Recently I posted a photo of one of the days when I was working out and I got private messages about it on my fanpage, my Twitter and my personal Facebook profile. They were all mostly from my readers who were asking for advice on what kind of routine I usually do and I was shocked by the response because first off--I am not THAT fit. Second, I am not a fitness trainer, and third, I am not a dietitian either. But even though I told them that, they were still curious so I thought I'd just write a quick blog about it. This is of course, not a medical advice so please do not follow any of this religiously. This is something that works for ME.
My diet is pescetarian for "technical" purposes. I basically eat vegetarian but with seafood added to it. I still eat animal byproducts, just not the actual meat itself. That means no beef, no chicken, no pork, no birds, no alligators, etc.
I eat a lot of fruits. My favorites are bananas, strawberries, apples, mangoes and watermelons. But despite this list, I love fruits in general. I'll eat almost any fruit.
I love vegetables as well. I can't go through a list because there's so many. I eat a lot of salads and even snack on raw vegetables like carrot sticks.
I also snack on nuts and granola bars to keep me going in the day.
I also drink detox tea once in the morning, and another one at night. If not detox tea, just a regular black tea. Before I could not drink it without sugar, but now I prefer them without sugar.
Just recently, I also added a protein shake to my diet. Sometimes my calorie intake throughout the day is not enough to sustain my activity. I lose weight easily and get really skinny. The protein shake just helps to increase my protein when my seafood and soy intake isn't high enough.
Lastly, WATER. WATER. WATER. I have been convincing myself that as well. And the common thing: no junks, sugary stuff, yaduh yaduh.
I have no particular routine! That's the truth. I just stay active. When my bestfriend and I had a membership at the rock climbing gym (which is closed down now, boooooo), we would boulder a lot and mix that with yoga. We stayed mostly lean (in the skinnier end).
Now I do a mixture of the following:
Metamorphosis (muscle exhaustion) by Tracy Anderson
Weightlifting (power clean, front squat, back squat, lunges, modified deadlift)
Planking (lots of them)
Ab workouts (I sometimes follow Ab ripper X of P90x)
Sometimes I'll do the treadmill (but I hate running so it's rare), or I'll do the elliptical or bicycles.
Just whatever I feel like doing and depends on how exhausted I am from work (I am a nurse so I mostly walk all night long for 12 hours!) I don't do the same workout back to back. I change it up :)
So there you go! I have no magic miracle diet or routine. It's really a physical and mental battle to stay healthy.
The weirdest thing happened to me yesterday: three different individuals who did not have any relations whatsoever messaged me that they somehow remembered me. By remembered, I mean, they supposedly encountered a food or item that reminded them of me. I kind of realized it by accident when I was talking to my student this morning at the hospital and showed her the messages. She also thought it was a little bit odd--in a good way--that they all remembered the same day (nursing same day means, afternoon-morning the next day since we're night shifters haha!)
One of my friends messaged me that she saw a Harry Potter related post on her timeline about a pillowcase and it reminded her of me:
And then my friend Kevin told me that he found his spoon from the frozen yogurt place that we went to before and it reminded him of me:
And lastly, my cousin Sharlyn from Australia messaged me that she saw this one snack that we used to eat a lot as kids and it also reminded her of me:
I thought it was very odd. My heart swells though. People remember my crazy self.
It took many attempts to write this entry, maybe a few backspaces and just plain lost of words. I do not know what prompted me to try again, and somehow, this came along. Now, I was able to spit out some words that may make some sense--and maybe close to what I have been wanting to write about.
I saw a post on Instragram that gave me a little bit more of a push. It made sense, as if it was what was bothering me these past few days. The post read:
"I'm attracted to your rawness. Your unguarded way of living. There's life in that."
I have met so many beautiful and interesting individuals in my life so far. All shapes and sizes, different personalities, from all walks in life, and with different goals in mind. Some I met through unavoidable circumstances, some by accident, and some I personally took the time to look for. Some of these individuals made a little more impact in my life than the others, but the point is, they all have some degree of influence in my life.
I realized over the last few years that I have been so "guarded." I think the perfect word would be that. I guard my emotions closely. I always take a step back and try to see what are the true intentions of every person I meet. I am not sure when it started to be that way because I used to trust people easily--but it just became so.
I can only guess that I have been this way because things happened in the past and it made me like a little rock. Not a rock without emotions, but a rock that shows up when it wants to show up. Like a pebble that goes in surface in the ocean.
There are certain things I admire about people. People who are true to their emotions and their beliefs. Whether I agree with them or not, there is always something admirable when people stand to who they are and not care what others think. That is pretty hard to do. I cannot even be 100% that way because I do care what others think sometimes. I am not about to lie about that.
There is also some degree of "rawness" and genuineness to each individual that I have met. Some have shown who they are as if they are a crystal clear ball, some just did it to impress me, and some really just thought they are that way. Maybe there are more perspectives to this, but I can only write so much.
I think what disappoints me is that, when I let my guard down, things change. People change. Some take you for granted, and some just turn out not to be the person you thought you knew. When that happens, my heart takes a little beating, maybe a little crying here and there hoping it was just a mistake--and when it finally hits me, my brain takes over. My brain protects me. Mind over emotions. When it becomes like that, I care a little less, and this rock goes back deep in the ocean until it surfaces again.
Getting a compliment is something that most people see as a good thing. Compliments are meant to be positive, something that can make your day, and something that is meant--for the most part--to genuinely uplift another person or being. I realized over the past few months after a friend of mine pointed out to me that I do not take compliments very well or rather easily. He told me that sometimes I just need to relax and to take it in and absorb it because they usually are meant well.
This thought came back to me yesterday as I was driving when I realized that I received a few compliments all in one day from various individuals I just happened to encounter. This one lady during my last night of my four-day work week transported a patient to our unit and casually complimented my hair, "I love your haircut!". The guy from the Asian supermarket greeted me, ironically, with a gracious "Hola" and told me "you look beautiful today--more than usual", and another girl came up and said "you look very cute and you smell nice." Most people generally respond to these compliments with an automatic "thank you" because that is how it usually is.
Do not get me wrong, I do say my 'thank yous'. The thing about me when I receive these compliments, I have the tendency to be a little defensive about it--to the point that maybe, just maybe, it is on the annoying side of modesty. I responded to the lady who complimented my hair with a mere "oh it's shorter already" rather than a quick thank you, the guy at the store with "I didn't look beautiful the other times you saw me?" in a joking manner rather than a quick thank you, and a mere "I don't smell myself anymore but people always smell my lotion, I guess" to the girl who complimented that I smelled good rather than giving a quick thank you. When these came to mind, it bothered me. I just cannot take compliments that well.
On a regular basis, I receive plenty of them. It is very flattering really, and it also makes me think that maybe I am doing something right or I am just an inexplainable magnet of compliments. I need to breathe in, take it, and whether it is genuine, playful, real or not real, most of these were said to me to somehow invoke some positive reaction.
I need to learn to accept all the good that comes my way, and hope that one day, I graciously accept them like it is meant to be received. And to all of you who constantly do, I have no 'ifs', no 'buts', and no extra thoughts: this is my plain response of a genuine THANK YOU.
The first ever Pop Fiction book collaboration is finally here! Fall in love between now and ever after with amazing stories from your favorite Pop Fiction authors: ilurvbooks, fallenbabybubu, peachxvision, j_harry08, and shirlengtearjerky, with foreword by Mina V. Esguerra for PHP 195 in bookstores nationwide!
By Jessica Concha
I am not really much of a person to do book and movie reviews but I thought that since I have been binge reading lately and always have been binge watching movies--I might as well try to write a review about them, since well, I like to write and I'm talkative and here I am and I can't stop going . . .
On to the important stuff: I do not have a perspective on reading before watching a movie, or watching the movie before reading the book because some people have a pretty strong opinion about the matter. In the case of "The Duff," I saw the movie before I read the book. I did not hear about the book until after the movie came out, and my motivation to read the book came after watching the movie. (So I guess you can say I really liked it? Yes?) Since I saw the movie first, I will write the review, movie first before the book, and then write a comparison at the end of the post.
There will be spoilers on this review, so I am just putting it out there.
THE DUFF (MOVIE VERSION)
I saw the trailer in the theaters with my best friend and we playfully joked that we both wanted to see it because we do not really see a lot of teen romance like She's the Man, A Cinderella Story, or Mean Girls type movies anymore. Although I am wayyy past my teenage years, I still am pretty sappy about these kind of movies.
The movie is centered around Bianca, who by no means popular but is friends with popular, attractive girls (Jess and Casie). She is an average looking girl and kind of weird in a non-creepy way. She has her own thing going on and in the beginning of the movie, it appeared as if she did not care about what people think until she was called "The Duff" by Wesley Rush (played by Robbie Amell, who by the way I already loved since his Life With Derek days).
So Wesley. Fucking. Rush. (I do not mean to put the 'F' word out there but for those who have read the book, you know what I mean!). Wesley is the most popular guy in school, a jock, and a good looking one at that. Wesley was using Bianca to get to her friends and playfully called her the Duff or the Designated Ugly Fat Friend. According to Wesley, you do not have to be ugly, or fat, but a duff is just the term to describe this one person much less attractive than his/her friends. (And you have to admit, Mae Whitman is not fat, or ugly--and in Wesley words, "I would never call someone fat or ugly, that's messed up!").
Some of the book lovers hated the movie because of the whole cliche plot line where Bianca wanted to become a 'dateable' girl and Wesley needed a tutor in Chemistry. Although this did bother book lovers (and I'll tell you why later), I did not mind the storyline because I knew from the onset that watching this type of movie will give me all sorts of cliche (and sometimes, that's just what I needed. Why do people think cliche is bad?).
There are so many things I loved about the movie. Although it did have a kick on the cliche plotline, and some will argue this, Bianca's character did not have a major transformation to become a beautiful swan. In the end she was still the same Bianca, but a more confident version of herself. I also liked how she had a foundation of friendship with Wesley before anything else (and I mean since they were babies), and I also liked how despite Madison (Bella Thorne's character) is a walking mean girl, Bianca's best friends Jess and Casie were both the opposite of how attractive, popular girls are depicted these days. The movie was also something most of us can relate to because every one has their own insecurities.
At the end of the day it was a fun and light, movie. I think they were going for the audience that the classic Mean Girls movie went for, but I still think it lacked the certain elements. I think it's also because they made the movie PG-13 and not R, so it was not as bold as it should have been. Overall, the message was really inspiring, along the lines of 'there will always be somebody who is prettier, smarter, and you will always be somebody's duff. It should not stop you from liking yourself anyway' which again reminded me of the mean girls line 'Calling somebody fat will not make you any skinnier. Calling someone stupid won't make you any smarter' yaduh.. yaduh. Not exactly the same, but about the same wavelength. If you're in it for a feel good movie, this is the way to go. I know I'll be re-watching it again.
THE DUFF (BOOK VERSION)
I read the book in one night--the day after I watched the movie. I thought the movie was good and I wanted to see how different it was from the book. I think I will be a little reserved in writing the comparison (I'll save that for later), and go strictly for the book review.
I think that even though it is a young adult book and a teen book at that, the book is a little deeper than the title make it to be. First off, I did not think it focused on her being "The Duff" because it was just more or less what started her relationship with Wesley but nothing more. The book is a little raunchy (I do not mean erotica, and as much as I'd like to be open-minded about it, I've never read a full blown erotica book. Oh, no pun intended) and the book touches upon sensitive topics like family issues of divorce, alcoholism, abuse, abandonment, importance of friendship--which from the onset is wayyy more than just your typical gooey teen book.
The book also went into character development of actually falling in love, which in a sense, pulled some hearstrings for me because how many guys actually admit to being crazy about a girl and actually, and genuinely, using the 'L' word. ("Wesley Rush doesn't chase girls, but I'm chasing you.") Oh, I'm melting. Another thing that I liked about the book is that it tells about the situation that children on broken families go through, it is awkward and in a sense very painful if you think about it.
In the end, the underlying issues depicted in the book are coated in a modern-day urban-dictionary word with added funny scenes and interactions among the characters. If your arrow points north, this book is definitely not for you.
THE DUFF (BOOK AND MOVIE COMPARISON)
Before I start, I might as well put it here: They are so different it might well be from two different galaxies.
The premise for both the book and the movie is the same. Bianca gets called "The Duff" by Wesley and pretty much started the whole charade. The names of the characters are still the same, but I think almost everything else has changed.
1. Bianca and Wesley were not childhood friends.
Unlike in the movie where they are neighbors and they had some type of love-hate relationship because they've known each other since they were little (the movie takes the cake on this one for me), the book however says otherwise. Wesley and Bianca were not friends at all, they do not acknowledge each other in school besides taunting each other, and they kind of just start sleeping together in secret in the books. Bianca goes through family issues because her parents were going through a divorce, and her means of escape--and she worded it as if Wesley was her drug--she goes around having sex with Wesley just to forget. They are just friends with benefits--no, just F buddies since they weren't even friends in the books. In my weird Twilight reference, Wesley is Bianca's personal brand of heroin. Yup...
2. In the movies, she lives with her mom.
In the movies, Bianca's character lives with her mom post-divorce already. Her mom (the actress) is hilarious and very supportive with the sense of non-normalcy attached to it. The book on the other hand is the opposite because Bianca lives with her dad who happened to be an alcoholic and is just going through the divorce that has not yet finalized. For most of the book, Bianca's mom is away and travels the country. She pops here and there to talk to her, but otherwise, she's almost a non-existent character.
3. In the books, Wesley is not just smokin' hot, but super rich too.
Some people just walk through the light. They're an awesome athlete, good-looking, smart (third highest GPA in his class--according to the author), and he's rich that his family owns a mansion. Yes, a mansion. Wesley in the books had a little bit more of the background story because he mentions his parents are usually away, he has one sister who lives with his grandma (and absolutely hates him because of his 'lifestyle'), and gives off that vibe that he's just a misunderstood jock. In the movies, Wesley did not seem rich, he seemed to be the one with parents that argue all the time, and his sister was not in the picture. I understand that they could easily cut off her character because she almost was never in the book anyways. . .
4. Madison (Bella Thorne's character) did not exist in the books.
There's no mean girl Madison in the book. I read somewhere that Bella Thorne originally auditioned for Bianca Piper's character but did not get the part. She does not even match the character description on the book so I see why. Apparently the producers loved her so much that they had to rewrite the script to add her in. I am 50/50 about the addition of her character because I do not know if I liked it or hated it. Adding her character made the movie--like how the movie was, cliche--and she was a competition to Bianca. No competition of the sort in the books. Wesley was free to mess with our Bianca, and fall in love with her too on his own accord *wink*.
5. Unlike in the movies, Toby Tucker was not a douche bag.
Toby Tucker in the books is by all means a gentleman. He had a girlfriend in the beginning of the book, and then they broke up eventually. He and Bianca started going out (like for real, girlfriend and boyfriend status) that you'd feel guilty because he was a really nice guy. In a sense, he was the perfect boyfriend you'd introduce to your parents, but it seemed that no matter how good you are, if you don't like the person, it's just not worth the hassle. Bianca and Toby parted ways in a a good way.
Toby in the movie version though... please.
I can go on and on about the differences and I might end up writing the whole book so I just wrote the biggest changes. You can read the book to see the rest because I think it's refreshing to see how they adapt books into movies. I know some hate it, but then if you think about it, putting hundreds of pages of books into a two-hour or less movie is a big challenge. Some things in the book are not picture friendly, and you deviate from it--or more--afterwards. Overall, I enjoyed both and a definite trip back to my teen days.
We thank all of you for joining the A Place in Time: Take Two contest (Christmas Edition). We appreciate all the love, effort, and support you have given us! Here's the list of winners! Please don't forget to message us on here to claim your prize!
RODEL MADRIAGA - PHP 1000
SHUREIJOON WP (@shureijoon) - PHP 500
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What's keeping you busy right now?
J: Work. I started working recently at a hospital and I'm still trying to get acquainted with everyone and everything. It's a little bit stressful but everyone is very helpful and amazing!
How do you de-stress? Is there anything in particular that you do?
J: It depends. I write stories, I hang out with friends and we do almost anything and go everywhere, I rock climb, I eat, I sleep... just anything I feel like doing.
So writing is a stress-relieving activity. What can you say about the near-ending of your story, The Sacred Rule of Love?
J: I can't say too much since it will spoil a lot of things! I think you should just wait because... it's a very unique ending. Just wait.
I hope it's not too personal, but how is your dating life?
J: I am single! I have been for quite sometime now. Once I start dating, you'll know! I'm very vocal and I'm always proud. But for now, I'm as single as I can be.
What's something we should watch out for?
J: There's a project coming up in 2015! That's all for now. I'm very excited about it!
Jessica Concha released on her official fanpage that her fantasy-romance story, The Sacred Rule of Love, will be ending very soon. Although the story is about to take a bow, speculations on who the female heroine, Zoe Aldana, will end up with continue to surface in Wattpad world. Will it be Alexus the dreamy guardian angel or Jax the ultimate bad boy? If you have not read of the story, you are missing out on a lot!
Abs and bright blue eyes anyone?
Pop Fiction released its latest teen fiction book. Guess which one it is? It's no other than Jessica Concha (j_harry08's) "Take Two: A Place in Time." Deliveries are still ongoing. The book is PHP195 and $3.99 for an e-book at Buqo app.
Take a selfie with the book (or the pinup about Terrence because we hear there is one inside ;) ) and use the hashtag (#TakeTwoAPlaceInTimeBook) on Twitter, Facebook, or Instragram so we can see them!