Tag Archives: discipline

Willpower – and a little forgetfulness goes a long way


At 10.30pm last night, I had a little hunger pang. Not surprising, since I had dinner more than 4 hours ago. It being a little late, I ignored it.

At 11pm. I had a sudden urge to eat a snack. To be absolutely specific, it was an urge to eat tomyam flavoured fried ikan bilis (anchovies) with peanuts, stored in a little plastic container, out of sight, with the cooking spices.

How about a PLUM? Said the good angel.


I fixed my eyes on the TV, watching Octavian get fed up with Mark Antony.


How about a PLUM?

I touched my tummy, sitting lazily on my butt, on the sofa, being a couch potato.


How about a PLUM?

In the end, I ….. ignored them all. I ate neither plum nor little fried fish.

I even told myself, “I’ll have some ikan bilis in the morning before my cereal” but I forgot about it. A little forgetfulness goes a long way. And so does willpower.

If you are thinking about losing weight, I will advise this: for the next few weeks, ask yourself, really ask yourself, are you mentally up for it? Can you do it? Do you have the discipline. It may be that you’ve failed before, or you really don’t know. Then, test yourself – change your diet for the next few weeks and stick to it. Try cutting your rice/white bread and other refined carbs by 1/3 or 1/2. If you succeed, you not only have hope, but you might just lose a couple of kilos during the experiment.

I sort of knew I could change my diet, as I’d already done so for some months, but my weakness is exercise. I have no will to keep myself at it. Perhaps you are better disciplined at exercise than with diet.

Either way, don’t sign up for a weight loss programme until you have convinced yourself you really want to do this. (Or in my case, paying for the gym sessions does force me to keep at it – I am too poor a man to afford such waste).

And once you have accepted it, do not give up. Tell yourself that that is not an option.

Remember: you will get used to it. You will get used to eating less, you will get used to the pain, the exhaustion. My trainer told me on Day 1, when I nearly died halfway through gym, that I will get better with time. I did. When I lost it again while he was away, he said I would recover, and I did. I never thought I would overcome nasi lemak deprivation, but I did.

And worst of all, something that will cause all you ladies to scream in horror, I am now immune to chocolate. I walked into Marks & Spencers one day with my wife. I stood in front of an entire wall of chocolate, and their combined charm had no effect on me.

Well, then again, I am no woman. :)


A 2-Week Challenge

The last 2 weeks have been a challenge. My trainer has been away on reservist training, which lasts two weeks. My last gym session was on Sep 30. So I’m supposed to exercise on my own, and while I’ve done so, it’s really not the same as going to the gym. Not even half as vigorous! I’ve been mainly jogging, about 3 times a week. I’m supposed to engage in some exercises, but I don’t do as much for sure. We were supposed to have a session last Sunday, but trainer was not feeling well so he messaged me on Saturday night to cancel. To be honest, that was one of the most relaxed Saturday nights in a long time, not having to “worry” about the Sunday morning tort… I mean, gym session. But I think by the time I get back to gym this coming Sunday, my muscle mass would’ve dropped.

But the one thing I think I have enough willpower to pull off is continue to cut my weight via dieting. Thus far, other than the appearance of a delicious coca-cola cake from my wife’s oven, and one particularly stressful weekend, my weight has been steadily dropping. One week ago I finally went below 72kg but it went back up to 73 a day or two later. This was from that stressful weekend. I realize that stress is really bad on weight – you tend to eat more, and your body tends to be less efficient. I’ll have to write on this some other day.

Two days ago my office went out for one of those lunches that I dread and enjoy at the same time – a buffet. And it was a really good one: Penang Place at Connexis, Fusionopolis at Buona Vista. Everything was good! A colleague remarked that she has never seen me “eat” like this. But another one later remarked that I didn’t really indulge. I guess I won, because, surprisingly, not much damage was done. Ok, about 400grams of damage lah.

I ate rather carefully the next day, i.e. yesterday. Went for a 40-minute jog/walk. To my delight, this morning I was below 72kg again.