SARA MAY GAR­CIA PEREZ,

40, FIT­NESS IN­STRUC­TOR

Shape (Singapore) - - Shape Your Life -

She has been ex­er­cis­ing since she was five years old. From a young age, Sara has al­ways been one with fit­ness. “I started swim­ming from the age of five un­til I was 15. Af­ter that, I never stopped train­ing and went on to study all about fit­ness, phys­i­ol­ogy, biome­chan­ics and move­ment,” she says. Af­ter spe­cial­is­ing in sports sci­ence at Colom­bian Univer­sity PCJIC, she went on to be­come a cer­ti­fied per­sonal trainer, as well as a cer­ti­fied in­struc­tor in group ex­er­cise, aer­o­bics, yoga, pi­lates and TRX.

To­day, she does ev­ery­thing from strength train­ing to yoga. On top of core train­ing and Latino dance classes that she teaches, she’s al­ways break­ing a sweat with a work­out sched­ule that in­volves strength and gym train­ing, cross­fit, car­dio and yoga – each mul­ti­ple times a week.

She once felt too big com­pared to Asian girls. When Sara first came to Sin­ga­pore from Colom­bia, she found that her mus­cles and physique made her look a lot big­ger than the lo­cal women, who are gen­er­ally more petite. How­ever, that didn’t bother her for long. “I im­me­di­ately I re­alised that this is what makes me spe­cial in this coun­try.”

She hated work­ing in an of­fice. Ten years ago, Sara took on the role of a fit­ness man­ager, where she spent long hours cooped up in the of­fice and stressed be­yond mea­sure. Her fit­ness level dropped, her mus­cles shrank and she felt tired just climb­ing up a flight of stairs. “I felt bad phys­i­cally, had no en­ergy and was very un­happy,” she says. That’s when she de­cided to re­turn to the front­line as a fit­ness in­struc­tor.

Cross­fit is her favourite work­out. Of all work­outs she has done, she names cross­fit as her favourite be­cause she gets a full-body work­out, fast. Com­pared to sim­ply run­ning on the tread­mill and lift­ing weights af­ter, cross­fit com­bines the car­dio ben­e­fits of high-in­ten­sity in­ter­val train­ing with that of strength and en­durance in a short time pe­riod.

Her diet is spot­less. Sara starts her day with a green juice com­pris­ing cu­cum­ber, spinach, kale, lemon juice, grapes, fol­lowed by a pro­tein-loaded break­fast of six eggs, two yolks, rice and some fruits. Dur­ing lunchtime, you’ll see her with a hearty bowl of brown rice, quinoa, spinach, chicken breast, av­o­cado and hum­mus. And just be­fore din­ner, she typ­i­cally guz­zles down a pro­tein shake with oats.

But she does have some in­dul­gences! She wouldn’t say no to pizza, burg­ers, French fries, and a cold beer – but she lim­its those to once or twice a week. Noth­ing more.

Sara May Gar­cia Perez lives by her fit­ness mantra – 70 per cent nutri­tion, 30 per cent ex­er­cise.

FIT FASH­ION Un­der Ar­mour Polyester Elas­tane Low Im­pact Every­day Com­fort Sports Bra, $59, Odlo Polyester Elas­tane Light Shorts ,$69, New­line Polyester Imo­tion Printed jacket, $129, and Un­der Ar­mour leather run­ning shoes, $149, from TripleFit.

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