Tiffany Wong : Real Talk On Body Confidence
She had tried every quick-fix weight-loss remedy and detox programme she came across, and only saw short-term results. She hated the gym, hated working out and hated feeling that soreness after working out.
But when she started gaining weight rapidly, she knew that narrative had to change. It was mid 2016, and with no change in her lifestyle or diet, Tiffany Wong could not stop herself from gaining weight.
"My diet consisted of whatever meat and vegetables were available, the occasional snack or junk food on the weekends; nothing extreme or out of the ordinary. It was the most bizarre experience and there were no real answers."
Her consistent weight gain got to the point where she was eventually convinced by her family to do a blood test to find out if there were any irregularities that could have been the cause. When her blood test results came back normal (perfectly healthy), it was even more frustrating for her as, once again, she was left to figure out what else was happening with her body.
"It appeared that my metabolism decided to come to a complete halt, so I decided to take matters into my own hands in August 2016."
That same month, her friends were embarking on a new business venture - a personal training gym, JYM Training.
"I was reluctant at first, and needed more information before committing to it. The idea of a gym intimidated me. In my mind, gym equalled unfamiliar environment, crowd, machines that I don't know how to operate, or care to use, fancy gym wear, and the list goes on!"
After doing a site visit, she was immediately sold on the 'newness' of this unconventional gym. By then, she was open to trying something new. Wong signed up with two other friends and was assigned a personal trainer.
In photo: Wong has come a far way in her fitness journey, and recently won the Jamaica Moves Get Moving Challenge, having amassed 473,056 steps over the four-week period.
But signing up was the easy part. She was consistently exercising for months and not seeing the weight-loss results she had hoped to.
"Five out of seven days of the week I ate whatever meat and vegetables were available and drank only water, but apparently it wasn't enough to see any changes."
Out of mere frustration, she started to meal prep in January 2017.
"I decided to prepare 10 meals one Sunday - five lunches and five dinners. Weekend meals were less rigid, but I still made healthy choices, refusing to indulge in a 'cheat meal' until I saw drastic results."
By week nine, the results came. Happy with her progress, she rewarded herself with a cheat meal.
"I have no idea what my weight is now, as the scale and I are NOT friends. I judge my results by how I feel in my clothes, most of which are now falling off of me," she admitted to Outlook.
In February, she did a weigh-in and she had lost only two pounds. But for Wong, the results were more evident in her measurements in inches.
"I was about four inches down in my waist, three inches down in my chest, and an inch off each thigh. Even though there were results, I fixated on the two-pound loss. I thought to myself, 'that's it? All this work and that's it?'"
She didn't allow that to deter her from continuing her meal prep and workout routine, but hoped for more results at the next weigh-in.
In March, her results showed that she was 10 pounds down from February, and even more inches.
"This proved to me that consistency is key and how important meal prep was for me. It wasn't just about meat and vegetables, but everything about how they are prepared."
Talking Body Confidence
Overcoming body confidence issues can be quite a task, this is something Wong said she knows form experience.
"You have to be ready. You have to want it for yourself and you have to decide to do something about it."
Her advice for individuals (both male and female) who struggle with this issue is to start small.
"You will not see results overnight. Short-term fixes are of no use to anyone. Understand that this is a long process. Stop comparing yourself. Don't set unrealistic goals; you will only set yourself up for disappointment when you don't achieve it. Accept that you need to try until you find a method that works for you, as not every body type is designed for the same prescription. Sacrifice and discipline garner the best results."
In photo: Today Wong has a different outook on working out at the gym and being consistent
Since deciding to take her health and physical well-being into her own hands, she has described the journey as amazing. Like everything else in life, she said, it has its ups and downs.
"Knowing that my hard work is paying off is the most rewarding experience. Understanding what works for me is a continuous learning experience as I can feel the changes in my body depending on whether I have had a good eating day versus a bad one. The body is unforgiving, so treat it well- it's the only place we have to live!"
The members of her personal-training gym have been a huge motivating factor on Wong's journey. She expressed how she has been comforted by the company and individual attention personal training offers.
"As a small group which trains together, we have been very supportive of each other's journey and it has been invigorating to learn about my body's limits throughout the process. No workout is ever the same, which I like! There is a sense of family since we have been working out together since the opening of the gym."
Wong has come a far way in her fitness journey, and recently won the Jamaica Moves Get Moving Challenge, having amassed 473,056 steps over the four-week period.