Singapore's #Fitspo of the Week: Twins May & Choy Wan

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 (cheryltay11).

May Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)
May Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)


Choy Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)
Choy Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)

Names: May Wan / Choy Wan

Age: 33

Occupation: Mumpreneur / Public Relations Specialist (both signed to Beam Artistes)

Height: 170cm

Weight: 54kg / 56kg

Status: Both married

Diet: No restrictions but will watch portions / Fruit juices in the morning, no carbs at night, cut out sugar completely, no processed foods

Training: Combination of weights, HIIT and Pilates with a personal trainer three times a week

May and Choy Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)
May and Choy Wan (Photo by Cheryl Tay)

Q: Both of you are former models, actresses and veejays, was there a lot of pressure to be of a certain shape and size in the entertainment industry?

May: Oh, we were so brainwashed back in the day. I look at my old photos now and I was SOOO THIN. At that point we didn’t think that way and we were constantly told we had to be smaller, thinner. For me, I started out at 17 so you can imagine how bad it is to be brainwashed to be of a certain shape. Models of today are too skinny!

Choy: I remember I went to Taiwan for a shoot and these people had already seen my photos before choosing me for the job. However, when we were shooting halfway, they suddenly stopped the shoot and they called my agency to complain that I was fat. They sent me home after. At that time I was thinner than I am now!!

What did you do then to try and lose weight?

May: We tried slimming pills, went on the Atkins diet and we used to have all these bad migraines. (shudders)

Choy: We tried this thing called hot rocks, we went on weight loss pills and the side effects were bad. We would get heart palpitations, the menstruation cycle gets messed up and we became very edgy, which led to us becoming over-sensitive to others’ comments.

How do you feel about your bodies now?

May: I’m a mother of two now – Leala, 5 and Siena, 2½ – and I feel sexier after having my kids. When I got pregnant, I got up to 68kg but I wasn’t stressed about having to lose the weight after. My body confidence shot up a lot after birth; of course it helps to have a very supportive husband.

Choy: I am more confident about my body now compared to 10 years ago when I was skinny. My body is fitter and healthier now, and I want it to be in the best condition when I get pregnant in future. Up to about 25 years old, I was still very affected about my body but around the age of 29, I had a turning point in life where I learnt to love myself and I don’t care about criticisms anymore. That’s when I met my husband too.

Did anyone ever compare the two of you physically?

Choy: Yes, I’ve always been the chubbier, heavier twin and I gain weight more easily than my sister. I grew up getting compared to her al the time, with people saying I’m the fat twin and the mental anguish was bad, but it doesn’t bother me anymore. Right now, I travel a lot for work and because I’m in the travel industry, there’s a lot of wine and dine. For a period of time (this was after I stopped modelling) I shot up beyond 60kg.

I want to be fitter and healthier so I started to go to the gym, I hired a personal trainer and learnt to eat better. My goal was to lose weight sustainably and keep it off – which I have for the past three years. Do it slowly, have patience and it helps to have a partner who leads a healthy lifestyle too.

What advice do you have for the girls of today?

May: I always believe you need to find a balance and have the right support system; otherwise it can lead to depression and eating or mental disorders. If your friends tell you, “Aiyah, you’re so thin now, work out for what?” then that’s not right. You want to be healthy, toned with some muscle. Being thin is not everything!

Choy: Throughout our career, we have had people telling us we weren’t skinny enough, our ass was too big, our hips are too wide – but all of that is thrown out the window. Get the right food and right exercise; don’t see it as a weight loss regime over a period of time but a lifestyle change for life.