Exercising a healthy life

Farhan Julaihi

Achieving the desired fitness goals differ between individuals – some want to gain weight while some want to slim down. The common features lie in determination and hard work.

In an interview with the Bulletin, Hisyam, 22, shared his journey to achieving his fitness goal of having a fit and healthy body.

Looking back, Hisyam said his body was not always to his liking. By the tender age of 10, he was already classified as obese.

“My school advised me to see a dietitian due to my weight. I weighed around 65 kilogrammes at the time, which was not normal for my age and height.”

With the help of his father, Hisyam was able to work on becoming healthy. “I started to lose weight after my father taught me portion control. This resulted in me cancelling my appointment with the dietitian.”

ABOVE & BELOW: Twenty-two-year-old Hisyam, and 23-year-old Khairul Ikhwan

In 2017, he felt that he could be in even better shape. So he made it his goal in university two years later.

“During my first semester, I tried to establish a workout routine but it did not last long, as I had to concentrate on my studies; and I simply did not have enough free time to exercise.”

When COVID-19 hit the Sultanate last year, time was suddenly all he had. “I did not have to attend physical classes. I felt lost with all the spare time.”

This ignited his desire to work out. “I wanted to me feel like myself again,” he said.

Only this time he tackled it differently. “My mindset was mostly to be fitter each day and challenge myself in the process. Some people start off too quickly, with high expectations, which burn them out. That is why a lot of people give up after a month.”

Exercising regularly, Hisyam hopes, will increase his chances of earning a spot in the Officer Cadet School (OCS) once he graduates.

Meanwhile, Khairul Ikhwan, 23, shared his journey in achieving his fitness goal of completing short- and long-distance runs.

Ikhwan and his friend, Hafiz, picked up jogging last year. Since then, they have been keeping track of their progress and treating it as a friendly competition, which motivates them to better themselves each time.

Ikhwan jogs after class because he finds it the best time as there are not a lot of people around.

He jogs three days a week to prevent burnout, adding that “I judge my runs based on the times cut per distance. For example I set a goal of running 2.4 kilometres under 13 minutes and I did it.

“In March, I reached my best record for 2.4 kilometres in 10 minutes and eight seconds, something that seemed impossible to achieve before”.

Ikhwan’s goal is to have a healthy body as it “leads to a healthy mind”.

And his next goal: To run a marathon.