As the story has it, I woke up and found myself on the very opposite side of the globe – the flipside. I arrived February 16th, 2005 and thought I’d simply do a year, then leave. Years later and I’m still here. I went from being some random foreign girl to taking on labels I never imagined – university professor, film extra, professional boxer, CEO of my own girls-only fitness company, Flipside Fitness, and CEO of my own boxing club, Korea's largest -- Hulk's Club, formerly known as Hulk's Boxing.

After 11.5yrs in Korea, I picked up one day and left. I returned to Toronto, Canada but only to pack up my bags and venture out again. Now I'm living in Makati, Philippines. Life for me is better in Asia and I'm so happy here. This isn't a new chapter in the book of my life though, it's a whole new book I've started!!! I'm a whole new woman. I left Korea with Flipside Fitness on my brain, Hulk's in my heart, boxing in my bag, and my four-legged friend Balboa Button by my side.

Life is an adventure and this is my story of yesterday.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Empowered Clothing Coming Soon

 I picked up this sweater back in Toronto and got it printed there too.
Can't say I get to sport it much here in the Philippines though considering the weather.
Website coming soon but the fan club of men is already growing. I'm growing my crew of Empowered Sisters here but the response and support by the men has been pretty awesome.  I have quite the buff male model sporting the male sweater option.  
Balboa doesn't yet have his own Empowered sweater but tonight I made him a little Rumble in the Jungle sweater.  Rumble in the Jungle was the fight between Mohammad Ali and George Foreman.

No Sparring As Anticipated... Sunday, August 20

Today I had a day off training, a forced day off, which meant it was a rest day for the dumbbells and my boxing gloves. It also meant all day I thought about training and wondered if the weights and heavy bags missed me.

[I'm joking... relax.]

I was scheduled to spar today but couldn't get into the club to do so because something came up. 

Life happened, that's what came up.  

No worries though.  It wasn't a big deal but hopefully I'll get to spar this week.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Weekends Are the Busiest

 I waited and waited... and waited... 
and then distracted myself by trying out something different with my camera.
We were off to a late start today for the Empowered bootcamp and only half the crew was able to come out for training but we made up for it with all the extra punches thrown.
Love my Saturday mornings with the Empowered sisters.
We've only reached the halfway mark for the camps but already ladies are asking about what's next so today I launched the flyer for the next two camps.  The response has been really great. 
I always return from coaching and training super hyper about what just went down and pumped about the potential of what's next but Balboa reminds me to take a breath and try to relax.
In the evening I headed over to Chef Works for some business mingling
...and to "help" test the newly purchased fondue set.
I wasn't the only one "helping out", there were others.  This is only 6 of the 8 who came out tonight.

First We Sweat, Then Chat... Saturday, August 19

I come to Ayala Triangle Gardens 4 days a week...
Tuesday -- morning fasted run
Wednesday -- Empowered bootcamp in the evening
Thursday -- sprint training with the Makati Running Club
Saturday -- Empowered bootcamp in the morning

Today I headed there nice and early for my bootcamp.  I showed up early, prepared, and ready to teach my Empowered sisters some boxing on this fine, gorgeous morning.

...and then I waited.

One had messaged me around 3am, telling me she just got home from work and couldn't make it and then another messaged me this morning saying she couldn't come because of a prior commitment.

...still I waited for the others.

They showed up late and I'm not a fan of tardiness so I always get a bit annoyed it's always so short lived with those I coach.  I'm always happy to see them.  I have a really good crew of women that I'm training with Empowered.  There's currently 7 of them and they're all very positive and super fun to train.  To tell you the truth, I have never coached a person I didn't like or didn't enjoy training.  I think a big part of it has to do with the fact that I do love coaching and I do believe that what I'm doing is bettering them but that it's also bettering me, in different ways though.

Today's crew went from four to two but I had a lot of fun coaching those two and then after we stood around chatting and chatting till I started to hear my tummy grumble and then had to leave.  I had showed up at 9:15am for the 10am camp but it wasn't until after 12:30pm I arrived home.  The park is only but a 10 minute walk from my house so that really had nothing to do with the time. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

It was Go, Go, Go from the Moment I Woke Up

Got in some intense padwork with Coach Bogs today on a hot, hot, HOT Friday morning.
Today the temps were high outside and we definitely felt it inside the club.
And of course a random flex-off.  This time it was with Coach Jun Jun.
Another day of pushing myself to exhaustion with boxing... I love it.  Love, love, LOVE it!!!
From sweaty sweats to sweet clothes and lip gloss.  
I had to quickly go from athlete to entrepreneur for an out-of-town business meeting today.
After my meeting, I headed to High Street in BGC and snapped some pictures while I killed time before my next meeting.
I always get a good giggle when I look around and see just how beautiful the Philippines is.
I love living here, I much prefer the Philippines over Canada, but it's funny how those who have never been here are quick to label it as being so different than what it really is.  
They're so ignorant to their own ignorance.  
Snapped a quick pic before my last business meeting of the day, at Dr. Wine.

A Nonstop Kind of Day... Friday, August 18

Uber no longer works in the Philippines, well hopefully just temporarily.

I had a meeting at 2pm and then another business meeting at 7:30pm.  The 2pm was at The Fort Strip in BCG and the 7:30pm was in Poblacion.  No problem.  The two cities are but only 20-35 minutes apart, depending on the traffic.  

I showed up well over an hour late for my 7:30pm and thankfully so did the lady I was meeting.

No Uber equals big problems.  We have Grab in the Philippines but with Uber accounting for thousands of drivers and them no longer being able to be on the road working, this meant Grab drivers were being brats and being super selective with who and where they were driving.  

No Grab drivers took my request despite trying to bribe them with extra cash.

No taxis were around either.

It was a rainy night and it was a Friday night... a rainy Friday night on the start of a long holiday weekend, great.  It was the perfect receipe for a disaster, hence why I arrived late to my second meeting.

Ended up checking into a new ice cream parlour with Skittles.  It was set in a possible location that was originally offered for his business but he declined.  We wanted to check it out and we needed to kill time while we waited for the rain to slow down and the Grab drivers to pick up our request for a ride.  Ended up getting into a random discussion with the place's location manager and in talking with him he then asked one of the owners to join us.  The owner then sat down beside me, ordered a coffee, and then we discussed business for the next 20-30 minutes together and exchanged contact information.

Showing up for my second meeting an hour late was definitely not like me but the owner's wife whom I was there to meet also was late so it actually worked out just fine.  She had heard about me earlier on this week and had passed on her business card to Skittles because she wanted to meet me after hearing about my business idea.  So tonight we met and in talking about my business idea and my boxing, we discovered something we both had quite the giggle over.  Remember how I was scheduled a fight here in the Philippines, a fight with that female fighter I had seen fight a bit over a month earlier, and how she canceled the fight?!  Well, guess who she trains.  She trains the very lady I was sitting right beside, having tonight's business meeting with.  I tell you, in the Philippines, it's not a matter of six degrees of separation but instead a matter of one or two.  My would-have-been and should-have-been opponent works over at Tiger Gym apparently, the very gym that just this past week I had been reached out to and told to go spar at.  This is like the fourth or fifth run-in with this particular female fighter.  I tell ya, I'm either going to fight her or hire her.  

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Well Isn't This Ironic

It was a mix of irony and self discipline -- this is how sprint training with the Makati Running Club went down.. well didn't really go down.

Challenge Yourself to Change Yourself... Thursday, August 17

Yup... I'm the girl that spends the entire week complaining about sprint training with the Makati Running Team and then shows up 30 minutes early for it.
...I still HATE sprint training...

And yup, I'm the girl that complained so much about having to do sprints and then, after showing up so bloody early, gets a text that it's been canceled.  Wow.  I figured I could do one of two things, jog home and count it as dodging that bullet... the bullet being of course sprint training... or I could do the workout I had come to do, which again of course would be sprint training.

I did the sprints.

Well, yes and no.  I did half the number of sprints, 4 instead of the full 8, but I also did three times the number of laps around the park.  Oh, and I pretty much felt "just as great" as I did the last time I did sprints which was really not great at all.  

What doesn't challenge you don't change you... right? Right.  

Tonight's challenge was definitely more of a mental one than a physical one.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Covered in Sweat from Start to Finish

This is what happened when I left my cellphone ringside.  
Coach Bogs decided to secretly take funny pictures with it.
 My friend jumped in on the pictures and I jumped into one... I thought I was photobombing their pic.  Didn't realize they had the last laugh though, it was my phone.
I got caught on camera, amusing myself with Coach Bogs' reaction to the smell of my gloves.
I'm sorry but I'll never stop finding that funny... hahahaha.
 Finally, I took a picture with my own camera.
In the evening I took some more pictures but this time it was of my Empowered sisters at tonight's bootcamp.  I had told them I'd do some boxing with them but I was so impressed with the response I got and just how much fun it was.  These girls are unstoppable, if only they saw what I saw... wow.

Waiting For the Kick... Wednesday, August 16

I'm finally back to feeling the my fabulous, fierce self and I realized this when I stepped into the boxing club and laced up my boxing boots.  I didn't feel like I was fighting my own body with having to push it at training.  My body felt up to par with how it was before I started having complications from my preworkout supplement.

Speaking of preworkout supplements, Coach Bogs and I had discussed my lack of energy this past week and I had noted I suspected it being due to overusing it -- using it for a too lengthy period of time without taking a break from it.  Plus, I had gone from one preworkout sup to another one but with no break.  

Today I brought Coach Bogs two servings of the preworkout sup I just stopped taking.  

He's never taken this particular preworkout sup.

I was super amused at the reaction of him and the other coaches asking me about it, particularly by those who had never taken a preworkout sup before and were clueless as to how to actually take it.  I teased them by telling them they had to snort it but they knew I was just joking when I broke out into nonstop giggles.  One of the other coaches asked Coach Bogs if he could try it so I mixed up a half dosage in his water bottle.  I totally came off as some kind of druggie when I asked for a piece of paper and then made a funnel out of it.  I've never taken a drug in my life but I have had my fair share of struggles with getting my protein into my water bottle.  Their reaction was priceless.

If you've ever experienced someone taking their first ever preworkout supplement, them waiting for it to "kick in", then you'll understand the pure amusement I had for the following hour or so.  He walked around the club, making faces, scratching his head and wondering if it was taking effect.  It made for quite the hilarious distraction during training and not just my training but everyone else who knew what had happened.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Finally Up and Out

Morning fasted run out to Ayala Triangle.
This is my favourite spot in Makati and I'm here at least 4 times a week because of coaching/training.
This is so fitting; it's almost like Makati knew long before I even knew I was meant to be here.
In other news, not new news but other news.... I got a little caught up in Balboa's cuteness today.
Balboa has his own Intagram page now.  I didn't post the superhero pic of him but wanted to share it here instead.  Played around with what kind of image and feel I wanted his page to have.  I went with cute and soft, innocent, but it was a toss up between that and playful and animated, cartoon-like.

A Delay to a Full-Speed Day... Tuesday, August 15

It took me an extra 30 minutes to get my tired Polish self out of bed.
It took me another 2 hours to get my unmotivated Polish self out of my condo and street side.
I didn't want to run today and I definitely didn't want to do a morning fasted run. Not fun.

But I did it.  I may have taken me a ridiculously long extra 2.5hrs to start it but I did it.

And did I come back regretting having done it?!  Absolutely not but I did regret it taking me so long to get out there to actually do it because I had a long list of things I had to do today.

Making Balboa an Instagram page wasn't one of those things.

I am the queen of procrastination, seriously.  If there were ever an award for it, a title to be fought for, a label to be won, I'd smoke the competition.  The only thing that basically stops me from my procrastination from taking over and completely making my day useless is my dependency on lists.  I start out each morning, after my breakfast, by sitting at my kitchen table with a large cup of coffee and my agenda.  I write out that day's list of things to do.  A lot of the time they are flooded with relatively mundane and silly things that really don't need to be put on the list but it keeps me focused and busy.  

A list distracts me from becoming distracted... from procrastinating.

Today's To-Do List...
  • Fasted morning run at Ayala Triangle.
  • EC: Instagram post -- preworkout snacks.
  • EC: Work on the numbers for EC 1.2. -- profit & loss, revenue, staffing, etc.
  • EC: Type up the boxing bootcamp outline.
  • Send the Meetup.com link to C.
  • Update my HP with Sunday's entry.
  • Get my head shaved.
  • Revamp my Facebook page -- cover shot and profile pic.
  • Call TV5 regarding the filmed interview.

Note:  EC stands for Empowered Clubhouse and getting my head shaved was the only thing on today's to-do list that I didn't complete.  Finishing all the work related to the Empowered Clubhouse numbers took up a good chunk of a day.  Not bad for a day's worth of work though.  It was a long day but a very productive one.  Oh, and I have a new potential investor.  I haven't actually met them yet but my name came up in my business mentor's meeting tonight and they passed their business card on to him to give to me.  Sweet.  The ball is definitely rolling on this Second Dream of mine.  I love it!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Almost back to "Normal" and Fuelling Up

 Felt good to be back at boxing after being MIA, dealing with the 
complications from my preworkout supplement.
 I'm sure Coach Bogs missed me but I doubt he missed my smelly handwraps.
The what and when I ate for today... Meal #2 was eaten around 1pm. 
I train a lot and I eat a lot, the two are very much connected.  Food is fuel. 
What I don't do a lot though is take breaks while training.  
I don't like it when people interrupt me.
This is the face I make when interrupted, when some guy interrupts my workout to ask if he can use the weights I'm using but he knows he can't curl them and I know he can't curl them so I just sit there and stare at him.

Help Arriving... Monday, August 14

I may have just scored my first sponsorship here in the Philippines but how ironic, it's from a company back in Canada... nice.  I'm hoping to be taken on by them as a brand ambassador and I'm really excited about it.  I had a phone call with them late in the evening tonight, to discuss what I'm eating, my training, and how they can better assist me.  

With me having launched Empowered and hopefully soon opening up the Empowered 1.2, I really want to up my look and make my image all that stronger and more fierce.  Having a team of professionals on my side is definitely going to help me.

Tonight's homework:  Map out what a "usual" week for me looks like, focusing specifically on my training and eating -- when and what I do for training and when and what I eat.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Stay Humble, Sit Down... and Eat Pancakes

This happened today... I indulged in some pancakes though I should note that I did have quite the hike trying to find them.  There's no real diners in Makati and the first Pancake House we searched out today was actually closed.  The city empties out on the weekends.
 My excuse for eating pancakes is because I'm coming off a physically very hard week.  I'm sporting a bit of a messed up central nervous system and exhausted adrenaline glands thanks to prolonged preworkout sups usage.  But the irony of this poster, wow.  It's thinking like this that is going to keep my clubhouse in business and booming.
I was texted this tonight after my business meeting.
Stay humble, sit down... start small and grow big.
I was humbled tonight but happy also.  After my meeting I returned home to this popping up on my cellphone -- one of my Empowered sisters incorporating some of the exercises I taught her into her own training.  Love it!!! 

A Turn in the Original Path... Sunday, August 13

I've taken two full days off training and my energy level is no better.  It ranges from zero to sub zero, seriously.  Since Wednesday when I hit a mental wall at boxing my energy has been totally lacking and the only thing I can think that's different is I've started taking Jack3d, a pre-workout sub I stir in a glass of water and down about 20 minutes before training.  I've been taking it since two Thursdays ago and my body hasn't felt the same since.

Today I struggled to wake up for the market and it was only the promise of coffee and food that got me out of bed but even then it took me a good solid 30 minutes.  Upon arriving back at the condo after the market, I was suppose to simply shower and then go to church... yeah, that totally didn't happen.  I laid down for a nap and my body totally refused to wake up.  

Woke up many hours later and headed off to my 5:30pm business meeting.

Tonight's discussion centered on getting the numbers and adding an additional step to Empowered.

I'm not a business woman, I'm an entrepreneur but crunching those numbers and having them on the tip of my tongue on demand is not my thing.  Tonight we discussed this and I mentioned I was curious about taking on a potential business partner to deal with the numbers, the admin and background stuff of my business.  I was told it'd be a smart move and so now I'm in the search of a business partner.  I have one potential young lady that I'm very eager to meet and discuss the potential of a partnership with, she comes highly recommended from my main business mentor, and tonight I was recommended to two more at my meeting.  Plan is to meet them all, approach them about my business, and then take it from there.  

I'm also now in the search of a smaller space.  Originally I wanted to go big, loud and proud with my Empowered Clubhouse but tonight we discussed possibly making that the final step, something I should work up to.  If my bootcamps continue at the rate they're going then the next step could be to launch a small studio to test it even further and to take my coaching further.  Doing so would really help me out a lot with landing investors because it'd further and strengthen my brand, it'd definitely aid to hyping my business up more, and it'd give me a solid foundation for which me to approach investors.  It'd be my much needed backup.  Consequently, this would mean I'd go from asking a jaw-dropping lump sum of cash from many investors to just needing possibly a couple of smaller investors.  The odds would be in my favour and it'd also mean I could take this step a lot sooner than later.  I'm going a bit stir crazy with still being in the beginning stage of my clubhouse.  Am still looking for investors.  The plan is to devise a new clubhouse plan, Empowered 1.2, and then pitch it to the investors.  

I was served a piece of humble pie today at my business meeting but it also fed me some amazing food for thought that's going to launch my business forward, that's going to get me closer to launching the Empowered Clubhouse via a different route. I am humbled, I am blessed and I am so very thankful.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Present Park and History Con

This is how I started my morning -- coaching the Saturday morning Empowered boot camp.
I'm not a morning person but these fabulous gals were so awesome to coach.
I have still yet to coach a female that isn't amazing, seriously and honestly.
Right after coaching, I dropped my boot camp gear off at home and headed out to History Con.
It was held at the World Trade Center Metro Manila and it was jam packed with people 
and things to see.... like the Knight Rider!!!
Now that's one pimped out car, dannnnng.
I'm still very much a truck girl though.  I love my trucks, jeeps and definitely the motorcycles too.
 As for motorcycle gangs, no comment, but I just had to pose with him for a picture.  I had to see who had bigger biceps... of course.  I should note here though that while everyone was giving this beefy man all the attention and lining up for a picture with him I spotted this fierce female.  I thought she looked so badass so I asked her if she'd pose for a picture with me.  Much of my pink hair has washed out and you can't see my tattoos here but I look so completely tame compared to her.  I love her look.
That badass chick and me, we're women... that's our superpower.
And speaking of superpowers, say hello to Takeru Kobayashi.  Now I love food, I'm always eating or I'm always hungry and thinking of food but for me food is fuel, for Kobayashi food is his career.  He's a tiny Japanese cutie, he's quite buff and sports abs too, but he's a competitive eater who holds 8 Guinness Records including eating the most hotdogs.  Today he wooed the crowd with eating 14 hamburgers... yikes.
The best part of the expo was the shop part of the event, a section of the center that was designated to showcasing local talent and skills via their private shops.  Maikala Wire Concepts was one shop I came across and instantly I loved their stuff.  They make handmade jewelry made out of wire.
Check out my bracelet... Empowered.  I love, love, LOVE it.
Not too sure I feel about this scene right here -- Skittles hitting every single target on command. 
He thought I'd feel safer knowing that he can protect me.  I was thinking more along the line that I felt more scared knowing that he could get me with one bullet if he wanted.