Paper Edition | Page: 1
Some choose to go outdoors and brave the city’s air pollution, heat and unfriendly traffic, while others prefer to sweat inside comfortable and trendy “mega gyms”.
Novi found her comfort zone inside the gym. She even hired a personal trainer to achieve her ideal fitness.
“I just want to be disciplined in doing exercises to get a healthy body. Besides, I definitely want to look sexy, at least for myself,” said the petite 34-year-old.
During her session, she obediently listened to her personal trainer and followed his every instruction — from basic walking and running on a treadmill for cardio training to doing flexibility exercises. She eventually ended her calorie-burning session back on the treadmill.
Novi, an employee of a company located in the Indonesia Stock Exchange building near the Pacific Place shopping mall, seems to have enjoyed her “me time” at the Fitness First club at the mall since becoming a member two weeks ago, with at least two sessions a week.
“In the past two weeks, I have felt a lot fitter than before,” Novi said after wrapping up her training session. “I no longer get headaches, migraines and insomnia because of the disciplined and monitored training.”
She chose the club located in the mall since it is connected to her office building. “So, I don’t have a reason to skip
exercising,” said Novi.
For such comfort, she is willing to spend some Rp 4 million (US$435) monthly in membership fees, including for 20 hours of sessions with her personal trainer, an amount she regards as another factor in “motivating” her to be disciplined.
Friday is her favorite training day since it is the time when many enjoy longer lunch breaks, usually from 11 a.m. to around 2 p.m. “That day, I can get lunch, go to the gym, shower all in one place and back to the office fresh in body and mind.”
Others, like former swimmer Richard Sam Bera, prefer to exercise outdoors, including running or cycling. Three years ago, he committed himself to the triathlon, an interest he developed when studying in the US in the 1990s.
“I usually ride my bike around my housing complex, or run a 10-kilometer loop on Sunday. I also frequently make a Jakarta-Bogor tour on my bike during the weekends,” said the seven-time Southeast Asian Games gold medalist in the men’s 100 meters.
Across the capital, more and more Jakartans are embracing a healthier lifestyle — as seen from the rising number of mega-gym fitness centers, both local and international chains, often located inside shopping malls, such as Fitness First, Gold’s Gym and Celebrity Fitness, to other smaller gyms found on many city corners.
Many have thousands of members, from some 26,000 at Fitness First Indonesia to 70,000 at Gold’s Gym Indonesia.
“For us, being healthy means our members understand and consistently follow healthy life patterns,” said Francis Wanandi, CEO of Gold’s Gym, which has 11 clubs and is set to open four more.
These healthy patterns, he said, include exercising at least three times a week, maintaining a healthy diet, having enough rest, consuming dietary supplements and drinking enough water.
Responding to the trend, nutritionist and healthy lifestyle motivator Phaido Toruan noted that people often think that being healthy simply means they are not sick.
“Actually, health means more than just not being sick,” he said. “Staying healthy should be for both the mind and body.”