If you’ve ever wondered how exciting the life of an athlete must be to be able to do what they love day in, day out, think again. Short track speed skater, Anja Chong – who’s also known as Malaysia’s ‘ice queen’ – notes that while everything appears to be peachy on the outside, most athletes go through challenges and obstacles that often go unnoticed.
“Living the life of an athlete requires you to be extremely focused 24/7. In other words, you live for the sport you’re competing in. Everything from what you eat to what you do every hour, how you recover from an injury and even your thoughts play an important role in your career as an athlete,” she says.
After having gone through so much pressure and winning three gold medals at the 29th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games held in Kuala Lumpur in 2017, Anja decided to give her body the break it needed before making a comeback early this year.
“I knew I had to pull myself out from the sport to heal physically and mentally. I hit a breaking point and needed to put myself and my well-being first. But now, it’s a completely new ballgame and I’m all set to face the SEA Games that will be taking place in the Philippines next month,” she explains.
Anja, who defines a SuperFEMALE as someone who is able to love herself and those around her, hopes that she’d be able to connect well with her team members and have a good relationship with them during the upcoming SEA Games. “There were a lot of criticisms when I was in the 2017 SEA Games and I was upset and disturbed by people’s behaviour. I hope that this time, it will be a healthier environment for me and my team to compete in and we can all rise together. Whatever happens, I hope that I can inspire at least one person with my experiences and that’s more than enough for me,” she concludes.
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