone! This is Em on a Friday night. ;)

How are you guys doing today?How was school and/or work all week? School started for me and it's ok -- so far. Well, you guys know how school could get pretty stressful from all the deadlines to beat and exams right? Yes. So far, I am not tempted yet to shave my head bald from the stress and pressure around me. haha And as for my part time job? I restricted myself on my availability, it sucks about not getting that much hours as I used to, but school is way more important right?


That's that and let's move forward to my exciting news for everyone. I have TWO EXCITING NEWS! Are you guys ready?

hmm, remember the SEPTEMBER CHALLENGE? Where in the whole month of September I will try to completely eliminate my bad sugar and too much sodium intake? I posted that entry Monday night and it's been 4 days since then and 5 days since I last weighed in and to be honest, the challenge is pretty tough. I still get tempted to run to the convenience store and grab a chocolate bar, but I'm not gonna do that, I am taking the challenge and I am gonna be healthy! The exciting news you might be wondering? I weighed myself today and I LOST 2lbs! I am really happy that even despite of the lack of exercise and sweating for the past 2 weeks, I still lost 4lbs in total.

That is the first good news, and the second exciting or more like interesting news I have for everyone is this blogger.

Meet Steph everyone a.k.a Traveliztera in the blogworld. Yes. Steph is our featured blogger for the week. Why do we have this "featured blogger" of the week/month? It just hit me one day that there are people out there from different race, background, ethnicity, size and gender that could make a difference in their own little way. I wouldn't have met Steph if I myself wasn't inspired enough to be a better person.

Yes. I did "interview" Steph thru email, I sent her questions and she emailed me back (thank you! :D). If you didn't click her link and didn't check out her profile, Steph used to struggle with her weight as well and now I want to share to you guys her success story.

  • Please introduce yourself
- I'm Steph a.k.a. Traveliztera in the blogworld and I've been struggling with my weight for 11 years. I'm 21 years old right now, so yes, it all started when I was only 10 years old. Actually, there had been times wherein I was really thin then suddenly I'm overweight again and then I'm thin again... The cycle went on.I was really thin when I was a kid. I guess the fastfood mode really made me bigger when I reached the 4th grade. Of course, my parents tried to control me but in the end, it's still up to me, right? Well, I loved eating. I loved buffets. I was basically overweight during my highschool days and then I slimmed down again before college. Then suddenly, I gained weight again throughout my college years and I finally reached the heaviest weight I never thought I'd reach--150lbs. I've been doing a lot of weightloss stuff throughout my college years and I DID LOSE a lot but look what happened: I graduated heavier than before I even entered college. Here is where the ultimate cliche/lesson comes in: NOTHING BEATS PROPER DIET AND EXERCISE. Yes, I did all those fad diets back then. I even drank fatloss supplements. I loved making the excuse of "I'm too busy to even workout so I'll just starve myself!" Sure, you get to lose a lot of weight at first, but everything will come back and get you after some time and trust me--it's worse.
  • What/who motivated you to lose weight?
- The fact that I wanted to prove to all the people who do not believe in the long-term power of proper diet and exercise that they are wrong. I was also dared by my friends that if I didn't lose weight in 3 months, I'd have to post a bikini pic--which I obviously didn't want to do. I took the dare. Hey, at least you have an additional motivation! Haha! Also, the reason why I started http://traveliztera.blogspot.com was because I wanted to track my weightloss process. With a lot of people watching my weightloss actions, the motivation was definitely intense.
  • How did your first few weeks of dieting go?
- It was great! I guess my motivation was so strong. I was really determined and I learned to make a low-calorie version of each of my fave meals. I definitely enjoyed because I didn't deprive myself. You just gotta make dieting fun!
  • What are your struggles in your "I wanna be fit and healthy" path?
-Weight plateau days are definitely "Garrrrr!", but instead of hating, I learned to love my body more. Of course, it's definitely annoying when your efforts had been really all-out but your scale still shows the same numbers, but you have to stop and think that your body is telling you something. In this process, you really have to stay positive. It's either you're overworking and your body needs rest, or you have to change your routines. It is during these times wherein you learn to unite with your body more because getting mad at yourself would just discourage you.
  • Have you reached your weight goal yet? If yes, what are your plans/goals on how to keep that weight?
- I have gone beyond my weight goal and that was a huge surprise for me. I originally wanted to go down from 150 lbs to 115 lbs. but surprise! I currently weigh 103 lbs. To keep this weight, I shall continue what I have learned from the whole process. The thing is, when you get yourself into the proper way of losing weight, you get to adjust to the healthy ways and that is something long-term, unlike when you go for the fast weightloss ways.When you go for the easy way of losing weight, you learn nothing. You're dependent on something and what happens once the thing you're depending on is gone? When you're undergoing the healthy way of losing weight, you're totally in control and you get to do that forever. I still eat the things I want but I am still aware of their calorie count. Even though I don't count, it's as if my body has been trained to stop whenever I reach a certain amount of calories (for me, my calorie limit is 1200 calories) and that's the beauty of following a healthy weightloss process. I have a cheat day once a week and I work out 3-5x a week for 20 minutes.
  • Did you enroll yourself to a exercise program?(gym, dancing, martial arts etc etc).
- During the first 3 months of my weightloss, I had a gym trainer who designed a program for me while I took care of my diet at home. After 3 months, I was on my own. I made my own workouts based on the stuff I saw in fitness books and magazines (like Women's Health). I also used The 30-Day Shred by Jillian Michaels in the last month of my weightloss process.
  • Lastly, what's your message to us who are struggling in losing weight and how to keep us motivated.
1. Don't starve or deprive yourself.

You will definitely feel unmotivated. First of all, when you starve yourself, your metabolism slows down. Your body thinks you're not getting enough energy for it to work so it wants to save up by storing fat. Your body stores whatever you give it so you gain more weight. When you gain weight, you get more discouraged.

When you deprive yourself, you tend to overeat once you're exposed to your ultimate weakness. Have a cheat day or eat a small amount of your favorite "sinful" treats during your diet days. Trust me, a small bite is enough to satisfy those cravings.

2. Don't hate your body.

Love your body! You have to learn to listen to your body's needs. When you're friends with your body, you get to know more what it really needs. Plus, you feel happier and you get to be motivated more because you want your body to stay great.

3. Don't say you're too busy. A 10-minute workout can make a difference. ;)

4. Never go for short-term weightloss ways. You lose weight in a short time but you also get to gain it all back (plus some new pounds) in a short while as well!
5. You can definitely lose weight. Set goals in your mind. Never underestimate your mind because once you start setting goals, your mind works to give you determination.


Thank you everyone for the time in reading this entry. I learned something new from Steph and I hope you guys also did.

Let's all be healthy!

Happy Dieting!


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