Long ago when I was in primary, we live in this humble housing area at the suburbs of Ampang. Our neighbor was this Chinese family, and there was Uncle, Auntie, and Nyonya (Grandma).
One evening, when I was out at the parking area to play, Auntie commented on me, wearing a green and red singlet.
“Badan adik macam tebu”, she said. Translated, “Your body is like sugar cane.”
Repeated a few times.
From that day on forth, I have this small dream at the corner of my mind; to get a fit and well toned body.
When I was in secondary, some boys were gifted with body tougher than me. But when I looked back at the pictures, well, they were not that tough though. That means, well, you can imagine how lanky I was. If the ‘tough’ boys are normal, then I am skinny.
And then I entered university. That was when I got a bit serious in weight lifting. Following my friends, we went to the gym which was a walking distance away from our hostel. My aim is not only to shape up my physical figure, but also to maintain my cardiovascular fitness and sugar level.
One grandmother of mine suffered several heart attacks. She became really weak and fragile after each episode. It was sad to see her going through this every time. This is the long term effect of her fond of eating fatty food, including the crunchy yummy skin part of fried chicken.
Another grandfather broke his leg when his bike crashed with a car. He passed away soon after that, when his diabetes made his leg injury incapable to fight the entrance of germs and viruses.
One uncle, who seemed to be healthy, fit and strong, passed away because of a heart attack at the clinic after he complained that he had chest and arm pain. The doctor discovered that most parts of his heart filled with cholesterol, until that day it became clogged.
These incidents taught me the importance of taking care of your diet and doing exercise. I continued working out regularly towards my last semesters in the university. I made it a standard agenda in my daily schedule, but sometimes my friends would get annoyed because I chose working out first and then meet them later for dinner.
Some even jokingly said that I wanted to be Mighty Mouse; short height but bulky muscles.
Nowadays it’s difficult to get to the gymnasium. I have changed my routine; now I visit the pool and do a few laps. Every time I finish my exercise, I felt good. At least I have taken care of myself well.