Fitness Check In #8: Why I Lift Weights

Hello everyone, this yoyo is back. I started this journey a year and a half ago, setting up little goals to achieve while attaining that big picture in the long run. I have to say there have been ups and downs, lots of hiccups. I was on board full swing for a while, and then fell off the bandwagon. I just got bored, and started trying other things like running and pop pilates but now I’m back lifting again.

However, I’m happy to report that I have some little wins along the way. I can now lift all my groceries and Ashton at the same time, while running to the car. I am much more flexible and can even do the splits. Still can’t do handstands though. I can do half a pull up – getting there, slowly. My lower body is definitely stronger than my upper. I lift much heavier than a year ago. I squat 62.5kg and deadlift 85kg, my recent personal best. And I hear many of you gasp.

 

 

My fitness journey chloeash

 

 

Some of you would say I’m strong. But let me tell you, people ask me why I lift so heavy. “Do you want to look like a man with muscles bulging here and there? Why do you take protein powder? Isn’t that for those who want to get bigger? Won’t lifting so much weight make you look manly?” All those misconceptions and uninformed, uneducated questions make me go bonkers. There is no short answer because it takes a lot of reading and understanding to really know about nutrition and how our body works.

Let me just tell you in short that us women in general don’t have the hormones to make us look like Hulk. While losing weight and watching my calorie intake, I will sacrifice some muscles. I need to minimize that by lifting heavy, shocking the body into thinking that I need to preserve all the muscles I can to do the crazy shit. So, optimally, the body will lose fat instead of muscles. That is really what all of us want. Lose fat, not just weight from water or muscles. That said, I’ll need the time to achieve what I want to achieve, and once they actually SEE the results, they MIGHT understand. And when I’m much closer to my goal, I’d probably have to add much more cardio to the routine.

Then again, I live in Asia, in a smaller town nonetheless. Women are supposed to look small and skinny with flawless porcelain skin.ย That’s the typical standard of beauty here. Many eat like birds. Some eat like a teacup chihuahua. I see it differently though. I want a body that not only looks but is fit and healthy, a body that is strong enough to protect myself and my little ones. A body with defined arms, perky butt and strong legs. While smaller than most men at the gym, I lift heavier than they do. I get looks that say “whoa!” and some “WTF” ones but I like that. I like feeling strong. It’s definitely one of my motivations ๐Ÿ™‚ I strive for an athletic body, and I am working towards it. All I need is consistency, patience, persistence and faith in the program my husband designed for me.

** Bear in mind this is my personal thoughts on what I want for myself. I’m not saying that what you’re doing or not doing is wrong, and that my way is right. What I’m sharing is what I think works best for me. A personal journey of trial and error to a healthier body. There are too many sensitive people around who take things personally that I need to put up this disclaimer. **

 

 

xoxo Lily

 

 

 

  • Good for you! I think it’s a growing trend here in North America to be more fit and athletic looking but I know in Asia it’s still not very popular. I don’t know how they can get so skinny by not eating! I can’t even skip one meal let alone cut back lol

    • Lily

      Oh gosh, I think here, the thought is ingrained in all females since young. My second daughter Ashlyn has a very healthy body and by no means is she fat. She has a little tummy, but most kids have it anyway. Some people dare to tell my 7 year old that she’s fat. You see how unhealthy our culture is? I gave that person a death glare!! How friggin rude!

      • WHAT?! That’s so horrible!

        • Lily

          IKR? She’s only 7 years old. Isn’t it ridiculous? Makes me angry.

  • Good for you Lily! You are awesome! Weights are something that boosts your metabolism and I get tired of hearing women say they don’t lift because they don’t want to get big HAHAHA. Makes me laugh so hard. That being said, I was going to a power pump class once a week at my gym, but haven’t been able to get back lately and miss it. It’s such a good workout, even for a chubby girl like me!

    • Lily

      You’re right Tracy! It’s ridiculous most women are geared into thinking that lifting makes them big. LOL! Oh, I loved Body Pump. I used to go to these classes when I was at Uni. I also loved Body Combat. But that said, any workout is great as long as we keep our body moving. Just that our workouts should tailor to our body’s needs and ability. What about your Zumba? I know you love it!

  • I say good on you, Lily! Back when I was living in KL, our condo has a decent gym and I was the only woman who did weights too. My husband trained me because he used to have personal trainer for years so he knew what he was doing. I miss it but these days yoga is my only exercise…that said I managed to bust my shoulder (my rhomboid muscle is swollen bad) so yoga is a no go for the next few weeks. Sigh…do you have any exercise suggestions for abs that doesn’t require upper body at all? I can barely breath, every time I try I feel a stabbing pain on my back. ๐Ÿ™

    • Lily

      Yoga is great exercise to gain strength and flexibility without all the unnecessary impact! Erm, for abs, maybe try lying on flat back with your shoulders relaxed and do some leg lifts. When you engage your core, you get a pretty mean workout, especially when you keep your legs elevated without support the whole time. But stabbing pain in your back? Did you see a physiotherapist? Never do any workouts if your body isn’t up for it. Best to seek professional advice Shireen!

      • I have an appointment this Friday so I have to wait for a couple of days. It’s so frustrating not able to do any workout before then. ๐Ÿ™

        • Lily

          Take it as a rest week or something. Sometimes, our body needs it. A personal trainer told me once, that when we feel tired and sleepy all the time, and maybe even when we get injured, it’s a way of our body telling us to stop for a while. Take a good rest then ๐Ÿ™‚

  • ML Chan

    YES! to strong and healthy bodies! PS: Your hubs designed your program? How cool is that? ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Lily

      Yes, the hubs designed it. There are pros and cons though. Good thing is, I can always ask him if I’m unsure. The bad is, he gets impatient with me when he thinks I asked a stupid question. He’d fail as a personal trainer. The clients will leave him! LOL!

  • Good for you!!! I have a LOT of opinions, lol. Especially against stereotypes and other people thinking they know what’s best for you! Haters gonna hate. Screw them ๐Ÿ˜›

    • Lily

      Right? And some skinny woman preaching about running the other day. Go run a marathon! You’ll definitely lose weight and be skinny. I was like WTF? Screw you! I don’t want to be skinny. Take your bony ass out of here! HAHAHA!

      • Exactly. It’s not about being skinny – it’s about being healthy and happy with how you feel and look. That said, I do get annoyed when people say stuff like “go eat a cheeseburger” or tell me I’m not eating enough…I eat really often (every few hours) but not a lot at one sitting, and people always feel the need to comment on the amount of food I eat. I assure you, I’m not starving or malnutritioned. Mind your own business. PEOPLE.

        • Lily

          Haha here, no one will tell you to eat more. They probably just tell you NOT to eat. LOL!

  • I’m amongst the ones that gasp and am so proud of you for all the things you’ve acheived in terms of fitness. The older I get the more I also see keeping fit as something I need to do to be healthy, strong, and even feel more powerful… not just as a vanity type of thing. Good on you! xx

    • Lily

      Aaw, thank you Sofia. I sometimes wish I have the body type is an ectomorph but unfortunately, I’m in between an endo and a mesomorph. Deep down, I’m hoping I’m more of a meso, but who am I kidding? HAHAHA!

      • I think I’m meso. Plus, I get low blood sugar levels really easy. Mr H loves going out for hour or 2 hour long “jogs” (ok, jog then look at the scenery, then jog then enjoy the scenery… over and over again…) but after 40 minutes I just completely get drained and can’t go on, like my battery stopped all of a sudden!

        • Lily

          Mesomorphs are the best though, I think. The perfect average with easily built muscles ๐Ÿ™‚