For most people, getting in shape means taking a few gym classes a week. But for Sabrina Fung-lam, it led to a complete transformation of body and mind. Meet the businesswoman and mother for whom extreme fitness became a way of life 40
‘‘If I’d known it was going to be this hardcore, honestly, I might not have done it,” says Sabrina Funglam, scion of the Hong Kong-based global trading behemoth Fung Group, as we discuss the punishing exercise regime she embarked upon two years ago. Glowing and animated, with an athletic physique, it’s hard to imagine the woman before me could once have needed an overhaul, but for Sabrina, these past 24 months have seen dramatic lifestyle changes.
“It just started out as a typical, ‘Let’s get a trainer, let’s get fit,’” says Sabrina, recalling how the struggle to return to optimum weight after her third child provided the motivation to make a change. The personal trainer recommended by a friend, however, turned out to be anything but typical in his methods. “My friend was looking good so I just asked him for the name and number of his trainer and I booked myself in. He didn’t tell me that it was going to be super intense two-hour sessions during which you’re not allowed to drink water or wipe your sweat with a towel.”
The founder of Asia Performance Training, Anson Cha—or Coach AC, as he prefers to be called—has Sabrina on a gruelling regime of daily sessions that last two to three hours. These can consist of anything from indoor weights work to cardio and obstacle courses in the park, and even running up The Peak wearing three layers of thermals in 32 degree heat. “As someone who never used to drop an ounce of sweat two years ago to now being able to go trail running for four hours under the strong sun and thunderstorms at midday, Sabrina has demonstrated that willpower and hard work can produce endurance,” says Coach AC. While the workouts vary, they are all high intensity and are undertaken every day without fail. No excuses.
“A workout tends to be the first thing that most people cancel each day,” says Sabrina, “but I organise my day around my training.” On the advice of one of her father’s fitness-focused friends, she has learned to be unashamed about giving exercise absolute priority on her calendar. “He told me you put it in your diary and when people ask if you are free at that time, you just say you’re not. It sounds simple,