Photo: Ong Wee Jin
Q: What’s your secret to looking fabulous?
A: Consistency is key. Most people can be very diligent in hitting the gym three to four times a week for a short period of time. But to be able to sustain such a programme takes a lot of discipline.
I use a combination of two diet techniques that really worked when I was trying to lose fat – intermittent fasting (limiting eating for eight hours a day and fasting for the next 16 hours) and juice cleansing (taking only fruit or vegetable juices for a number of days).
I did a three-day juice cleanse last year and the results were amazing. My craving for junk food vanished completely after the cleanse.
It may or may not work for everyone but I highly recommend it. But as with all diet programmes, do seek advice from a professional first.
Q: Was there ever a time when you weren’t fit and fab?
A: I used to be less muscular but not exactly scrawny. Vanity prompted me to start lifting weights when I was in junior college.
I was a competitive volleyball player and the high caloric burn made me tall and lanky. I thought packing on some muscles would make me look more “manly”.
Q: What is your diet like?
A: Below is my normal diet plan on training days. If I’m losing weight or trying to put on muscles, I tweak the diet plan accordingly.
Breakfast: Power shake with protein powder, oats, chia seeds, powdered vegetable supplements, two servings of fruit and two eggs.
Pre- and post-workout: one serving of waxy maize (fast-digesting carbohydrate source) and protein shake.
Lunch: Rice, vegetables and lean meat like chicken, fish or seafood.
Snack: Mixed nuts and dried fruit.
Dinner: Vegetables and lean meat like chicken, fish or seafood.
Before bed: Protein shake.
Related: Maximise Your Protein Shake
Q: What are your indulgences?
A: Ice cream, but only good ice cream. I feel that having your favourite food once in a while helps you to stay disciplined for a longer time.
Q: What do you do to relax and how do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?
A: I like to take holiday trips. I can do a couple of long trips and probably four to five short trips a year. I’m lucky because I enjoy my work, which is flexible in nature.
Since I’m in the health and fitness industry, keeping fit and healthy is a requirement. Being surrounded by like-minded healthy people who eat well and exercise regularly certainly helps.
Q: What are your must-dos before and after fitness sessions?
A: Have my pre- and post-workout shakes. If I forget to bring them, I make a U-turn and head home to get them.
Q: How important is it for you to keep up with your fitness routine?
A: It is important if I have a goal to reach, such as getting a six-pack for a photo shoot.
If not, I try to train hard and eat well. I take periodic breaks when on holiday, during which I am not 100 per cent strict with my diet.
Q: What’s the biggest sacrifice you have had to make to get to your current size today?
A: Not really a sacrifice but I had a few injuries in the earlier days when I was still going through trial and error with training. You learn as you go along, but some of the battle scars stay with you for life.
Q: What do your family and friends say about your active lifestyle?
A: They have no complaints. I try to motivate them to exercise when I can. My mum used to complain that I was eating too many eggs – as many as 10 at one shot.
Q: How extensive is your collection of sports-related paraphernalia?
A: Over the years, I have collected volleyball trophies and lots of gym wear, which is my work attire.
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Q: Among these, what’s your most prized possession?
A: Perhaps my Volleyball Singapore Open gold medal. The adrenaline rush you get when you play during the finals is priceless.
By Lester Wong, this article originally ran on straitstimes.com