How to Lose Weight Abroad: Thank you, Blogilates

How to Lose Weight Abroad: Thank you, Blogilates

One of the things I noticed about myself when I first moved to Korea is the fact that my body was getting significantly… softer. This didn’t exactly boost my confidence, as I’d already put on quite a bit of weight prior to moving here as well. Unfortunately, most of the weight gain didn’t exactly come as a surprise. I had neglected to take care of myself during my first few months living here – which is something that I was always consciously aware of.

When I first started teaching English in Korea, I spent most of my weekends out in Seoul drinking with my friends and eating pub fare. I never exercised, barely cooked at home and was smoking and drinking more than normal. I was totally aware of these issues, but hadn’t taken the time to actually be proactive about bringing this much needed lifestyle change.

It wasn’t until I went to Vietnam in July 2014 that I’d realized how much weight I’d actually gained.

When I came back from my vacation, I decided to download the Couch to 5k running app, which helped me build endurance, enabling me to actually enjoy running. In the beginning, it was a slow and dreadful process, and the fact that I was still smoking made it that much harder. However, before I knew it, I was able to run for a few miles without even thinking twice about it. However, I needed something more than running and my amazing cheerleader of a boyfriend to keep me motivated.

How Blogilates Changed My Life

While running definitely helped me build endurance, I didn’t actually start losing weight until I began watching Blogilates videos on YouTube. There’s something incredible about Cassey; a bubbly, fit woman encouraging her audience to be better people while simultaneously driving them to insanity through torturous yet satisfyingly intense HIIT workouts designed for weight loss.

Try my personal favorite video:

Each day, I followed the Blogilates Workout Calendar diligently. Within weeks, I started noticing small changes in my body and began to feel more confident and happy with my tenacity – my life literally began to change. I cut back significantly on my alcohol consumption, permanently gave up smoking cigarettes and started to feel more energized and lighthearted.

The best part about this program is that all of the videos are free and available on YouTube. The Blogilates mobile app only costs me $1 each month, which is far cheaper than a gym – especially in Korea. One of my favorite features of this app is the community that I can connect with. I love to share inspirational quotes or progress pictures, all of which are backed by encouragement from others who are also on the path toward  betterment.

Picture on left: Vietnam 2014. Picture on right: Korea 2015.

Picture on left: Vietnam 2014. Picture on right: Korea 2015.

I’ve Reignited My Passion for Cooking

Aside from the obvious joy of feeling stronger and healthier, one of the most wonderful changes that has happened during this entire transition is the fact that I’ve regained my sense of self in the kitchen. Cooking has always been my primary passion, and the fact that I have reclaimed this love lost is something that is extremely special to me. It’s allowed me to channel my creativity and feel a bit more comfortable and at home  in Korea.


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So to anyone out there who is struggling to find motivation or looking for new ways to stay in shape, I can honestly say that Blogilates has changed my life for the better. If I can do this, you can too! I recommend trying a few videos and see what you think. And to Cassey: Thank you for everything that you’ve done and continue to do. You are a light in the world and an inspiration to so many. 



  1. September 9, 2015 / 4:59 am

    Well done…! You have lost so much weight!!!

    I put on so much weight when I first moved to Sing – drinking copious amounts of alcohol for 6-7 hours a night was the norm. Scary, actually in hindsight! But then I realized I needed to get healthier and commit to working out religiously instead of going out all the time…

      September 9, 2015 / 7:07 am

      That’s exactly how it is here in Korea. Must be an Asian thing – it’s common to stay out all night drinking here. But yes, I’ve done the same thing – just trying to stay away from that sort of thing and remaining dedicated to health. I still allow myself to eat my two favorites (pizza and Indian curry) on a somewhat regular basis, though! Thanks for your support! Seriously, check out Blogilates – she’s the best!

  2. September 9, 2015 / 11:21 am

    Wow, I am so proud of you!! I’ve been putting on weight lately too and I know it’s just from not working out and neglecting to eat well. Thank you for the inspiration!

  3. September 9, 2015 / 11:44 am

    You looked geourgeous before you lost weight and you look absolutely stunning now that you lost weight. Good job! I think you should be definitely proud of yourself because what you have achieved is something most cannot do. Good job!

  4. September 9, 2015 / 11:58 am

    Wow! That is so great. I really need to start doing something more regularly. I’ll check out Blogilates.

  5. September 9, 2015 / 12:17 pm

    I’m at work so I can’t watch the video but congrats! I’m working on getting a 6 pack and a toner behind and its hard!

  6. September 9, 2015 / 5:35 pm

    AMAZING! Congratulations on your weight loss and health journey! I’m on a weight loss journey myself and just began my first round of the 21 Day Fix. I’ve been eating healthy and working out like crazy and I’m thrilled with the results thus far. I’m about 10 pounds shy of my goal, so I’ll be sure to check out Blogilates in hopes that it will help me kick things to the next level.

    Allison Jones

  7. September 9, 2015 / 7:43 pm

    Congrats on the progress and weight loss. That is so motivating! I hope to be able to do the same.

  8. September 9, 2015 / 8:56 pm

    Go girl! Keep up the great work! I love what Casey stands for and how awesome she makes women feel 🙂

  9. September 10, 2015 / 4:09 am

    This is amazing! So happy to hear that you’re feeling healthy and happy. Love the Blogilates tip as well – I’ll definitely have to check that out!

  10. September 10, 2015 / 6:18 am

    I completely understand you Asian weight gain problem. I have gained a TON of weight since moving to Japan. I don’t know what it is about these countries that make you gain so much weight. We’re moving to Europe in a few months and once we have settled in I am getting back into my grove. I will DEFINITELY be checking out this app.

  11. September 11, 2015 / 3:24 am

    You did an amazing job getting into shape. I’m going to try those Youtube videos and I need a lot of help.

  12. September 11, 2015 / 4:02 am

    What a great before and after picture! I have seen blogilates all over the place, but never really looked too much into it. Sounds so interesting and clearly works!

  13. September 11, 2015 / 6:56 pm

    Congrats. Losing weight in any situation is hard – traveling especially. Will def look into the videos.

  14. September 14, 2015 / 6:54 pm

    Congrats on the weight loss. You look fantastic!

  15. September 15, 2015 / 7:08 am

    Congrats on the weightloss. D I’ve been here in Korea for 18 months and can’t even begin to describe the amount of weight I’ve put on. I actually don’t think I drink that much – I’m just incredibly inactive and eat junk (I can’t eat most Korean food because I’m a vegetarian so resort to staying in and eating crap). I’m half way through my detox week which I’m hoping is going to set me back on the right track towards better eating habits and getting more exercise. 🙂 Will definitely check out the blogilates videos because I do love a good workout vid. 😀

      September 15, 2015 / 7:50 am

      I’m a vegetarian as well! The vegetables and tofu here are super cheap, which is great – but so are the large $5 pizzas. I think it’s totally common to gain weight abroad, and it’s nothing to be ashamed about. I highly suggest these Blogilates videos. The key is to staying active and dedicated, which can be the difficult part. If you need any support, let me know =)

  16. October 23, 2015 / 12:30 am

    I too have struggled with weight gain. Glad to see you found a way to shed the 30 lbs. Congrats on the new found energy and great bod to go with it. My husband decided to try veganism for about 2 years. I couldn’t be as strict and give up milk, cheese and eggs. We never felt as healthy as we did when we gave up meat. After getting pregnant with our son, we decided it was best to slowly introduced meat for protein. I consulted my doctor about staying a vegetarian and getting protein in other sources. She advised that it was possible, but difficult.

  17. October 23, 2015 / 1:53 pm

    Wow you look great! What an inspiration! I found myself in a rut recently after coming back to Korea. We took a break from working out while getting settled here again and its crazy how quickly pounds pack on and how easy it is to eat fried chicken and beer. The food that you’re making looks great! I love exploring new recipes here, it gets frustrating to get your hands on some of the ingredients here, but if forces me to be more creative! Ill have to try blogilates one day! We did T25 while we were traveling and that was an awesome workout for the road since its only 25 minutes long! Thanks for sharing!

  18. November 8, 2015 / 6:21 am

    Great post! It’s too easy to put on weight when traveling, and tough when you’re eating a different cusine to that which your used to, so congratulations on losing the extra weight!

  19. November 14, 2015 / 4:42 am

    Great job. I find that I usually lose weight whenever I travel. I attribute this to more walking and drinking water than at home, eliminating snacks, and eating reasonable sized meals.

      November 14, 2015 / 5:23 am

      Thanks! It was definitely hard to achieve here as Korean food is extremely salty and carb-heavy. However, I was able to do it by cooking my own meals more often and HIIT workouts.

  20. Laur
    January 18, 2017 / 12:12 am

    Wow, I feel like I am reading my own diary! I found your blog through ITA (I’m halfway through my TEFL class and trying to read everything I can to decide where to go).

    I lost my grandmother a little less than a year ago and she was always telling me to travel, but I always said I was too busy or didn’t have the money or whatever. Then I had the same thoughts you talked about having when your brother passed and I literally do the same combing through blogs and pictures for everywhere I want to go. And then I read that you’re a Popster too! Seriously, did you steal my soul while I was sleeping or something??? I swear if you tell me you’re into karate and learning new languages I’m reporting you for identity theft!

    Love reading this, you’re giving me tons more ideas and reasons to leave here. <3

    • January 24, 2017 / 6:44 am

      This is too funny! I haven’t tried karate, but I won’t confirm whether I did or did not steal your soul 😛 If you have any questions or need some tips let me know!

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