WHS 12-Week Challenge

WHS 12-Week Challenge: Week one
The 12-Week Challenge, a body transformation competition from the World Health Store, where entrants compete to improve their physique and lifestyle and win up to 8,000RMB, kicked off last week, on Monday 1 August. Over 40 people are taking part, including Time Out’s sales and marketing manager Even Fang and travel and assistant web editor Blessing Waung, who will be keeping a diary of her progress and milestones throughout the three month journey.

Follow her weekly blog, starting today, for her account of the struggles and successes of the challenge and just how hard it really is to live in Shanghai without eating rice or noodles.

Week one
“When my colleague Even and I first embarked on the World Health Store 12-week challenge, she had already started going to the gym daily, cutting out all alcohol, and was eating smaller, healthier meals. I endeavoured to do the same, which has proved a lot more difficult that expected. Living in Shanghai, particularly in the media field, temptation runs rampant, from delicious but dangerously calorific street food to endless molecular cocktails.
One week in, I’m happy to say I’ve been eating and drinking less, but my lifestyle is still far from disciplined. I still don’t eat breakfast, I don’t drink as much water as I ought to, I take lunch at my desk, and I can never seem to find time to go to the gym. Textbook mistakes.
During our initial analysis with Rock, the former bodybuilding champion turned nutrion expert at the WHS, he advised me to eat four meals a day, at 10am, 1pm, 4pm and 7pm, to prevent over-indulging, and to avoid processed carbs, like rice and noodles (I visibly balked).
In addition to diet, the challenge reinforces the importance of exercise by providing four weekly classes from circuit training to kickboxing. Last Thursday, I attended my first circuit training class, an intensive half-hour workout consisting of running laps, jumping jacks and squats. Although tough, afterwards I felt pretty good, and given the opportunity I’d like to do it every day.
The second circuit training, hosted by Me Wellness by Murat Erbaytan at Anken Green, was not so easy. With more than two dozen energetic pitstops, most of the other challengers were panting and moaning just a few stops in. As you can see in the photo, the instructor Murat has an perfectly honed body. I could barely walk the next day.
Many of the other challengers have perfect attendance at all of these classes, and I’m wondering how that’s possible when life is already so jam-packed, making the most of living in Shanghai? I think next week I will have to start scheduling daily workouts into my planner alongside work events, and drinking just water at both.”