Name: Tin Shu Min
Date of Birth: 14 November 1995 (20yrs)
Personal Best(s): 1:58:26 (Women 20km R racewalking, 2015 Asian Racewalking Time Trial)
Career Highlight(s): Current national record holder of the Women’s 20km Road Race Walk
Q) What are your hopes, dream and target this SEA Games?
I hope to clock a personal best.
Q) How’s your preparation for the SEA Games?
Training has been hampered due to a persistent femoral injury I sustained in January, but we’re doing our best and staying optimistic for a good outcome! :-)
Q) What are some of the biggest challenges in your sports career so far leading to SEA Games and your athletics career?
Injuries- in particular, recurrent stress injuries to both femurs in the past 8 months. But injuries are inevitable, especially because I’m still very much a beginner in the long-distance scene, and we’re confident that this problem will be resolved in time to come, with more conditioning and biomechanical fine-tuning. Other than that, I’ve been blessed with a smooth-sailing athletics career!
Q) How did you specialise in your particular event? Why this event, what’s the attraction?
I picked up jogging after I failed my 2.4km run in secondary school and found that I enjoyed it very much. In JC1, I tried for the school cross-country team but didn’t make the cut. My coach then introduced me to the 3km race walk event. Upon completing my A levels in 2013, I commenced training for the 20km distance.
I enjoy the challenge my event brings me, as it is both a technical and an endurance event. I really like watching my juniors and myself improve day after day. Race walking is still a very new sport in Singapore and I’m excited to see how far we can take it.
Q) Who is your coach, tell us more about him/her. Also a mention of your previous coaches.
My coach has always been Coach Chu Seow Beng, the long-distance track and cross-country coach at Hwa Chong Institution. He is a highly committed coach who is extremely dedicated to all his students, as well as the local race walking scene.
Q) Do you take care of your nutrition and diet? Your opinion on supplements and food.
I don’t take any supplements. There aren’t any foods I consume in particular; I eat pretty much the same things I always did before I began sports, though I’ve been paying more attention to my calcium intake recently.
Q) Aside from athletics, what else interest you? You could say the other part of your life beyond athletics.
I like sewing, reading, and taking very long walks, especially around places I’ve never visited before.
Q) How do you fit in your training/competing with your family and studies/work?
Because I took a gap year to begin training for the 20km, I’ve had no problem with time management. A lot of prioritizing will have to be done when I enter university this August, though.
Q) Share with the readers, some aspects of your training regime.
I train 8-11 times a week. Most of my training sessions are split between long walks of varying speeds and distances, and intervals. In recent months, however, we have begun to look into cross-training alternatives like the stationary bicycle.
Q) What are your long term athletics goals?
Currently, I would like to clock below 1:40. It won’t be easy- it will take at least a few years of dedicated training.
Q) What advice do you have for young aspiring athletes?
Don’t put so much pressure on yourself to do well in competition! Focus instead on your passion for your sport- I think that’s how one sustains long-term drive.
Image courtesy of Edmund Sim