Starting out strong. Health before wealth.

Today, I finally got back on my schedule.

Going to bed early(ier), having a coffee while steeming, and meal prepping for the week. My stomach has been on vacation with me, and this extra baggage has now got to go!

I absolutely love junk food. Chips, chocolate, ice cream, peanut butter, cereal, pizza... Etc. But, the guilt! Waking up in the middle of the night with indigestion, and not loving the person staring back at me in the mirror; Has made me make some (hopefully long-term) healthy eating and exercise habits.

I have always consistently lived fairly healthy. I never eat past 8pm, and always fast through breakfast until lunch. This gives me roughly 16 hours of no food daily. Intermittent fasting. My boyfriend has been doing this for 8 years now, and since I have known him, he has only had breakfast 3-4 times (on special occasions). The only way this is feasible for us is by drinking coffee in the mornings. Caffeine helps hold over your cravings, allowing you to forgo breakfast.

By fasting, I don't have to feel such guilt when I plow through 3 rows of Oreos... However, this is surely not a routine I can stick with without regret.

So I woke up this morning, on a mission!

I had my coffee, got into my gym clothes, and paired my new Senso brand wireless ear buds. I had a pretty decent workout, especially considering I have been MIA for the past 2 months :)

After my workout, I snacked on some nuts and had a salad that I prepared last night for the upcoming week.

I found that if I just make a classic 'lettuce tomato and onion salad', I get bored easily. These salads lack substance, aren't exciting, and leave my stomach grumbling a mere minute after I eat. So, I like to create these vegetable medleys with nuts and cheeses :D

In the Philippines, there are a lot of people living with diabetes. This angers me, because when they go to the local Dr.'s offices, they always give them awful advice and they walk out with numerous prescriptions. Diabetes here is obviously caused by the awful diet staples we Filipinos adore. White rice, chips, pasta sauce with refined sugars to sweeten it, etc. I don't know how many of my followers have ever visited the Philippines, but we seriously LOVE our sugary foods.

When people ask my boyfriend about the Philippines, he is quick to mention that Filipinos are the nicest people he's ever met, but the traffic and food is god-awful. When people ask about the food, he is always quick to ask them if they have ever eaten at or saw a Filipino restaurant anywhere outside of the Philippines.

Eating healthy is a chore. It requires a lot of shopping, as there aren't any one-stop markets that carry all of the items one would need. In order to go grocery shopping for the week, you would literally have to spend an entire day driving around to different shops and markets, as well as fighting to find a decent parking spot. If only there were Whole Foods, and Trader Joes! (I have never been to either, but I have seen videos of walkthroughs, and have been on the receiving end of some delicious gifts from these stores!).

...And this is why this upcoming summer, I absolutely cannot wait to move to Ecuador! Fresh and organic fruits, meats and vegetables galore. I mean, just check out this market in Otavalo, Ecuador... (Supposedly its the biggest and oldest outdoor market in all of South America!)

As a Filipino, it is not easy for me to get a visa to many countries, but many places in South America are visa free, with a Tourist visa obtained on arrival. Most of the flights from the Philippines to South America have layovers in USA, and even these flights I cannot take. Without a transit visa I will have to fly from Cebu to Manila, to Dubai to Brazil to Ecuador! I guess it will be worth it all, when I step foot into perpetual spring-like weather! Oh, and since I have never seen and felt snow... We will spend our first full winter in Patagonia. Probably the Chilean side. Will I still love the snow after this? I hope so.

A little news about Steemit: Since the latest hardfork, there is no longer an incentive to auto-upvote your post as soon as its published. Instead, to maximize rewards you should wait at least 15 minutes.

And if you took the time to read this far down, and you are in the Philippines... I have a giveaway for you. (Only Steemians in the Philippines since it is requiring me to ship an item through postal mail). So, if you are living in the Philippines and leave me an awesome comment... I will reach out to the best one, and send you a New years gift. Trust me, it is very worth it :)

Thanks to all of my friends here, and I am grateful to have made such great lifelong friends and allies in my 5-month journey on Steemit. I will continue to support those, who support me.

Have an excellent start to an even better year. 2018 is OUR year to shine, and to make names for ourselves!