Hearts set on a mean­ing­ful cause

The New Paper - - CAREERS - RY-ANNE LIM

ONE FM 91.3 DJs hope to kick-start healthy life­style and in­spire oth­ers by tak­ing part in the In­come Eco Run

Con­sis­tency is key when it comes to stay­ing fit and healthy, and ONE FM 91.3 ra­dio DJs Fly­ing Dutch­man (FD) and An­dre Hoe­den can at­test to that.

Their heart prob­lems, which FD grap­pled with six years ago and Hoe­den 11 years ago, in­spired them to turn their lives around – for a while.

The pair stayed away from fried food and were slim­mer and fit­ter.

To­day, both have ad­mit­ted to back­slid­ing, par­tic­u­larly FD, whose real name is Mark van Cuylen­burg.

But the ra­dio per­son­al­i­ties hope that by par­tic­i­pat­ing in this year’s In­come Eco Run’s 5km non-com­pet­i­tive race on April 29 at the F1 Pit Build­ing will help them get back into the groove.

For­merly known as the NTUC In­come Run 350, the event is an eco-friendly run that aims to raise aware­ness about en­vi­ron­men­tal con­ser­va­tion and a zero waste life­style.

FD, who shed around 7kg af­ter his heart at­tack in 2012, told The New Pa­per: “I felt great when I lost all that weight.”

The 62-year-old at­tended a lo­cal weight-man­age­ment pro­gramme to re­duce body fat and in­crease mus­cle den­sity, which helped him drop to 77kg.

Since he stopped the pro­gramme in 2015, his weight has steadily in­creased. He is now 87kg, even reach­ing his heav­i­est a few months ago at 89kg.

“I blame the can­teen at my of­fice. It is ir­re­sistible,” he joked.

FD added: “Be­ing fit is a life­style, not a one-time thing. Once you stop at­tend­ing these pro­grammes, you for­get. You stop fol­low­ing their in­struc­tions.

“I hope the run kick-starts my mo­ti­va­tion to have a healthy life­style again.”

Hoe­den, 43, had a stent in­serted into his left artery be­cause it was 95 per cent clogged in 2007.

For the first few years af­ter that episode, he kept a strict diet with no fried food and ex­er­cised four times a week. His weight quickly dropped from 96kg to 75kg.

But things changed when he be­came a fa­ther of three chil­dren, aged nine, six and three.

He would, for ex­am­ple, eat his chil­dren’s left­overs – from sweet drinks to junk food – even when it was un­nec­es­sary.

With his day job, his real es­tate busi­ness and par­ent­hood, he also did not have time to keep up with his work­out sched­ule, and he even­tu­ally hit 86kg.

“On a good day, I get about four hours of sleep. I can’t even re­mem­ber the last time I had a full eight hours of sleep. By the time I am home, I am men­tally drained and ex­hausted. Ex­er­cis­ing is the last thing on my mind,” he said.

“And when you be­come a par­ent, it is not about you any more. Even your health be­comes sec­ondary to your chil­dren.”

Since Hoe­den signed up for the In­come Eco Run, he has re­turned to the gym for strength and en­durance train­ing. He goes around four times a week, lift­ing weights and run­ning on the tread­mill.

He said: “I am run­ning not for a medal or a great tim­ing, but for a mean­ing­ful cause. I want to see a bet­ter fu­ture for the next gen­er­a­tion and for my chil­dren.”

His other goal is to be­come con­sis­tent with ex­er­cise, as “it shouldn’t be a three-month stint”.

“Keep­ing fit is about chang­ing your life­style and it in­volves com­mit­ment,” he said.

“We are never too young to be in dan­ger of health con­di­tions.”

For FD, run­ning 5km will not be easy.

“But if I can com­plete it with heart is­sues and a weak back, even if I have to jog and walk the whole way, any­one can do it,” he said.

“I want to show peo­ple that any­thing is pos­si­ble as long as you put your mind to it, be it con­serv­ing the en­vi­ron­ment or be­ing healthy.”

lim­min@sph.com.sg

TNP PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

An­dre Hoe­den (left) and The Fly­ing Dutch­man tak­ing a po­si­tion for In­come Eco Run’s 5km non-com­pet­i­tive race .

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