Q&A With Malaysian and Singaporean Bodybuilding and Fitness Champions! Part One

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Alright, so I thought, wouldn’t it be boring if readers just read stuff from my perspective? So I collected some questions from you, my dear readers on Fabodylous’ Facebook fan page and forwarded them to some local (Malaysian and Singaporean) bodybuilders and fitness competitors! So here is what they have to say. Enjoy and learn!! 🙂

Malaysian And Singaporean Bodybuilders

Nolan Chee Chean Syze

Nolan Chee Chean Syze Bodybuilder Malaysia

Mr Hong Kong World Invitational 2011 – Champion (Masters)
WFF/NABBA World Invitationals 2012, Melbourne, Australia – Champion (Masters)

Q: What do you eat to maintain your shape? Brandon Senna Tan

A: Brandon, I basically eat clean 365 days all year round and don’t alter my meal plans much. Monday to Friday, I’ll have six small meals a day but I will have 2 cheat meals on Sat. On Sunday I’ll have one cheat meal. Reason for the cheat meals is to raised up my metabolism ( you’ll not gain fat but naturally entering fat-burning state!) while shocking my leptin levels to super compensate my calorie surplus meaning I will feel “fuller and pumped” during my weekends and a lot stronger for my Monday’s workout.

Q: Do you eat before or after a morning workout? Tyler Bobbitt

A: Good question, Tyler. It all depends on how thick your skin fold is. If your skin fold is thick, 30-45 mins prior working out, you should keep your stomach empty while ingesting high doses of BCAA+L-Glutamine and Creatine to prevent catabolism (sip throughout your training session) and immediately your workout,wash down a whey isolate shake with no carbs added. 30-45 mins later,eat like a “KING” – plenty of VEGGIES and 8-10oz. of any protein sources and no carbs.

On the other hand, for those with thin skin fold, carbs such as oatmeal, fruits or some starchy foods are recommended prior to working out and do add in some protein too. It may be from food or supplements. Have them at least an hour or two before hitting the gym. If you have the budget to spare, you may wanna drink an intra workout supplement during working out and right after workout, simply stick with a simply whey protein drink and some waxy maize starch as a post-workout supplement.

Q: How has bodybuilding affect your social life? Are you strict with your diet during the off season or do you eat out often so you could go out with friends? Ashley Foo

A: Ashley, I’m pretty strict with my meals, obviously. Mondays to Fridays, I will not eat out. I only reward myself with treats on the weekends for all my efforts during my workout days. In terms of my social lifestyle, it all boils down to your individual goals.


So,what I am simply trying to say is that once your goal is set, you must not let anyone, any excuse, temptation or external influence to deter you from reaching your goals.

Q: Can you share with us 3 things that are needed to improve the sport of bodybuilding? James Phua

A: James,  simply out of my thoughts, this sport can be further improved if:

1) The athletes show humility. I’ve seen too many bodybuilders acting out too much to be a “REAL” person.

2) This sport is controlled by too many “POLITICIANS” and the athletes with the biggest potential aren’t given a chance to compete because they aren’t well connected with the right people while those who were “chosen” are given too much attention. In order to eradicate this issue, a FAIR institution has to be set up and managed by multi-racial officials with lots of bodybuilding experience. Again, just my two cents.

3) Too many misinformed bodybuilders have condoned themselves into thinking that only by using HEAPS of performance enhancing drugs can they build a “GIGANTIC” physique overnight. I would like to advice all bodybuilders to read and thoroughly understand the substances which they intend to use on themselves, along with the side effects which come with them.

Q: What supplements do you take?

A) I can’t do with BCAA, L-Glutamine, creatine monohydrate and fast and slow acting protein powder.

Zen Low

Zen Low Xiang Hua Bodybuilder Singapore

Mr Singapore Bodybuilding Championships 2012 – Champion (Men’s Open Below 70kg)

Q: How many bodyparts should I train per session and how many days should I split my entire body for bulking? Zharif Hashim

A: No matter if you’re bulking or cutting, there shouldn’t be much difference in your splits. You should be training 1 to 2 muscle groups per session. Split them so that you train one major and one minor muscle group each session. E.g. Back with triceps, quads with calves. Try not to do 2 major groups together like back and quads.

Q: I have a 9 to 6 office job. How could I fit in six meals into my day?

A: You can try to eat breakfast, pre lunch, lunch, tea break, dinner and pre bed. For pre lunch or tea break, it can be just a shake or light meals, need not be a full meal. If your work doesn’t allow you to eat, grab a shake.

Q: What do you think about training protocols like HIT, GVT and FST-7? Have you tried them? Do they work?

A: I personally do not fancy these training protocols. I always change my training according to how I feel that day. Some days I do a lot of sets but some days I just feel weak and finish my workout as fast as I can. Those protocols are useful if you remember the basic rule of training. Stimulate the muscles.

Q: Does weight training negatively affects your performance in other sports, e.g. handball? Lee Guang Yao

A: Ever since I’ve started bodybuilding I have lost touch with other sports as it takes up a lot of my time. If you train consistently with other sports, I believe weight training will improve your performance in your core sport, eg basketball. It’s the matter of being consistent.

Q: Is it possible to stay lean and muscular all year round instead of having bulking and cutting phases? Keith Matthew Wong

A: Yes, it is possible provided you are dedicated enough to keep your meals clean and do your work in the gym. Sufficient cardio and moderate diet can keep a person lean all year round. It makes you grow better quality muscles and you will have lesser fat to cut when it comes to contest prep season.

Nur Farina Ismail

Nur Farina binti Ismail Fitness Singapore

SFBF Mr Singapore Bodybuilding Championships 2011 – Champion (Women’s Figure)
SBBF Mr Singapore Bodybuilding Championships 2011 – Champion (Women’s Model Physique Above 160cm)

Q: What do you do when you feel lazy and unmotivated to workout? Zoe Goh

A: There will be times we feel very drained and lazy. It’s all in our mind. I believe its common for us to feel that way sometimes. What I do normally is to warm up on any cardio machine for 10- 15 mins to get my heart rate pumping and body warm. That way your body will signal your brain to get ready for training. Another way is to get a training buddy. This way it helps you to be motivated to train. You will have fun training with 2 or 3 people as you will be motivating each other to go harder on your workout until you forget that you were actually tired.

Q: Any advice on how to break a plateau? Haniff Mutasha Radman

A: Step 1: Nutrition- It is the most important of all the steps. Keep track of your carbs, protein and fats intake. If you aren’t eating right, you can’t grow. A good starting diet will be 50% carbs, 30% protein and 20% fats. And you can try eating less carbs but higher protein intake to help you lose weight faster but dont go on a diet that is so low in carbs that you can’t stick to it long enough to keep your weight off permanently or you can eat more carbs to gain weight but generally make sure 40% to 60% carbs, 30% to 40% protein and not more than 20% is fats.

Step 2: Training – Changing up your routine is a great way to break out of a plateau. Change the order of your work out, change the days you train each body part, change the days you train. Try to manipulate your sets and repetition. Go heavy, do higher than normal reps and change the exercise. Just change everything up for a few weeks. Try keeping your body guessing every 3-4 weeks and it will have your muscles growing. You cannot train the same way for an extended period of time and hope for gains. The bottom line is that you need to emphasize the basic exercises, train hard, train to failure, progressively lift heavier and adjust your program.

Step 3: Take a week off – You may be overtraining and your muscles are desperately trying to do what you want them to. After a good week out of the gym with NO workout, then you get back into the gym you’ll be able to lift even more weight than you would if you’d keep up your program, and your muscles will reward you with a new surge of growth.

Q: I’m working in a kitchen of a bakery. How do you recommend I resist the temptation of food, since I’constantly surrounded by them? Chan Win Sern

A: Try eating smaller meals (pack from home if possible) or buy healthy snacks like almond, granola/oats bar or protein bar if you feel like eating the cakes or bread. This will help stop your temptation of eating the sinful food. It’s easy to say, but I understand that it may be hard. Set a goal and focus that you have to achieve your desired physique or healthy bodyweight. Practice abstaining from the food that’s tempting you for a week. Because in one week time you will get use to it and you can’t be bothered with the cakes, pastry, etc. Of course it is fine to indulge once in a while.

Q: Does your relationship affects your training or vice versa?

A: Either way round, nope. My husband is also in the fitness industry and he understands why we should look good and stay healthy. Furthermore we are personal trainers and we need to set a good example for our clients. As long as you know how to manage your time for training and time with your love ones, everything will turn out fine.

Q: What are the most common mistakes of women who want to obtain their dream physique?

A: Most women want to have a toned body. But commonly they are afraid of lifting heavy weights because they think they will grow big which is impossible due to our smaller testosterone production. But yet, 90% of them are unknowingly training for endurance by attending “toning” classes and doing too much cardio. Of course it’s good to supplement your weight training with cardio like HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). It’s not wrong to attend classes if you feel like having fun, just keep it to once a week. In my opinion lifting light weights applies stimulus for a longer duration and is the same thing as jogging on a treadmill. If you want to burn fat stop performing 100 reps with light weights.

In addition to that, they keep doing the same thing everyday and their body adapt to the training easily and they end up burning less calories, build less muscle and release less fat-burning hormones over time. Doing this kind of workout day after day will promote stripping of your muscles instead of building it. The stimulus used will never be enough to promote growth and development. The only way to increase fat-burning hormones is to lift heavier weights and get it done in less time (higher intensity). Most women also spend too much time in the gym. The most important thing they should know is our body composition will only change with 80% diet and 20% training. Avoid over training and watch your diet by eating every 3hrs with small little meals to keep your metabolism going.

Stay tuned to Fabodylous for more Q&A with our local champs! Like our Facebook page to stay informed about following parts! 

Have some questions of your own which you wanna ask? Click here and write it as a comment on this status.

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