Tag Archives: fitness

Review: Garmin Fenix 5X

I’ve been using the Garmin Fenix 5X since August 2017 thanks to Garmin Malaysia!

My Ninja!

I’ve had enough time to play around with it and here’s my review!

As with the review I did for my panda (FR 235), this will be from my perspective of what I’ve found useful and interesting (the highlights). For a more IN DEPTH review with comparisons between models, check out the famous DC RAINMAKER.

Why did I choose the Fenix 5X?

-I do more than just run (since my plantar injury)

-I love big watches

-I wanted to try the 5S in WHITE for aesthetic reasons (as always!) but it wasn’t available

-More importantly (I saved the best for last), THE BIGGEST REASON would be the beautiful topo MAPS that is unique to the Fenix 5X!

SO PRETTY *wipes tears*

Features that are ONLY found in the Fenix 5X:

Point of Interest: You can find cities, FOOD and DRINK, fuel services, lodging, attractions, entertainment, recreation, SHOPPING, transportation, hospitals etc. Oh yes, you can also find COFFEE!

The downside is that it takes quite a while to load. BE PATIENT!

Looking for cities!

Around Me: It maps your current position and helps you find things that are around you.

You can move the little pizza slice to narrow the search to that area. SO COOL! *I was indoors and I didn’t wait for the map to load before taking this picture. A full map (like the one above) will appear.*

Back to Start: You can use this to get back to where you started if you ever get lost.

It will tell you how far off you currently are, ETA, directions, compass and a map.

Courses: You can preload routes from your phone/computer and let your watch do the navigating!

Round-Trip Courses: I absolutely LOVE this function! You can choose to run or bike, the distance and the direction (any direction, North, South, East and West)! Once you’ve done that, it will map out a route for you. This is GREAT especially when you’re exploring a new place/city! It will tell you where to go, turn and if you’re heading in the WRONG direction!

Other features:

Watch faces: You’d probably know by now that I go NUTS over watch faces.

Simple or complicated? YOU decide.

Battery: 20 hours for the Fenix 5X to support all your crazy endeavours (in GPS mode)!

Weight: 98g (Fenix 3HR – 86g; FR 235 – 42g) It is a lot heavier than the other models.

Connectivity: Bluetooth Smart sensor for all your external devices (HR monitor, Footpod etc) and WiFi (for Sapphire units) for easy and quick uploads straight to Garmin Connect! REALLY, and I mean REALLY quick.

HR Sensor: Improved optical sensor that takes readings more frequently – more accurate!

Data fields and screens: HIGHLY customizable! But I like to keep it simple to just 5 data screens with 3 data fields where appropriate.

I’ve included a map!

Smart notifications: When Bluetooth or WiFi is turned on, you can receive texts/tweets etc on your watch WITH Emoticons!

TOO CUTE!

Control “room”: Quick access to certain widgets and functions when you hold the LIGHT button.

Widgets: Like other models, you can add all sorts of widgets from heart rate, performance, steps, calendar, notifications, weather, “My Day”, calories, temperature, stress, altitude etc

Quick glimpse of your activities throughout the week.

New activities and apps: Navigate app, Track Me app, seperate Indoor Track and Treadmill, Mountain Biking, separate Snowboard and Ski

You can basically turn on Track Me and go! And it will do just that… TRACK YOU!

Breakdown of all the activities/sports mode:

Run: Run, Treadmill, Indoor Track, Trail Run

Other cardio: Hike, Walk, Climb

Bike: Bike, MTB, Bike Indoor

Swim: Pool Swim, Open Water Swim

Multisport: Multisport, Triathlon, Swim Run

Snow: XC Ski, Snowboard, Ski

Watersports: SUP, Boat, Row Indoor, Row

Gym: Strength, Fitness Timer

Other: Tactical, Golf, Tru Swing, Cardio, Jumpmaster, Project Wpt, Other

The Fitness Timer

I have been using this function for my HIIT workouts!

Try this quick Full Body 12 min workout. For one circuit, set your timer for 8 rounds of 20 seconds GO TIME and 10 seconds REST. Repeat this process for circuits 2 and 3.

Circuit 1

Burpees

Walking lunges

Jump squats

Step ups (on bench)

Rest for 1 min

Circuit 2

Push ups

Plank

Tricep dips

Lay down push ups

Rest for 1 min

Circuit 3

Plank

Mountain climbers

Flutter kicks

Dead bug

Quick example: When it beeps… it is GO TIME! Want more workout videos? Check out my Instagram.

One thing I love about Garmin watches is that it is not just a watch with a bunch of apps throwing all sorts of data at you but that these data are PERSONAL to you. It GROWS with you. For example, data from a VO2 Max workout allows the watch to determine your fitness level and provide suggestions for training/recovery etc accordingly.

Below are 2 new features with the Fenix 5 series:

Training Status Screen: It describes how your current training is affecting your performance and overall fitness. You can either be peaking, productive, maintaining, recovery, unproductive, detraining or overreaching.

As you can see, I am “maintaining”.

Training load shows you your current effort. It pulls data from the last 7 days of training (both duration and intensity). It will then let you know if it was low, optimal or high, comparing to what you’ve done previously.

Aerobic and Anaerobic Training Effect: After every workout, it gives you a split of your training effect.

Killing two birds with one stone!

I still consider myself fairly new to this whole techy GPS watch thing and have only tested a few Garmin models. But of all that I HAVE tried, this is by far THE BEST! I am REALLY happy with all the additional data and unique features especially THE MAPS!

It is pretty pricey. If you’re unsure about whether or not to get one, let me help you decide!

Is THE FENIX 5X for you?

YES if you:

-Are into multisport

-Data nutterhead (like me)

LOVE maps (also like me)

-Want to train effectively, efficiently and specifically

-Travel often

-Rough (I wore the Fenix 3HR (similar design, material and outlook) to Tough Mudder and it survived every bit of the MUDDY MADNESS!)

-Itching to spend your money somewhere

NO if you:

-Don’t care about data and maps (Pfffftttt!)

-Want to keep things simple

-Not a techy/data person and would easily be confused with data (OVERLOADDDDD!)

-Only do one type of sport (ain’t nobody got time for extra stuff) (Check out Garmin Forerunner series)

-Just wanting to keep fit

-Just wanting to track simple data like steps, calories etc (Check out Garmin Vivo series)

Please let me know if you have any specific questions about the watch or if you are thinking of getting one! 😉

xx

If you are in Malaysia, these are the relevant websites:

Main distributor

Facebook

Instagram

#AdeleWFOTM – Hui Xin

For the month of October (or whatever that’s left of it), we have Hui Xin!

Sorry for the delay this month. I got caught up with my research project and NEARLY missed this month’s feature.

Anyway! Back to Hui Xin – you might know her as the girl behind Run89. Indeed, she is one of the co-founders of the running group. Her fire and enthusiasm for running and just her overall outlook on living an active life continues to inspire me. Read on to find out more about her!

1. How long have you been running?

I started running since 2013.

2. How did you get into it?

Initially, I ran to lose weight.

When I heard that my favourite sports brand was organising a road race event, I registered! After signing up, I started to train for it. Since then, I’ve fallen in love with running!  It’s like a drug!

 3. You’re the co-founder of the Run89 crew. Tell us more about that!

Sure! Ru89 is more than just running and working out as a group, we are like a family with strong bonds! Besides running together, we travel together too and we will try our best to host a trip at least once a year! It is really fun to be with them.

We are also very grateful for all the support from Nike. We had a chance to attend many interesting events and meet other runners from different parts of the world! These are some of the best memories for the crew!

Our slogan is “Stronger with every stride” – which means in everything we do, every step that we take, will make us better and stronger!

4. Your profession/work:

Store Design & Construction Executive

5. How do you juggle work and running?

When I started my new job, it was a bit difficult to juggle both. But after a while, I managed to adapt. I will try to run at least 5km if there wasn’t any special activities going on that day.

6. Do you have a training schedule? What is it like?

My training schedule in a week looks something like this:

3 days of speed work

2 days of easy running/light workout/cross training/badminton

Race or LSD on weekends

7. Who do you usually train/run with?

My running buddies! This running community is huge and there will always be a familiar face whenever I go running! It’s great!

If we have similar running menu for that day, we will train together. Otherwise, we will catch up after training!

8. You also host weekly group core training on Tuesdays. Could you tell us more about that?

R89 Blastfit is hosted by Sabbie (Sabrina Lim) and myself. We both LOVE to workout! At first, we wanted to gather just a few of our BFFs for a group workout. We recognised that girls are quite shy to step out and we wanted to create a safe space to do just that.

We took this oppotunity to initiate the concept of “GIRL POWER”, where we can just be as strong as the boys. We are so blessed that the group has somehow grown into a big family!

 9. Which was your most memorable race event and why!

Definitely the Osaka Marathon! For now, it is my favourite running event! Everything is beautiful in Japan! The Osaka Marathon uses the rainbow as their theme color every year. Each color has a different meaning. The medals are also always beautifully designed. One of the main highlights that I really love is that there’s a whole row of Japanese food stalls at around the 30km mark.

The route is also always filled with passionate supporters, cheering for the runners and providing aids. You can also find cosplayers, which are fun to look out for!

Last but not least, the Osaka marathon’s route is totally flat with only one flyover incline at around the 37th km mark which makes it a totally perfect route to hit your PB!

 10. Favourite distance:

10km / 21km

 12. Other than running, what do you like to do?

I love working out in general and also Muay Thai!

13. Is there anything else that you would like to share with us?

I would like to share how running has changed me to be a better person. Before running, I was shy and someone who didn’t like to share and talk to people.

But through running, I got to know people from different stages of life and got to learn a lot from them. Besides being able to help you destress and have a more positive outlook of your life, running does make you think and realise that there are better things that exist in this world.

Thank you so much for sharing Hui Xin! Running (especially in a group) CAN be SO FUN! If you’re interested to join them for running or for a workout on Tuesdays (for the ladies only!), check out their FB page and Instagram.

#AdeleWFOTM – Colleen Augustin

This month, we have OCR Queen – Colleen Augustin!

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I first met this lil power nugget face to face at the start line of the Compressport Combo Challenge 2016 trail race at Mardi Maeps (you can read about it here). I knew who she was but until that time, we had not officially met. We exchanged a few words and I instantly got that bubbly-hyper vibe from her. She’s a BALL OF ENERGY!

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Back then, she ran a few road races and some trail runs here and there. Now, this 19 year old is taking over the OCR scene with her latest 2nd place win at the Spartan Super 2017 in Malaysia!

She’s super supportive of others, REAL and a true inspiration!


Recent achievements at the APAC Championship Series:

1st Leg – Hong Kong (3rd)

2nd Leg – Taiwan (5th)

3rd Leg – Korea (3rd)

4th Leg – Malaysia (2nd)

Finals – Perth


1. How did you get into OCR?

I got into OCR because of my mother and brother. They went over to Brisbane, Australia for a Spartan race back in 2014. During that time, I was playing basketball with my team. I was curious what it was since I’ve seen my mom do Reebok One Challenge before. So, I asked my dad since he was ex-military, and he explained it to me. When my mom and brother came back, I saw the photos and they told me what they did. It intrigued me even more.

When the next OCR event came about in Malaysia, I went! It was the Viper Challenge (21km). It was my first ever obstacle race, it was gruelling but I finished it and immediately got hooked.

2. How long have you been doing it?

I believe it would be about 2.5 years since I started OCR. I started in late 2015 in November, I was 16 then.

3. Are you part of any OCR community/group?

I would like to think that I’m part of many OCR Communities. Hahaha…18951482_1955591918009788_4196383762455839875_n

I like to mingle with other Spartans from around the world and from everywhere. But there are a few names that come to mind like OCR Junkies (KL), Lion City Spartans (Singapore), Warrior (Penang), and a Philippines group that I can’t quite remember the name. I am not single-ing them out, these are just names I remember that I’m quite actively close with. They have been very warm and friendly every time I visit.

4. Your profession (school/uni/work):

I currently work with OBC Malaysia as a bootcamp instructor. I would probably start my first year of university next year (due to my parent’s wishes hahahaha *coughs*).

Right now, I focus on training.

5. How do you juggle work/study and OCR?

I have a very supportive community at work and at home. I also learn how to manage my time more wisely and get my priorities right.

6. Do you have a training schedule? What is it like?

I do, but it changes at times. Roughly, I train from Monday to Friday about 2-3 times a day with 1-2 rest days a week. On weekends, I usually put in a hike/run/bootcamp session to just stay alive (with exception where I will just jog or swim).19958968_10211183888207710_4264200008165936802_n

7. Who do you usually train with?

Who is very hard to say, as I train in classes/sessions. Outside of that, I train alone by myself or with my trainer. It sounds sad for some, but I prefer training alone so that I can focus on myself and my weaknesses.

8. What keeps you motivated?

That is a tough one. The love of the sport, and constantly wanting to improve and challenge myself.

9. Which was the most memorable race event and why?

My most memorable race event was the recent Spartan Super 2017 in Malaysia, which happens to be the 4th leg of the APAC Championship Series before the finals in Perth.

I was crying tears of joy when I finished the race despite coming in 2nd place. Why? It was the people. When I was finishing the last cluster of obstacles and burpees, I just kept pushing myself remembering what my brother and my parents said to me during the race. That kept me pushing hard! I also heard the people at the race. Spartans going into their starting pens, shouting: “Go Colleen!” “Malaysia Boleh!”! These were people that I’ve never met before. I was so touched I started crying when I crossed the finish line.

When I started this APAC Championships Series, I knew I had my family, coaches, OBCFamily and MonarchyFamily supporting me at every step. Little did I know that I had made an impact on other Spartans in Malaysia as well.

In the moment, as I crossed the finish line, I saw Quek and Mike. They were giving me such big smiles! I felt so proud that I made them smile like that. It was because of them that I had this blessed opportunity to do this – improve myself and make a difference/appear in the OCR scene on a larger scale. My competitor, Angelique, gave me a hug when she saw me which I returned to her and Jade Ross.

Even while being interviewed, I started crying tears of joy again!

10. Any advice for someone who is wanting to get into OCR?

As I tell anyone, just do it!

Start small if you are scared, go for a shorter distance 5-6km long. You never know how hooked you would become until you cross that finish line. I highly encourage it. Go with a friend if you’re worried.

Sometimes in life, you have to get out of your comfort zone and JUST DO IT!

11. Your inspiration: My family, coaches, competitors and teammates!

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I hope you guys enjoyed it as much as I did. And maybe, a lil spark of inspiration to start your first OCR?

Thanks so much for your time, Colleen! Keep it up and make Malaysia proud! All the best! <3

Follow her OCR journey on her FB page

xoxo

7 Ways to BOOST Your METABOLISM!

Following from the previous post on plateaus, we know that our unique METABOLISM plays a big role.

Does your metabolism need a BOOST?Photo 24-04-2017, 11 43 23 am

Check out what you need to do (or not do):

1. Lean Up

A lean and mean MUSCLE machine that is. Yep, muscles NEED A LOT OF FOOD! Having more muscle mass means that your body is burning more calories… EVEN AT REST! How good is that?!IMG_3066

1 Kg of muscle burns about 10 kcal/day (1). So, if you gain 1 Kg of muscle, you burn an additional 3650 kcal/year.

2. Eat WHOLE foods

When it comes to eating, QUALITY matters! Besides eating a “well balanced” meal of protein, fat and carbs, pay attention to the QUALITY!Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Highly processed/packaged foods can really wreck your metabolism! Foods that have added refined sugar can send your insulin levels through the roof. Insulin is one of the hormones that signals your body to store fat, especially around the waist.

The safest option? STICK TO WHOLE FOODS! Fresh is BEST!

3. Eat ENOUGH for YOU

Your metabolism drops when you don’t eat enough! The resting energy expenditure (REE) is what your body burns at rest.Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Your body is always looking out for you. When you’re not eating enough, it senses “danger” and tries to hold on to whatever reserves it has as your body does not know when is the next time that you will eat.

Under eating leads to energy imbalances and changes to hormone levels (leptin and tyroxine) (2). Essentially, when these hormones decrease, your body stores fat and REE decreases.

4. Get MOVING

Any form of physical activity increases your daily energy expenditure. The more active you are, the more energy you burn!Photo 15-04-2017, 11 25 20 am

5. HIIT

It is good to have 1-2 days of high intensity activity – the kind that leaves you huffing and puffing! This can also increase energy expenditure even after you’re done (3).Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

Ticking all the right boxes with my Garmin FR 235!

6. Sleep

We all LOVE SLEEPING BUT most of the time we fail to prioritise it. We get caught up with social media/work/life and end up skimping on sleep.

 

sleep and weight

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Your body NEEDS to rest. Your hormones go haywire when you don’t have enough sleep! In the long term, it could affect your metabolism and lead to weight gain.

 

sleep and weight gain

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Also, you’re less likely to be physically active the next day when you’re tired! This means less daily energy expenditure!

7. STRESS

We are ALL stressed out at some point in our lives. Work, school, sports, food, security, money, love, friendship… LIFE!Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

When you’re stress, the body thinks you’re in “danger“. The hormone cortisol comes out to play. When you’re constantly stressed, cortisol hangs around. Overtime, it can lead to insulin resistance and fat being stored around your waist (4). Again, it will mess with your metabolism!


What can we learn from this?Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

EAT right. Sleep well. MOVE. Chill

Make these simple steps a HABIT. That way, you wouldn’t even have to THINK about it. It becomes second nature.

If you feel stuck, GET HELP! A personal trainer, a dietitian, a friend, Google etc.

GET UP and MOVE!

Time to BOOST your metabolism!

Contact me if you need any help.

Hit a Plateau? Here’s WHY!

Do these sound familiar?

-Working out but not seeing any changes?

-Not getting anything out of your fitness regime?

-Not losing/gaining weight?

-Bored?

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If they do, you’ve probably hit a fitness plateau.

First off, YOU are NOT alone! We all struggle to find that ultimate BALANCE – eating well + training right to reap the max benefits.

I’ve hit a few plateaus throughout my fitness journey. But I also remember the times where I’ve seen significant changes. Those happened when there were drastic changes in my nutrition and workouts.

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Stress and shock will force your body to change. Remember the changes you saw when you first started working out? You probably saw HUGE changes in the first 3 months. That’s because you went from sedentary to active, the kind of shock that your body was not accustomed to. And then something amazing (or not) happened, ADAPTATION. Your body adapted to the stress (and your new lifestyle) and the only way to continue to see change is to WORK HARDER (new stress)!

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Aside from doing the “physical work”, your body is like a MACHINE that needs the RIGHT FUEL. There is SO much information out there about workouts and foods to eat.

BUT in order for any of those information to make sense to your body, you need to know YOU.


 Let’s talk metabolism

Metabolism is basically ALL of the chemical processes that goes on in your body to keep you alive.

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Anabolism – making stuff (cells, tissue, muscle etc)

Catabolism – breaking stuff (for energy)

Putting it into VERY simple terms, these two processes ultimately affect your fitness, physique and weight.

Understanding YOUR OWN body will help you beat plateaus. We need to tune into our own body ques.IMG_0897

The tricky bit is that we all have VERY DIFFERENT metabolic rates. Our health state (disease, illness, stress), sex, age, height and genes affect our metabolism. Environmental factors play a significant role too. Major ones would be nutrition and physical activity.

By making better lifestyle choices and changing a few bits here and there, you CAN workout and eat smart to achieve your ultimate GOALS.


Here are a few things to look out for:

Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and Estimated Energy Requirement (EER)

The BMR is an estimate of the energy that you need in a day to maintain bodily functions (breathing, heart beat, body temp etc) while at rest. It is usually based on gender, age, weight and height.

With the BMR, you can now calculate your EER which adds in the activity element.

You can do all of that here.

Macro Breakdown

KNOW the macros in your food. They play a role in metabolism!

Macronutrients are the carbs, protein and fat in food. The Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Range (AMDR) is 45-65% Carb, 20-35% Fat and 15-25% Protein of your total daily energy intake. However, you can alter these values based on your personal preference (low carb, high protein etc), performance goals etc.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProtein + Healthy Fat + Carbs

Work out what you eat in a day. It can be a lil tedious but it is worthwhile if you’ve hit a plateau. You can always take the stress out of nutrition and get a dietitian to work it ALL out for you, including EXACTLY what you should eat. 😉

Body Composition

It is good to get a sense of your body composition – percentage of body fat and muscle mass. Most fitness centres or the doctors would provide this service.

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Muscle weighs more than fat. You could be within the normal weight range for height but you could be carrying excess fat. Similarly, you may be on the heavier side of the weight spectrum but have more lean muscle mass.

This could be the reason you’re not seeing changes on the scale (if you’ve been working out and eating well). Try not to rely on the scale. Go by how you feel, look and how your clothes fit!

Change Your Routine

Following a strict routine may very well be the cause of your plateau. Mix it up and throw in new elements (new workouts, new foods etc). This will give your body a nice surprise and kick start your metabolism!

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Record Keeping

Sometimes, life can get to us and we can be UNAWARE of what we are doing or eating.

I AM ALL ABOUT RECORD KEEPING. I keep an e-record of my workouts, nutrition, emotions, work, finance and sleep. I find that it keeps me accountable of my actions, how I spend my time/money and helps with awareness and reflection.

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It can be overwhelming and I don’t expect you to go from zero to hero! Start with something small, like workouts and nutrition for 1 week. You can make it as brief or as detailed as you please.

Who knows, you might SURPRISE (or not) yourself at the end of the first week. And you probably would be able to spot what you need to change.

I have a food journal template. Drop me an email or leave a comment if you want one!


Perspective

Plateaus are not ALL bad.

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Lil reminder to REST!

Let’s look at it as a time to rest, reflect, change, and continue to challenge and push ourselves towards our goals!

IMG_5353Stay strong, I am here for you!

All the best!