Throwback: When I Used To Run

Was doing some post-lunch clearing of emails when I came across this link to a running-related comic that I have saved.

running_0header

Link: http://theoatmeal.com/comics/running

There are 6 parts to it in total.

As I look back at my running days now, it has dawned on me that my very 1st race (Great Eastern Women 10K in October 2006) was exactly a decade ago!

Exactly 1 decade (10 years) on, I have stopped running – with my last run being in March 2016. This current phase of life coincided with major changes at work, the closure of California Fitness (where I used to gym/workout at) …… and subsequently taking up yoga – which is my to-go regular workout currently.

I guess it came to a point that I stopped enjoying my training runs, and no longer look forward to waking up at 4-5am to go for Sunday races. And right now, not missing it nor regretting it as I’m enjoying my yoga sessions very much.

Never say never. I have yet to achieve my goal of a 1 hour 15 min 10km so I forsee I will end my ‘hiatus’ / break from running and get back to training for this specific goal. No timeline to this yet – will probably go with the flow as I need to start adding more cardio-based activities progressively to my current workout regime.

Not sure if I will ever do a 3rd marathon as I’m not keen to do long distance runs anymore. In the event I don’t – I can still live in peace knowing that I have completed 2 full marathons, albeit in lousy timing. Can’t take away the fact that I’m a finisher 2 times over*

* Thinking about it now also, it is pretty incredulous that I was being lectured on how to complete a marathon and to apply that to work when said person is not even a good example to begin with. But of course that chapter is over now so peace out!

Advertisements

October Milestone

After a period of procrastination, exercise inactivity (late July till now) …… I finally got moving and bought a trial pass at Yoga Inc to start yoga proper *grin*

And 1st October, being a Saturday and also the 1st day of a new month (and new quarter i.e. Q4) was the perfect day to make a new head start/beginning in my fitness/health & wellness journey, as well as to develop a new interest/hobby. And most importantly, another goal/resolution finally ticked off my list 🙂

And what better than a Warm Stretch class – which is a basic level stretch class, but with a slight twist as the room is slightly heated to a temperature of 35 degrees. As per class description, it was the perfect class for me to start off with and work out those stiff muscles again (after a good 2 months of inactivity/zero exercise). Although I ended up resting and recovering from the muscle achnes (particularly at the right shin) for a few days after class.

Will be looking forward to my next planned class (Basics) soon, with the eventual goal of making it a twice a week workout (long term) with some self-practice on my own at home. Am excited to see a more flexible me …… and also how far my yoga journey will go now that I have finally taken the 1st step to start.

Learn From Experience, Reflect, Review, Reboot

21 days into the new year (as today is 21st January 2015) …… It has been a pretty good start to year 2015 so far 🙂

After getting through a pretty stressful Q4 last year (2014) ‘fire-fighting’ and ‘solving’ issues here and there, am definitely thankful for the various positives and good tidings 21 days into January and into 2015 in all. And you definitely feel good when things start to feel right, and happen right!

In addition, it is constantly an ongoing challenge to keep building onto sustainable habits and making them permanent / for the long haul in the greater scheme of things. Just yesterday (or rather on Tuesday evening) …… the below happened.

2015/01/img_6865.png

Essentially I spent a good 4 hour odd on a simple piece of paperwork – when I have originally targeted to finish it 2 to 2.5 hours max so that I can leave office at 7pm as originally intended. Thinking through it as I blog this down now …… I was reminded of what we had discussed just earlier in the day (Tuesday morning to be exact) during PPI (weekly focus group) …… on the need to standardize and fine tune our daily work flow, right from meeting to fact find to preparation to implementation to post sales follow up.

So why did I waste time writing out the paperwork by hand when I should have right from the start use a type-written version (typing out the rationale is way faster than writing) – which was what I have been doing for the past few cases submitted. On average I took around 2-3 hours to complete everything when type-written …… so a lapse of judgement there and I should have stuck to my SOP (standard operating procedure) strictly – which is doing the more efficient method of type-writing the post sales paperwork right from the start.

Thus one major resolution / activity / habit (for year 2015 and beyond) that I need to consistently review and refine would be my financial planning processes and workflow – right from meeting to implementation to post sales paperwork/compliance and follow-up.

Progress: Bio Clock & My Ideal Work Day

One of my major 2014 resolutions was to work on my bio-clock and in the process improve my time management. The ideal looked like this ……

20140327-120717.jpg

Since January, I have been consistently logging down my sleep and wake-up times, timings I leave the house and reach home. Initial timings were pretty far from the ‘ideal’ as above …… But the logging was useful in allowing me to monitor how I use my time daily, and from there, make the necessary adjustments via the setting of daily goals/targets. Slowly & steadily, my wake up times adjusted from 0930 …. to 0830 …. and finally hit the sweet spot  last week at 0730 to 0735 (due to Rockwills Estate Planner course).

Then just when I thought I have successfully done the adjustment and made the habit stick (and in the process ticked off 1 major item on my resolutions list) …… however due to PMS and bad mood + dislike of my current office environment in general, I have been lasping back into the old pattern of waking up after 9-plus, and not being able to have a headstart on my day as much as I would have liked. Not only that, have been skipping my Tuesday gym/workout sessions for the past 2 weeks as well due to course & PMS, and also taking a longer time to fall asleep (a definite sign that I need to make myself more busy and more tired).

So I suppose after all the good momentum, the slight down/blip that I have been experiencing this week is probably what I intended to write about earlier – taking 1 step back in order to take 2 steps forward!

Time to get back on track to my intended routine (Early Headstart, 4 Day Week In Office, Back To 2 Workouts A Week, Weekly Reading/Audio etc.) …… And will be shutting down my computer after finishing this entry 🙂

Some Thoughts On Work Life Balance

Starting another entry on the go as I head to Bugis for a Saturday pre lunch workout!

A topic/subject that has been very close to my heart and which I have made as one of my key 2014 resolutions – Work Life Balance.

What prompted this entry was the below which I chanced on a blog earlier in the week ……

20140215-131249.jpg

My usual workflow habit for the past couple of years has always been to hit office (on non-appointment days) after lunch from 2pm onwards, and work late till 8pm at least (7pm would be considered early). Even earlier departure on workout/running days. So this gives me at best 5-6 hours in office, plus given the 1 hour commute to Beach Road, 1/2 day easily whizzes by without managing to do much productive work. In fact there are days where I could well possibly be more productive working from home (since 2 hours is saved on traveling).

Thus it has always been a long term goal for me to overhaul my bio-clock and sleep patterns, so that I can start the day earlier, and get more done in the day. Another motivation would be the health aspect of it, as a more ‘normal’ bed time and earlier waking hours helps me lose weight 😛

Of course the most important motivation is that I have my evenings free for work appointments, daily workouts and runs, family time, time to catch up and re-connect with friends – while still getting in 6 hours in the office on a non-appointment day.  In the past, the old me had always thought that I can compensate by staying late beyond 8pm. But that leaves me tired (after late dinner and the 1 hour commute home) and the cycle repeats again and again. The need to really change and overhaul my bad work habits accumulated over the years came acutely after my Japan trip where I had the time to think through what I really want going forward, and the life I ideally want to live. And the action plan to make it happen 🙂

What further prompted this entry also was my observation of seeing SS work late for the past week in office. Due to whatever reason, they usually reach office around lunchtime or after lunch, and are the late night owls that stay beyond 9pm. On first impression, you would think they are hardworking reps who are dedicated to their work, and have a lot of clients to serve – thus the late night hours. But from some time last year (2013) onwards, after our move back to Shenton Way, I have come to realize that it is more likely that they are not as efficient and effective as others would think they are, as versus to the impression they are giving off. So this is one thing I must never learn from these so-called achiever(s)- and also a push factor for me to change before its too late!

From there  I can understand better now why one of my clients elect to bring work home to do rather than stay late (so that he gets family time at the dinner table with his girls before retreating to his study room).  And essentially I have came around to lugging my laptop home again everyday (changed back to using the Acer document bag so that the load is lighter) in order to catch up on work (comparisons, research, email) and do my travel blogs. So no more leaving office beyond 8 to 830pm on most days. Thursday is a departure from norm as I went back office to collect my laptop after appointment – while on the way home.

As much as I should be spending more time with clients outside rather than being in office (another key motivation for the change) – the original 3 days per week in office rule as I have originally intended is not practical anymore as business activities have increased now the festive season (Christmas and Chinese New Year) is over and we are going into the last lap of the banding year. I have been diligently noting down my timings (sleep, wake up, leaving home etc.) in my little diary …… This has the effect of making me more mindful of how I spend my time. And am happy to note that I have been improving on my sleep-wake cycle and getting to office earlier. Still some way away from the ideal wake up 8am, reach office at 1030am to 11am target …… but am definitely working towards it! Hope to report my progress on this blog as I go along ……

Note: Finished this up on Sunday 16 Feb 2014 before heading out for lunch.

Finally ….

FINALLY (again) … managed to find some time yesterday evening to sit down with my green notebook ….

This is the notebook where I will do my once a year exercise of writing down & formalizing my new year resolutions (which are also the goals that I’ve set for myself to achieve) for the brand new year. While I do have the key ones at the back of my head, I still believe that writing them down is very important as it signifies making a commitment to what you are setting out to do.

After having done the exercise of writing them down, the next step is to break them down into smaller daily and weekly goals ……. And put it in a visible manner to make them easily track-able …..