Feel Alive

You ever feel like you have so much going on that you can’t get anything done? Well, life’s a bit different these days…you might have guessed from the last post…my baby boy is here!

Since his arrival, we’ve just been having a blast learning how to be parents. It has been the greatest pleasure being overwhelmed with love, graced with his beautiful smiles, and experiencing that incredible bond that everyone kept telling me about.

I know this is supposed to be a blog about living the fit life, and although I’ve deviated from that core topic – I still firmly believe that a fit life isn’t just your body but your mental health as well. I know that my journey in 2013 when I started this blog had a tremendous impact on my lifestyle now. I look back on those old posts as reminders of my past habits and how this is a place for me to “remember” how I overcame it.

My greatest passion in life is to live the most fulfilled life I can possibly live all the while being truly grateful for everything that I already have and learning to enjoy every present moment for what it is…a chance to feel alive.

I want to start creating small and short lists of things that made me feel alive. I want to share them here, so that at the end of each year or periodically throughout, I can remember how life was so worth it that moment.

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Creating a foundation

It’s 9am on a foggy Wed morning, and I decided to stop procrastinating and finally get my DL renewed. I got pulled over about a week ago and with my kind of luck, I’m sure I’d run into the same guy who asked me if I would take care of this expired license and insurance card immediately, he could save me $300 in citations. I promptly said, yes sir, and a week later I am fulfilling my promise.

But there are several reasons why I procrastinated doing this very normal and very typical thing that all people do.

I got married about 4 years ago. I had no intentions of changing my name. I liked my rather difficult name because it was shared with my dad. My last name is his first name and he felt that I had a “good” name in the sense that it has brought me good luck and fortune, so changing that to something else is like saying, “he dad, your lucky name is not enough for me”. It’s also a unique name because my half brother and half sisters share the same last name but spelled with only one “H” and my full brother has my dads last name. So it’s just us two in this whole world who share this name with two “H’s”. And I feel kinda lucky.

But today, I am appending that name with my husbands last name so as to not give it up for good. This will be better in the long run since we will be having a family with the same last name.

Speaking of family, we’re expecting our first child! We are so excited and our hearts of so full and filled with so much joy! This name change is one of the first of many foundational things I am doing to plan and prepare, so my last little things can be taken cared of before the arrival.

I’ll create another post about it.

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Travel Adventures

Today is a good day to be alive ๐Ÿ™‚ Actually, every tomorrow is motivation to do better than we did today. Several events occurred in the past few months.

Entering my 30s
I am so blessed to be alive at 30 years old. I thank God every day for everything I’ve been blessed with. I believe a loving, caring and supportive family is so incredibly important to have on your team especially when waters get rough. I haven’t had the best family experiences growing up, but in the past 10 years I’ve worked my butt off to make sure my family is my top priority and to build meaningful relationships with the people who love me unconditionally.

I entered my 30s with a bang. I set a goal to visit every single state before I turn 30 and was blessed enough to be able to sit on the sandy beaches of Hawaii on January 22nd. All 50 states are crossed off my list. My next decade goal would be to visit all 59 National Parks. The criteria is to go on at least one hike. My husband is on board and he’s going to join me. He also has a goal to run a marathon in every state by the time he’s 50. He’s got 2 down and I’m so excited to root him on each marathon adventure. He’ll join the 50 Marathons in 50 States Club.

I decided to reach these goals about a year ago when I realized I only had 9 states left that I haven’t been to. Since this past summer I’ve been on a traveling surge, galloping across the northeast, northwest, Midwest and Alaska and Hawaii to finish. It has been an incredible journey and I’m so glad I did it.

Some of the places I visited on my travel adventures included Bar Harbor, Maine and Acadia Natl Park. What an incredible place. We visited Cadillac Mtn for a 5:30am sunrise.

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After several hikes, we indulged in lunch at Jordan’s Pond House. An incredible restaurant located in a secluded area looking at Bubble Mtn. Then went back to Bar Harbor where we stayed and relaxed in our B&B and ate at a restaurant down the road. We fully indulged in the spectaculars of Maine.

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I also visited New Hampshire and Vermont. Both incredible places.

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My journey also expanded to Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota and Oregon. As for Alaska and Hawaii, we were able to visit those places because we had flight vouchers from a previous trip to Seattle where they bumped our flights but offered $400 and that made our flights to Ak and Hi half price. We were able to do almost all of the things we wanted without breaking the bank account.

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I’m so thankful to be blessed with beautiful enriching experiences that make life worth living. I don’t think these things just happen to people. I think if you want something you need to go out and reach for it and make it happen.

There’s one more great thing that happened but I need to put it in its own post. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Hello 2014!

Hello 2014! My fit plan was for 2013, but for several months, I’ve been so incredibly busy that blogging has been extremely deserted.

Well, might as well look forward to what 2014 will bring. It’s already…(eek!) March! I can’t believe how with just a blink of an eye, 2 full months has passed in this new year already.

So my last few posts at the tail end of summer pretty much summed up my desire to keep searching for something more. I kept feeling like I was always looking for something. I am doing everything that I set out to do. I didn’t even want anything anymore but felt like I was aimlessly searching for something.

Several events happened in the past few months…and I feel so blessed.

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8/22 – What. A. Day. Just one of those “rumble strip” kind of days…

Ever have one of those days where somehow you hit the rumble strip and just can’t manage to get off it?

Holy Crap – that was today. I’ve been rumblin’ and bumblin’ all day and I don’t see an end in sight.

Let me just get the typical updates out of the way. I didn’t exercise, and I didn’t eat right. But at least I had my coffee at a normal hour (all I can ask for anymore). Coffee sets the tone for how I handle the day and today, I wouldn’t say is one of the best days I’ve ever had. But I “handled” today. I took care of what was necessary to move along. And get today over with. I tried to follow my advice and make the most of it.

There’s really no point in going over all of the details but a small insight is that someone close to me and my company had to abruptly leave. While they gave us all of the details that they didn’t have to share, I felt a deep sense of sadness, and my heart was open and aching. My compassion for them were beyond words.

The lesson I think I learned today is that although you never really know someone deep down, all you really need to know is if their heart is in the right place now.

Granted, we all make mistakes, and some of us make mistakes with grave consequences, but we are all human. And humans do stupid things from time to time. Sometimes we get confused with helping someone when we are actually hurting them. But is any sin truly greater than the other? What God teaches us is that there is a perfect balance of living where we can all reach a level of happiness that is enough for us. Where we won’t need the things that don’t matter. Where all we need is the simple love from one another. Where His love is enough. But what if we can’t have that basic need of having someone to love? Or someone to love us back? What if our heart tells us one thing and our mind tells us another? How do we grow out of it? How do we triumph overย  the landmines set in front of us to make us fail? As humans we are going to fail. We are going to falter. We are going to do things that we “can’t believe” we are doing.

Making the “next” right decision is hard, but honest and authentic love and support is what they need in times like these. I care for this individual and the next adventure in their life. I pray for them, for God to protect them, because they meant a lot to me.

The rumble continues…

I tend to approach everything in business as either an strength, weakness, opportunity or a threat. Details are details. What is the big picture? What is the vision? I’ll do whatever I need to do to get from A to B. But sometimes if I don’t know what the big picture is, I might not find it.

Because of late, business has been a rumble strip and a half – as we have lost a few people recently, so my staffing is low. Although our production has decreased, we are still steadfast in the goals we set out to do.

A great line from Rocky 12 or whatever the last one was, went like this, “The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place. It will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you’re hit, it is about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much can you take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

I find this quote very inspiring because the ones who survive are the ones who can keep getting punched in the face, stand back up and be ready for the next one. All the while knowing that the worst is yet to come. A man wiser than me, one of my old bosses that I had a meaningful relationship with, who felt like a mentor in some ways, always told me that as long as we are still moving, we will be ok. It’s the ones who stand still who will fall.

I believe as a fully bootstrapped company, we’ve overcome so many things, and we’ve learned a lot along the way. We’ve recorded our mistakes, and we’ve seized opportunities as they came. Most importantly, we have loved and cared for everyone to some degree who has crossed our path, those whom had chosen to be a part of our team, and this is the “Giving Back” part. Treat people with respect and genuinely care for them as a fragile relationship that need a kind and honest heart, and no matter how hard it gets for you, they will pour themselves to help because you’ve already done it for them.

The world is full of sunshine and rainbows. It’s a magical land full of romance and adventures.

godthroughit

 

 

 

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Why love half-way?

As soon as I recovered from that last post – I immediately went back to Vegas a week later. Saw an opportunity to attend the MAGIC Market Show – which is a fashion industry show for all you newbies, me included. This time, I went alone. It was a good trip, so to say.

Before I left I thought long a hard about how stressful the show before was, and how much stress was put on my digestive system. Mainly because we ate at 11pm at night most nights…or perhaps, the fact that we are sooo hungry that we gorged each meal, or perhaps the self-inflicted pressure of “if we hurry, we’ll get through x number of booths today”. Of course all of this is just part of traveling for work. Thus the need to relax and prepare beforehand.

I’ve discovered a list of traveling pet peeves:

  • I don’t like to RUSH – if I can avoid it at all costs, I will
  • I like to plan my time out for majority of the day, and plan time for “anything goes” so I don’t have to RUSH
  • I need scheduled meal times – so my digestive system isn’t bombarded with food it’s not used to or so much at once, aka RUSHING TO EAT
  • I don’t want to RUN to get anywhere because we have to RUSH
  • I need my coffee every morning at a normal morning hour, not at 2pm
  • My normal speed is still pretty fast. I’m not a turtle.

For this trip, I wanted to do it because it was a chance to see how I’d do on my own. I must say, I do just fine. Better than I expected. I learned the roads and became an expert on the Vegas side-road system. I avoided the strip at all costs. I learned how to get around and also discovered my favorite locale even more: Chinatown.

I had a chance to eat Pho twice on 2 nights. Tried 2 different places. It was fantastic at both places. I also had a silk salad which is vermicelli, ground chicken, seafood, and lettuce, carrot, cucumber, mint, basil, etc. Soooo delicious.

This weekend, an old colleague of mine was in town for work. It was his first time there, so I had a chance to show him the slower pace of Vegas a bit. It was nice to catch up. Can’t believe it’s been 7 years since we both graduated college.

We did a few things together, but mostly learned about each others personal lives, professional lives, and aspirations. It was really nice to know that college had an impact on others the same way it did for me. I had a great college experience and must say that it did prepare me in many ways. I was definitely one of those bright-eyed and hopeful kids who wanted to set out to make a difference in some way. But was very disappointed when I got into the real world. I did learn to cope with it, and from my experience in the fraternity that I belonged to – “Your experience is only as good as you make it.”

And that’s how I’ve lived my life….how could I make today better than yesterday? How could I make the most of this moment? Did I love deeply? Learn greatly? Smile unabashedly? And did I live honestly?

Sometimes, I hurt uncontrollably, but I think it’s because I’ve got a big heart and sometimes it’s just downright mushy. I can’t help it. I enjoy my fairytale, my magical land of hopeless romance. Why be alive if you can’t feel it? Why love half-way? It feels amazing to be embraced! We need more affection in this world and a deeper more meaningful connection.

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Reflect & Recover from this insane thing called, Life :)

Part of a healthy & fit life is to squeeze in recovery times and usually those are called “vacations”. I can’t speak for everyone else and offer advice for ways you can recover from the insanity of your life, but I can paint a picture of how it looks like on my end.

The insanity of my life:
I hate revealing what I do for a living, because my work life is still rather private to me. But in a snapshot, I’m a partner in an internet-retail business that operates several websites. Part of the insanity of my life, is feeling like I’m being pulled in a million directions from every department, and I have 2 million projects going at all times…I’m sure many of us feel the same way. I must confess, I have the luxury of throwing my hands in the air when it gets too insane, and no one dies when I need to hide under my covers for a day. Unlike my husband’s profession, if he doesn’t make it to work, people die. But the insanity of my life comes from inside me – I’m a person who needs constant change, constant interaction, constant inspiration, and I guess despite how much I need all of those things, I’m constantly bored. Thus, the need for a recovery vacation isn’t always for “recovery” but instead a need to feel inspired to do it again the next day.

My driving forces:
I’m motivated by success, passion, small things that become big things, love, strong bonds, and a variety of positive life experiences. I grew up with nothing but the love and family bond from my parents. It was just 4 of us, and no matter how hard it became, we always made it work, and the things that don’t matter, just didn’t matter. I was raised to not care about money, and that all you need in this life is a place to sleep, food to eat, clothes to wear (and it didn’t matter where it was from) and an indestructible family bond, because no one will ever love you as much as your family. My core values include tight knit bonds at home and at work. I have an amazing set of friends who are always there to inspire & encourage me in all my endeavors…

Every year I reflect on how many things I accomplished, and I list everything that I can think of, big or small, because I believe that we’ll never know how awesome or how strong we are until we get the chance to see everything on paper.

Living a fulfilled life is hard work. Just like marriage, being a parent, running a business, being an employer – you want to do it to the best you possibly can, it’s all an incredible amount of hard work to juggle every aspect and to stay sane. BUT this is a FULFILLED LIFE.

I feel truly blessed every day that I get to go to work and hang out with people who are thrive in seeing small things become big things and see them perform each day with passion in their eyes.

My recovery potion:It’s not really a potion but more of a way of life that helps ground me and maintains that fervor for success, passion & more. I like to take small, short, quick vacations and usually with my husband or my business partner who also happens to be my best friend and partner in crime.

My latest travel adventures include a pre-show trip to Lake Havasu. We had to go to a retail tradeshow in Las Vegas for roughly 6 days, but included a quick trip to Lake Havasu to pretty much relax yet get ourselves acclimated to the tradeshow aches and pains.

Typically, at shows, we are walking from 8:30am to 6-7pm. Walking on concrete for 8+ hours KILLS your lower back, hips, feet, calves, etc. It’s also hard on your digestive system, because we are eating pretty much garbage because that’s the only type of food available at these things, and we are hurrying to eat it so that we may get back to work. My stomach has been upset the entire time, I constantly feel bloated, etc.

But the pre-show trip usually consists of the ability to sleep in a couple of days before hand, light “office time”, good meals, and an exhaustive hike or activity of some sort. The exhaustion prepares our bodies to accept the aches and pains during the show. It’s kind of like running 30 miles and putting your body through what it would feel like when it’s time to run that first marathon. Acclimating the body is half the battle of dealing with it. The body will kick out inefficiencies and prepare for the pain.

Our Havasu trip consisted of a long hike through slot canyons with ridgeline views of the lake, and an incredible dip in a cove while swimming with a few ducks. It was an incredible time to unwind, yet exhaust ourselves. One of my favorite things is flooding my eyes with incredible mental photographs of the beauty of the desert. I confessed my love affair with the desert, and explained how it has a burning prickly spot in my heart, because I’ve just about had a heat stroke from that hike, and I pricked my finger somehow from a cactus.

It’s an incredible landscape and I feel so loved by it. My next adventure will take place in Maine in just a few short weeks. I can’t wait to share it.

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Korean Bibimbop!

Ahhh….I’m sick today. Could barely get out of bed. I feel like I got hit in the face between the eyes with a baseball bat. Yep, it’s a sinus infection.

Husband called me in some antibiotics. Hopefully I can knock this junk out before I head out to Vegas for a week.

After I crawled out of bed today, I had a craving for some Korean food. So we headed down to Red Chili and got a Bibimbop. If you are unfamiliar, it’s a spicy pork and kimchee dish over rice served in a hot boiling bowl. Best part is the fried egg laid delicately on top. If you haven’t tried Korean food before, I highly recommend it!

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Travel Adventure!

I’m a travel-aholic! Found a journal that I just had to get. It hits a nerve with every one of these quotes sporadically spread throughout the pages.

Can’t wait to share my next batch of adventures!

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Men’s Health Urbanathlon

I considered doing the Urbanathlon in Chicago in October. My only hesitation is I wonder if it’s more intense than I can handle? Probably not.

Here’s the training guide: It’s goal is to get you up to speed with your running, and then throw in some obstacles to get you to react quicker while running at full speed. I’m a little nervous about this because it is not a “happy to participate” event. You can not move on to the next obstacle until you complete it.

Geez, I thought the Tough Mudder was a least fun and a “happy to be here” event…now this one requires me to TRY to do well? I may have to really train for this. So here’s the obstacles list:

Monkey Bars: Easy – Medium

Tires: Easy

Hurdles: Medium – Yea I could potentially have a problem with this. At only 5’2″, I’m at a slight disadvantage.

There’s more obstacles, but most of them are so easy-looking like crawling under a car, cargo net over a bus, running up the stadium stairs, etc. I think where I will struggle is the distance. It’s about 13 miles in length with obstacles in between. Means my stamina and endurance will need to kick into high gear and not give up on me.

Would be a fun event to do. I’d be up for it! Just means I need to start training asap.

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