33-year-old lawywer Suang Wijaya's weight had slowly been creeping up over the last few years, but noticed that his weight gain "accelerated" during the pandemic. "Most of it was diet," he says. "Also, when I had a busy period at work, I would go a few weeks at a time without exercise. I wasn’t feeling too comfortable, because my office clothes were starting to get a bit suffocating!
At his heaviest, Suang weighed nearly 160 pounds—but it wasn't until a pivotal moment at work that he realized how much he had to make a change.
"My team at work had won an important criminal case," he explains. "After nine years in jail and potentially facing the death penalty, our client was found innocent and released from jail. Before he returned to his home country, we treated him to steak. Our photo with the client was published on the news. Although it was a happy occasion, all I noticed was how bloated I looked! So I felt I needed to do something."
Suang joined Ultimate Performance Singapore and started working out with a personal trainer. He did three weights training sessions each week with his trainer, and then another three workouts by himself, consisting of a mix of upper and lower body exercises, following his trainer's instructions. After losing 1 kg (2.2 pounds) in his first week, Suang felt motivated to push himself even further.
"I learned how important it is to always be pushing myself harder every training session," he says. "I also learnt the correct way to execute the exercises correctly and safely. "
Equally important as the physical training was the change that Suang made to his diet. "Before Ultimate Performance, I did not know about calories, how many calories I was having a day, and how to track calories," he says. "Through this journey, I learnt about calories and the importance tracking calories... I have a better relationship with food now and no longer worry about the frequent business meals I have with my clients."
Over the course of five months, Suang lost approximately 35 pounds. "My family, friends and colleagues noticed right away," he recalls. "They were very curious about my workout and diet routine. Some of them engaged personal trainers on their own!"
"I certainly felt much healthier," he adds. "I feel like I am having better sleep at night and also falling sick less often. This journey has also made me better appreciate the importance of health and fitness... The first step is always hardest. After that, things get much more manageable."
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