Making the time for fitness
Get Lean, Get Strong Challenge participants talk about integrating exercise into their lives
For more than eight hours a day, five days a week, she teaches life-saving techniques to her students at Gleneagles Hospital.
But nursing teacher Junita Rodrigues, 56, has not let her busy schedule stop her participating in the Get Lean, Get Strong Challenge 2016.
The challenge is jointly presented by The New Paper and fitness equipment specialist AIBI.
Last month, Miss Rodrigues and nine other contestants were selected from a pool of more than 80 applicants. (See report)
She tells The New Paper on Sunday: "Trying to juggle the hours I work and the training sessions is a challenge, but it is one that I am happy to do."
After her work ends around 7pm, Miss Rodrigues drives for half an hour to the gym in Geylang for the training session.
Contestants are expected to attend at least three sessions per week. She attends at least four.
She has some muscle aches but Miss Rodrigues says she enjoys the addition of the training sessions to her schedule.
"I've never exercised so much in my life. The pain is expected but it feels good and makes me happy," she says.
Another Challenge participant, teacher Leon Lim, 27, also tells TNPS about how he integrated exercise into his life.
Now, he enjoys "going for training after a long day of working because it calms me down and I get peace of mind," he says.
But making adjustments to his schedule and diet was not easy.
Mr Lim says: "I have to make a conscious effort to go train and eat clean. Sometimes we tend to overeat or eat things that might not be nutritious.
"But I know, in the end, it will be worth it."
About the challenge
The Get Lean, Get Strong Challenge 2016 is a fitness competition that challenges 10 participants to lose as much weight as they can.
Under the supervision of noted local trainer David Devito, contestants will undergo an intensive six-month training regime worth $5,000. This consists of one-hour classes at least twice a week at Mr Devito's gym, The Fitness Protocol.
Rather than focus solely on cardiovascular exercises like running, Mr Devito's methods have a strong emphasis on technique. They feature the use of a kettlebell.
Participants will also have to watch what they eat and adhere to a strict diet that Mr Devito and his team will plan and monitor.
The winning participant will get prizes worth more than $6,000. There are also prizes for the second- and third-placed contestants and consolation prizes for the other seven contestants.