PETALING JAYA: Former All-England men’s singles champion Hafiz Hashim is not an ordinary badminton coach but one who strives to be a good example.
The 39-year-old national junior coach showed one can lose weight if he or she sets their mind to it.
And he did it by shedding 10 kilos within a month.
Hafiz, who stands tall at 1.88m, had put on a few kilos during the movement control order (MCO) at the start of this year. It was not much but he knew he could be overweight if nothing is done about it.
He overcame the battle of mind and started exercising, cut down on his food intake and said no to his favourite Teh Tarik, juices and carbonated drinks.
“I weighed about 92kg at the start of the year and gained about four kilos within a month. I felt uncomfortable, lazy and bloated, ” admitted Hafiz, who coaches the Under-15 boys at Academy Badminton Malaysian (ABM) under Datuk Misbun Sidek.
“We have virtual training for the boys but it’s not like a full-day activity. I used to spar with my boys but now, I instruct and watch them do their workouts and while at it, I would have a few sweetened drinks.
“I had little physical activity at home. I was also taking care of my three children, including my one-year old daughter, as my wife had to work from home.
“I was overeating too. I’ll have a heavy breakfast and another meal at 10am. Then, it’s lunch at 12pm. At 2pm, I’m back at the kitchen looking for food.
“At 4pm, it’s goreng pisang (banana fritters) and what not. Then, it’s dinner at 6pm and about 10pm, I’m back to ransack the kitchen again. It was like six meals in a day!
“But on Feb 2, I decided to change my MCO lifestyle. I put on my jogging shoes and run for a few kilometres in the mornings. I stopped all the snacking, cut down on food and just kept drinking water.
“The first few days were tough. It was a struggle to follow the new routine. I remembered my playing days, and how I pulled through many obstacles. I was mentally strong enough to pull it off. Eventually, I felt lighter, better and fitter.
“And on Feb 24 when I weighed myself, I surprised even myself. I lost 10kg!”
Hafiz said he knows the importance for coaches to be physically fit.
“Players are watching. Coaches must set the right example. I’m not obese or overweight but extra pounds could have turned me into a sluggish person. And that’s not what I want as a coach, ” he said.
Now, when the players report for duty next week, a slimmer and fitter Hafiz will be able to keep pace with them.