GuavaPass

The gym scene in Singapore has seen changes in the past year, with options to provide more flexibility for fitness bunnies to get their exercise fix. Traditional gym memberships that previously existed in various forms now make way for the latest trend – multi-gym memberships that allow members to access a variety of service providers. If you’re like me, who needs variety in your exercise regime, this could be something for you to consider! With a multitude of partners, a monthly GuavaPass membership allows you to try out an unlimited number of classes across various studios – yoga, bootcamp, dance, crossfit etc, allowing you to experience different types of exercises.

I love trying out various types of exercises as I feel that it challenges my body more, rather than allowing myself to plateau. Within a single month of GuavaPass, I had the opportunity to try out new exercises that I might not even have known of!

Croyez StudioI attended a PABT class at Croyez Studio, which uses a powerplate to intensify the workout. Typical exercises like squats, lunges, pushups were all more tiring on the powerplate and my muscles tired faster. Even when you’re not exercising, standing on the plate is supposed to burn calories through the vibrations of the power plate. It was a short but intense class of 9mins x3 times, with a warm up and cool down session, and I ached like crazy the next day, despite the fact that these exercises are what I would do in my usual workouts.

Anthem

CruCycleIt was also my first time trying out spin classes, with Anthem and CruCycle, and I LOVED THEM. I’ve been apprehensive about such classes for a long time as I always thought they’d be crazily intensive and I was always worried about the bulking effect on my muscles. Thankfully, the latter hasn’t happened. And I really enjoyed the classes I attended! Though tiring, as expected, they were incredibly fun, and time flew by as the energy of the class pushed me to pump my legs faster on the bike. And I really liked how both studios had really well equipped shower facilities, which is something I’ve come to appreciate after visiting so many gyms in the past month.

GuavaPass Website

GuavaPass websiteBooking classes on GuavaPass is quite convenient! Upon successfully registering for an account, you can then log in to access the list of classes and book them with a click. It was the cancellation that I found rather niggly. There is a 12hr requirement for free cancellation (even up to 24hrs for some), otherwise you’ll have to pay a fee. Which made it rather inconvenient for last minute changes in my schedule. I also had some slightly unpleasant encounters with certain service providers – Bikram Yoga Katong, for instance, required a first-time registration fee on top of what you pay for your GuavaPass membership. Though it was a nominal fee, it would have been better if this was communicated on the website so that members can make an informed decision, taking note of the added costs, when they book a class with that studio. It turned out that I didn’t really like the class and never planned to return, so I felt that the fee I paid was rather a waste of my money. In addition, the class duration was stated as an hour on GuavaPass, when it was actually 1.5hrs.

These are just some small kinks that need to be worked out. But overall this concept is a great idea and I can see it being a success for people looking for variety in their workouts.

For more information on membership, check out GuavaPass (:

Caveman Food

I’m always on the lookout for new salad places. Especially since I recovered from my long bout of cough which had me stay off salads for a good two months, I’ve really missed it! It might sound pretty ironic that I love eating salads, since I’m nearly always seen to be indulging in good food. But the salads I eat always have a balanced element to it – I still can’t live without my meats ^^

Caveman Food caters to lovers of the Paleo diet, and it’s the first time I’m trying Paleo-inspired food. I have to say that it resonates with me quite well, since the focus here is on proteins – which is essentially meat. I’m also glad that salads are spreading out from the CBD to other parts of Singapore as well, making it more accessible!

Caveman Food Beef Cubes Salad MealI ordered the Beef Cubes Salad meal ($11.90). I would say that this was quite a good deal because it came with three sides instead of the usual two, since the salad is included as one of the ingredients in the dish! If you are confused by what I mean, each set comes with your choice of meat + 2 sides, which range from the likes of pumpkin, sweet potato, baked eggs, boiled vegetables, green salad, apple salad etc. The meal I ordered comes with salad already, and I had the chance to pick two more sides on top of that.

While that was a bonus, I was rather disappointed by the beef. Partly because I really don’t like black pepper, which was the seasoning for the beef. So flavour-wise, it was disappointing for me. The texture too was nothing fantastic – I found it a bit tough. I loved my choice of sides though! The pumpkin was amazing in its natural essences, and the apple salad was a refreshing touch.

Caveman Foods Moroccan Half-chicken Meal

Weiling ordered the Half-Chicken meal ($12.90), which came with a choice of Moroccan / Italian / Mexican flavours. She opted for the moroccan, and I really loved it!! I was so tempted to steal her food. In contrast to the beef, the chicken was cooked incredibly well, and was delightfully tender. The spices were aromatic, and went well with her sides of sweet potato and boiled vegetables.

I was quite satisfied with the food at Caveman Foods. The portions are really very generous! They gave quite a large quantity of everything (meat included), and we could barely finish our food. Prices have been increasing sharply since its launch though, and I’m finding it a tad pricey to be honest. I believe it’s still cheaper than Daily Cut though, which is the next Paleo concept that I want to try out soon!

Caveman Foods
Square 2 #B1-130
Daily 11.15am-7.45pm

My favourite Youtube fitness channels

hello from Taiwan!! (: *waves*
this is such an inappropriate time to be doing this post with all the pigging out in Taiwan haha. ^if you see the title, i’ve been wanting to do a post on this since the longest time. ever since i got back from exchange (can’t believe that was nearly a year ago :'( time flies), i was trying to lose the weight i gained on exchange. proved to be horrendously difficult. i lost a little, then hovered around the same spot for about half a year?! before i finally, FINALLY started losing weight this year! (though i’m sure to gain back everything with all these eating….oh dearie me). so i thought it’d be appropriate to share what i’ve been doing now that i finally started losing weight! – this is going to be a pretty wordy post btw…but you can just scroll past the words to the videos further down if that’s all you’re interested in (: –
i suppose you all know that i love to eat. ;) i live to eat. and i exercise to eat haha.
i used to HATE exercising when i was younger. i was just a bag of lazybones. and now, i definitely can’t say that i love exercising – that would be too much of a stretch – but over the past few years, i’ve come to accept it (that it’s necessary, considering how i love to indulge in food. but also knowing that it’s simply to stay healthy!) and i’ve found a way to incorporate it into my life in a way that i enjoy (: i think that’s the most important thing about exercising (and eating for that matter) – to find a type of exercise that you enjoy, and find a routine that you can sustain. no point pushing yourself for a month and just burning out/injuring yourself and never want to/be able to exercise ever again.
i’ve found that i prefer exercising in the morning best! that works for me. i like to get it over and done with haha. and after that i feel happy that i can go on indulging in food for the rest of the day knowing that i’ve got my workout settled, without having to worry that it’s gonna rain, or that i have too many things to do and not be able to squeeze in a workout. plus the sun is usually less harsh early in the morning, and i definitely prefer running when the air is still cool. morning air always smells so nice and fresh ^^ i usually wake up between 7.30am-8am to exercise. if you’re not a morning person, this obviously ain’t gonna work for you – so find what’s optimal! some people love the tranquility of exercising at night, whereas i’m too afraid to run outside in the dark. it really depends on your preference, and what kind of schedule you can stick to.
talking about the schedule, i used to wake up at 7.30am every single morning to run (except for one day of rest). used to. haha I’m lazier nowadays. so i alternate my days of exercise instead, but i still get in 3-4 days of exercise a week. and i vary my exercises as well. it really depends on your schedule, to see how you can fit exercise in as a regular routine. but don’t ever use the excuse of ‘being too busy’, because if you put your mind to it, you can MAKE TIME for it. that is what i always strongly believe in. (says me for now, while work hasn’t started. i really don’t know how i’m going to fit in my exercise when i’m working…sigh)
okie enough words for now. as mentioned above, i usually exercise every other day nowadays and i alternate running with other exercises. i tried out Pilates for the first time ever when i came back from exchange and absolutely fell in love with it!
i also tried out antigravity yoga and barre classes at Upside Motion which i thoroughly enjoyed as well! (:
i love going for all these classes, and it’s really another thing altogether when you’re working out with other people and you’ve got an instructor there pushing you to carry on. i also really enjoyed how all these class sizes are pretty small, which allows for more individual attention and coaching.
unfortunately attending these classes are pretty pricey, and i haven’t managed to afford them at this point obviously, so i found a cheeper, and also more convenient way of exercising! i went on a craze searching for youtube fitness videos and these are some of my favourites! (:  i always go for those which require no equipment except for a mat (i’ve been wanting to get light weights, but i haven’t managed to find cheap ones :/ any recommendations?) so it’s really good for getting my exercise fix at home.
 
i LOVE her videos. Cassie is absolutely crazy and she makes a lot of noise in her videos, but her exercises are awesome. don’t try this video if you’re just starting out bcos it’ll KILL YOU. i died after 4mins into the video (because it was the first one i ever tried). but her workouts are really really effective!! they’re my favourite and i really feel so much more toned after working out to her exercises for the past 8 months. also love how they are pilates-centered. these workouts will leave you dripping with sweat at the end (okay sorry gross :p) and you know you’ve worked out hard ;) she comes up with new videos on a regular basis, so it’s great for those who love variety (like me!) and are always up for something new. no need to worry about plateau-ing with new exercises all the time ;) the videos are 5-20mins long in general, so i usually combine a few for an hour of exercise.
if you think it’s too troublesome to manually combine exercises for your workout, check out GymRa! (: they have lots of 30min-1hr long exercises so just take your pick and get into your workout! the good thing is that it also includes warm up and cooling down, so it’s really a full comprehensive exercise. and side note for guys… : the figure of some of the models are -> :O ’nuff said. and it’s the best motivation for girls (though it’s pretty unattainable imo hahaha).
i love this channel for the variety of exercises it has. there are many different instructors with different styles ranging from pilates, to cardio stuff, yoga etc etc. some are harder, while there are some which are for beginners, so play around and take your pick.
special shoutout to this workout by Ballet Beautiful (on BeFiT) because i absolutely fell in love with it when i found it!!! it’s crazy tough, but totally reminded me of the Xtend Barre classes i did at Upside Motion. for ballerinas or just those who want a figure as gorgeous as a ballerina, this one’s for you (:
i don’t really use this channel that often, but their website is pretty interesting as it allows you to select the exact type of workout you are looking for, and it’ll fish through its entire library to find the perfect video for you.hope this helps!! (: and remember that abs are made in the gym and shown in the kitchen ;) so eat healthy too!! :) i obviously don’t have abs haha. but anyway i’ll be doing a post on my salads really soon!

Upside Motion

hello! :) i’ve been meaning to blog about my fitness/healthy eating regime, but procrastinated terribly! this post shall mark the beginning of a series of few more posts (*i will try my best* since finals are coming…) on this topic which you can follow here, and i can’t be more excited to kickstart this with my experience at Upside Motion! :) 
i came across Upside Motion in some magazine previously and i was really fascinated by the kind of classes they have at their studio! because i learnt dance previously, i tend to be intrigued by exercises that train strength and flexibility through similar means – yoga and Pilates for example. i always find yoga a little too relaxing though (with the exception of hot yoga which is really awesome!), but i LOVE Pilates (read about my Pilates experience) ^^ at Upside Motion, you’ll never get bored ;) their classes are nothing like your standard yoga or Pilates classes. what i was attracted to was their Xtend Barre and Antigravity Aerial classes.
*hello from upside down!* 
SERIOUSLY?! yep, i could hardly believe my ears when my instructor asked me to flip upside down in my first class of Antigravity Aerial! :O i was absolutely freaked out!!! i have this fear of hanging upside down (firstly because i get motion sick, secondly because I’m terrified that i’ll crash head first to the floor). i didn’t dare to let go of the hammock at all!! held on to it as if my life depended on it (which seems perfectly legit right?!) my instructor had to come along and pry my hands off :P i felt a teeny bit more secure with her supporting me, while i lifted half a finger off my grip, then a whole finger, and one hand, then the other. and oh my mama, i was hanging with nothing but the hammock supporting me!
after a minute of quivering though, i started to feel the immense liberation of hanging upside down. all the blood rushed to my head. but i just closed my eyes and enjoyed the feeling of my mind being blank. it was incredible. i started to enjoy it. especially as more lessons went by and i trusted that the hammock would hold me securely, it was an amazing feeling.
i learned to fly! (this photo was taken pre-flying)
and i did crazy stunts! i looked forward to every single lesson of Antigravity Aerial because we tried new things each time, with increasing level of toughness, but it was empowering to find that i could do these stunts! of course i wasn’t good at all of them, but the strength-training was really good.
Antigravity Aerial is a great exercise for a low-impact, full-body workout that stretches, strengthens and works the core muscles without placing unnecessary pressure on the spine and joints. all these upside down actions are especially good for people with stiff backs because it really helps to lengthen the spine and releases the tension in the neck and spine. have i mentioned how it’s really therapeutic as well? ;) – my favourite part of each class was at the end, when we would cocoon ourselves in the comfy satin hammock. it’s such a lovely, warm, enveloping feeling and i could totally fall asleep in it! haha. and it’s absolutely safe. every successful move gave me more confidence in the strength of the hammock, and it really pushed my boundaries in overcoming my unfounded fears :) 
Xtend Barre was a whole different feat. it was TOUGH. no doubt about that. but i loved every single bit of it.
ever wondered how ballet dancers have such toned, taut bodies? i found out the tough way in Xtend Barre :P but it’s an incredible exercise! I just saw the funniest quote the other day:
You aren’t going to get the butt you want by sitting on the one you have

haha! it’s so true!!! if you want the toned, chiseled physique of a dancer, you’ve gotta work for it! and literally, in that one week of classes (i attended them quite regularly), i already felt a difference in my body. plus all the other exercises that i’ve been doing (which i’ll blog about soon!), it’s really been helping me a lot in strengthening and toning my body :)
using various equipment such as small weights, a bouncy ball, yoga strap, resistance band, and the barre of course, Xtend Barre sculpts the body through a combination of isometric exercises and orthopaedic stretches to tone hard-to-reach muscles (some of which you never knew existed). my thighs, glutes and calves screamed for mercy (gosh how could such simple-looking exercises be so tough??!!!!) but i tried my best to press on. that’s really the whole spirit of exercising! never ever give up! even if its tough, just work to your maximum and take a break. you’ll get better each time ^^ taking this bunch of photos was a crazy test for my muscles which were already shagged out from the class before that (so i put in a lot of effort to smile ok…haha), but the extra exercise gave me an additional boost of fulfilment ;)
for girls who’ve always wanted more toned legs, arms, butt and abs, Xtend Barre is the perfect exercise to achieve the lithe silhouette of a dance without building unnecessary bulk.
i really enjoyed all my classes at Upside Motion and i strongly encourage you to try them out too! :)) plus, it’s SO NEAR school (for those in SMU) – a less than 5 minute walk away, which makes it super convenient ;) do try it out and check out their website and Facebook for more information! ^^

oh yes! and fyi, Upside Motion recently launched an app which makes it absolutely fuss-free to check class schedules, book your classes and keep track of them! no more forgetting what classes you’ve signed up for ;) i hope you enjoy the classes as much as i did!

City Hall
36 Armenian Street #02-03
Tel.: +65 6636 6859

Bukit Timah
100 Turf Club Road Horsecity #01-02L/X
Tel.: +65 6465 1559

Maple Pecan Granola

hi! (: finally here with my GRANOLA recipe ^^ this is actually my second try at making granola. the first time tasted alright (sorta), but wasn’t great, so i wanted to improve on my recipe before i shared it with all of you! (: and i’m proud to say that my second try was much yummier! possibly because i used less ingredients to make a smaller quantity, which allowed it to be cooked better. plus i eat my granola at a tremendously slow pace, so the small quantity doesn’t bother me. feel free to double (or triple) the quantity if you find that you finish this portion really quickly! it’s a super simple recipe, and i can’t wait to come up with more variations of this! ^^
Ingredients:
1 cup oats
¾ coarsely chopped pecan nuts
¼ cup chopped almonds
dried cranberries (whatever amount suits you – depends on how sweet you like your granola to be)
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp coconut oil
1. Preheat oven to 150 deg C.
2. In a large bowl, toss together oats, pecan nuts and almonds. 
3. In another bowl, combine the maple syrup and coconut oil. 
4. Mix the dry and wet ingredients, making sure that the dry ingredients are evenly coated.
5. Spread the mixture on a baking tray such that it can be baked evenly. 
6. Bake granola for about 30min, checking at the 20min mark to make sure that it doesn’t get burnt. 
7. Let it cool slightly and mix in the cranberries. And it’s ready to be eaten with milk/yogurt or whichever way you wish!