Fit And Fab

He lost 16kg in six weeks and won muay thai belt

Mr Teo is determined to do well in his studies and also be a successful fighter.
Mr Teo is determined to do well in his studies and also be a successful fighter.ST PHOTO: NIVASH JOYVIN

Muay thai exponent Terrence Teo speaks to Joyce Teo about juggling school and training

Q What is your secret to looking fabulous?

A Eat a healthy diet, drink plenty of water, have enough rest and train hard. Having a positive mindset is important too.

Q Has there ever been a time when you were not fit and fab?

A This was during my national service in 2013. I had a bad fall and had to undergo surgery for a dislocated shoulder.

I took more than a year to fully recover. During that time, I could not exercise and kept eating as I was bored. As a result, I piled on 20kg and weighed 95kg at one point.

I shed the extra weight within six months by exercising regularly and watching my diet.

Q What is your diet like?

A Mainly steamed fish or chicken breast, with egg whites and a salad (without dressing) or vegetables that are stir-fried without oil.

I will snack on cashew nuts and almonds if I need to. Or, sometimes, I will have a bowl of granola with a scoop of peanut butter.

I avoid eating carbohydrates for dinner.

Q What are your indulgences?

A Occasionally, I go for buffet meals with family and friends.

Q How important is it for you to keep up with your fitness routine?

A It is very important. I have to train regularly because I don't know when my next fight will be. I want to make sure I'm always prepared.

Q What is the most extreme thing you have done in the name of fitness or diet?

A I lost 16kg in six weeks in order to fight in the 69kg weight category at the Johor Chief Minister Championship Belt in October last year.

  • Bio Box

  • TERENCE TEO JIA JIN

    Age: 25

    Height: 1.85m

    Weight: 79kg

    Although Mr Teo has always been active, he had problems maintaining a healthy weight as a child.

    Despite playing soccer in primary school, he was placed in the Trim and Fit (TAF) club for overweight pupils.

    Joining the athletics team in secondary school helped him to lose weight and keep fit.

    His fitness level reached a new high in 2011 when he tried out muay thai. "I was so hooked on it that I trained five times a week," he said.

    Mr Teo has an elder brother who is a project manager. His mother is an insurance broker and his father works part-time as a warehouse supervisor and diving technician. 

I ate healthily and trained twice a day, five times a week. It was very tough. My mind was telling me to give up but I managed to persevere till the end.

Thankfully, I brought back the championship belt.

Q How do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?

A I am juggling work and school. I work as an instructor at Juggernaut Fight Club. I am also doing a degree in Sports Science at PSB Academy, a private education institution.

It's tiring but my passion for muay thai keeps me motivated. I finish work at 5.30pm on weekdays and attend classes at 7pm. To stay awake, I make sure to have a cup of coffee before class.

I will spend time with my family during the weekends.

It can be very difficult when I have to prepare for an examination while going on a strict diet and training at least twice a day for an upcoming fight. But I am determined to do well in my studies and also be a successful fighter.

Q What are the three most important things in your life?

A My family, muay thai and my studies. I am studying hard to get a good job after I graduate.

Q How has your active lifestyle influenced your family and friends?

A Some of my friends have joined the gym after seeing that I had lost weight and am keeping fit with a proper diet and training regimen.

Q What's your favourite part of your body?

A My arms. My least favourite part is my chest.

Q Would you go for plastic surgery?

A No. In martial arts, there is no need for plastic surgery to look good.

Q Do you think you're sexy?

A I have never thought of myself as sexy, although many people have told me that I look like the South Korean pop star Rain.


Correction note: The story has been edited to correct the name of Terence Teo to Terrence Teo. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 06, 2016, with the headline 'He lost 16kg in six weeks and won muay thai belt'. Print Edition | Subscribe