How to achieve that "Balik Alindog"

I’m not an expert in nutrition or physical fitness. I’m not a professional trainer either. And I most certainly don’t have abs to brag about so of course it makes total sense that I write an entire blog post telling you how to work out and live your life.

Seen here: Me without abs. But I’m going to go ahead and share what I know anyway.

No one who exercises does it because they want to. At least if you’re like me and you’re reading this for inspiration, then you work out because you feel like you have to. I mean, if I were like my boyfriend who doesn’t get fat no matter how much food he shoves down his mouth, I wouldn’t exercise at all.

The beginning is always the hard part. The first thing you need to do before starting a workout routine is to determine what you like doing and what you want to achieve. If you’re hyperactive, maybe you’d like an intense workout like circuit training or CrossFit. If you want something more relaxed (and your body is flexible), do yoga. If you’re competitive, maybe you’ll thrive in a gym where you can race against other people running on treadmills or bench press heavier weights than the guy next to you. If you love to dance, there are lots of dance workouts to choose from. You can also take up group sports but this will be harder to organize because you’ll rely on other people’s schedules. Also, group workouts usually end up in group eating.

I’d like to join a gym or do those pole-dancing or aerial yoga things but the problem is I hate spending money on anything exercise-related. My rubber shoes are gifts. My dumbbells are given by a friend. I bought the cheapest exercise mat I could find. And I just go to YouTube for my workout programs.

I love online workouts because you could do almost all of them whenever you want at the comfort of your own room. I always recommend Jillian Michaels’ 30-day shred to friends because it’s just the right pace and even though it’s hard, it’s not too hard that you want to quit on the very first day. It’s also very short for a relatively intense workout—less than 30 minutes. You can also try Shaun T’s Insanity workout if you want a challenge. There are also a lot of 10-minute workouts online and you can do three of them in a day if you get easily bored with repetitive exercises.

Once you’ve decided what workout you’ll be doing, you have to find a motivation to keep at it. It has to be something bigger than “Balik Alindog.” You need to have a concrete target. It can be anything like attending a wedding, a beach trip, buying an outfit that would only look good on you if you’re fit, or making your ex-boyfriend/girlfriend regret leaving you. Or it can be something less superficial like doing it for your health or whatever. Just find that motivation. For me, I work out so that I can keep fitting in my clothes. Even though I enjoy shopping, I’d be depressed if I had to buy new clothes because I got bigger.

It’s hard to stay motivated, I get it. On days when I’m feeling lazy, I get up and change to my workout clothes anyway. Sometimes that’s all the incentive I need because I’ll be too lazy to change back to my regular clothes so I might as well work out. But sometimes I really can’t or don’t want to exercise. And if that happens to you, it’s okay to take a break. Don’t force yourself to work out because you might end up hating it altogether. But you have to work out at least three times a week.

Get a workout routine going whether that be in the morning or once you get home from work. I prefer working out in the morning. It jump-starts your day. There’ll be fewer clothes to wash because you won’t need to shower twice a day. Your belly is empty in the morning so after a morning workout you have the illusion that you’re that much closer to achieving a flat tummy. And there is better lighting in the morning which is great for after-workout selfies. The only downside is you have to wake up earlier than usual.

If you’re working out by yourself, you have to have a semblance of discipline. And I hate to break it to you but I can’t give you discipline through this blog post. No amount of reading could help you if you don’t plan on doing it. Please seek the services of a trainer.

Try working out this week and see how it goes. If you’re still up to it, next week, we’ll talk about dieting. (Yikes.)

We can do it, guys!

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