NTC Tour Dubai 2015

Hey Blissful people! I know I have been MIA for a while, but sorting my schedule again to be back on posting regularly, as mentioned before I am still working my way in this blog. Meanwhile let me share with you an awesome experience 2 weekends ago. NTC Tour came to Dubai last Friday, 15 June 2015!!! 😍 Nike Training Club is a global fitness community of girls driven by self-expression in movement and training. It embodies Nike’s commitment to inspire and enable female athletes through its products, services and experiences. NTC or otherwise Nike Training Club organizes an annual tour around the world bringing together thousands of female athletes and fitness enthusiasts to ignite a year of fitness. NTC tour is a day of training challenges ranging from studio to high intensity. And this year, it is NTC’s very first time in Dubai. When I learned about it, me and my friend Eggie had to join right away. 😆 I signed up more than a month before the event and was so excited. So excited that I had to prepare for it even my workout routine is focused on lifting. Nike exceeded everyone’s expectations with how they organized the day. Nike really knows how to pamper us ladies, and with that let me share you photos, ‘coz what better way to tell than pictures right?

*** Warning: extremely photo-heavy.

This is a photo from an aerial view. *Courtesy of Nike Running Middle East (from their Facebook page)

This is breathtakingly captured. 😍

The group training warm-up, which we weren’t able to attend since we have queued at the braid bar for like 45 minutes already and behind us is an even longer queue. 😃 So yeah, braids it is, but we managed to get to the last 5 minutes of the warm-up.

The countdown.

Here we go! #ntctourdubai #betterforit

A post shared by Joy Lorenzo (@joielorenzo) on

This is the event schedule, the workout schedule is based on the color of your wrist band, we were given “yellow”. Event 11275931_10205455888309754_1628840857_n Yes, we were also given free Nike headbands. I really thought that we’d be getting just a T-shirt for the event considering that the registration is only for AED 100, but Nike went the extra mile to make sure we are well-taken care of. See below. 😍 NTC1 These are what’s inside the goodie bag. I love the statement. The bag’s also filled with vouchers from different health and wellness companies. This shirt was supposed to be printed with my name, but since it was already too late and the event was already over, I practically had to beg Nike staff to allow my shirt and Eggie’s to get printed even with just a ready-made fitspo quote. And yes he did! Thanks to you! Not bad eh? I think the quote gets me pumped up. 😆 DSC_0436 The towel made me feel relieved, since I got a little scolded by the Schatz just because I forgot to bring my own towel. Thanks Nike, you saved me from getting dripping-wet with sweat. Wait a minute, did I just create a short tongue twister? 😎 DSC_0435 In between our workout sesh we hit all the “experience stations” and yes, these stations and everything else I’m going to tell you about are for free! 😮 😍 How cool is that? The braid bar.

*Credits to Nike for the photo above. 11330465_10205455885909694_1630321746_n 11351358_10205455885949695_498388110_n The nail bar. I was the nail technician’s last customer. We hit most of these stations after the workouts, next year if there will be an NTC tour again, we know the drill- hit the event early to experience everything. 😋 11328838_10205456346561210_457856144_n 11358789_10205456326800716_685141503_n 11301343_10205455867869243_1825157039_n The recovery station with facials and massage, which unfortunately we did not have enough time to visit and yes, people were crazy and there were long queues. 11261472_10205456326920719_389424967_n The energy bar by KCal and Essentially, our goodie bag came with a food stub from Kcal. Eggie and I excitedly hoarded the healthy juice. 😆 11119930_10205456346601211_128330421_n 11120561_10205455882229602_300073771_n 11301377_10205455868509259_1782623279_n They had the T-shirt personalization bar I was talking about earlier. And the snapping spots for all the selfies that shouts, “beast-mode” and “fitspiration”. These inspiring messages were all over the event area.

*Credits to Nike for photo above. 11355418_10205455880229552_1221724128_n 11355376_10205455880749565_1701540114_n 11350240_10205455875589436_690075185_n 11272285_10205455867909244_443074457_n 11351488_10205455867749240_356975666_n 11292840_10205455867829242_1916720484_n*All sweaty. 11328854_10205455867669238_1883897195_n Sorry for the quality of the photos, we only had mobile phones with us, because who would bring an HQ DSLR camera to an event full of workouts??! 11287077_10205455867589236_1534039697_n And onto the workouts! We started with strength training where I found my “fitspo” and ultimate fitness girl crush!!! Aaaaah! I know, I sound super excited but her body is literally fitness goal! Follow Salma on Insta by the way and you guys will see why I sound like this.

About last night. #Focus #BetterForIt #NTCTOURDUBAI #NTCTOUR #NikeWomen #Salb

A post shared by Sal's Body Routine (@salbroutine) on

Then we did dance fusion.

We skipped HIT training for dinner, then we capped off the workouts with a yoga session.

And some more photos we snapped, told ya, this is photo-heavy: 11261099_10205455867069223_1956730354_n 11355359_10205455867149225_1181324125_n 11119679_10205455883949645_1955492018_n 11119171_10205455867469233_1748391464_n 11125226_10205455868589261_930556805_n 11124218_10205455868549260_607483929_n 11310958_10205455868149250_353126141_n Making silly faces. 😝 11297827_10205455867989246_1144130978_n Whoah! You go girl! 11262292_10205455868189251_1805574194_n It was indeed a day full of fun and fitness! Thanks to my girl, Eggie, really grateful that you did not hesitate to come with me the moment I asked you to. 😘 Nike did really well in encouraging and igniting fitness motivation that day, I was more inspired to push and work harder to reach my goals, so thanks Nike! I had a blast! Wherever you are in your fitness journey right now, don’t give up. Just do it! Don’t make excuses, soon you’ll see results, just keep pushing. Don’t be better for anyone else, be better for God and yourself. 😍 Remember, we honor God with our bodies. ‘Til next post blissful peeps! Here’s the official video from Nike:

“Feel a little confident the next time you work out by donning a braid.” 👌   Signature 2

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The Pinay Makeover Experience

Last weekend, I got to work with the lovely and talented Erl from Makeup by ERL and the whole team of Pinay Makeover for a makeover photo shoot of 3 lovely Filipinas that was featured on 7Days UAE (Dubai paper), read on the full article here. Erl invited me to do makeup for one of the models. This is really a fun learning experience for me since Erl has been in this industry for quite a long time now and she has already built a name for herself, how sweet of her to invite me right? 😊

Erl and her friend, Kristine formed Pinay Makeover with the help of their talented friends in the Filipino community. It is an online non-profit initiative to showcase the true beauty of the Filipina and promote Pinay empowerment by offering free makeovers to interested Filipinas who are willing to step up to the challenge by sharing their inspiring life story. -from their website

The movement is really inspiring and I believe it gives out a very powerful message to all Filipinas out there to strive and be the best version of themselves, that a Filipina is empowered to make a difference in this world because she has what it takes like any other woman, she is confident, beautiful inside and out, intelligent and worthy of respect. A Filipina is world-class.

To be honest, the stories in their blog have moved me to be more proud of being a Filipina, to fully believe in a Filipina’s abilities, to not compare myself with others or compete but encourage teamwork, to believe that I can achieve whatever I put my heart into. Their project is indeed living up to its aims and visions. Go Filipina!

If you are willing to step up to the challenge and share your Pinay story or if you know someone who is, please nominate or send Pinay Makeover a message here info@pinaymakeover.com or send them a message in their Facebook Page, if you’re in a different location, let them know as they can accommodate your request since Erl’s day job allows her to travel making overseas makeover requests a possibility, how cool can that be? 😍 They also have an Instagram page filled with inspiring stories and quotes about women empowerment, please hit follow ❤. I am sharing the full page 7Days feature photo from their Instagram below:

YES!!! I was invited once and my back and name also made it to 7Days, I was ecstatic when I found out really 😍, I mean it is my first time to read my name and see myself in a newspaper, so that explains my excitement 😆. I am really grateful to Erl, Kristine and to the whole team of talented and creative people behind Pinay Makeover. Kudos too, to the genius photographer, Sir Arian Marcos, check out his website here. More photos from their Instagram page below:

No matter what nationality you have women, let’s continue to promote women empowerment and let’s make a difference in this world.

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#YearofHappy February and March – My Personal Approach

I know it’s already too late for February #YearofHappy post and overdue for March. Here are what’s required for both months:

* February – Go to a thrift shop or dollar store and buy the weirdest, goofiest, strangest things you can find – anything that makes you happy! Then, make a haul post or (better yet) a video sharing what you bought. Don’t spend more than $10 and remember to have fun!

March – Create an inspiration board using your favorite colors, images, or sayings. Haul out those old issues of Glamour and go to town! Hang it somewhere you will see it every day so that you can feel happy and inspired whenever you look at it.

* From October June

February- First off, I didn’t really get to have the time to stop by a thrift store to purchase some strange things. ✌ But here’s the deal, I did spring cleaning, and had stuff that really needed to go out since I haven’t used them for ages. Letting go of things that we always cling to but never used anyway is actually exhilarating and liberating haha! And yes, I’m talking about things that are still usable, they say, “one man’s junk is another man’s treasure.” I’ve really had to think so many times before giving away stuff, I’ve had those convos in my head like “maybe you can wear this somewhere”, “but this reminds you of something really meaningful”. Nevertheless, if you haven’t used them up for such a long time, it’s time to let go especially for clothes. You see, we have tons of things in our homes that are really just sitting for ages and we don’t wanna part with them ever. But as one saying goes, “how can we receive if our hands are full”, I know that’s too deep to incorporate about donating, but think about the people who are fighting for survival right now, maybe receiving that old sweater of yours that’s been sitting in your winter clothes box for years is the only thing that can make a girl happy and warm. We can be a blessing to someone right now by letting go of things we haven’t used for a while. So the things, I have gathered after cleaning went to a donation box nearby my place. * I am not saying this to brag or anything, I am writing about this to encourage people, so that together we can make a big change and help others who are in need right now. Dubai is a city which has immense efforts towards charity and we can make use of that. There are different donation boxes and charitable organizations spread throughout Dubai like those below, and that can be placed few blocks away or next to your building:

1613232307 b Dar_al_Ber_Collection_box download

You can also learn about different charitable organizations in Dubai in this link.

Aside from being able to help, I also freed up some space in my closet and drawers which is a good thing. 😍 After all, this movement is about being happy not only on our own, but also inspiring others to be happy and be a blessing to someone. Smile, happy people let’s radiate positivity. ☺

March- this is the month that I lost my best friend Heizel, read more about her inspiring story here. But our loss is Heaven’s gain indeed. My heart goes out to her family, though mourning we all strongly believe that she is happy now with the Lord, smiling and no more pain from brain cancer. March is a tough month for her family, my family and me, but no matter how tough this month or even life can be, one thing is for sure, God works out everything together for our good, and He promised to never leave us nor forsake us. I may not have an artsy, colorful and creative inspiration board for this month, but I have managed to create some typography-inspired doodles on my planner below. Simple but it means a lot to me.

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Now, these #YearofHappy prompts for the month of February and March may be different from what it’s supposed to be, but I think they have just been more personal and more inspiring, and I think you can tweak things a bit anyways. Let’s always remember blissful people, to give back and be a blessing to someone, to hold, cherish and make most out of every moment while there is still time. I wish everyone a HAPPY and BLISSFUL year, how time flies, it’s almost April. 😍 If you want to do the #YearofHappy project, please feel free to do so and read more about it here.

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*Donation boxes photos from (1, 2, 34)

Liebster Award

Last week I saw a comment from Beth, of The Honey Blonde Life, she’s such a sweet gal and you should check her blog and cute cat, Bentley. 😃😺 Turns out she has nominated me for the Liebster award, thanks Beth.

It is said that the Liebster award was created to recognize and/or discover new bloggers and welcome them to the blogosphere. So, I am nominating my fellow bloggers below.

The Rules:

  • Link back to the blogger that nominated you–(The Honey Blonde Life)
  • Answers the 11 new questions
  • Nominate other bloggers (however many or few as you’d like)
  • Create 11 (or however many you’d like) new questions
  • Notify the new nominees of their award.

liebsteraward

1. What is your favorite under-eye concealer for dark circles?

I have really been loving the Maybelline Fit Me concealer, it’s good for highlighting the under-eye area to give you that “I got that 8-hour beauty rest” look even though I spent the whole night last night watching Vampire Diaries. 😛 It’s very light in consistency which means no cakey appearance but coverage is really great.

2. Favorite tea (if you drink tea).

Undeniably green tea, I have been loving teas lately. I can’t wait to try other flavors too.

3. What do you like to eat for breakfast?

I like big and heavy breakfast, I get really hungry after sleeping. If I’d have more willpower to rise up early I love eggs, toast and fruit shakes. But these days, a bowl of oatmeal with banana is my go-to quick breakfast which is also filling by the way.

4. Favorite fashion accessory?

I love fancy jewelries, I think they spice up any plain outfit, ,make it unique and interesting. To be specific, I like necklaces.

5. Do you wear BB or CC Cream?  And if so, what is your favorite brand?

Nope, I don’t really wear any of the two. I have tried the Garnier before once.

6. Favorite health snack when you’re on the go?

Fruits and granola bars! 🙂

7. Who is your favorite style icon?

It’s funny that ever since I have been reading this question in magazines and online, I am always clueless about my style and icon. Maybe that’s because I haven’t really paid much attention, I love dressing up but does not want my style to be labelled. It’s also ridiculously embarrassing to say that lately (I mean “a week ago” type of lately) I have a fashion conversion and enlightenment. I suddenly want to completely re-think and re-invent my fashion sense, invest in quality basic pieces, start from there and incorporate “classy” and “sophisticated” but with a trendy touch to it. Therefore, now I can answer the question above, I’m excited to say that my style icon is Miranda Kerr (her style is exactly a mix of everything I love- the class, the sexiness but with the right touch of elegance), Ivanka Trump, Sarah Vickers (URGH! Her closet is to-die for), and our very own (Filipina actress) Heart Evangelista. Gosh! Can’t believe I just got this figured out at 26. 😬

8. Favorite TV show?

These days I haven’t really been watching TV. Do I sound boring? Well, if I do, I’d catch up on TVD.

9. Fun fact about yourself?

I was born and raised in Saudi Arabia, in one of its strictest town. Growing up I had to wear an abaya and burqa (face cover with only eyes showing).

10. Would you rather live near the mountains or the ocean?

Ocean! I love water and the sun.

11. If you could bring three things with you to a deserted island… 😉 what would you bring?

I feel like this is the most difficult question. 😣Haha! If only humans are allowed, I’d bring my family, my Schatz and a boat to fit us all. But if this is stricly “things-only” question, I’d bring my Bible, a knife, and a lighter.

So, my questions are:

1. What is one holy-grail beauty product in your kit that you can’t live without?

2. Who gave you the best beauty tip you have ever received and what is it?

3. What’s your favorite store to shop clothes at and why?

4. What 5 things do you think that should always be in a woman’s wardrobe or closet?

5. Where do you want to travel in the next 3 years?

6. What are your healthy habits?

7. Fun fact about you that no one knows?

8. Describe your perfect weekend.

9. Who would play you in the movie about your life?

10. Why do you blog?

11. What is that one goal that you have not yet met, but are working to achieve?

I nominate:

Polished by Amy

Jaiful and Her Cheeks

Real.art.music.life

She is Joyful

Confetti and Curves

Dorkchops

Please feel free to copy the award icon and paste it to your blog’s sidebar. 🙂 Enjoy Liebster!

* Photo from here.

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Adventure: What Else Are Pleasant Aside From The Weather in Dubai?

Weather

Last weekend, an intense sandstorm hit Dubai and it was dusty everywhere with zero visibility last Saturday. Dubaians were expecting warm weather afterwards which indicates early summer, but instead the weather is very windy and at 21°C. So if you’re in Dubai with this weather, trust that this will be the last full blast of winter, well maybe spring for some places which has 4 seasons. This time of the year is the most pleasant of all so I recommend grab you cameras, selfie rod and get ready for the following activities:

1. Biking along Downtown Dubai– get the best view of Burj Khalifa up close while exploring the streets of Downtown Dubai, perfect for this kind of weather. You can find more information on the page of Bykystations, they have info about rental locations, rates, how many bikes are available per station and smartphone apps. Bring your girls along, it could be fun. Don’t forget to wear sunscreen. 😉

2. Visit the Dubai Miracle Garden– it has more than 45 million blooming flowers in colorful designs, shapes and structure. This garden also holds a Guinness record for having the longest wall of flowers. So what are you guys waiting for? Head to Dubai Miracle Garden and make sure to take lots of photos. I haven’t been there yet myself, but I plan to visit one of these days. The garden is open from 9 AM-9 PM on weekdays and from 9 AM-11 PM on weekends, the entrance costs 30 AED.

3. The Beach– if you are looking for sand, sea, shopping, entertainment and dining all at one place, then pack your beach bag and head to The Beach at Jumeirah Beach Residences. They said you can have it all in here, they do have a running track, fitness facilities, cinemas, water park and play area for kids. I have visited The Beach several times already, it’s actually one of my favorite places to go in Dubai since last year. Like SM, The Beach has got it all for you. There’s never a dull moment indeed! Hurry up, before the sun gets too hot. You know, summer in Dubai? 😬 Follow their Instagram account for cool photos.

beach

4. Skydive Dubai– again, What perfect way to get our adrenaline pumping while the weather is pleasant? Skydive it is! They only have slots until May 30th, book your tandem dive now in this link. If you’re the adventurous type and would like to shoot down at 210 km/h, this should be in your list when you visit Dubai during cool months. A stunning aerial view of the city of Dubai will surely amaze you. Not an adrenaline junkie? Well, they do have a cafe in site, just sit, relax, feel the sea breeze while watching skydivers land and sip your favorite coffee. This is in my bucket list by the way. 🙂 C’mon let’s skydive. If you have done this, share your experiences below, I’d love to hear from you.

skydive

Before, the scorching summer comes to Dubai, make sure you try one of the activities above. Share your photos below if you do. 👍

Photo & video credits: All photos and videos came from their respective websites.

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KJ Eats: Lemonade Dubai for Valentines Dinner

So what’s KJ up to on a Valentines day? (KJ= Ken and Joy)

The boyfriend did not let the day pass without an unusual dinner (at least for us, this is unusual :D), although I did not really want us to go, because we can have it anytime not only on Valentines day. That’s the thing about us, we’re not too fussy about the V-day, but who says no when he insists? Not me! Hehe! And so, we strolled along Sheikh Zayed Road after having coffee at Caribou, where I assisted him in setting up his photography blog which is soon to go up by the way, please stay tuned for that. 😉  We saw this restaurant called Lemonade, and we decided to give it a try.

One fact about Ken and I is that we always have difficulty in deciding where to eat, he always considers what I want and what I feel like eating each time. I always say, “Wherever you like.” Then he says, “but you have to tell me where you want to eat”, although he already has something in mind that he’s currently craving for, and behold the endless exchange of questions before a decision is finally made. Crazy right? This case was more like, “where do you wanna eat?” I said, “anywhere” he utters, “let’s walk towards that direction and see what options we have” then I said “okay”, then we felt a little tired from walking aimlessly ‘coz we both we’re carrying laptops, I said, “what if we eat somewhere near our place?” He said, “okay, now let’s take the metro.” Just when we are about to approach Emirates Towers metro station, we saw Lemonade, K said, “let’s try this one.” Umhhmm, that’s exactly how we do it. Very confusing. 😀

When we entered the restaurant, we were greeted by bright, yellow lights and chairs which kind of gives a happy and vibrant atmosphere to the overall design.

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I was delighted to see a wide variety of choices for salads, and so was Ken because he’s currently on a fitness and diet program. They have the sections “Marketplace” and “Land & Sea”.

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Then they have tossed salads and sandwiches below.

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They’ve got braises, hot veggies and hot portions.

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And who doesn’t love desserts? 🙂 The macarons look yum, but in this instance, Ken and I chose to go all vegan.

11006077_10204745365387125_2065132498_n 11003935_10204745366427151_933561754_nIf you love lemonades, they have lots of flavors to choose from.

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Ken ordered “Thai Vegetables” and “Pineapple Chicken”, if you like tangy sauce on your salad with a hint of cilantro, you’ll love Thai Vegetables, I did, I love cilantro really! If you’re a fan of Indian food, you will like Pineapple Chicken, the sauce resembles Indian flavors minus the spiciness.

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I had “Avocado and Cherry Tomatoes” and a hot veggie dish with eggplant, Piquillo Peppers and feta cheese. Both are really yummy.

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I know, all dishes ordered are vegetarian, but we just didn’t feel too hungry because we had coffee and fruit smoothies beforehand.

They have partnered with Snappcard loyalty rewards system for every dine-in experience with a minimum spend of AED 50, if I am not mistaken you get 4 points and once you collect 7 points you’re entitled to a free serving of Lunch box or salad. Not bad eh?

The Verdict:

You won’t regret coming to Lemonade if you’re after delicious and healthy Southern Californian food choices. They have a lot to choose from, so don’t worry vegans, you’re safe here. 😉

The staff that assisted us was very friendly and helpful to explain their serving sizes, best-sellers and mobile loyalty rewards system via an app called Snappcard.

The restaurant interiors itself exudes happiness and vibrant attitude.
The average price for 2 people is AED 100 or even below, depending on your appetite. Price range is okay for me. Our bill is shown below:
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I know we haven’t ordered from the other food sections, but it’s definitely worth to try. They currently have 2 branches, Ibn Battuta and Sheikh Zayed Road. You can also check out Lemonade’s Facebook page here.
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*I heard their lemonades are good (and they’re served on those cute Pinterest-ish milk jars), their cakes are light and fluffy, and their red velvets are “wow”.
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Valentines is not defined by how fancy your dinner date is for that day, by your special someone, or by how many bouquets of flowers and boxes of chocolates you received. Let’s make everyday a Valentines day, let’s make love alive in our lives daily by showing the people around us that we care. Let’s create value in this world by giving love rather than always expecting to receive it.
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DISCLAIMER: This is not a sponsored post, we paid for everything, actually Ken did…oops! 🙂
* These reviews came from Zomato.