Shape Fit Girl 2019 finalist Jona Mae may have gone several sizes up over the years, but every ounce of strength and confidence she has gained along the way has made it worthwhile.
Jona Mae De Gollo (@jm.degollo) – JM for short – calls herself a sporty fashionista and proudly lives by motivational quotes like “strong is the new sexy” and “train like a beast, look like a beauty”. Besides working out up to five times a week blasting through strength training, pilates, yoga and more, the 32-year-old tech talent specialist and former full-time model dedicates her weekends to even more sweat time – bootcamps, road bike cycling and even wakeboarding – all because it brings her joy. Her fitness goal for 2019? To improve her flexibility and mobility with reformer pilates and yoga classes. Here are five things to know about JM and her fitness journey.
I BELIEVE THAT I AM ALWAYS A WORK IN PROGRESS. When I first started exercising in 2014, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I do now. My turning point took place when I was exposed to functional training classes and worked with personal trainers. I came to love the learning process, as well as how my body responded to each workout and got stronger along the way. There is always something new to learn and to work on in the fitness world, especially since I am on the constant lookout for different sports and workouts to try. After yoga, pilates, strength training, paddle boarding, cycling, surfing and Muay Thai, I’ve recently picked up wakeboarding on weekends.
KETTLEBELLS ARE MY LIFE. I love how much you can do with it – with proper form of course. On top of squats, deadlifts and thrusters, you can also do overhead presses to work the shoulders, which are my favourite body part!
I AM A SKIN NERD. I’m always scanning products to ensure they have the best ingredients. My friends often consult me on my skincare routine, which I love telling them about. On top of basic products like toner, eye cream and moisturiser, I make sure I use essence at night because that’s when our skin cells regenerate.
I LOVE CARBS. And thankfully, it works for my diet. For me, it’s all about balancing my input and output. My picks for a fuss-free lunch are usually brown rice or quinoa with salmon. For dinner, I love cooking pasta with lamb chop or basmati rice with chicken.
MY FITNESS JOURNEY MADE ME REALISE THAT MY WORTH IS BIGGER THAN BEING A SIZE 0. When I first started out as a ramp model, I was told I had to be a certain size to fit in and I often felt I wasn’t pretty, skinny or good enough. That mindset changed once I started eating healthier, having a regular workout programme, and found new friends who had the same fitness goals as me. Five years later, I may be several sizes up, but I love every bit of the new me. I’m stronger and definitely more confident!