Singapore #Fitspo of the Week: Gillian Tay

Strong is the new sexy and fitness is the new party. With society leaning towards health and fitness, Yahoo's #Fitspo of the Week series is dedicated to all inspirational women in Singapore leading active lifestyles. Know of any who deserve to be featured? Hit me up on and on FacebookTwitter and Instagram (cheryltaysg).

Gillian Tay. Photo: Cheryl Tay
Gillian Tay. Photo: Cheryl Tay

Name: Gillian Tay (Instagram: @jillysunkist)
Age: 29
Height: 1.65m
Weight: 55kg
Occupation: Designer / Project manager
Status: Happily single
Diet: Tries to eat in moderation by reducing sodium, carbs and sugar drinks; avoids eating after 8pm  Training: Quick 30-minute bike ride on the road after work on weekdays; Surfset, floorball and flowriding on weekends

Have you always been sporty?
Yeah, pretty much, I've always been known to be super active and I can't sit down for more than an hour not doing anything. I would swim, play badminton with my neighbours, take a spin around my neighbourhood on my bicycle or go inline skating.

Who got you started on working out?
As a kid, my dad was the one who groomed me to be a sporty and competitive person. So it was always in my blood to work out to keep fit, in order to be competitive in whatever sports I took up, even if i suck at it. Haha!

When did you start flowriding?
I started flowriding when Wavehouse Sentosa opened in 2009. My first competition was sometime in 2010 at the World Flowriding Championship Wildcard division where I took three places, competing with girls from around the world. Ever since, I’ve been hooked on competing in flowriding. My most significant achievement in flow was in 2013 when I won the Asia Flow Games and represented the Asian team at the World Flowriding Championship at Durban South Africa.

What is it about flow that you like so much?
The feeling of being free on the board and doing all sorts of tricks! It feels like it frees my inner soul (so spiritual, true story) and that sense of achievement you get after landing hardest tricks is like striking the lottery.

How difficult it is to balance office life and an active fitness regime?
I must say, it's really tough as I work in an advertising agency. But then it's all about time management and making an effort to do it, even when I am really tired. In fact, my Mondays are not that blue when I make an effort to be active over the weekends. I feel really refreshed when i head back to work on Mondays!

Have you always been confident about your body?
Depending on my mood during certain times of the month, if you know what I mean. Then again, I was never a petite and slender girl, and my body type is more athletic.

But after I started working full-time and getting really tired from work, I tend to slack off my exercise regime and it has made me feel less confident about the body. I just try to work out as much as I can or style myself up in other ways.

As you grew older, how have your opinions on fitness and body image changed?
It is easier to put on fats and more love handles as you get older. Also, the trend of getting fit seems to be kicking in quite a bit, so it is good to see more people having a proper work life balance and making time for gym or any sort of sports.

Is there any kind of sport you would like to try?
I would love to kite surf and snowboard. It's very similar to the usual sports I am into – the adrenalin rushing kind. It brings you a happy type of high!

Will you ever consider plastic surgery?
I don't think so. I am happy the way I am. Everyone should accept themselves for who they are and love themselves and not compare to what the society wants us to be.

Why should people make an effort to lead an active lifestyle?
Not only they will feel good about themselves, but in the long run, it would be good for health, as everyone ages. Being in an active lifestyle teaches one to understand themselves better, in terms of mind and health.

Gillian Tay. Photo: Cheryl Tay
Gillian Tay. Photo: Cheryl Tay