DISCLAIMER: “I am not here to brag to you about anything— because in the first place, I fail a lot (as in a lot) before I can accomplish a certain goal in my life.
I am also a person who has a dream career yet learned to love what God had given me, someone who wishes things were different at some point, however, looking at what God had blessed me, I have no right to complain..
Like you, I am a dreamer…Who believes that someday, God will bless me, then, He will listen to my prayers and grant everything written in my consistent prayer list.”–Lerie
My name is Lerie Almo Queyquep-Huelgas. My pen name is Arachidamia.
I am a Millennial Arachidamia. I am a proud Filipina.
WARRIOR ANCESTORS: My great grandfather was a US Army World War II Veteran and my father was a Philippine Army Veteran.
I was born in the famous (According to Old Tales) Barangay of the “Warriors”-Solidwest, in the Heritage City of Vigan, Province of Ilocos Sur, in the beautiful tropical country of the Philippines. However, I am not a war freak…hahahha!
I am the eldest child of the six children of the late Nardo and Cherry. Born before Kelly, Kheng, Melai, Bors and Mimi.
EDUCATIONAL PROFILE: I am an alumna of the following notable public schools:
- Elementary-Burgos Memorial School West Batch 1996;
- Highschool- University of Northern Philippines-Laboratory Highschool Batch 2000;
- College-University of Northern Philippines- College of Arts and Sciences-Double Major in Political Science and History Batch 2004 (Provincial Government Scholar) ; and,
- Post-Graduate-University of Northern Philippines-College of Law-Bachelor of Laws (British Scholar) Batch 2008
DISCLAIMER: Basically, I am not an expert writer. I just love telling stories (Anyway, I am a Historian by diploma), giving travel tips, sharing my running journeys and my learned lessons from my embarrassing experiences. Hahaha!
I am here to share to you my experiences specially “my Travel and Running Journeys.” Feel free to learn from “My Mistakes” and learn how I cope up and rose above it.
I am here to inspire and empower every human being. That’s up to you if you want to be empowered. That’s your life anyway. Hahaha!
TRAVEL INTRO: I am not one of those bloggers who quit their jobs to travel the world. I love my job and in fact, my corporate job income is one of the basic foundations of my effective traveling.
I grew up being called “Walay or Payangyang” in Ilocos Dialect. This means it was hard for me to stay at home and mostly enjoying the outdoor activities. My Mamang Cher used to scold me because I don’t stay at home most of the time in my childhood years. I loved swimming in the Mestizo River and we called it “Karayan.” I loved playing hide and seek or “Linnemmengan,” biking in Burgos Street and almost all 90’s child street games, like “sha’tung, tumbang preso, kadang-kadang, basketball sa kanto” and the like.
My first travel Buddy was my childhood best friend, John-John, who also love the outdoors. We used to joyride with his scooter to enjoy Vigan and nearby municipalities.
Nowadays, my real life travel buddy is my husband Rhod.
Locally, we have visited most landmarks of the Islands of Luzon and some famous landmarks in the Visayas Region. We will try to write about those trips. Today, we are planning and saving to explore more cities in Mindanao such as Davao City, Zamboanga City, Siargao, General Santos and many more.
I started traveling overseas in 2014 with my then long time fiance, now my husband Rhod. We first visited the “Playground of the Rich” Singapore. I also traveled with my family in the same year in Hongkong for Epi to visit Disneyland. She was just 8 years old then.
As of today, I have visited few Asian countries for personal leisure and some sponsored trips. And, I am planning to visit the remaining Asian countries that allow my Filipino Passport.
TRAVEL STYLE: We are a “STICK TO MY BUDGET TRAVELERS.” The Microsoft Excel is a powerful tool for my travel budgeting. As for Airfare, I book tickets 2-3 months before travel. Since we are budget travelers, AirAsia and Cebu Pacific are our airlines. For our hotels, Agoda.com is one perfect portal.
TRAVEL KIT: Most of our travels, I carry one backpack and a sling bag for my passports, ticket and hotel accommodation reservation. I bring chocolates, water bottle for refilling in our destinations, crackers and noodle cups for emergency purposes. On the other hand, my husband wants to bring his trolley bag and his sling bag. hahahha!
TRAVEL DURATIONS: 3-5 days
BUDGET LIMIT: In our Asian explorations, I save Php 20,000 budget for each travel for 2pax.
TIP: I stick to my Php 50-70 office lunch budget to save for traveling. Or, I bring my pre-cooked lunch “baon” in the office.
RUNNING INTRO: I was not really a running enthusiast, I am more of a mountain biker, mountain climber and loved walking way back in my little yet rich in history hometown. I loved borrowing my generous cousins mountain bikes in Vigan City. Thank you Manong Jhong and Manong Jufranz! Hahaha! .
When I started my bar exam review in Baguio City in 2008, I learned to run because as per advised of one of my good lawyer friend, Atty. Jong, running is a good sport for the brain. As a starter, I ran the distance from my apartment to the apartment of my review buddy, now Atty. Mars. My apology, I did not have any gadget to measure the distance before but it made me sweat despite the cold weather in the mountainous city of Baguio.
When I went to review in Manila City in 2009, I continued my regular running activities before my classes. Most of the time, I ran from Taft Avenue through United Nations Avenue going to CCP in Manila City.
I stopped running when I got employed in a Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) company in Makati City in the same year due to my working schedule. My night shift for 6 months (10 PM to 6 AM) really affected my sleeping and eating habits. I would rather sleep than run or exercise during that time. I also remember that I slept immediately right after eating breakfast. So, I decided to change employer because my job schedule made me an obese. I had to change lifestyle or else my health would deteriorate.
WEIGHT GAIN STRUGGLE: When I arrived in Manila in 2009 and worked in August of the same year, I was weighting 45 kilos. When I resigned from my work in Makati City in 2011, I was weighting 62 kilos. Imagine, I gained 17 kilos for just a span of one year and eleven months.
I started joining fun runs in 2013. My present employer gave me the opportunity to join such events for free. How? Aseana City which is located in Tambo, Parañaque City, Philippines is a perfect venue for fun runs and other sporting events because of its strategic location in the bay area. Aseana City is owned by our company, D. M. Wenceslao and Associates, Inc. Our company gives complimentary registrations to its employees.
Due to regular running and joining fun runs from 2013 to 2015, I lost 10 kilos. I started with my first 3 kms run with the Scholar Run in 2013, followed by 5 kms runs, 10 kms runs and half-marathons.
However, due to becoming too complacent with my successful weight loss, I started cooking and eating again the delicious Filipino dishes such as Adobo with Unlimited White Rice, Chicken Afritada with Unlimited White Rice, Chicken Curry and so on and so forth. Hahahah! I got back to my own old self eating my comfort food when I am tired and exhausted.
See, I eat too much and I run less. I settled. As a product of my laziness, I am in my 60 kilos now. Hahahah!
Due to my weight gaining, I started running again. I started in November last year, but I could not make it on a regular basis. I tried again on January as a New Year’s Resolution but failed. And so many start up failures! Period!
In March 6, 2018, I woke up with the determination to fight against obesity. I said to myself that I need to persevere and discipline myself or else, nothing will happen to me. I tried running on a regular basis but as they say, setting up a new habit is hard during the first 2 weeks.
I RE-read the book of Dale Carnegie “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living.” This is a good read for people who constantly worry and who are losing hopes due to failures, disappointments, anxiety and etc.
PURPOSE: Now, I am running to glorify God, for my health, for my family, specially for my daughter and my husband. I am running for those people who are losing hope due to earthly problems. I run for those people suffering from Cancer and Heart Problems. I run because I just have to run to live and enjoy this One and Only Life that God gave me.
In fairness, I am already running on a regular basis right now. I downloaded the Nike+RunClub Application by Nike. The app is helping me a lot in my running goals.
I am also working on a diet plan, I hope it will help me lose some pounds so I can run faster. Changing food menus on our table is a struggle. I love cooking saucy foods such as Chicken and Pork Adobo, Pork Afritada and our favorite breakfast of fried rice, fried egg and fried danggit. My family loves my everyday home cooked food. Hahaha!
A month ago, I have changed our white rice with brown rice. This is a good start. I am also preparing my grocery list filled with rich in omega fish products, vegetables rich in fiber and some affordable fruits. Hahahah!
I know there will be temptations. At these moments, prayer will be my most powerful tool. Hahaha!
Now, I am inspired to join the 42nd Milo Marathon in the Philippines on July 29, 2018. This will be my first full marathon. I have already completed the first month of my 4 months training using my Nike+RunClub App. My 9.50 km run last week was a non stop run. A new personal best and I will keep trying until I can achieve my target pacing. Before, I can only run 1 km nonstop. Hahaha!
Let’s see where this training leads me. Hahaah! See more: FitFatFeat Journey
RUNNING AS FAMILY: Way back in Baguio City, I was a solo runner. Now, I run with my husband most of the time.
I also started running with my daughter in 2014 when she was 8 years old and loved complaining. Now, she is a full pledge Long Jump and Triple Jump Athlete. She recently joined and competed in the Region 1 Athletics Association or R1AA held in Alaminos City, Pangasinan last January 2018. Though she did not qualify for the Palarong Pambansa 2018, her exposure and experience will help her in her future races. I also encouraged her to continue to work hard and persevere for her athletic dreams. Also, she was a 10 km Finisher in the Color Manila Run 2017 held in Vigan City.
I also run with my sisters on occasional basis. Hahahah!
LIFE’S STATUS: I am a mother to Epi, a legal wife to Rhod, a trainee marathoner and a new blogger. Don’t expect too much from me. Please bear with my grammar. I will assure you that I will edit and correct my articles. Hahahah!
BLOGGING GOALS: I aim that my blogging will inspire and empower other people to live to enjoy life through traveling and running.
We are also working hard and praying the hardest that someday we can accomplish our American and European Marathon and Travel Goals. We will see!
Let’s see where my Filipino Passport will fly me.
All for the greater glory of God!