Interview With: A Teenager Who Became The Pride of A Nation

Rabiatual Adawiyah Binte Yusak
23, Personal Trainer

As a Silat martial art fighter, Rabiatul Adawiyah Binte Yusak (nicknamed “Bit”) has made impressive sporting achievements – on a national and international level. In 2008, then 19 year-old Bit competed in Penggal Putri Silat Championships International Women’s Open held in Singapore. She won the gold medal. The following year, in the Laos SEA Games 2009 and Asian Games, she also brought home the gold medal – which cemented her as a national sporting pride. Bit is ranked 4th as Best International Silat Exponent. The surprising fact is it was only two years from the time she started training in Silat that she got her first, of many, gold medals. This is one girl you do not want to mess with.

How did you get involved in Silat?
By chance! When I was 17, I came across a banner promoting a Silat club that is managed by the residents’ committee in Woodlands. And I signed up. For the next five years, I trained and competed before retiring in 2010.

What was it like to train for an international championship like the SEA Games?
Initially, it was stressful. I wanted to prove to myself in the sport. Also, there was the added pressure of wanting to bring glory to my country. Over time, I enjoyed the thrill from the anticipation of preparing for competitions. It saw it as a chance to improve my skills.

What drove you to win?
The hunger to prove, to myself, that I was capable of winning.

What would you say was your greatest training obstacle? And how did you overcome it?
Fasting months proved to be challenging, for training and competitions. It took some time before I learned to balance between pushing myself harder, and managing the challenges that come with fasting.

How is life like nowadays post-championship?
Today, I am a personal trainer at Celebrity Fitness Singapore. Though I have retired from competitive sport, I maintain the ethos of keeping fit regularly for my own health; and for the benefit of clients who do their Personal Training sessions with me.

What is your advice for people who want to lose weight and keep in shape?
Feed your muscles, not your tummy. Regular exercise and healthy nutrition go hand-in-hand. Whatever you eat during post-training, it is intended to aid muscle recovery. So, input equals output. To achieve the right type of body and fitness goals, you are what you eat. And everything in moderation.

What is your personal exercise regime like?
I am in the gym six days a week. Everyday, I target a different body part and muscle group. I make use of free weights because it gives me greater control over my range of motion, resulting in a more dynamic workout. My cardiovascular workouts consist of self-designed circuit training exercises. When possible, I participate in Celebrity Fitness’s signature dance fitness program ‘Dance N’ Attitude’, more popularly known as DNA.

I also do ViPR and TRX functional training. ViPR (pronounced ‘viper’) uses rubber tubes of varying weights that allow for toning and conditioning in a full body workout; and TRX is a form of suspension training that uses one’s own body weight to deliver a full-body resistance workout.

Each workout normally lasts between 45 to 60 minutes. I try to work out with a buddy, and refrain from training in larger groups because there is a tendency to lose focus.

What is your diet like?
I consume a lot of lean protein like chicken breast, hard-boiled eggs and protein shakes. For breakfast, I have a bowl of cereal, oats or granola with skimmed milk, and three hard-boiled eggs. I only take the egg whites though! Lunch is a portion of rice with a side dish. This is usually fish or red meat. About an hour before work-out, I have a banana. 45 minutes after work-out, I have five hard-boiled eggs or a protein shake. Dinner consist of a flank steak, or roasted chicken breast, with oregano or black pepper seasoning.

What do you do on your days off from the gym?
Cycle in the park or swim. To keep myself happy, I also have ‘cheat’ days when I indulge in a cupcake, a handful of jelly beans, or an ice-cream.

Who inspires you?
Beyonce Knowles. She worked her way to the top to become one of most prominent artistes with her own clothing and fragrance line. She is a successful entrepreneur with a wholesome family image. And no controversies. While I may not exactly aspire to be a performer, I identify with her work ethics of staying focused; and determined to achieve your dreams regardless of whatever obstacles that come your way.

In what ways do you practise eco-conscious living?
I try to do little things like using the air-conditioner less frequently at home, turning off the tap while brushing my teeth, running a full load of laundry instead of half or smaller loads, and switching off electrical appliances at the power source, instead of leaving them on standby.

If you could do your part in saving the planet, in just ONE way in your everyday life – what would you do or what would you change?
I would like to get more people to be involved in preventing animal abuse. It pains me greatly to read about abandoned and abused pets, especially when we are supposed to be taking care of them.

Thanks Bit ♥

To find out more about Celebrity Fitness where Bit works as a personal trainer, click here.

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