Gym Etiquette 101: How to Conduct Yourself in the Gym


This summer season with people hitting the swimming pools and beaches at an all-time record high, the people going to the gym to double time on their time and efforts into sculpting their perfect physique are also in droves. However, amidst their unbreakable concentration in committing to having a healthier and better figure, some of them have disregarded even the simplest gym etiquette. It may have missed their noticed or they may think it is fairly non-existent but gym etiquette is very much an essential aspect in showing courtesy to your fellow gym goers as well as make it an overall better experience for you.

So the next time you go to your favorite country club to try out your new exercise regimen, do not forget these few gym etiquette pointers at home.

1.) Wipe your sweat

Working out on different gym equipment and sports facilities while listening to music is the best way to break out a sweat and get our bodies pumping, but unless you are solitarily working out or are in the privacy of your own homes, chances are someone is going to be next to you working out as well. And considering how close some gym equipment are positioned next to each other, you may be unintentionally flinging your body fluids to the person next to you—unintentionally making the experience extremely gross for them. The same goes for leaving your sweat on benches and machines for the next person to wipe. Show some courtesy by wiping up when the sweat is coming down and make sure the gym machines are well and dry for the next person to use.

2.) If you are not working out, do not sit on the equipment

Essentially, you would need breaks in between routines and sets in order for your heart rate and breathing to recover. However, while you are recuperating for a minute or two, be considerate enough to leave the equipment for someone else to use—especially if you would already notice a queue. Resting on the equipment while people are waiting and lining up to use it is just plain rude.

3.) Put the weights back where you got them

This is supposed to be something your mother taught you as a child and something that should be ingrained in you by now. But unfortunately, many gym goers are still guilty of leaving weights wherever for the gym attendant (or worse, the next person using them) to return. You are not only effectively making your gym look like a mini obstacle course but you are making it a very precarious place for other gym goers. The cardinal rule is: If you can lift it out of its rack, then you can definitely lift it back to the rack.

4.) Do not intimidate anyone

Gym goers develop routines all the time which they follow religiously every single time they go to the gym, but that does not mean that other people are aware of this. You may be a regular at your gym (or hey, you may be the brawniest among the people in there) but does not mean you can give someone the stink-eye while they are doing their routine on your preferred machine just because they did not get your memo that they are occupying the equipment for your next set. This is just plain rude and an obvious show of power-tripping. Instead of being all passive aggressive, politely let the person know that you are waiting to use the machine or even better, ask to work in with them when they are resting.

5.) Do not spray perfume

The gym is no place for your cloying scent so spraying your preferred Ralph Lauren perfume or Chanel 5 is definitely a no-no. You will only succeed in making the place an unbearable space for a workout. Imagine mixing in a combination of people’s sweat and your favorite perfume and you may just come with a new and innovative scent called “Eau de yuck”


Top Things to do In the Philippines this Summer


The summer heat is definitely on.

This is the season where people sweat a bit more profusely in the afternoons, dress a little too lightly or a bit less than they used to, feast on cold fizzy drinks or cold food and frequent the beach more often. It should be no surprise to you if you see your co-workers waltz into their cubicles sporting a brand new tan. It is, after all, the summer season—that one season wherein people could not help but be ambivalent whether they are thankful for the summer heat, or are seething about it. However, they would all agree that this is the best season to enjoy the best outdoor activities in the country as no other season would offer you this equal opportunity of basking in the sun and enjoying the various outdoor activities.

So if you are planning an epic summer getaway, do not book your tickets for abroad just yet and enjoy the multitude of summer events you and your family or friends can enjoy this season all within the Philippines. Get your pen and paper at the ready and be sure to include some of the most epic adventures you are about to have as we have listed down below.



Without a doubt, the Philippines is teeming with lush wild forests, tropical beaches and scenic sights—all of which you can behold from different areas of the archipelago, or even from the comforts of your own home. Do a bit of research about your local area and discover which tourist spots have newly cropped up or you have neglected to check out over the years and visit that particular place. If you have likely discovered most of the scenic sites and tried all the things there is to do in your local area, go discover some of the local tourist spots in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao and translate to real life what you have seen and researched.



The Philippines is very well known for being a tropical paradise filled to the brim with a multitude of white sand beaches with a plethora of marine life within them. And they are all waiting for you to discover them. Cool yourself off from the summer heat and book a trip to the nearest place with the best beaches and immerse yourself in the sights and soak your feet in saltwater and bury them in white powdery sand. Some places that offer you an array of beautiful and scenic beaches are: Boracay Island, Aklan, Palawan, El Nido, and Puerto Galera.



Summer is the best time of the year to engage in outdoor activities and fortunately for us, the Philippines plays host to a multitude of diverse activities. Different local destinations have their own corresponding activities: You can have a few rounds of gold in the various golf courses around the country, swim with the gentle giants known as whale sharks in Cebu, go surfing in Baler, Aurora, go trekking in Mt.Apo—the possibilities are endless and this is the best time to try some of them.



Seeing as the Philippines plays host to a rich and abundant marine life, it is no question that we would be considered as Asia’s Dive Capital. Whether you are a novice or a professional or just an individual looking for a little underwater adventure, discover the country’s best diving spots that hold a prolific and expansive collection of marine creatures. Visit some of the country’s known and best dive spots such as Anilao, Puerto Galera and Boracay for an underwater experience you truly will not forget.




More often than not, we have neglected to discover and appreciate all the natural wonders our hometowns have to offer us. This is largely attributed to the fact that we are all leading perpetually busy lives that we have forgotten or overlooked the fact that we have a superfluity of activities to do just around us. This summer season, rediscover or discover them all and give yourself a treat by immersing yourself in the local wonders of your hometown.

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Planning a Safe and Fun ATV Ride


As summer looms over us so are the endless possibilities of summer outdoor activities. These can range anywhere from outdoor beach sports to indoor sports activities. However, for some automobile enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers, this is the perfect time to venture into all-terrain vehicle riding or ATV riding for brevity. In fact, the Philippines has been making waves for hosting areas where riding ATV’s may be possible. This is a fun activity you can do outdoors during your leisure time and is not only limited to adults as everyone and anyone can do it, with enough safety precautions of course.
So, for those of you who are novices or even the experts in ATV riding and whether you are planning this as a Saturday afternoon hangout activity, or a weekday run in the seemingly endless and trail-less dirt terrains, planning ahead for your trip can it make it so much more fun and safe in particular.


Remember that you are essentially operating a machine (your mini four wheeler is still a machine after all) and like most machines, it would break down from time to time and would constantly need to be checked and maintained. This is a precaution, have your ATVs checked before riding them into terrains as you will never know if you might be driving one with a malfunctioning break. It is still better to be safe than sorry after all. Additionally, have a good look at your physical condition, being sickly and injured would make you unfit to ride an ATV, especially for those long and rough excursions.
Before heading out, make sure your quad is adequately prepared by checking all the fluid levels and condition. This includes oil, brake fluid and engine coolant on liquid cooled machines–pretty much like how you should check your cars before driving off with them. Peruse the tires and make sure they are not showing any signs of wear and also that you have the proper air pressure. Check your brakes, clutch and throttle cables, if they are adjusted and lubricated as necessary and that the battery and all lights are working if equipped. If you are not in good shape (physically or mentally) or your quad is not in good and working order, then you might as well forgo it as your trip may be precarious for your welfare and your health.


Admittedly, you would get yourself and your ride ready. But apart from that, you would need to have a list of essential items you should take with you including an emergency kit. This list will serve as your reference for you to plan your great ride. What your emergency kit should contain are the items listed down below:

*First Aid Kit
*Tow strap
*Tool Kit
*Tire repair kit with pump
*Spare cash and credit cards


Having a toolkit is extremely necessary and it does not even have to be very big. The kit that comes with your four-wheeler is usually found under the seat or behind a body panel on some older models has most of the tools you will need. If your ATV does not come supplied with one, then it is best you furnish yourself with one.


Long ATV rides are fun, but you should keep in mind to try and plan your stops beforehand especially if you are not familiar with the area you will be riding in. For unfamiliar places, try reviewing maps and pick places to stop in order for you to rest. Pick places with scenic views so that you can enjoy while you rest. Additionally, it is a good idea to let someone know where you are going and when you are expected to return so that if something untoward may happen, someone is at least apprised of your activities. If you are going to be late, contact those who you have notified about your whereabouts and update them what your new time of arrival will be.

Lastly, it is better to ride in a group or at least with someone else as there are some things beyond our control while you are out on the trail so riding with a group or with others may help should anything awry happen.


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Choosing the Appropriate Running Shoes for You



Running shoes come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

And no pair exactly comes the same.

However, neophytes new to running activities commit the novice mistake of donning on whatever shoes they can get their soles on and use that for running events. However, this often overlooked mistake can be the determining factor between your win or your loss. Choosing appropriate running shoes do not only come in two facets such as how stylish it is and the size it comes. No, when you are choosing the right shoes for you, you need to consider your very specific needs. For greenhorns, these are things they neglect to consider while regular running pundits regard these aspects as their very reason for choosing a pair of running shoes. Your specific needs include things like your weight, your biomechanics, the shape and not just the size of your feet and the very surfaces you run on (It is very different to be running on terrains and using shoes designed for the gym or Crossfit workouts). Taking all these into consequence would essentially mean that what may be a good pair for you might be a terrible pair for others.
So if you are looking to buy yourself your first pair of running shoes, consider the things below before making a purchase.


Road Running Shoes are the shoes you wear for forays onto surfaces with slight irregularities. They are usually light and flexible and are made to stabilize and cushion feet during repetitive strides on hard and even surfaces.
Cross Training Shoes on the other hand are shoes gym goers and Crossfit enthusiasts prefer. There is occasionally more contact with the ground so this is much more appropriate than going for shoes with a thick platform sole.
Trail Running Shoes are running shoes that are specifically designed for off-road routes and uneven ground, usually littered with rocks, mud and other sorts of obstacles. These shoes are equipped with aggressive solid traction and is enhanced to offer better stability, support and underfoot protection.


Stability Shoes

These shoes are perfect for runners who tend to demonstrate mild to moderate overpronation when running. The design usually includes a firm “post” in order to reinforce the arch side of each midsole–an area mostly impacted during overpronation.

Neutral Shoes

For mild pronators, these shoes can be appropriate but this pair is best for neutral runners who tend to roll outward as it provides shock absorption and some medial support as well. Choose super-cushioned shoes that provide more cushioning than any other traditional shoes for greater shock absorption.

Minimalist Shoes

These shoes feature extreme lightweight construction. It offers little to zero arch support in order t encourage a natural running motion and a midfoot strike all the while still offering cushioning and flex. There are minimalist styles that offer stability posting to assist the overpronating runner transition to a barefoot running position.

Motion Control Shoes

These shoes are ideal for runners who demonstrate moderate to severe overpronation. These pairs come with features such as stiffer heels or a design built on a straighter which would counter over pronation.

Choosing the right pair of shoes for your next running event need not be a grueling task if you have carefully considered your specific needs. A few tips to make sure you get the best and most appropriate shoes for you is to try shoes at the end of the day as this when your feet is at its largest considering the day’s activities (This will ensure you do not buy shoes that are too small). And if you do wear orthotics, bring them along as they also impact the fit of a shoe.

Lastly, when choosing shoes, you do not need to conform to your gender, males can buy from women’s shoes if they find that they have a narrow pair of feet while women can buy from men’s shoes if they find they have a larger or wider foot.


Culinary gems from Old Pampanga

Chef Gene Gonzalez will demonstrate how to cook traditional Pampanga cuisine on Feb. 6, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., at The Maya Kitchen Culinary Center.

Recipes include Adobo del Diablo (Kapampangan adobo) with a deep bronze color produced by constant simmering and deglazing of the pan with stock when a crust is formed; Menudo Sulipeña (oxtail stew), slow-simmered dish of oxtail, ham and chorizo Bilbao with brandy; Pato Al Caparas (duck with capers), braised duck with ham and liver; Pasta Juan, chewy coconut bars; and Princess Cake, layers of butter cake iced with buttercream.

Gonzalez owns and runs Café Ysabel at 455 P. Guevarra St., San Juan. Together with his chef son Gino, they run Buenisimo by Café Ysabel at Scout Tuazon cor. Scout Lozano, Diliman, QC.

For inquiries, visit www.themayakitchen.com or e-mail contactus@themayakitchen.com. The Maya Kitchen Culinary Center is at 8/F, Liberty Bldg., 835 A. Arnaiz Ave., Makati, tel. 8921185, 8925011 loc. 108, 0929-6796102.

Winter food show

Sixteen homegrown social enterprises take the spotlight in Food Philippines’ third participation in Winter Fancy Food Show (WFFS) on Jan. 17-19 at Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco, US.

“What food the Philippines will be bringing to WFFS are products that do not only stand out given their high food export quality, but those that advocate social, cultural and environmental stands,” says Rosvi C. Gaetos, executive director of Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions, the export promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industry.

“It is already recognized that specialty food items from the Philippines are of premium quality—natural, healthy and functional.”

Participating companies include Brandexports Philippines Inc. with Peace and Equity Foundation, Eighth Wonder Inc., Fruits of Life, JUD Products Philippines Inc., Mama Sita’s (Marigold Manufacturing Corp) and Philfresh Corp.

The Philippine pavilion will be at the South Hall of Moscone Convention Center.


Tourist Spots You Should Never Fail to Visit When In Laguna



A brand new year has just commenced and predictably, some of you may have travel itineraries for the year ahead. For those of you deciding to explore local wonders, you will be pleased to know that our country hosts an abundance of vacation spots and places to visit. The Philippines plays host to many wonderful tourist destinations which local and foreign visitors flock to regularly and if you are a local who has not yet searched every nook and cranny the Philippines has to offer then maybe this is the year you should start listing them on your travel list.

One of the most frequented local destination is Laguna, Philippines. The place is a cornucopia of tourist spots and is basically a food connoisseur’s favorite spot to gorge on local food. Just ask anyone residing near the country’s capital and you would soon find out why a lot of locals and foreigners would be found clustered in this area. Undoubtedly, Laguna Philippines is teeming with tourist attractions for adventurers and nature lovers alike.

However, for those of you who have never set foot in Laguna, you might be at a loss as to how to plot your Laguna vacation. Well, whether it may be a day trip or a weekend getaway in the Philippines, one thing is for sure, you are guaranteed to enjoy Laguna. So if you have plotted Laguna as your next area of destination, never fail to visit these various tourist spots that are definitive of the place.


Any self-respecting Filipino citizen should know that their national hero’s hometown and birthplace is in Calamba, Laguna which is why a quick visit to pay homage to Jose Rizal’s shrine should be in order. The Jose Rizal Shrine is one of the tourist sites in Laguna teeming with people, and it is worthy to note that for a place that holds so much history, it has been preserved well. Visit this place when in Laguna and see for yourself the house which molded and shaped the boy that would soon become the country’s national hero.


For the water babies, Splash Island is the best place for you. Located in Biñan, Laguna, Splash Island remains unchallenged when it comes to being the largest water park in the Philippines. Equipped with countless water slides, various rides for both the kids and the kids at heart, Splash Island is the perfect place to visit for an occasion with friends or with family. Visit Splash Island and everyone will be guaranteed fun and amusement and be prepared in exploring diverse slides of different sizes and angles.


For nature lovers, adventurers and hiking enthusiasts alike Mount Makiling is the place to be. Named after a mystical dweller and protector, Maria Makiling, this mountain in Laguna is a legendary inactive volcano. For those of you seeking a day adventure of would just like to bask yourself in the midst of nature, this mountain is ideal for camping, trekking, bird watching and mountain biking.




One of Laguna’s interesting and unique tourist spots is Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery. A definitive feature of the tourist spot is the burial site located inside or more accurately put, beneath a church. It is unique as it is the only one of its kind in the Philippines and is considered a historical landmark as its underground crypt was used as meeting place in the year 1986 by the Katipuneros or by the Filipino revolutionaries.




Undoubtedly, Pagsanjan Falls is Laguna’s pride when it comes to famous natural attractions. For those of you visiting Laguna for the first time, this is one place you should never miss. Rent a small boat that would take you to the falls or “shoot the rapids”. From there, skilled and accredited boatmen will assist you and take you in an idyllic and scenic boat ride in Magdapio River before reaching the main falls.




For aspiring artists, the National Arts Center should be one of your initial stops when in Laguna. Situated in Mt. Makiling, Los Baños, Laguna, the NAC is a hub for aspiring young artists. Incidentally, a boarding school for artistically gifted Filipino secondary school students can be found here. For those seeking tourist attractions, the NAC serves as a great vantage point in perusing Laguna de Bay, Crocodile Lake, Talim Island and the surrounding towns of Laguna.


Games You can Play with Frisbee




Lightweight, handy and can easily fit into any bag, the Frisbee has been making waves ever since its early inception.

Tossing a disc towards another individual has never been a more satisfying and enjoyable activity. The fact is, Frisbee Philippines has been on the rise and has been making its prominence known recently among sports enthusiasts and health buffs. It is a great way to tone your muscles, improves your health and is an overall fun activity.

Additionally, this is one of the fun go to games when you are planning to hit the beach. It does not need so much equipment apart from the flying disc and it is portable. However, your Frisbee is more versatile than you originally thought, and that nondescript flying disc in your possession carries a multitude of activities you can do. Sure, the traditional way of throwing a flying disc back and forth may be a fun and enjoyable game, there are a lot more entertaining ways that employ and utilize a Frisbee. This can range from casual to complex, a two-man game to a team sport.

Looking for ways to spice up your activities with the flying disc? Read on below.


If you are one of the fortunate people who lives in the vicinity of a vast and lush lawn near you, then Frisbee Golf is one of the games you can play using a Frisbee. Given the moniker “frolf” or disc golf, this game shares the same aspects with regular golf with the obvious exception of utilizing Frisbees instead of golf balls and holes are replaced with baskets. The mechanics of the game are fairly easy as the objective of the game is to get the disc inside the basket in as few tosses as possible.

You can easily make your own makeshift course as well, and this is possible in any empty lot. Just fashion a basket out of pail or an unused laundry basket. This game can be played with as many players as you want with players taking turns on one disc.


This is pretty straightforward as the rules and mechanics are similar to regular bowling. Prop up a set of lightweight bottles that can easily be knocked over by a Frisbee and commence target practice. Aim and then hurl your Frisbee towards the targets. The beauty of this game is that there are so many diverse ways to play it such as switching up the rules to declaring the winner as the one who tossed the least number of times to knock the entire set or considering the winner as the one who knocked the most bottles in one throw.


This is also known as Guts. Have two teams on a court akin to a dodgeball-like court. Each team would have a thrower that would throw the Frisbee into the other team’s court. Should the Frisbee land out of bounds, the defensive team earns a point and if the defensive team fails to catch the Frisbee, the offensive team scores a point. If the defensive team catches the toss then neither team scores.


When you do not have a set of pals to play Frisbee with, enlist the company of your best animal friend and pet. Dogs enjoy a game of Frisbee as it is very much similar to “fetch” or “catch”, they enjoy it as much or even more than their owners. Obviously, the Frisbee would be the accessory utilized in playing this game in lieu of a ball, and it can also serve as a makeshift dish for whenever your pooch is ready to have a water break.


There are so many various ways to play with a Frisbee, and though the classic and traditional approach never gets old, it never hurts to incorporate new ways to play as well. So on a bright and sunny afternoon, gather some friends and bring out your flying discs then get playing!