I Have Been Exposed To COVID 19 Positive, What Do I Do?

“Oh Shit!” was the first word that came out of my mouth when a close coworker called me about the result of her test.

She was sobbing hard and was so scared because she also is undergoing chronic medication which we all know are really at risk. I was really speechless. I had so many questions in mind like how did she got it? Where did she go last week? Why didn’t she tell us earlier about her having symptoms and why did she have to lie to us. I was in close contact with her everyday. I really didn’t know what to say but told her to calm down, drink water and we’ll figure out what to do next.

As part of essential staff working in a medical center, we still go to work regularly with the transportation provided by the company observing all the precautionary measures mandated by the government, social distancing, washing of hands, wearing gloves and mask. We may be at risk though because we entered the same door where patients were coming in and out. The management always reminded us to be extra cautious and everyone was aware about it.

We survived the dreadful virus since it entered the country not until last week. One of my office mate was tested positive. She seated next to me, we rode in the same transport, a close coworker and had conversations just like normal days.

A week ago May 24, I participated a global virtual marathon #R2RVirtualMarathon (Run to Reach Virtual Marathon). A run for a cause (https://www.gofundme.com/f/run-to-reach) joined by 100+ countries around the world where funds go directly to the WHO’s COVID19 Response Fund and partner women-empowerment organizations, who are frontliners themselves. My every steps, breathe and thoughts were for them, for the victims, for the frontliners, for those who can’t even move because they’re handcuffed by this pandemic.

Until after a week, a friend is one of them and who knows, might as well happen to me.

Time spent sitting and waiting to see if you may get ill leads to anxiety and fear. The wait, however, is the reality of the situation.

As of writing, I’m on my 3rd day of 14 days self isolation, monitoring myself if any symptom may occur.

Paranoia is real!

Everytime I sneeze, the thought of oopsy! Did I catch the virus? Do I have fever or what.

I am experiencing some muscle pain, is it part of it? The truth is I did some home work out yesterday, chrunches, jumping jacks, push ups just to keep myself busy from overthinking.

So what do i do now? Although I know, I am fit and more than bigger than this invisible enemy, there is Him Who is bigger than any biggest in the world. I pray that this ends soon. Continue practicing healthy lifestyle might be my best defense.

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How I loose Weight Naturally (3 Practical Tips)

You looked chubby! Oh, you’re too skinny for that! etc..etc..phew!

Indeed, we cannot please everybody no matter what we do, what we say or who we are.

A friend asked me, how long it took you to loose weight? What did you do? What did you take?Are you ok with that?

Well, it’s a loooong story. It’s never one of the overnight success. I didn’t take magic pill or grabbed a product of infomercial dieting pills. Rather, I was a product of a roller coaster rides of a low self-esteem aspiring girl to become someone, to break a chain, to make a difference.

Motivation for me did not come naturally, I created it.

I always admire people with appealing abs haha! It’s not that I fantasized their body but I applauded the discipline and determination they had. I know it’s not an easy journey. It took them a lot of hardworks to get there, from the discipline of food intakes to the pain of work outs endured. So, it gave me a thought of hmm..IF THEY CAN, I’M SURE I CAN TOO!.

I was never into sports during my youth, neither during school days nor even in THE genes. But the breast cancer that run in the family history freaked me out. Plus the paranoia of becoming a possible carrier since I am the only girl in the 5 siblings was getting into my head. My grandmother (may she rest in peace) died with breasts cancer.

With all the faith I have, I promised myself then that I must do something to prevent it. I have to change my fate.

I already knew the answer even before asking myself how.

Below are my 3 personal effective tips on how to loose weight.

1. ENGAGING TO PHYSICAL ACTIVITES

Working 12 hours a day, 6 days a week is really daunting. So to break the cycle, I started walking at least once a week for maximum 2 hours. Until it became habit, until I started small steps of jogging until I realized I fell in love with running. From 1km until to even more. I got hook to it and even brought me to running races, marathons and ultra marathons.

Although I tried enrolling to gym, unfortunately I got bored. I was just more than a lazy pig to go out everyday because of exhausting work. I felt, I just wasted my money plus it was quite expensive for me. So I focused then on running. At least there was this feeling of freedom and getting some fresh air once outside.

Thanks also to “youtubersity” as I call it, there are ample of home work outs/excercises available where I sometimes do.

2. DISCIPLINE ON DIET / NUTRITION

Goodbye carbs!sugar!salt!

Welcome greens!fruits!veggies!

CARBOHYDRATES or we call it carbs. For almost one year, I’ve totally given up rice. We Filipinos love eating rice because we grew up with it. A meal is not a meal without rice. It was hard at first, but eventually my taste bud forgot how it tasted. So what was my alternative then? Boiled potatoes, wheat bread and other natural energy source carbs i.e banana.

SUGAR This includes giving up sodas, instant coffee,candies and my love for chocolates. So I made sure fruits are at reach.

SALTS or salty foods especially junk foods. I’ll admit, I was a fan of junkies. Fooling my own belief that it will just be washed out by drinking lots and lots and lots of water. I limit putting salt as well in my cooking. As much as possible, recipes are boiled, blanched or steamed.

I’m not a vegetarian, aspiring though hah! Not even nutritionist. I am not so conscious about the number of calories intake and burnt as well. But I make sure to include proteins such fish, meat, dairy products and eggs in my meal.

3.FASTING (12:12 INTERMITTENT FASTING)

I can guarantee that this way too effective! Since I work in the middle east, where observance of Ramadan for our Muslim brothers and sisters is being practiced I used this opportunity to take fast in solidarity to them. Although, mine was not similar to the religious practice they have,14 hours from sunrise to sunset for 30 days, I made it personal.

Perhaps, most of us already familiar with  intermittent fasting (IF) — a way of eating where the body uses fat as an energy source instead of glucose. Instead of eating whenever you want throughout the day, you’re limited to consuming your daily caloric intake within a 12-hour window, and then required to fast for the other 12 hours.source: (google search)

Actually, there are different types of IF but for me I used a 12 hour window. Meaning to say, I ate only twice a day. I made sure I’m on the table at 6 in the morning and 6 in the evening. A whole day without food and water but making sure I re-hydrate well at night..for 30 days.

So there. These are just 3 amongst numbers of tips you can find everywhere about how to loose weight.

Proven and tested by me. As easy as 1..2..3 and it requires COMMITMENT.

So if you are ready to commit, these tips fits you.

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Running with Mask

How it affects my running?

When running with mask becomes fashion 🙂

It was beginning last May 16 when the local government of Doha, Qatar issued precautionary measure of wearing mask be mandatory when leaving the house for any reasons. Violators of new rules will face up 3 years in jail or a fine of 200K Qatari riyal ($55,000). Although, I’ve been observing this (wearing mask) even before such new ruling, the weight of the punishment scares me! I can already build my 3-rooms bungalow type dream house in that huge amount which I haven’t had yet as of the moment haha. Never in my wildest dream caressing cold steel bar.

I truly understand the seriousness of this measure. It is not just to protect myself as runner but to protect other people from me as well. As what I’ve been always saying, grateful that we are still allowed to go out and do physical activities such running, jogging or even walking. These are simple things not to be taken for granted. Just have to follow the rules and be courteous.

As per experience, running, jogging or even walking with mask is manageable at the start upto 2km but literally uncomfortable in the the long run. Physical activities as those requires tremendous oxygen to keep us going. Below are some of my personal tips how I survived running with mask.

  1. Choose routes that are less crowded. Since parks are close, there are still open areas where residents can do physical activities but of course observing social distancing. I intentionally separate myself from potentially crowded places so I opted running on roads or just within my residential and nearby blocks.
  2. Adjust time for running. I prefer going out at 4:30am the earliest before roosters crow and while people are still snoring in bed. Plus a better way to start the day blessed by the sunrise viewing.
  3. Keep the pace slow and manageable.
  4. Choose the right mask you’re comfortable with. I tested wearing both the surgical mask and N95 one, but I ended to wearing the fabric mask instead. I’ts breathable, washable and fits snugly over my nose and mouth.
  5. Pulled it up whenever I am in the vicinity of others, when someone is coming towards me or when I am about to pass a person. Pulled it down when there’s no one around and when they are about 20m away from me.

Basically, runs should really be in areas where you can be alone or places where you won’t encounter anyone else. There is no point to wearing a face covering or mask if you are not going near to people at all.

Posted in expatlife, fitness, health, inspiration, personal stories, runner, running | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Plan of Getting Married?

Breaktime in the office and I was stunned by one of my office mate’s question. “Do you have any plan of getting married”?

I felt my face turned red! Oh my gosh! I didn’t see that question coming! It’s not an easy question answerable by yes or no. My ego was like, is it a humiliating question? Excuse me! Am I unmarriageable person? And I think I was loosing my brain cells at this rate. Totally lost my reasoning skills haha!

We were having conversations about the current pandemic, situations of our families back home, plans about futures and talks about the next 5 to 10 years from now. Whether we remain expat in those years or go back home to our country for good.

So as to defend my ego, I answered him back with the Ms. Universe level award-winning statements. Do I need to?. I’m not in a hurry anyway plus I am happy loving myself right now. Although I’m not closing my door, that right time will come. And I am true to that.

The talk did end there. “We’re not getting any younger so you better be hurry.!”. Come to think of it, you should have at least another kid so you have someone to take care of you when you get old. Oh!oh!

In the Philippines, it’s a norm when a parent gets old and retire, children take care of them, support them until their last breath. With the strong family ties, we cannot just afford to send them to organizations like homes for the elders and let them live alone and be separated. Plus of course considering the monetary value it will cost.

If those are the only reasons I should marry, then I won’t.

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One day, I’ll write my Own Book!

With conviction!

I’ve always dreamed of writing a book. But how and when, are  the ageless questions that has indefinite answers…yet! Haha! Pinch me, I am dreaming!

Just a sudden thought I have right now. Can I?

I belong to the 80’s generation. Grew up in rural area. Way back then, there was no internet yet, no cellphone, not even television.  I love reading comics, pocket books, books at school, fictions and non-fictions. But my favorite of course are those magical or fantasy books. Who wouldn’t like it? That’s where my dream of becoming a princess started haha!

I remember I’ve almost cause fire in the house.  Gas stove was not even in dictionary that time. Our way of cooking was using firewoods. I forgot to put water on the rice I was cooking that resulted to getting it literally toasted. The smell of burnt rice spread through the entire house. I was too focus on reading that I forgot everything around.

My latest discovery of my passion about running might be my niche. Things like discipline on trainings, discovery of the other side of me, from baby steps to becoming long distance runner and many more.

I know, there is something in it I wanted to share, some worth to read inspiring messages and might as well touch someone’s life in whatever form.

Let see. 🙂
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This is a photo of me holding the gold medal I won during the Virtual 42km (Full Marathon) in Ladies Category just last month.Will definitely post a story behind it. A run that I personally offered to the frontliners and people afflicted by current pandemic. (not a good quality photo though)

 

 

 

I am visioning myself that one day, I’ll make a pose like that holding not just a medal but also a book authored by no other than me.

May the universe conspires.😊

 

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When this is over

When this is over
I would jump off from bed
Lace up and run straight
As fast as I can
As far as I could

When this is over
I would never-ever waste a single moment
To hug people I’ve distant with
The neighbor, family
Be it friend, or enemy

When this is over
I would shout loud to the universe
A “thank you” for the chance
For giving me the break
To recharge,regrow and reflect

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Expat Experience

Happy to be part of the expat circles and share my answer to some questions given by Ms.Sarah Emery, a travelling expat blogger. Follow here journey on insta
@sarah_with_a_smile ;
1. What was the best advice you received before living abroad and how did it help you?
  I think, best advice given to me was to mind my money. As I’ve mentioned, I was earning more than enough back in my country but I never had a single penny left in the bank. Rather, I left the country buried in debt. Minding my finances now helps me figure out the difference between the needs and wants. Funny it sounds, but yes! I learned to make the most of budgeting since we are receiving our salary just once in a month. I was offered a 2 year contract first followed by two more renewals and so was able to pay the debts left behind, support the family, learned to save and share when necessary.
2. What was the worst advice and why?
Worst advice? I think developing a new network of friends to avoid homesickness.  I am a friendly and easy to get along with person.  I easily trust people. I don’t even need to question your personality as long as you are human to me then we are friend. But unfortunately, this opened me up to those who took advantage of me and it hurt me so bad.
3. What advice would you give to those becoming an expat (can be in general or specific to the country you are in)?
Learn to adjust and embrace changes. Honestly,there was last minute sudden fear in me as I boarded the plane heading to the Middle East. I questioned the  uncertainty of whether I will be safe or whatever because of what I’ve read about traumatic experiences and successful OFW stories in the internet. Which one of those will I be? Rather than worrying,I focused instead on the positiveness and thought of  the reason why I chose this path. Just be brave. Know the basics, like where to go in case of emergency, stay in touch with your Embassy or the agency you were in. Be involve in some local activities that might fit your interest.  Get along with people who can motivate and bring out the best in you. Strictly abide whatever local law mandates. Need not to worry specially nowadays that we can access all means of communication anytime, anywhere.  Don’t be afraid. As long as you know how to communicate, just be what you are and express yourself.
4. What about your expat experience, has it surprised you?
Yes! It did surprise me. I was literally culture shocked! From the climate, to the foods, to the smell of spices, to the traffic, to dealing with different nationalities and even to my own English language grammar!
5. Do you think you have changed since becoming an expat and if so, in what ways?
Yes, I can say I’ve changed a lot! I know I’ve regained my confidence and self-steem that was buried from my doomed past. I was able to recover and took care of my physical health and mindful of my over all well being by actively participating in some local  events here. I specifically involved myself in sports, going to gym, competing local running races, marathons and ultramarathons bearing in me with pride my country’s flag.
My recent vacation also gave me the opportunity to go backpack travelling in Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam for the first time in my life..ALONE!. There was this awesome feeling of getting lost and finding yourself, rebuilding yourself again..somewhere.

 

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Untold Emotions

I had so much in mind that i wished I’ve said
but always speechless when our eyes met
couldn’t even say a word every time I’m with you
coz I was too scared that I might just loose you

I may admit Love,I still get butterflies,
though I’ve already seen you a couple of times
Tried to avoid you, as much as I could
But this pretending can no longer hold

Your simple gestures meant so much to me
A simple how are you? a good aftee bunny!
i smile like an idiot when you’re messaging me
do you also miss me?or am i just too dreamy

I let you stole my heart 2 years to be exact
but now it’s ok, to not bring it back
I’m sorry for being crazy, jealous and grumpy
just to camouflage the pain, that I didn’t want you to see

Thank you for the friendship,thank you for the hugs
thank you for sweet kisses, for simple goodnight
although shy to confess, these emotions untold
but my world needs reset, as the new year unfolds

A love-filled Christmas, is my wish for you
A joyous New year, on your special day too
May you be blessed with good health, more marathons to go
We will still be running, and thank God I met you!

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Stuck

Just dealing with some emotional issues right now.  A dear friend just died, motorcycle accident. She was one of my best friend, an angel, roommate, a pharmacist, a mother of 3 kiddos.  Two years ago I posted here about sending her off to the airport because she’d already finished her contract and went back to our home country for good. That was my last memory and last hug with her. I was literally crying as I waved goodbye for some reason  but I never thought that would be the last and will never see her again.

Currently I am also in struggle of trying to fake a smile but my heart is being devoured by insecurities and jealousy.  Never been felt appreciated by the person I dear so much, but seeing him happy with someone else is pretty like piercing me. Oooh jeeeez!

I can’t even run and exercise right now to get some endorphins because I am still injured. Hoping at least to divert my hard to spell mood.

Just a week ago, a superthyphoon struck my province, destroyed our house and leaving my family in evacuation center which means my financial support is much needed.

I really feel completely stuck right now. Spunk me for my foolishness’ sake but believe me I even envy the dead.  At least their sufferings are gone. Ohh God!

As much as I don’t want to entertain this negativities and chasing peace is as ridiculous as it sounds. It is just too heavy to carry right now. I know, these are just minor problems and might be just one of my lows. It is just one of those moments where I have felt like my emotions controlling me. I also know that there are much more than out there who are having worst than what I am experiencing right now….let me just unload it..

Still thankful that I’m alive.

Still grateful that I can still see the light.

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My fist solo backpacking- CAMBODIA (2nd-3rd day)

Cambodia caught my heart with the scenic view of stone temples of Angkor Wat,  Bayon and Ta Prohm. I love the serene looks of it.

From my hostel in Bangkok, I booked a day trip bus to Cambodia for a 10 hour land travel. I was picked up from hostel by the single motorcycled man around 9am and brought me to this bus downtown waiting for other passengers. We were about 12 pax in the bus heading to Cambodia from different nationalities of Spain, France, UK, India and yours truly Philippines. There was a small snack and a water given to us also in courtesy of the bus operator (perhaps), so we assumed that we really had a loooong travel ahead.  Since all of us are first timers, we had a small brainstorming and sharing of ideas what to do or where to go to explore Siem Reap. We decided then to stick together once we arrive.  If you want to have a “sit pretty”, a hassle free travel connecting to those countries, you can visit https://www.camboticket.com or other online sites offering similar services of transport. Again, in my case, I opted to book it with my hostel. I found the price cheaper though.

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After almost 5 hr travel, the bus stopped at the certain restaurant ( was not able to get the name of the it) about 2 miles away from the boarder. We were instructed to get down and they (shuttle tour personnel) checked our documents.  The decision that we will stick together never happened :(. Since I didn’t need any visa, I was the first transported by a single motorbike man to the boarder. I was so hesitant to ride at first and believe me, the nervousness crawled over my body because I felt so alone that time! I was dropped off from the motorbike around 100m away to immigration and  just instructed me to go straight,and turn left. So, as a stranger to the place,I hurriedly walked like a zombie with my 6 body senses super alert that time haha!

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I stayed at Yolo hostel via booking.com and bought the ticket for a shuttle

My passport then was stamped! After passing through immigration I went straight to the exit.  There, another shuttle tour personnel was waiting and where our connecting bus was also located. We spent almost 2 hrs of assembly until all other passengers were gathered. Finally, we reached our final destination,the Siem Reap after another 4 hours of travel. 🙂 We were dropped off to a bus station and there, some tuk-tuks were waiting and sent us to our respective hostels.

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I had a lot of photos actually but these two are my favorites. The front and inside view of Angkor Wat Temple.

 

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I booked my one day tour in the hostel. They have several packages also, but I availed the 4 temples visit (Angkor Wat, Ta Phrom, Bayon and the famous Angelina Jolie’s Tomb Raider movie spot, plus the sunset view.  The weather in the morning was too summer that you really needed a hat or anything that would protect your skin from sunburn. Ironically, in the afternoon the rain poured heavily with strong wind that we were unfortunate to view the sunset.

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Entrance to Bayon Temple.

Note: A tourist must possess an admission pass (an ‘Angkor Pass‘) to visit the temples and sites in the Angkor Archaeological Park. Passes may be purchased at the main entrance on the road to Angkor Wat. Passes are sold in one-day ($37), three-day ($62) and seven-day ($72) blocks that must be used on consecutive days. I got mine for  one-day pass only. I have to leave the place the following day for my Vietnam travel (as my next stop).

 

 

 

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