Achieve 16% Body Fat – Day 84

2 weeks have gone by since I posted the last video on here. I’m still chugging along on my year-long journey to get fit. You can follow along with me on YouTube if you’re doing the same thing and feel it would be helpful to have a “partner”.

Unlike others who show miraculous improvements in a short amount of time, my journey is slow and full of setbacks. I do think I face a lot of the same issues most people face when it comes to losing body fat. When it feels like 1 step forward and 2 steps back, I get very demotivated.

Something I remembered from my readings is,

You need both motivation and volition, or willpower. One without the other will result in failure.

Just because you’re motivated to lose weight, doesn’t mean you can unless you have the willpower to not eat that slice of pizza.

So I need to constantly will myself to keep my eyes on the goal, and I think making these videos and writing blog posts help. If I feel like someone is watching, even if no one is, then I feel accountable and empowered. I wonder if that’s how most people think and I wonder what methods others have used to accomplish their goals.

What do you do to motivate yourself? How strong is your willpower? Did you fail and why?

If you’re reading, leave a comment, even if it’s anonymous. It’s a step forward to admit failure and find another path.

The Defining Decade – My Takeaways

My first reaction after I finished reading was,

Man, I wish I read this book when I was in my early 20s instead of now. 

Doctor Meg Jay couldn’t have done a better job describing who we are in our 20s than her book “The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter and How to Make the Most of it”. It’s like she’s in my head all these years. Thoughts like,

I should really live it up now, I’m never going to get the same freedom and fun. This is bad for me, but it’s not like I care about a few extra year when I’m 90.


The time you have today spent alone, could be time you wish you had spent with your spouse, kids, and grandkids in the future.

OMG. That’s it.

So aside from getting in my head, she makes a lot of really good points. You can hear quick highlights in her TED Talk video.

But if the video got you curious, I highly recommend you buy/rent her book. Her stories are heart-felt and relatable, which make the book a really fast and fun read. Don’t put this off, go read it today and start thinking differently!

Thanks for reading!


How I Try to Be Less Well “Rounded”

Yesterday was Mid-Autumn Festival 中秋节 and the significance behind this holiday, like every other Chinese holiday I celebrate, is family. We have a family meal together and eat mooncakes.

Last night, I worked alongside my mother to craft these delicate mooncakes filled with homemade red bean paste, pine nuts and salty duck eggs, surrounded by a green tea mochi skin. My American coworkers were mind-blown by the sweet savory aspect and found it undoubtedly delicious. Score. Perhaps this will be our new tradition.

All that mooncake is bound to add a few inches to my waist, but oh well, that’s what the holidays are for right? To get nice and round on the inside and bundled tight on the outside by our winter coats.

On the other hand, I’m trying to lose fat for next year. Why? It’s always been a goal for me so I thought 2018 will be the year. I’m hoping to go to Tomorrowland 2018 Belgium. So in preparation I want to get to 16% body fat. To motivate myself, I started a video blog of myself each day saying what I did and how close I am to my 16% body fat goal.

The problem with the video blog is that I have to watch it to remind myself what I said, and that’s just not efficient. As of today, I’m going to try to summarize the key points of what I say in the video to here and attach some videos here and there.

I did something similar without the video log and much shorter a few years ago. First of many started here: 30 Day Cleanse for Abs Challenge. I got to Day 24 and I got to 19.3%. I was at 23% on Day 3. I’m a bit skeptical of the decrease, especially since I didn’t use the same measuring tool throughout. But in any case, I’m following a lot of the old tips I talked about along that journey, this time around as well. No alcohol is a must. I’m just not doing any weight training because I don’t have a good gym and I sort of replaced it with yoga. I want to take up another physical activity though, like dance or rock climbing. We’ll see.

Currently I’m at my 70th day since starting this new challenge to get to 16% body fat. Read more about why I don’t say “I want to lose weight”: BMI vs % Body Fat and % Body Fat Measured – Caliper Method. If you want a good tool to easily measure your body fat %, here’s what I bought a few years ago: Day 20 of CAC.

I lost about 1% of body fat and about 6 pounds since I began. That means on Day 1, I had (118*23%) call it 28 pounds of fat. At Day 70, I have (112*22%) call it 24.5 pounds of fat. Okay, so of the 6 pounds I lost, 3.5 pounds were fat, other 2.5 pounds could just be water weight or standard deviation of error. In any case, just imagine holding 3.5 pounds of butter in your hands, that’s 14 sticks of butter. HAHAHA, that’s a lot of butter.

So double what this guy ate, but I guess in reverse:

All that took was a lot of self-control and exercise. So, if you want to follow my journey from the beginning, you can start here with Day 1 and subscribe to my channel for daily updates. They’re only about 2-3mins long after Day 1. I talk about what exercise I did, weight loss tips and other random thoughts that come to mind.

Below is the video from today. Got a 30-minute run in the morning and 10 flights of stairs. Here’s to being less round!