Falling in love with fitness over a heartbreak is something that Ceci Lam is not embarrassed to talk about. Speaking brutally frank about being called fat is something that the wellness advocate reveals along with the triumphant claim that her body is something she worked really hard for and values immensely.
Narrating her fitness journey in an inspiring tale of girl power combined with her success as an Instagram sensation, there is so much to learn from Ceci’s incredible story. She emphasizes that every woman should take care of herself, because if you don’t like yourself nobody will.
Tell us about your connection to Macau.
All my memories are here and I grew up here in Macau. It’s home for me.
You had a chance to live in Shanghai but what makes Macau special?
I have my family here. I always say I can chase my dream anywhere in the world but my parents are here in Macau and this is where I will always find them. That is why I moved back.
Tell us about your fitness journey.
When I started working out, I was so fat. When I finished my internship in Disney World Florida, people were telling me I looked pregnant when in fact it was just fat. I attributed that to eating too much chicken, fries and beer. Even my mom made a comment about my appearance.
I started dating a player who broke my heart. He broke my heart and I went to the gym and worked out so intensely. So that’s how I fell in love with working out and how happy I became even with the treadmill and exercise. I said to myself, “I’m going to be super sexy and he’s going to come back to me”. But of course, he didn’t. I met someone else better and my life is even better now.
I have not been blessed with the body I have now. I worked hard for it.
You do a lot of Pilates? Why and how did you start practicing?
Miley Cyrus used to be chubby. She was a popular Disney star. One time I saw her image pop up and she looked so fit. So, I thought if she is fit now, I can achieve that too so I started Pilates.
I found so many benefits of Pilates. Maintaining a correct posture, awareness of health, control of my mind and body, it’s all very empowering and kept me focused.
When you go the gym, you just exert so much physical energy.
In Pilates, you have to concentrate and keep focused because you have to finish the movements and you are also training your mind.
You decided to pursue Pilates as a career. How do like teaching it?
I’ve been teaching Pilates for the last three years in Shanghai. I love my job and what I’m doing.
Before I used to dread going to work but now I get up at 5am and I love it to be able to teach new exercises. I see my clients and the process and what they get from Pilates and it’s very rewarding. I feel lighter and better. I help them have less pain in their life, they sleep better, they work faster, they have a better life, and all in all that’s very rewarding.
What are the challenges in that industry?
People ask me, what is Pilates? We should focus on the need to promote and educate people on what Pilates is and the benefits of it.
How did you grow your Instagram following?
I started the Instagram account three or four years ago. It’s a fitness account and features healthy living, which studio I go to, and what exercise I do. The key is to keep consistency and do content and I studied other people in terms of imagery or that colors need to be great and consistent and the right kind of filter. Keep in mind the subject and imagery with all my followers, who are also Pilates instructors, so it’s like a small community and we like to share.
What role does social media play in your life?
I can’t live without Instagram. I spend a lot of time on it and Snapchat as well. It helps me to learn outside of Macau. I will follow and keep myself updated with individuals who share my interest and lifestyle
Why is presentation important for social media and what are your secrets?
I think one must have an eye for aesthetics so that the branding is strong. I personally want to see pretty things and I shop a lot and I spend time for my hair and outfits. That is my fitness and style that manifests on my Instagram.
Taking care of your appearance is important in a girl’s life. It’s simple—if you are lazy you’re going to be ugly. You have to take care of yourself because if you don’t like yourself nobody will.
Everyone wants to be in a good shape. Do you have any fitness tips?
It’s very simple what I’m doing. What is healthy living? Some people say I exercise, eat salad, or drink water. I think the important part of healthy living is to get good sleep, eat healthy food and do a certain amount of exercise. Keep the mind positive.
If people have negative vibes no matter how many exercises you do you can’t be beautiful outside.
What are you working on right now? What are your plans for the year ahead?
I am working as a freelance Pilates instructor. I am working on my pilates concepts on Instagram. I take some video exercises that you can do at home. I am building my brand and program whilst also applying to be a Pilates educator.
I want to teach in the future because that’s how you bring awareness of pilates and spread the passion. Life is more than just quick money or a Ferrari. I want to try and influence people to try something different and help people become healthy, live longer and not just concentrate on money.
Where do you spend time in Macau?
I love going to the swimming pool. I love walking in small alleys and grabbing a cup of coffee. I like the one at old Taipa Village at The Blissful Carrot. There’s a park there and I chill there by myself and slow down and gaze at the beautiful surroundings. Sometimes I go hiking in Coloane as well.