Before & after. Photo Credit: Michael Wan
IPP White Collar Boxing, in aid of The Children's Surgical Centre in Cambodia, will be held on the 17th of March in Hong Kong at the Intercontinental, as male and female boxers give their all in the ring. Following 12 weeks of intensive training, we caught up with one of the contestants, Michael "The Great" Wan.
Michael is the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens Operations Manager, and at 29 years old, this will be the fourth Sevens he's been involved with. On asking him why he suddenly decided to take up this new challenge of boxing, he said "I've always wanted to take up something that would challenge myself before I turn 30 and, more importantly, to put me out of my comfort zone."
It was just another ordinary day in the office for Michael, when the poster popped up in his Facebook feed. The urge took Michael, and within 2 minutes, he'd signed himself up to fight, "It's one of those things sometimes you just do, without giving any thoughts," Michael added.
On asking what he hopes to achieve with this challenge, in terms of personal results, Michael replied, "my main focus is getting back into shape and losing that 30 lbs I gained since I joined the Union." with regards to charity Michael said "of course being able to help others who are less fortunate is my main drive", which led us to ask why he's willing to put himself in the ring to help raise money for others? Michael said, "There’s an old Chinese proverb, killing two birds with one stone," and explained that if he could burn off some fat and help others at the same time, then why not? We're not going to argue with him on that one!
We wondered if Michael had ever boxed previously. He replied, "Never in my life have I boxed before and it was something completely new to me... taking myself out of my comfort zone was the key to it!" That's something we at More Chaos like to hear - if you're comfortable, it's time to seek a new challenge, and Michael's got a winning attitude!
Since Michael has undergone intensive training for this event, and has come so far, we asked if he will continue boxing, or find a new challenge. "My plan is to continue with regular boxing classes as it is an extremely physical demanding sport which keeps me in shape!" Michael added, "my next challenge will be the Spartan Race and will again look to challenge myself with another adventure." Spartan Race is an international event, and anyone who feels up to the challenge can take part by registering on the Spartan Race Hong Kong website.
With all this talk of challenges and training, it sounded like pretty energy intensive stuff. We asked Michael what has been the toughest part about his training and changing his diet? "The training was extremely tough as it was solely focused on high intensity workout during the first 6 weeks. The level of fitness and intensity definitely caught me by surprise! We didn’t even put the gloves on before that! On the diet, that wasn’t too bad as I was used to eating clean and training hard before the drastic weight gain. I must admit though - there will be cravings for junk food. All I did was to drink plenty of fluids when that crossed my mind, that was the trick for me."
Given that Michael has come towards the end of his training, and his fight is right around the corner, we asked the hypothetical question of, if he could start his training over, what would he have changed about his approach? To our delight, Michael said, "actually I wouldn’t change a thing, as I knew that was my only way to achieve my goals. Credits must go to my mum and my coaches who helped with my meals and training day in and day out!"
With all of this dedication to shaping the new Michael, we asked if he was going to have a day off after the fight. Michael replied, "as much as I want to hang my feet up and relax, it will not happen! I've got a mini rugby festival with my U11 rugby team playing in it! Also, with the Sevens just around the corner, there’s no time to rest. Bring it on!"
Michael's efforts are helping to raise funds for the Children's Surgical Centre in Cambodia. If you'd like to help support the work done by the centre, please click here to donate.