Holiday Greetings from The UST Daughter Diaries!

My last Angel of Christmas is none other than my soul sister & best friend, ATE! <3 She’s always so busy with school as a Pre-Med student and with weekday classes until night time, but because of the clamor for her to guest blog, I was able to blackmail cajole her sweetly into finding time to write me a Health & Fitness post for the new year.

If her story isn’t one of inspiration & hope for a healthier lifestyle (I think she really meant to write it for ME!), then I don’t know what is.

I hope you enjoy her post as much as I did! <3

A Healthier New You for the New Year!

Although I don’t get to reply often (nakakatamad mag log in hehe), I always appreciate reading comments about how determined and disciplined my mom’s readers say I am. I am truly flattered by all the praises, words of encouragement, love, and support you all have given not just to my mom but to the rest of the Goppets as well.

I know it can probably get annoying to read about how “ate abstained from this and that..” especially to my dear bubby, so thank you mom from the bottom of my heart for supporting me on my diet! <3

But for you to understand why and how I got this way, I need to tell you about my journey to a healthier lifestyle. So here’s the back story..

As a kid, I was always on the bigger side. I was the girl that was placed in the back of every school photo, I was the one at the very end of every line during assembly, I was the biggest size in every adult clothing store. I felt so awkward being next to all my stick thin classmates.

At my first school. I was always the fat kid.

In grade school, the era of rampant bullying, I was assigned a seat next to the “crush ng bayan.” A few days later, word got around that he liked someone from our class. Every girl wanted a chance to be near him so it was only normal for all of us to hope she would be that lucky girl. I distinctly remember one girl telling me “Don’t get your hopes up. He’ll never like you. You’re too fat.” Man did that sting.

A few years later, I moved to a different school. During Linggo ng Wika that year, all classes were asked to present plays. In our class, I was assigned the role of a pig that couldn’t jump because she was too heavy. I was so ashamed to come out on stage.

At my new school where I thought I was free from bullying.

I was the biggest size in every adult clothing store.

In high school, our play was El Fili. Due to the lack of guys in our class, some girls had to play male roles. I was one of them. There was a part wherein I had to die and be carried out. I overheard one guy saying “I have to carry THAT?! -insert curse here-” Needless to say, I cried in a cubicle that day.


That summer, the summer before college, I vowed to work my ass off till I had none. I deprived myself of food and did a whole lot of cardio workouts. I lost 30 pounds in 3 months.

I took up Mixed Martial Arts the summer after high school in the hopes that I could lose weight before going to college.


When school started, I thought I had lost enough. I thought I had moved past all the teasing and name calling. Well, I was wrong. One day, during what my English prof called “KSP” or knowledge sharing power, a blockmate shared that in the older times people had a different notion of beauty. She said that the plumper you were, the more beautiful you were perceived to be. Then out of nowhere my seatmate called me out in front of everyone. That caused me to crash diet.

In college. Confident that I had lost enough. Apparently I was wrong.

But no matter how much effort I put into it, my weight would not go down anymore. I plateaud. My classmates would often pinch the back of my arms, telling me how soft they were. That’s when I realized I was doing it all wrong. I lost weight but a huge percent of my body composition was still fat. I had no muscle. It wasn’t the scale that I needed to check but the mirror. Now, I don’t keep track of every pound because muscle weighs more that fat. Instead, I focus on the definition and cuts of certain body parts.

So, that was the beginning of the very beautiful friendship I have with the gym. I did resistance and weight training aside from cardio. Slowly, my body took on a better form. I even did Bikram yoga for a bit to enhance my flexibility, burn fats in hard to reach areas, and improve my posture.

As for the gym, this is my routine:

– 10-15 minute warm up (intervals of running 2 minutes, sprinting 60 seconds)

– squats (20 reps with 20 lbs., 3 sets)

– kangaroo jumps (1 min, 3 sets)

– lunges with arm raises (5 lbs per arm, 15 reps, 3 sets)

– spiderman -think planking with sideways leg raises- (20 reps each side, 3 sets)

– mountain climbers (1 min, 3 sets)

– various arm and leg workouts (weights vary from 2 to 15  lbs.)

– abs, abs, abs! (anything but crunches, those NEVER get you anywhere)

– stretching

– cardio (20-60 minutes, depending on how tired I am or how much homework I have to do lol)

I took going to the gym as bonding moments with my siblings. It’s good to have a gym buddy to keep you motivated.

For the cardio, I usually take a class like body combat. If I’m too tired, I’ll just run on the treadmill again. On days that I don’t have much time (mahirap ang buhay science lol), I take a definitions class.

It may sound overwhelming, and at times it is, but whenever I think of skipping that last plank, or skipping cardio altogether, I remind myself of the pain I went through and use that as my source of strength.

For my diet, it’s not really a diet. It’s more of a lifestyle change. I no longer eat white carbs. Since I absolutely can’t live without carbs (figuratively and literally -forgive the science joke), I stick to brown rice and wheat bread. I also include lots of lean meat in my meals. I stay away from everything fried as well as fats. When I’m hungry, I make sure not to look at all the junk food mom has stocked in the room (#laglagan), and I snack on either an apple, grapes, a banana, or nonfat strawberry yogurt. I make baon lunch everyday that consists of one cup brown rice, one cup either steamed unsalted broccoli or asparagus, and one cup low fat spicy century tuna, steamed shrimp, or smoked salmon. I always have a skyflakes fit pack in my bag to munch on in case I get hungry in between classes too.

I’ve learned not to deprive myself because that would just lead to binge eating. If there’s something too good to resist on the table I’ll take a bite of it so I don’t have to keep thinking and imagining how good it would taste.

Lastly, instead of concluding with some emo quote or motivational mantra, I’d like to end on a lighter note. Here are a few of my favorite things to eat that prove healthy food doesn’t have to taste terrible.

1. BREAKFAST – One cup Nestle Fitnesse cereal or Greek Honey Bunches of Oats with almond coconut milk

2. LUNCH (always prepared by my mommy) – whole wheat tortilla wrap, turkey breast, A LOT of romaine lettuce, and a laughing cow non fat cheese slice

3. SNACK – Walter’s sugar-free wheat bread, Peanut Butter Co.dark chocolate dreams, and banana slices

4. DINNER – Romaine lettuce, grilled chicken breast, grapes, and homemade cilantro-lime-EVOO dressing

So yes. You CAN do it. Not to be fit & fab but so you can be healthier AND fab! And since the new year is just around the corner, what better motivation than starting the new year right to a healthier new you!

Happy Holidays!

The new, healthier me.

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  • Reply heybree

    Just looking at your pics made me imagine kung gaano na lang sila kapayat to say pa those words! You look NORMAL to me! Sila? Haha :D Basta Ate remember that no one can trample a kind heart. ‘GO’ girl!

    December 24, 2013 at 8:37 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Thank you so much Bree I know my ate will appreciate your kindness & support! <3 <3 <3

      December 24, 2013 at 9:18 am
  • Reply Anonymous

    You are sooooo gorgeous Jana! :) Your hardwork and discipline definitely paid off. Must be hard to resist the temptations left and right..miss jane’s posts always gets me hungry lol :) Now if only i can muster up the courage to start that road to skinny hehehehe..
    Happy happy Christmas my dear favorite Miss Jane and family.

    December 24, 2013 at 9:32 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      hahaha yes kawawa talaga lagi si ate when we go out, eating is always a part of our bonding sesh. kaya super bilib ako sa discipline & fighting spirit niya grabe!! ;P Thank you so much!! <3

      December 24, 2013 at 9:56 am
      • Reply Anonymous

        Oh noo it’s me ellawella i dunno why it sowed anonymous waahhh :)))

        December 24, 2013 at 10:25 am
  • Reply ewok1993

    i applaud your passion for becoming fit and being healthy. your dedication towards your goal is unparalleled. great job. we all could learn a thing or two from you. glad that you realized you need to shed those pounds before the thing called metabolism slows down considerably.

    happy holidays.

    December 24, 2013 at 9:57 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      oo nga nahiya naman ako sa dedication niya, maria, hahaha!! While I’m eating she slowly sips her cup of tea or coffee. She is really one determined lady so I know whatever goals she sets for herself, she will realize because she really knows how to work hard & aim for the prize :)

      December 24, 2013 at 9:59 am
  • Reply trisha_cm

    Thanks for sharing Jana, I will try this! Good luck to me!

    December 24, 2013 at 10:29 am
  • Reply mr_jeng

    OMG…. speechless…… OMG….. sadly for me…. my mom got the best of me and let the refopen and in my room… LOL… seriously though… epic… epic dedication… and i guess it is just a frame of mind…. great job and keep on doing what makes you happy.. you go girl!!!!! great job……….

    @mama bear …. grabe si Jana… siya na…. wala ako masabi…. I am soooo inggit sa dedication…. ^_^ great job on being her mother mama bear… ^_^ be proud ^_^

    Also…. Merry Christmas.. from my family to yours… Happy Holidays.. and may God bless you and your family always… ^_^

    December 24, 2013 at 10:32 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Christmas to you & your family, baby bear!! <3

      December 24, 2013 at 11:12 am
  • Reply Elaine

    You did it, Jana! I love the meals that you shared and the workout routine too. See you soon love! You and your mom are both adorable. :)

    December 24, 2013 at 11:40 am
  • Reply blissfulveronica

    this is so nice. i love love love this post… i have experienced the same things as you did Jana. from my formative years until now… i know that some people get bullied because of their weight as i did but its totally different when it is out there, written or told… this is so inspiring. i hope you have overcome all of the things that people have told you… its not bad to listen to criticisms but let that not define who you are… from all the posts i have seen, you have so much love around you… anyhow, i truly admire your dedication and determination in losing all the weight, i hope i get some of that… again and again, i love this post.. love love love! thank you for sharing some of the intimate things about your life Jana and thank you Ms. Janey (feeling close ako e) for making her share…. Happy holidays to your family!!

    December 24, 2013 at 12:02 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Thank you Veronica for your support to my Jana, and your words of wisdom. I keep telling her she’s tall kasi so she can’t expect to be super thin. She’s 5’7″ and her bone structure is medium. But I want her to be happy & confident, so I support her decision. :)

      December 24, 2013 at 1:21 pm
      • Reply blissfulveronica

        hi Ms Janey! this is Geevie… I logged on to my wp account so yung “press” name ko yung lumabas….. Happy holidays again to you and the rest of the Goppets!

        December 24, 2013 at 3:29 pm
  • Reply Ada

    How many times do you visit the gym per week, Jana? And do you have a cheat day? Brw, I admire your discipline and determination :)

    Sorry Ms Jane , nagpa-consult na ako haha :)

    December 24, 2013 at 12:35 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      hahaha it’s ok Ada I’m happy you’re interacting with my Jana. <3 She visits the gym only when she is free. I told her to prioritize school first. But she makes it a point to go at least once a week coz maintenance nalang suya now. And yes, she has cheat days but she only tastes, she doesn't finish the whole thing. Guess who finishes it off haha! :P

      December 24, 2013 at 1:19 pm
    • Reply readygetsetjanago

      Hi ate Ada! During the summer, I worked out every other day. I was very strict about it because I needed to reach my goal. Last semester naman, my schedule allowed me to work out 3x a week. But now, with all the 7 PM classes and stuff, I only get to work out once. If I’m lucky and have no major tests, I get to work out twice a week at most. However, since I’ve more or less achieved my goal body, I’m a lot easier on myself :) and of course I have cheats days haha! I’ll die without them. I just make sure to control the portion. Thank you for your kind words!!!

      December 24, 2013 at 4:18 pm
  • Reply Lauren Isabel

    thank you for this inspirational story!! i am in AWE at how much discipline Jana has….. :(( she looks great and i wish i could follow suit!! happy happy holidays tita jane and to the rest of your family!! :)

    December 24, 2013 at 1:23 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Hi baby girl!! <3 you look perfect the way you are. :) Merry Christmas to you & yout family, sweetie!! :-*

      December 24, 2013 at 1:29 pm
  • Reply jam

    Oh jana. This made me tear a lil bit. A lot of the things you said hit close to home. And jane has every right to brag about you because you are one amazing lady. Turning to a healthy lifestyle aside, you are a GIFTED writer. I enjoyed this post a lot. Thanks for sharing your very welcome insights. Merry merry christmas to the goppets!

    December 24, 2013 at 4:20 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      thank you!! <3 Yes I am so proud of my jana I'm so blessed with having such good kids & ate is one hecka leader to her siblings :)

      December 24, 2013 at 6:00 pm
  • Reply chris

    My dearest Jana, I was teary-eyed while I was reading this post because I can totally relate. I was also the biggest in class,last girl in line and was called so many names. Kids can be mean and it truly left a mark.

    I am so proud of you, my darling sister. You look so fab! Job well done.
    Ate Chris ♡

    December 24, 2013 at 5:18 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      omg chris ikaw?? chubby?? parang I cannot even imagine haha! ;) Tapos pastry chef pa. Merry christmas love you!! :-*

      December 24, 2013 at 5:58 pm
  • Reply ai-lyn

    OMG Jana, at your young age you are so DISCIPLINE!(as in sagad to d bones ka) Saludo me sooooo much sa ‘yo now. May pinaghuhugutan ka pala talaga. Me naman baligtad, i am so thin in my school days up to college, now naman d na mapigilan paglobo hmmp! I wish i can be discipline as u sana hahahahah

    December 24, 2013 at 5:36 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Yes even when she was younger i saw discipline already with the way she studies. Alam ko malayo ang mararating niya. :) Thank you for your support to my jana. :-*

      December 24, 2013 at 6:05 pm
  • Reply readygetsetjanago

    Thank you all for your wonderful words! They really mean a lot to me. I am very moved and all the more motivated. I was teary eyed writing this and it was very painful to revisit my past. Your comments make me feel so loved. So thank you :) and thank you, Boppy, for your never ending support. Love you!

    December 24, 2013 at 6:09 pm
  • Reply Rocynderella

    OMG Jana! I got teary eyed while reading this post! I jst hope na lahat sila makita ka nila ngyon lalo na ur classmate in grade school who told u na “d crush ng bayan will never like you!”

    U’re my fitspiration (so help me God!)

    pero next yearna ko magdadiet mommy jane after ng holidays, char!

    December 24, 2013 at 7:11 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      omg my thoughts exactly,Rocyn! ;)) thank you. And merry christmas! :-*

      December 24, 2013 at 9:17 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      hahaha you don’t need to diet kaya. So sexy!! :)) Merry christmas rocyn!! :-*

      December 24, 2013 at 11:49 pm
  • Reply Emily Go

    Naiyak naman ako… its no wonder ur so lovely, ate. Only the resilient and kind hearted people rise so elegantly from something painful/traumatizing. Kaya carry lang. I have a couple of lbs to lose..not much but ur my thinspiration

    December 25, 2013 at 2:22 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      thank you so much for your kindness & support to my baby, emily! <3

      December 25, 2013 at 9:09 am
  • Reply ronelie

    super love this Christmas entry,very touching and inspirational to many….you’re so GOrgeous Jana Go I really admire you’re strong will to change..Keep it up!

    December 26, 2013 at 9:31 am
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Thank you ronelie. Btw pls email me my laptop crashed. I’m trying to organize a lunch for all my winners mwah mwah!! :-*

      December 26, 2013 at 11:12 pm
  • Reply Anonymous

    I can totally relate!! I’ve always been fat and often teased about it. When I got into college, I shed pounds because I got into our University’s dance troupe. When I transferred to another UP unit, I got the pounds back. I focused on my acads and didn’t auditioned for dance organizations. When I started working last year, I enrolled in dance classes (belly dancing, streetdance, pole dancing, etc) But I had to stop because I got hospitalized and was crazy busy with work. I’d love to try Muay Thai. And I’m definitely enrolling this January. Thank you for being an inspiration :)

    Happy Holidays! :)

    December 26, 2013 at 5:09 pm
  • Reply Chesca Labaro

    My tear duct is getting full. Trying not to cry here. I totally relate to this. Well not on the diet cause I’m actually Morbidly Obese, yes my BMI is 40>. My story was a bit different (a lot different, more madrama), I never felt bad being the big fat kid during my childhood. I really didn’t care about what others say. I was very childish I didn’t care how I look and how others think of me all I care about was eating what I want. Until I reached college that I felt different, I got bullied and felt that no one notices me. Alam mo yung nagtatanong ka na bat walang nagkakagusto sayo or nagsasabi man lang na maganda ka. I lost my self confidence and made friends through text just because I felt that it’s the only place I can conceal my looks and just introduce myself to others by just showing them who I am. Kung ano ako at hindi kung ano itsura ko. I thought it was my happy place but in the end it made things worst. I’ve experience meeting some of them in person whom i thought appreciated me but in the end just disappeared kasi I didn’t look good. It was the most difficult time of my life. I felt lost, suicidal and hopeless. I don’t want to walk outside kasi I would here people saying how big I was. To the point I had to stop studying cause I didn’t have the courage to go outside and face the criticisms anymore. But it’s different now. I now have a 2 year old daughter who makes my life the happiest ever. And what you’ve shared is a great help on how I can be fit and healthier for the sake of my daughter. I want to be healthy for her, I don’t want to die early and left her just yet. Thank you for sharing what you’ve done to be fit and fab. Hoping someday I can also wear nice clothes and run after my little kid like there’s no tomorrow.

    December 27, 2013 at 10:30 pm
    • Reply Sugar and Spice

      Thank you for sharing. Like I always say, beauty is skin deep. :) But hats off to you for wanting to live a healthier life for your daughter. I must really follow your footsteps. Health, after all, is wealth. :)

      December 30, 2013 at 1:19 am
  • Reply Candice

    loving this very inspirational blog entry~ <3
    cheers to a better and healthier LIFESTYLE!

    January 8, 2014 at 5:17 pm
  • Reply houseofgoods

    Just read this post and gusto ko lang isigaw sa mga umapi sayo Jana na, BULAG SILA!!!!!
    *&^$^&)$# inis much ako sa mga nangbully sayo. paki pic nga yang block mate mo, matignan if kagandahan ang fez.
    I was on the heavier side too when i was little (actually now pa din hihihi)
    Though I did not get affected by the criticism because i have a very very strong personality. matatakot sila talaga dahil jojombagin ko sila hehehe.
    just like the other day, pasakay kame ng jeep ng anak ko, 2 daw kulang sabi ko sakto, eh ayaw magsipag usog, sabi ko baba na lang tayo dahil magbabayad ka din lang naman dapat yung comfortable ka. aba may umepal na matanda ang sabi, kaya pala daw di kasya kase malake ako, sinagot ko nga, kako ikaw matanda kana pero bibig mo wala kang kinatandaan. kaya ganyan pa din buhay mo eh. I dont usually amke patol sa mga elders but this one, masama talaga ugali. hindi ko pwedeng palampasin.
    sensya na if novela ang post ko. 1st time hahahahaha
    Just do your thing. Always embrace yourself with the love of your family.

    April 19, 2014 at 12:44 pm
    • Reply sugargospice

      Awwww thank you. I’ll make sure my Jana reads your comment. Thank you for the boost of confidence. I appreciate all the kondness & support you guys give to me & my family!! :-*

      April 19, 2014 at 1:42 pm
  • Reply carla

    Seriously, the whole time I was reading this post, I was scratching my head.. How could those kids think you were fat? As in I had to scroll back and re-study your throwback pics because for the life of me couldn’t even fathom how they could think of you as fat. Honestly, you looked normal and healthy!! Hay mga kabataan ngayon, are they really that mean?? But then, good job!! Hope to see more meal ideas in the future. Tortilla wraps and cheese sounds good! Just to make kwento, I myself just lost 30 pounds — just from not hiring a yaya for my super kulit toddler + watching what I eat (though not as strict as you! ). I just realized though, that I’ve become what they call “skinny fat” — which is what happens when you lose weight but don’t work out. So, I may look thin but actually have lots of flab and loose skin pa rin. Kaya tama nga na dapat mag work out talaga. Thanks for the inspiration and more power!

    October 29, 2014 at 1:02 am
    • Reply sugargospice

      Thank you for your kind words Carla! :) I’ll make sure my Jana reads this tom. No sembreak for her huhu.

      October 29, 2014 at 2:34 am

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