The Secrets To Lose Weight

It’s almost been a year.

Friends and family had commented, praised and asked what the secret is.

Of course, I don’t mind sharing what I know. I’m no expert as I still am learning myself but I happily answered their questions. Yet, most seems disappointed by my answer.


Because most still wishes that there’s that one ‘magic pill’ who will magically tighten, toned and make your arms, your tummy and your legs, smaller. Yes, instant gratification is human’s instinct. I was once that way, on the lookout for an instant result.


Sorry to burst your hopeful bubbles, there is no shortcuts, no magic pills, no secret formula. There’s only had work, commitment to living a healthy lifestyle and tons of sweat.

No Magic Pill


Sadly, I did fell for those sweet tempting ads promising this pills or that pills could shrink your tummy, will make the numbers on my scale get smaller.

Guess what? Those were all just that…empty marketing gimmick!

Yeah, sometimes you’ll lose weight fast taking one of those stuff but did you know those are water weight? Easy comes, easy goes!

Sometimes last year, I fell ‘victim’ and tried one of those ‘magic’ shakes guaranteed to make you lose weights, I’ve heard even some celebrities here are using them. I forced myself to buy the expensive shake. Took one in the morning to replace breakfast and one at night for dinner. Lunch was my only food.

Granted I lost weight but I felt lethargic because I was starving!

As soon as I ran out of the shake, my weight went back up. Do you want to be addicted to something that may cause your liver any damage in let’s says 5 to 10 years down the road? I wouldn’t touch any of those stuff ever again!

I had to re-train myself to choose healthier food. This is not an easy task. It is very easy to get deep fried foods here for the snack. They cost almost nothing too. Let’s not even go to the instant noodles, for we have plenty of them here that sadly it has become part of the culture to eat instant noodles.

All of these times I thought you’d have to starve yourself, you have to ‘suffer’ to lose those weights. Big mistakes! I once only ate papayas for breakfast and dinner for months! Yuck, I still stay away from papayas now if I have other fruit options.

Turned out by starving myself, besides the obvious of being hungry all the time, my metabolism got screwed up. Why? Because when you starved yourself, your brain will think the body is in danger, it will then hold on to that fat we want to get rid off. Starvation mode = body will hold on to your fat. This is a fact!

I was wrong! If you want to lose weight, you better start eating!

Eat To Lose Weight

All of us know how important exercise is by now so let’s skip the talk about working out and focus on the fuel aka the food first.

I’ve been working out seriously since April 2012, almost a year but it wasn’t until sometime in July 2012 that I started eating healthy.

Do you want flat abs? Toned and not flabby arms?

The biggest changes you could possibly do is by cleaning up your diet.


I don’t count calories – gah, I can’t stand numbers! – and I don’t weigh what I eat but most importantly, I don’t starve myself anymore since I adopt this new way of eating. The healthy eating. This is a sample of what I eat during the day:

Breakfast (7:00 AM):

  • Coffee with low calories creamer with 1 sachet of stevia (I’m trying to wean myself out of the creamer tho!)
  • Egg whites omelet loaded with veggies such as mushrooms, kale/spinach, tomatoes, etc). I make my omelets with 5-6 egg whites and 1-2 yolks.

Morning Snack (10:00 AM):

  • A cup of hot green tea with 1 sachet stevia
  • A small bowl of edamame

Lunch (12:00 PM):

  • Red rice, veggies and chicken breast. Note: Although red rice is healthier, portion control is still a must here. I’d rather load up on the protein aka chicken boobies!

Afternoon Snack (between 2:00 – 3:00 PM):

  • Greek Yogurt (or other Low Fat Yogurt just pay attention to the sugar content) or fresh cut up mixed fruits with hot sauce. (It’s an Indonesian thing called rujak).
  • Green tea or Coffee with Stevia

Dinner (between 6:30 -7:00 PM):

  • Red rice, veggies, chicken/fish.

This just a rough estimate of what I eat on a daily basis. Sometimes I’d eat up to 6 times a day! Lately, because I workout at night after work, I barely had dinner. What I would have is my protein shake mixed with all kinds of adds on such as banana, peanut butter, etc right after my workout then I’d be too tired and just went to bed.

Healthy eating doesn’t mean I stop enjoying good food. Actually, a lot of my friends at work got shocked to see how much food I haul to work daily. They didn’t believe it at first that healthy food can taste good without being loaded with MSG or salts. Most of them still think that healthy food is bland, no taste like the kind of food you will get at the hospital. Some even thought I’d only eat boiled stuff. Hell no!

My best friend? My beloved oven! I barely cook with salt these days, even if I do it’ll be using sea salt and no sugar or MSG (yes people still use these stuff here). The results? I’m fine, my taste buds are normal; actually, I can’t stand too salty food anymore.

I basically had said NO to all white stuff when it comes to food. White flour, white bread, white rice, white sugar. All of these are being replaced by the healthier kinds. Whole-wheat flour and bread, brown/red rice or my current favorite, coconut flour. Which is cheap here!

Reading label has now become a habit too. At first, I couldn’t care much about ingredients label but not anymore. Processed foods are something I try to limit lately. Why? Because they are loaded with chemicals and preservatives. Unfortunately, here for imported items, a lot of the ingredients labels are being covered by local stickers that had nothing to do with the ingredients. Whenever I went groceries shopping, you bet I’d peel those suckers out to see the labels. It’s my damn rights as a consumer, no?

Not everything with “Low Fat” or “Healthy” labels is actually healthy. You’d be surprised! Try to pick up a pack of Low Fat Yogurt, and read the labels. Believe me, I was shocked to see some low-fat yogurt can packed up to 22 grams of sugar!

Let’s start to read those labels; it can help reducing your waistline.

So who says to lose weights you have to starve yourself? Since I know better now, honestly? I would never go back to my old ways and starved again! Heck, NO!

If you follow me on Pinterest, you’d see by now how much I pinned healthy recipes. I’m addicted to trying them out or trying to make a healthier version of the Indonesian food.

An old friend just messages me the other day. She has two children and had shed 22lbs. Bravo! But she lamented on her stomach, real trouble spots for us moms, isn’t? She asked if she have to do so sit-ups until she rolls around the room. Hah! I told her nope. I hate sit-ups and crunches, plus with my herniated discs I really am not allowed to do those.

I asked her how her diet is. She said she had stopped eating rice and sugar which is great but she confessed she loves her noodles and meatballs too much.

Oh no! Noodles are simple carbs, so if we eat them we would feel full so fast but we’ll get hungry again so fast. Meatballs?  Luckily, I found someone who makes homemade meatballs without any preservatives so I never buy them from the store again.

Good Carbs VS Bad Carbs

She coaxed me to share the secret on how to have flat abs. Funny, because mine isn’t flat. There are improvements of course but I don’t have a six-pack – yet!

I explained to her that we cannot do spot reduction. We can’t pin point our body parts and hoping they will get toned, tighter, smaller. There are only two keys to losing weights: healthy eating and exercise consistently. You can’t expect great results if you didn’t give it your all. That’s it, the weights will take care of itself.

We put on the weights not overnight so please don’t expect an overnight result. This is not a magic show. Remember this: Nothing worth having is easy to get!

Wanna lose those extra weights? Wanna have flat rock hard abs? Let’s start living healthy, say no to junk & processed foods and start exercising. It took me years to realize there are NO shortcut, no magic pill…only dedication, hard work and most importantly self-discipline.

70% diet



  1. Aaron Ginyard
    March 20, 2013 / 3:38 pm

    Great article mo! I understand what you’re saying about the healthy choices. That is where I fall short. Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t eat everything, but I do allow myself room to have a cheat meal in moderation.

    • Mo
      March 21, 2013 / 9:00 am

      Thank you, Aaron!
      You seems to be doing really well in your healthy eating looking from your Instagram pictures 🙂
      Cheat meal in moderation is fine and I encourage cheat meals so we don’t feel deprived and ended up gorging on all those ‘not-so-healthy’ food.

  2. March 20, 2013 / 9:02 pm

    Love this post! No matter how many times we hear it, losing weight is no magic trick. It is hard work! This post is worth coming back to again and again, because we all need to remind ourselves what you are saying here in very easy to understand terms. Bravo!

    • Mo
      March 22, 2013 / 9:32 am

      Thank you Andrea for your kind words. We’ve known it all before that it takes a lot of self discipline and hard works but I guess we all wants to quick fix. 🙂

  3. March 21, 2013 / 3:57 am

    A little bit off-topic maybe, but you had me rolling on the floor when you mentioned “chicken boobies” in your post… Sorry I could not help myself laughing about that. lol

    • Mo
      March 22, 2013 / 9:36 am

      Hahaha Jan, I was laughing so hard too when I first saw someone use ‘chicken boobies’ on Instagram. yeah, I’m such a dork hahaha

  4. March 21, 2013 / 7:17 am

    I can’t say I eat the wrong food, but definitely I had the wrong eating habits.
    For almost 10 months I had been trying to loose baby weight by limiting the amount of food I eat, even to a very unhealthy amounts.
    then I just started going for walks, each morning, me and our dog, 45 minutes.
    in 3 weeks I was able to fit in my old jeans.

    I agree… There is no a magic pill, just work, consistency and routine.

    • Mo
      March 22, 2013 / 10:28 am

      Yay for loosing the baby weight, Ewa! Congrats. Little steps really do matters, be it a walking – it is still counts as exercising, moving our body so that will helps 🙂

  5. Saundra Rohn
    March 24, 2013 / 3:54 am

    I really enjoyed this post

  6. March 24, 2013 / 9:24 pm

    Mbak Mo, how did you do the two language post? I want to do the same with my blog. Thank youuu soo much! 🙂

  7. March 26, 2013 / 2:06 am

    I love your commitment to health! You’re absolutely right, there are no shortcuts. So often, when people want to lose weight, they aim for and look for the easiest way to meet their goals. But there are no easy shortcuts. Losing weight takes a commitment to changing your lifestyle, changing what you eat, changing how you move your body. Once you make that commitment, things will get easier. But until then, everything on the path of less weight and better health will seem hard.

  8. March 27, 2013 / 10:38 am

    Great post, Maureen. It definitely is diet, more than exercise. I applaud you for making these changes in your life, and modeling good eating habits for your son.

  9. Ren
    March 28, 2013 / 2:26 am

    Maureen, I really admire you for sticking up to your routines and eating habit. I’ve been going on and off with the eating habits, but seeing your ig posts and blogs kept me motivated to stay on track. It sure ain’t easy to change the lifestyle and maintain that habit but seeing how much you progress always makes me feel that somehow I can change to be fit as well. Thank you for sharing all the tips and motivations

  10. July 1, 2013 / 8:55 pm

    In order to be fit and skinny, you have to take care yourself through healthy diet and lifestyle. And by the way, Im truly really impressed with the other language that you’ve used:)

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