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.

But now I'm back; back in Toronto, Canada. It's not 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 and I left Korea with Flipside Fitness on my brain, 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.



Saturday, January 14, 2017

A Caffeinated Full Day of Work and Working Out

Going keto means you can get a little more creative with adding in more fats with your 
meals and, in this case, adding peanut butter into coffee. 
Slaving away at the library on my business proposal meant sending S.O.S messages for my dying need for more coffee.  It was a struggle but I made it.  Made it to my coffee date with J-Doll without getting an additional coffee.
My coffee with J-Doll gave me a extra boast of energy and off to Systems I went for training.
Killed it with training and the proof was in just how rough and scruff my hands got.
Left training totally on an endorphine high.
Trained right till closing, till the front desk gal told me I had to leave.
Hardcore baby.  Go hard or go home!

It's the Weekend, Right?! So What... Saturday, January 14

Today's Schedule:

9:00am       Wake up.
10:30am     Breakfast out.
11:30am      Toronto Reference Library -- business proposal research.
4:00pm       Coffee with J-Doll.
5:30pm       System Fitness -- weight training (chest and back) and cardio.
7:30pm       Arrive at home -- shower and eat.
8:00pm       Update homepage.
8:30pm       Answer fan mail and business emails.
9:30pm       Work on my business proposal -- focus: competition.
11:00pm      Business emailing.
11:30pm      Continue working on business proposal -- focus: researching prices.
12:45am      Design watermark logo.
1:20am        Email business mentor watermark logo.
1:40am.      Continue working on business proposal -- focus: possible clients.
2:30am       Wrap up work and go to sleep.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Ending the Full Day with a Food Coma

 Juggled a lot... A LOT... of work today, five countries worth of work.  
Actually, six when you consider I had personal training clients here to plan for and whatnot.
Balboa has proven to be the best little sidekick.  No matter where I am in the house, he is always by my side.  Today I grabbed a blanket my mom had made me and I gave it to him.  And while I worked away on the kitchen table he slept on his blanket by my feet.  He's so cute.
Sometimes I feel guilty for just how much I work and how little of attention he gets so I'm always sure to take mini work breaks to show him some love.
Unfortunately him returning "love" means kicking me in the face as he passes out and then tooting.
In between work and working out (or what was suppose to be me working out), I got treated out to an amazing protein-packed meal at a local restaurant that is a meat-lover's heaven -- 420 Smokehouse.
Telling the water to hold ALL the carbs was followed up by him leaving a little note on the bill, nice.

A Crash and Burn Kind of Night... Friday, January 13

I'm so international... Hahaha.  It's true.  Today in addition to the obvious fine, friendly folks here in Canada, I dealt with five other countries for work.

1.  Korea -- Job Interview with a personal trainer who wants to work at Hulk's.

2.  Japan -- Boxing club coach contacted me regarding a proposal he has for me.

3.  Thailand -- I was contacted by MJKO here in Toronto who has a young female amateur fighter who will be traveling to Thailand and wants to continue their training while there.  I know a kick boxer training in Thailand so I contacted her.

4.  India  -- I have a supplier there whom I need to order more boxing equipment from -- 10oz and 14oz gloves.

5.  Philippines -- Got confirmation that I officially have a place to live in when I make my temporary move there next month.

My job title:  professional athlete, entrepreneur, CEO of Hulk's Club.

Took the night of training -- off of boxing, off of weight training, and off of sparring at Fight Club.  I've been going super hard with long hours doing my business proposal.  I even took the night off of Keto, well, kind of.  I went to 420 Smokehouse, indulged in a meat platter of pure delishness and then was treated to a small blizzard at Dairy Queen.  

I didn't actually intend to take the night off of training, to tell you the truth.  My plan was to return home from dinner at 8:30pm, lay down till a bit after 9pm and then get to System Fitness by 10pm the latest.  I'd have a full hour to get in a solid workout in. 

That was the plan.  What ended up happening in reality was a whole other story.

Laid down for a "nap" and my nap turned into a 12 hour sleep.  Woke up the next day, ouch!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

From the Bedroom to the Gym Floor

My mom used to joke and say "how can I control my life when I can't control my hair".
This is how I wake up on a daily bases -- mad bedhead hair.  Messy hair, don't care.
Lunch at my all-time favourite breakfast place -- Figs.  Because getting 
soaked in the rain in "fancy clothes" needs a pick-me-upper!!! 
A possible building I have a curious eye on.  I've seen this building for well over a year now but never once ever thought of it as a possible candidate for my Second Dream, until today that is.
I knew I carried a lot of things with me through out the day, for my training and coaching, but tonight I decided to unpack my bag just to see what all that I had in it. And to think I emptied it a bit the other day. I took out my gym shower stuff -- shampoo, conditioner, comb, make-up, face towel. 

Inside my bag...
Sparring gloves
Heavy bag gloves
Hand wraps
Hand pads
Boxing boots
Skipping rope
Agility ladder
Resistance band
Protein shake mix
Shaker bottle
Earphones
iPod
iPad
iPhone
iPod speaker
Speaker cord
Phone charger
Business proposal sketch book
Training folders
Agenda
Pens
Small purse (ID, business cards, money)
Apartment keys
Tall socks
Toque
Extra training clothes
Ran into Coach Madman tonight at training.
Running training to resume very, very, VERY soon.... nice!

Someone Call 9-1-1... Thursday, January 12

I was on fire today, not literally but those who encountered me today may beg to differ.  I was just so hyper.  I was on such a roll, such a high for life and what I'm doing, so incredibly pumped for my workout and pumped even long after my workout when I should have been dead to the world and exhausted.  My brain was working faster than I could even stop to comprehend all it was processing.  

I blame the Hydroxycut Black... Well, that and I just love, love, LOVE what I'm doing.

Every day I'm hustlin', working towards my dream.  The hustle is very much part of the dream and I love it too. 

My day had started off rough though.  I didn't wake up as one of those over annoyingly happy-in-the-morning people who I always tell myself I want to punch in the face and pee on.

[Ouch.... That sounded way to harsh and borderline perverted.]

What's worse than putting an athlete in uncomfortable clothes (aka "regular" clothes) and heeled boots, it's getting them stuck in the pouring rain right before they're to walk into an office packed with perfectly pretty professionals who all sport picture-perfect hair and walk around with their nicely ironed clothes bought from their embarrassingly big and overly intimidating paychecks.  

Yup, that's how my morning started.  

It didn't start raining until I got off at my stop.  I didn't have an umbrella either; I don't own an umbrella.  I'm an athlete; we athletes run through the rain.  Competitive athletes like me always seem to turn the usual activity into a workout.  Everything gets competitive.  Everyone turns into competition.  We run so fast the rain drops can't even catch us.

Ya, okay... "Too far there Amy".  Okay.

Arrived at the Distillery District looking like a drowned rat and then had to sit through lunch wet and cold.

That was how my day started.  

Arrived back home, changed into dry clothes and then sat down to attack my business proposal.  Today I got a mad sweet hook up with a website that offers tips and tools to write a super professional proposal so I was overly focused on that.  It was a bit of a sensory overload in a sense.  I still have so much to do and I feel myself so fixated on sounding smooth with what I'm writing as oppose to getting the numbers and research down for such crucial facts and figures needed. 

I worked about two hours on my business proposal in the morning, another 3 in the afternoon and then 2 more in the evening.  Part of my work on it involved contacting various gyms in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area), copying and pasting what I've already wrote but into this new proposal template I'm going with, brainstorming additional ideas, and then bouncing ideas around with a key business mentor, a client of mine and my running coach.  

And then I found out something.

I found out that there are 44 "others" doing what I want to do here in Toronto but no one else is actually doing what it is I want to do.  So in a sense I don't actually have any competition.

And just like that I won big.  Every day I'm hustling; every day I'm winning... But I've already won actually because there is no competition.  The only competition is just me and what's going on in my own head with random moments of sensory overload and occasional doubt.  This is happening though and I'm winning.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Birthday Blessings for a Beautiful BDay Boy

Today marked my beautiful four-legged boy's birthday.
Mr. Balboa Button is five years old now and I love him so much more now than ever before.
But before I could really celebrate his birthday I had business to tend to.
Checked out a hip doggie shop down in the Distillery District where Balboa has been personally escorted there before for his nails.  Must be nice, right, being getting your nails professionally cut.  Even I don't get pampered like that.  Only once have I had a pedicure yet my little boy has gone twice here.  
It is a dog's life!
In the evening Balboa opened his gifts and had a lot of fun.
One of his gifts was a big box of peanut butter cookies... are they tasty for us two-legged friends?!
Ohhhhhhh.... I totally know this is two-legged friend friendly!
It's a tradition for my four legged friends to get a birthday pizza and this birthday marked Balboa's first birthday pizza in Canada.  No sweet potato options in this country but he still loved it!

Not a Life for the Average... Wednesday, January 11

HIM:  You only worked two hours today?!  What do you do with all your free time?
ME;  I studied at the library, I went and checked out some equipment at the store, did my research on 4 different gyms, met up with my main business mentor,... [ramble, ramble, ramble of more things I did]. What free time?  I'm an entrepreneur AND an athlete, so that means I'm overworked and underfed.
  
Entrepreneur, someone who works 70 hours a week to avoid a 40 hour work week.  Those who don't have that entrepreneur mentality will never understand.  It is a blessing but a curse at the same time, to not be satisfied with anything but your own dream and aspirations. 

HIM:  What are you doing up so late?.. I'm heading to bed.
ME:   I'm drawing the floor plan for my Second Dream.

"I'm drawing the floor plan", I repeated in my head... "I'm drawing".  That's exactly what I was doing.  I was sitting there with a pen in hand, sketching and erasing, erasing and sketching, designing MY floor plan for MY dream, MY Second Dream.

...and just like that the craziness of the day, the nonstop go of it and the lack of paycheck that comes with all the endless hours of work I do was justified.  The average person was going to sleep.  It was coming up to 1am and I was still working on my business plan at Snakes & Lattes, a place that I often go to work on work at because it's open late.  I've only twice have ever played a game here, acted like a "typical patron", all other times I come loaded with my laptop or iPad and my Second Dream brainstorming book.  "Go to sleep my friend", I said to myself.  "You sleep and dream.  I'm too busy making my life my dream."

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Empowering Myself (and Getting Sweaty too)

I needed to buy new earrings.  I lost the "LO" to my Love earrings, you know the ones I've been wearing for well over a year -- right ear reads "LO" and the left ear reads "VE".
Anyways, I had asked the sales lady at the jewelry shop that I wanted a similar pair of earrings, something that is different.  She recommended silver unicorn earrings.

Korean men sometimes refer to white woman as being unicorns.
I've been called a unicorn numerous times, it's a derogatory term, so to be recommended unicorn earrings.... wow.  

I bought them.
I wear a silver unicorn earring in my left ear and a silver heart in my right.

Unicorns are a fantasy animals and many Korean men fantizie as to what it'd be like to be with a foreign woman, a white woman.  They watch too many Hollywood movies, which doesn't help, and so western woman are portrayed as being much more sexually active and "easy"-going as Korean women.  

Needless to say, the slur "unicorn" is very derogatory.  I remember the first time someone ever called me that. It was the reason why I suddenly dyed my hair black and kept it black for so long.  I figured my small eyes and black hair would confuse many as to what my background was and thus I wouldn't be called a unicorn anymore.  I may have confused some but the name calling continued.

I shared this on my Instagram and noted that sometimes the things that were meant to break you down are what you can use to build yourself up.  I know I comment about the various negative things that happened to me in Korea but there is a lot of positive though.  I feel like I've benefited more from the negative.  It's made me so much stronger than I ever imagined.  And that's why I bought the unicorn earrings, as a reminder that I am so much stronger than anything anyone can throw at me.

I'm embracing the negative by turning it into something positive.
It wasn't a waste of time and energy.  
It was a lesson learned, a character building activity.
And on that note, after picking up my earrings, I went to make my body stronger.
I showed up at System Fitness for a butt-kicking cardio session.
 Love, love, LOVE System.
Kicked off my morning workout with Bruno, Iggy pushed me through the grueling last ten minutes, and then Salt N' Peppa got me to the end.
I finished my morning cardio as a gym nasty athlete.
...and then I came back for more in the evening -- LEG DAY!!!

Working Hard Not to Puke... Tuesday, January 10

No water today in my apartment building due to renovations the workers are doing so I headed out to System in the morning to get in a solid cardio session and then I showered there.  If it wasn't the no water in my building than it would have been the craziness outside with Mother Nature throwing us an insane amount of snow, either way I was not running outside today. 

Today's Schedule:
9am            Plan my personal training sessions for tomorrow.
10am          Go to the Eaton Centre to buy new earrings.
10:30am    Cardio session at System.
1pm            Work on my business proposal research at Toronto Reference Library.
3pm            Check out the workout accessories at Winners.
3:30pm       CIBC.
4pm            Power hour of studying Tagalog (Filipino). 
5pm            Work on my business proposal. 
8pm            Weight training at System -- LEG DAY!!!

After weight training tonight everything and anything was no-go.  It was day two of taking Hydroxycut Black and today's dosage killed me.  I got through my leg workout in the evening but going into my second exercise I started dry heaving.  I seriously thought I was going to puke and continued having to fight it off till I was done.  I added some ab roll-outs at the end of my leg workout and going into my 9th rep (9th rep out of 55) I literally puked in my own mouth a bit.  Nasty.  

And then came the ride home in Betty, a rough and tough jeep with oversized wheels and bouncy shocks.

I love Betty but tonight my stomach and all that wanted to escape from it didn't.

On route home I ended up picking up a lettuce wrap at Five Guys and inhaling it.  Then I went home and watched a movie.  I felt much better but it had been a nonstop day so I wanted to treat myself to some solid rest and relaxation.

Me relax?!  Sometimes.  Sometimes I pencil it into my schedule but at this point in the game I rather be squatting or working on my business proposal so rest and relaxation isn't so enjoyable for me.  I rather workout or work.

LETTUCE WRAP: a grilled burger wrapped in lettuce as oppose to sitting on a carb-high bun like your typical, non-Keto-friendly burger.  

Monday, January 09, 2017

Fighting the Forces of Cuteness

The struggle IS real.
Balboa is most definitely the bestest of best little snuggle buddies to have around but it only makes it impossible to wake up in the morning and leave him home alone.
Even when I'm not with him though I'm thinking about him.  
Today I meet up with the Captain at his office and he passed on a special gift
for Balboa as this Wednesday marks Balboa's 5th birthday! 
Balboa's first birthday in Canada.  I wonder if he'll get the royal pizza birthday treatment like he did in Korea.  Who's going to buy him a pizza?!  It's tradition.

A Suppliment Kick... Monday, January 9

Today I started using Hydroxycut Black -- a recommendation to me to help kick myslef out of the frustrated state I'm currently in.

The recommended dosage is two pills twice a day.

I took 1 pill after my breakfast (my biggest meal) and then 2 after my lunch because I didn't think I felt the first dosage like I had anticipated.  But then ohhhhh did it kick in.

I have about 40 minutes of my life today that I can't honestly account for beyond admitting that I know I went into super speed warped speed mode.  Skittles had texted me, telling me he was downstairs and that's when I realized my room had been cleaned, garbage collected and taken out, my floors had been washed, laundry folded, dishes washed, and I had even refolded all my clothes in my closet AND dropped by the rental office in the next building over, all in the span of 40 minutes.  I didn't remember doing all that but I knew for sure my little faithful assistant, the ever so cute Balboa, as cute and as smart as he is there was no way he could have done it.  Nice try, sweet wish, but no such luck.

Grabbed some Greek salad and chicken swarma before hitting the gym but by the time I was done boxing I was starving again.  Hydroxycut Black is kicking my butt and firing up my metabolism, yikes.  I felt much more energized throughout my entire workout, both with my boxing and weight training, and then I felt myself considerably stronger during weight training.  With almost every single exercise I did I upped my weights by at least an additional 10lbs.  I did pretty much the same reps as before but with heavier weights and my realization of it gave me an extra pump, enabling me to continue going hard.  

Sunday, January 08, 2017

A Perfect Sunday

My Sunday mornings are spent at church, surrounded by the beautiful people of Grant AME Church.  Today the men's choir sang.  They're my favourite choir here.
...my favourite seating partner.
...my favourite crew of people, enjoying my favourite meal, breakfast.... well, brunch. Close enough.
I indulged in a few carbs today -- rye toast.  Love, love, LOVE rye toast!!!
Still going strong with my keto though so bring on the bacon and sausages.

Not a Day of Rest... Sunday, January 8

Today's Schedule:
11am          Church service. 
1:30pm       Brunch out with friends.
5:30pm       Training at System.
8pm            Work on my homepage.
10pm          Planning for my personal training sessions.
11pm          Study Tagalog (Filipino).
12am          Work on my business proposal.
12:30pm     Cook the chicken.
2am.            Go to bed.

I took yesterday off of training on account of the total brain-drain I caused myself with pulling the long hours working on my business proposal.  After church and after brunch out with friends, I headed over to System Fitness for training, 5:30pm to 7pm. 

System was packed!!!

I think I'm going to change my Sunday off to Saturday off and hit the gym on Sundays, or at least switch it up every other weekend.  Saturdays and Sundays are so different at Systems.  More of my friends and familiar faces train on Sundays so the energy there is super positive.  Consequently it means I get more energized and have better workouts.  

Saturday, January 07, 2017

No Days Off

At the library on a Saturday morning, putting in some serious work for my Second Dream.
I already DO own my future, just working on making it bigger and brighter than my present.
This past Christmas I got a new book, the black one seen in this picture, it's for my continuation of what I've filled the blue book with -- plans for my Second Dream.  My Second Dream finally has a name now but I can't disclose it just yet, sorry.
After a solid work period at the library, I came home to cook some food up and then get back to work.  The tank top in my computer wallpaper screen actually reads "No days off" and that's true.  Such is the life of an entrepreneur. 

Going Hard with the Hustle... Saturday, January 7

4.5hrs at the library.
3hrs at home.
7.5hrs in total today spent on my business proposal.

Researching info, sorting through format stuff, typing stuff up, brainstorming ideas.

My original plan was to finish my business proposal by January 31st, because I thought I'd be heading out to the Philippines on that day, but now I have a little more time.  More time, that is, if I don't fly out to Mexico to train and fight before heading out to the Philippines.  Regardless, my fly out date for the Philippines has been pushed to February.

I need to get a rough draft of my business proposal done before the Philippines.

My plan is to go to the Philippines at the end of February, leave in late May/early June. Fly to Korea to conclude my stuff there.  Stay there for a couple of weeks, at most, then be back in Canada by mid June.  Start approaching investors and looking at real state, and adopt my Olga Ali.  Not too sure on when exactly to adopt her and by that I mean when in my coming true of my Second Dream would be appropriate to do so.  Do I wait till I have my grand opening of it to adopt her or do I get her in the process leading up to it, like when I get my location, first investor, or what?  What milestone in making my Second Dream come true do I go and get my girl Olga???

Friday, January 06, 2017

Dinner with the Birthday Boy

Dinner for four -- us "Asians".
It's argued that I'm more Asian than the Asians in my life 
but I don't know if that's an insult or compliment.
Much love for the Asians in my life, my "people"... hahaha.
 And much love for the birthday boy -- Captain Bowtie.   
He may very well be the only one that gets my dry humor and silly sarcastic jokes but he gets them and it's always a good time with him.

Birthday Celebrations... Friday, January 6

Headed out for the Captain’s birthday, us “Asians” – Captain Bowtie, Skittles, MaG and me.  

It was Captain Bowtie’s birthday today so I showed up earlier, at his office, and brought him a card and a little cake.  His work had arranged a birthday cake for him, that was nice, and I just happened to arrive right before they presented it to him so I got offered a piece.  That wasn’t so nice though.  Not nice for my Keto that is. I said no once, perhaps twice, but then gave in when the birthday boy personally asked me.  Angel food cake with a bit in devil in it.  The sweetness of it gave me a little tummy ache for the subway ride home.

I was suppose to go sparring tonight, at Fight Club, but the birthday boy insisted I join him for dinner.

HIM:  Let’s go for dinner together tonight!
ME:  I can’t.  I have sparring – the Fight Club.  .
HIM:  Don’t go.
ME:  But it’s only once a week and last week I didn’t go because of Florida.
HIM:  But I only have one birthday a year.

And just like that I canceled my sparring and decided to join him for dinner.

Dinner for two quickly turned into dinner for 4, with me being the only female so I wasn’t going to complain over that.  Sweet.  We met up down in the Distillery District and walked around, checking out a few restaurants before we decided to sit down at this overly fancy-pants French place.  The place was gorgeous but it seemed way too high class and way too pretty for me.  But it wasn’t my choice; it was the birthday boy’s choice.  It really didn’t matter where we went though, that wasn’t the point.  The point was to celebrate a good friend’s birthday, enjoy each others' company, share some laughs, and that's exactly what we did.

… Then I headed to training after dinner.  Got in some solid rounds on the heavy bag.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Next Week's Birthday Boy!!!

 Guess what little man has a birthday coming up!!!
This little handsome guy, Mr. Balboa Button.
On January 11th he turns five!!!