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Our New Morning Routine

March 16, 2014

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Whoa! We always feel bizarre whenever we shoot a video at home. We used to do it so often, but then we moved over to the studio when we realized that our film life/personal life balance became overrun. But shooting back in our home now gave us a bit of a nostalgic feel. And without makeup! And without showering! Without proper mics, also! Not even with good lighting! I feel like a newbie again!

Anyhow, we wanted to share what our morning routine was like. I don’t like using the phrase “New Year’s Resolution” often, because those are always destined for failure, from my experience, but our resolve to be more active definitely started in 2014. When we were in Canada and didn’t have much to do, we went to the gym all the time. And we loved it! We wanted to bring that back with us to Korea and to exercise more regularly than before. We’re doing that here as well, even though the gyms here are a lot less equipped than what we’re used to, but – still – we’re using it more than before.

Also, our morning routine has changed a lot since our Day in a Life video. Our breakfasts now have changed quite a bit. I know people say that you should eat a big breakfast because it’s better for you, and you eat less throughout the day as a result, such and such, but we don’t really do that. Since we work out in the morning, we find that eating a lot for breakfast really makes us more sluggish in the gym. So we just eat powerballs and protein shakes and coffee and juice, really. Once we’re in the studio is when we eat a bigger meal.

One of the things we cut out in the video is my ramble about the importance of water. That’s really the first thing I do in the morning. Wake up, go right to the fridge and down a big glass of water. I’ve read so often lately about the importance of hydration, and about how drinking more water makes you sharper during the day and less piggy-ish when you’re eating. Having water right away in the morning gets your brain juices flowing and your metabolism firing, so…I do it.

Afterwards is when the preparations for Martina’s awakening take place. Another thing you didn’t see in the video is that I’ll make the coffee, and then pour a mug for Martina, and I’ll wake her up by going over to her sleeping in bed and blowing the coffee aromas at her and trying to wake her up that way. Go ahead and puke rainbows! I’m a caring husband! Mornings are really difficult for Martina, not because she’s a lazy fartsucker, but because sleeping is really painful if you have EDS like she does. She wakes up a lot more when she sleeps than most people because she has to relocate her joints, so she’s never really had a full-night’s sleep. I’ll do what I can to make her mornings as easy as possible. Coffee helps transition into her awakening :D

The Powerballs we make are lovely and we highly recommend you give them a shot. Here’s our recipe for them

POWERBALLS!

Prep:
First put the coconut in the oven to toast, then do all the other mixing.  But don’t forget about it and burn it like I always do.

Mix:
– 2 cups old fashioned Gluten Free Oats
– 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
– 1/2 cup chia seeds
– 1 cup slivered almonds
(or Instead of a full cup of almonds, add half almonds, half protein powder)
– 2 Tbs goji berries
– 1/4 cup Cacao Nibs
– 1 1/2 cup toasted coconut flakes

In a giant bowl, mix all that dry good stuff together. Once it’s all evenly distributed:

Blend In:
– 1/2 cup honey
– 1 1/2 cup peanut butter
You can use other butters instead, like almond butter, peanut/pecan butter, etc

Mix the dry stuff with the honey and butter until the whole thing is solid enough to make a ball that won’t fall apart. You might find that the mixture’s too dry, in which case we just add some more honey until it becomes more solid.

Grind:
– Handful of raw sunflower seeds
– Handful of green pumpkin seeds
– Handful of chocolate chips

We usually put these three into one of those Magic Bullet thingies and grind them up into a powder. We use this to coat the balls.

That’s it! The chocolate chips are on the outside rather than mixed in, so that the first thing you taste is a bit of sweetness.

The powerballs are very dense and require a lot of chewing. They’re delicious, but they don’t dissolve in your mouth like junk food. We wash down each bite with some coffee. We also take these to the studio with us so we can have a quick snack from time to time.

Yeah! So that’s our Powerball recipe. They’re great. Hope you like them as well!

Anyhow, we also make different juices in the morning, as you can see. They’re mostly mixtures of Spinach and lemon with different additions, most of the time apple and ginger, though we oftentimes use oranges and carrots as well. We use a Kuvings Whole Slow Juicer and we really love it. We wanted a juicer that could juice green stuff, like spinach, and we didn’t realize that not all juicers can do that. So if you’re interested in juicing greens, this is the juicer for you.

A while ago, Martina went to this health food class in Toronto in which she learned about the Spinach/Lemon/Apple combo, but – back then – it was done in a blender. Meaning, you ate as much as you drank. We did that for a while, and if you don’t have a juicer putting that all into a blender with a bunch of ice water makes for a healthy drink as well, it just wasn’t…great. We just prefer something easier to drink that doesn’t fill us up as much as the bodies of lemon, apple and spinach do, you know? Though, we sometimes take some of the spinach pulp from our juicer and mix it in with our juices if we feel we aren’t getting enough fibre. Not all the time. We’re torn. Let us know what you think!

EDIT: Martina here! I wanted to add that I found a recipe online for taking the veggie pulp and making flaxseed veggie crackers! I’ll let you know how it is once I do it! I already used our juicer to make homemade tofu and soy milk!!! Amazing right?!!

Another thing I know some people might get confused by: our coffee is a French Press, but we call it a Bodum. That’s like calling a tissue a Kleenex. You can use any French Press you want, of course, but we like using the Bodum. We’ve used other ones before and we find that the metal warps over time, and then you get coffee grains floating in your coffee after a while. We haven’t had that issue with the Bodum. We still hate cleaning it, though. Getting rid of the grinds you can only do with water, but I don’t want to dump all the grinds down the sink, so we have to go to the bathroom, fill the bodum with water, and then toss the water with the grinds down the toilet. It’s the only dish we have that can’t be washed in the kitchen. Blarrrggg!

Lastly, we didn’t share our workout routine because that wouldn’t really make for a good video. We see on the front page of Instagram all the time these videos of superbuff people with giant boobs doing these insane workouts with smiles on their faces. We’re not that fit. Working out for us is gruelling with lots of sweat and not enough air to breathe in to form sentences. We don’t do Crossfit; if we did, you’d hear us talk about it all the time ;) But I started getting into running, and run 3-6 miles per run, 4-5 times a week. I’m not by any means fast. I’m sweaty and sore most of the time, but I’m doing my best to get good at running.

So that’s it for our morning routines! Hope you weren’t too bored with this little slice of our lives. You see us most of the time going out and playing around in Korea, but you never really see what we do for the first couple of hours of our days. Hope you found it somewhat interesting, and you can see a bit more of what makes us tick :D

If you liked this video and more of our personal vids, make sure you subscribe to our Open the Happy channel, which doesn’t really fit any schedule. We just put videos up there from time to time. Don’t miss out on any of them by clicking on this button here!

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  1. I’m amazed you guys can get up so early to do these routines when you guys sometimes stay up late to finish editing the videos and posting them up. True dedication there.

    I really like these slice of life videos that you guys put up. It helps me see that we can implement these things in our lifestyle easier when we get to see it done so smoothly. XD

    The powerball recipe is awesome and I hope you get to make a video on making those flaxseed veggie crackers!

    P.S. I was wondering: do you guys flush all of the coffee grains down the toilet or the ones you can’t get out of the French press?

    2 years ago
    • Yeah! We flush them down the toilet, but a commenter here said it’s safe to dump down the drain. I’m not sure, though…

      2 years ago
      • You could also use the coffee grains as a homemade body scrub or mixed with something for a face treatment and then just wash it off in the shower.

        2 months ago
  2. Question for Simon; when you say you are running (and you live in the middle of Seoul) do you run in a park or on the sidewalk? and how does that work with not bumping into people etc? Are there many others running about in Seoul city or do you feel like the only strange foreign person jogging about while other people goes “omg what the h/%& is he doing? training for a marathon?” ^^sorry I just had to ask since I always feel like a jerk if I was to be jogging on a side walk with cars running by or jogging in a park where people are sitting on benches, resting. Lots of love from Norway<3 ^^Tina

    2 years ago
    • I’m lucky that there’s a stream that connects to the river and flows by our apartment. I run along that. It’s busier on the weekends, but I never really bump into anyone. It’s only people on bikes I have to be wary of, because they zoom past often and NEVER use their bells NEVER EVER EVER.

      2 years ago
    • I think Simon goes to the gym to run, like on a tread mill (is that how you spell it?) or maybe an elliptical (again, probably not spelled, right), although I couldn’t say for sure. As a side note, is there no one running outside in Norway? Because, where I live, in Canada, people are always running along sidewalks, in the park, on trails and even on the road. Even during our winter I’ve seen people outside running, even though most cities have an abundance of gyms.

      2 years ago
      • When I lived in the capital we had people running on the sidewalk or mostly around the parks that were there, but in the more rural areas we have alot of forrest with hiking trails etc to run on, so I always feel strange if I run along the sidewalk here (i somehow never get myself into the forrest, maybe i should) it usually only marathon runners or sports people that do that. Other poeple run on treadmills or in the forrests/nature.

        2 years ago
  3. I don’t know about the apples in your country but organic apples in my country (Netherlands) aren’t as organic as it looks like. I know someone that’s allergic to both the organic apples and the other apples in the supermarket because of the pesticides they put on those apples (fruit). But when he eats an apple from his own apple tree without all the poison he can eat it without a problem. So in other words nothing is as organic as it always seems to be.
    You better eat your own fruit in your own garden then all that fake organic stuff. >_>

    2 years ago
  4. good reason for me to simply do pilates (the soreness is worth it,ok?) xD

    2 years ago
  5. Nice :D I might try your juice though I’m gonna make it on a blender, hope it’s not going to taste weird. I haven’t been regularly eating healthy and exercising so this video is a good reminder to get me back on track. Healthy living, fighting! :D

    2 years ago
  6. Very cool i alternate between juicing and smoothies. I have a an omega 350 vrt slow masticating juicer and just love it.

    2 years ago
  7. I LOVE my Aeropress. I prefer it over a french press, but I’m only making one cup at a time, so the Aeropress is perfect for me. I’m a beginner coffee snob, so I love trying new beans. When I make it out to Korea, I hope to meet up or drop off some coffee to you guys. I always have loved the coffee mentions.

    Also, I have a Breville for juicing. I’m going to slowly work it back into my daily routine. Great video!

    2 years ago
  8. i dont use a juicer, i use a really good blender (black and decker). i use kale instead of spinach so its tougher but the blender gets it down to tiny little pieces. i like the mass amounts of fibre because i normally don’t get enough. the doctors recommended me fibre powders and fibre cookies but consuming it that way makes my tummy and insides feel worse. my smoothies with the pulp in it has been super good for my tummy (or more my intestines, but whatever).
    ^^

    2 years ago
  9. Martina, you mentioned in the blogpost that you once made homemade tofu? Do you think maybe you can do a tutorial video on it one day? i’ve tried making it before, but gave up bc i got frustrated lol. :D

    2 years ago
  10. Sal

    who’s your favorite modern family character?????

    2 years ago
  11. This video is great ^-^
    And I’d love to try the powerball *-* do you have a recipe with gram instead of cup? (In germany we don’t have this cup thingy)
    This would be great :)
    and OMG Simon it’s soo cute how you take care of Martina *-*

    2 years ago
  12. No Colbert Report?

    2 years ago
  13. Hi guys! It’s awesome to see more awareness on healthy living. I feel like we’re helping each other out even though I don’t you guys personally. I started a year ago but wasn’t too strict with it due to the fact that my family doesn’t understand why I’m doing it. I’m a poor full-time student and since I’m living in Singapore, I have to get a lot of stuff on Iherb(my holy grail) and I needed to support my own lifestyle which suck. So, I had to take a part-time job. Anyway, I wanna ask what kind of workouts do you guys do, (strength, cardio, HIIT, circuit, etc) and do you guys meal prep? Are you guys very particular with the vegan/organic/gluten-free aspects of your meals? Is there any future where you guys see yourselves going more natural in her body care/skin care/cosmetics and such? Thanks! :)

    2 years ago
  14. Martina here: I do lift weights at the gym! I started with the very very lightest weights first (bc my EDS I can dislocate a joint with anything too heavy) and once that was too easy, I slowly went up. I do biceps curls then go up on my tippy toes and do a shoulder press while balancing on my toes. It works your abs because you’re using your whole core to balance while lifting the weights up. I think I might have to do a mini-workout video b/c I have no idea how to explain my moves to you! Hahahahah!

    2 years ago
  15. So I have a cold and all I want to do it is rub my face in the Meem’s fur. It looks so soft and snuggly!!! T.T

    2 years ago
  16. I’m strangely fascinated on how you make coffee. It seems so fancy.

    2 years ago
  17. Thanks for the tip! Simon and I were debating about peeling the lemon, we tried it once whole and it was great. Just a little more lemony. We do organic apples for shizzle. It’s the only thing we buy organic!

    2 years ago
  18. $430.00 on Amazon O.O

    2 years ago
    • Just make a regular smoothie with a blender! Plus, you’ll get more fiber (esp. if you eat it during breakfast!)

      2 years ago
    • I like the size of the juicer, since I don’t have much space, but whoa!!! that price…i’ll keep it old school for now and just chew stuff lol.

      2 years ago
  19. We’re not doing low-carb anymore. We found it too difficult. We’re just a lot more conscious now of the carbs we eat, and eat a lot less than we did before the diet :D

    2 years ago
  20. love your morning routine! i also juice every morning but i blend it and drink it as my breakfast.
    have you tried adding kale? i used both kale and spinach! =) also cucumbers add a great taste and extra juice!

    about drinkng coffe everyday..i’m so torn! one day a study says caffein/coffee everyday is bad
    then another study says “10 reasons why drinking coffee is healthy”…
    idk what to believe hahaha

    i hope you do more vids like these in the future! =D

    2 years ago
  21. Nice to see what you guys do to stay healthy in the morning!

    My morning routine at the moment.. is basically me showering (most of the time) and heading off to school. Yeah, I get a lot of people who tell me I should eat breakfast, that it’s important, and how it isn’t healthy for me to skip. I have eaten breakfast before going to school, however I found that my body would get really sluggish in the middle of the day and at some point, I got sleepy. I do eat breakfast, but it’s the term I use to call my first meal in the afternoon.. then again, that might be lunch or dinner….
    I started getting healthy after I started living away from my parents for university. It mainly consists of limiting the amount of crap I buy (stopped buying fast food, greasy food, chips, iced tea, frozen crap), reduce the amount of meat I eat, limiting how much I eat, and eating less carbs. But it works, as my parents noticed that I got thinner (i was a little chubby entering university)
    As for exercise… yeah I’ll admit I really can’t stand gyms. Don’t get me wrong, I know all the wonderful stuff it can do for you, but I really can’t stand the smell and the equipment. So, I do everyday activities to get exercise such as running/walking to the bus stop and carrying huge amount of groceries in 2 reuseable bags. oh and kpop dancing

    2 years ago
    • I am worse than you…my first meal on school days is lunch XD

      2 years ago
  22. You can always do most of these things the day before besides the coffee

    2 years ago
  23. You two look like you are having the absolute time of your lives-all the time! To see how much the both of you have changed since the beginning of these blogs, while still remaining yourselves…crazy! So happy for you two, even though I don’t even know you. It is always lovely seeing you guys update. Seriously! So happy for you guys!!

    Also-the tattoo looks KILLER. It turned out awesome. Can’t wait to see what adorable summer dresses you’ll be pairing with it once its warmer.

    2 years ago
  24. That’s why I always use some kind of wash on all my fruits and vegetables before I eat them, especially apples because I’m too lazy to cut or peel them, and I think they taste better when you bite right into the skin ^^

    2 years ago
  25. Loved watching your morning routine. The hubby got into watching a whole bunch of videos on Netflix talking about healthy eating and we started blending our vegetables but I found it way too chunky… It’s hard to chew your juice! He now uses the slow juicer, Hurom, I think it’s called, and tries to throw the pulp into his food. It tastes kind of weird in soups and omelettes so we might have to investigate something else! =P Funny thing about juicing, it’s pure nutrition so at the beginning, go slow, especially with wheat grass juice. We tried all enthusiastically and felt so nauseous we had to have Korean meat bbq to override it…. hahaha

    2 years ago
  26. I agree with the pesticides on the apples. My mom developed an allergy to apples, pears, and peaches because these fruits have the most pesticides on them. She has fruit wash, which is designed to wash off pesticides, but she just avoids these fruits.

    2 years ago
  27. Mai

    Thanks for sharing your morning routine! I’ve been trying to get into the healthier habit myself and I’m always curious to see what other people are doing.

    2 years ago
  28. I really enjoyed this! I remember the day in the life video and seeing how you guys have grow and changed is really cool.
    And you guys are super inspiring because you are so relatable. After seeing your first video I actually started to make those breakfast burritos because I really liked the idea of having a compact, filling, and semi healthy breakfast especially since I am also not a morning person. I’d make a couple the night before then I just had to microwave them and tada!

    And now I am kind of wanting to try juicing. I like a lot of fruit juices anyway so I mightvas well drink healthy homemade versions!

    Thanks for sharing your awesome morning!

    Ps -Simon makes an awesome hubby. I want one! Lol

    2 years ago
  29. I’m fascinated by the powerballs :D how many does that recipe yield? and what’s the recommended serving size/portion/amount/whatever-the-word-is? lol

    2 years ago
    • I’m not sure how many in terms of number of balls, but the recipe lets us eat something like 4-5 balls between the two of us every morning for a couple of weeks, plus a few that we randomly snack on throughout the day as well.

      2 years ago
      • Have you all thought about adding some coconut oil to your power balls. It would make them less dense, and coconut oil provides a ton of health benefits in terms of improved digestion and stuff. I was just thinking, because your power ball mix is very close to the seed-nut blend I make, which I spread over fruit, add to yogurt, or sometimes add coconut oil and peanut butter to, to eat more like a bar. But now, I’m thinking some small balls for random snack-age would be cool and portable.

        2 years ago
      • That sounds awesome. I’ll definitely be trying out the recipe ^_^

        2 years ago
  30. I’ve been looking for a new morning pick me up since I’ve given up coffee, not voluntarily mind you. Does juicing help give you some extra energy? For breakfast I generally have steal cut oatmeal or corn flakes with soy milk. I seriously miss coffee.

    2 years ago
    • YES! We found a huge energy boost. I think because you can put so much stuff into one glass it’s like having a huge salad for breakfast. We also do a raw oatmeal thingy for breakfast sometimes, with uncooked oatmeal, chia seeds, chopped banana or strawberry, cacao nibs, and soy milk. Let it all soak so the chia seeds enlarge and it gets all thick. Also, I totally made homemade sugar free soy milk in our juicer!!!! :O

      2 years ago
      • Homemade soy milk! Sounds like I need to invest in a juicer! I have an evil posses blender that isn’t very good at its designated job. For the oatmeal breakfast thingy is it instant oatmeal?

        2 years ago
        • I’m wondering if you could also make almond milk with a juicer! After all, it’s the same process! Almonds are yummy!

          2 years ago
  31. im eating junk food as i watched this Ou O

    2 years ago
  32. Sooo I was going to go to sleep… then I saw this video and sleep went out the Window! Those powerballs make me think that they are a smarter healthier version of Haystacks. Which are like toasted coconut covered in chocolate. While I am far from south korea I got a little taste of it recently. I got to see and meet No brain and Glen Check at sxsw on thursday. Thought of yall, Got me thinking, would you guys ever be interested in doing a fan meet for this kind of festival?

    2 years ago
  33. You guys have a huge apartment! Or at least a really large kitchen! My family’s kitchen in Hong Kong seems so much smaller than your kitchen, I’m a little jealous haha.

    2 years ago
  34. …….I also think that your a SUPER SWEET HUBBY Simon……..just thought to add that. :)

    2 years ago
  35. I think that you can safely throw the coffee in the sink. In my house we do this to “keep the pipes clean”. I don’t know if the pipes are the same in Korea though.

    2 years ago
    • Ah I wouldn’t risk it. I know for a fact that I cannot do it at home (Montreal), nor at work (Starbucks). Though buildings here tend to be old so that doesn’t help. I clean my Bodum by filling it with water and then dumping it all through a sieve. Give it a shake then place over a bowl to dry a bit before putting it in the trash. You could also keep the grinds for gardening if you’re into that at all.

      2 years ago
    • Oh oh…..
      Anyways, there are a lot of things you can do with used coffee
      http://calypsocoffee.com/exfoliating-coffee-ground-scrub-decreases-cellulite-and-erases-wrinkles/

      IM NOT SAYING YOU HAVE WRINKLES!!

      2 years ago
    • ooo! If the plumbing in Korea is anything like plumbing in Taiwan, I wouldn’t pour coffee grinds down the sink …and maybe not down the toilet either. In Taiwan there is always a receptacle in the toilet room for disposing of used toilet paper. No one ever puts used toilet paper into the toilet bowl, as we commonly do in the U.S. The drainage pipes are typically narrower in Asia from what I know.
      I’m fortunate to have a backyard and I just toss the coffee grounds out over the fallen leaves where it all composts slowly. :D
      Loved the video and your routine. Good to see the personal, at-home, side again.

      2 years ago
  36. I’ve been looking at different ways I can improve my health and energy, so reading what you guys are doing is a big help and inspiration!
    Your juices sound interesting! We don’t have a juicer, but maybe some time I will try that in the blender for a smoothie-like thing. ^^

    2 years ago
  37. The powerballs recipe sound pretty good, actually. On the weekdays I get a granola bar (Costco’s choco chip ones are DELISH) and coffee with milk&carnation instant breakfast…and then running to class [because I slept in] is my exercise. :D If I have time I like to make brown rice onigiri with half a boiled egg inside or some other protein like tofu/leftover chicken/tinned salmon.

    2 years ago
  38. True that. In Asia, a lot of pesticides are used, especially on apples (high demand) and berry like products.

    2 years ago
    • I was wondering about pesticides over there. thanks :)

      2 years ago
    • Wash you fruits with water, mixed with 1 or 2 tbs or white vinegar, and a pinch of baking soda. It’ll clean better!

      2 years ago
  39. I know yogurt is always great for a healthy diet. But I also understand (after living years in China) that Korea has their own variation of yogurt which is more for drinking and far sweeter. Does Korea also provide Greek Yogurts and stuff (it is horridly expensive in Shanghai).

    Though working out is great. My trainer once said going out doing a sport is also very helpful. Like play basketball or go swimming. Muscles adapt to new routines fairly quickly, but in sports you have the opportunity using other muscles and putting your work out into practice ;)

    Have you try switch spinach into kale in your juices? I quite like kale….

    2 years ago
  40. Morning routines are so important!
    I’m between routines right now cuz moving and wedding and stuff, so we’ll see what new routine takes shape.
    Until then I’m sluggish and waste most of the day.

    2 years ago