Shila Amzah On Losing 14kg In A Year And Why She’s Doing It For Her Four-Year-Old Son
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Malaysian singer Shila Amzah is back, and looking mighty fit while at it too. The 32-year-old, who last performed here at Mediacorp’s Let's Celebrate 2023 countdown party, is staging her first solo concert in Singapore on June 3.
8days.sg spoke with the singer ahead of her gig to find out more.
Though Shila’s had a really packed day filled with back-to-back radio interviews, the singer’s as chirpy as ever when we catch her during a 30 minute break.
She lets on that her son, Seth, who’s turning four this year, is in town with her this time, though she didn’t bring him along today.
Listing off the things the mother-son duo are looking forward to doing in Singapore — catching up with friends and eating sup tulang merah for Shila, visiting Universal Studios Singapore (USS) for Seth — Shila and her entourage settle themselves into the seats opposite us in a nondescript meeting room at the Mediacorp campus.
The past few years have been really busy for Shila, despite the pandemic throwing a spanner in her plans to further her career in China, where she made a name for herself after impressing with her vocal chops and command of Mandarin in variety singing shows like One In A Million and I Am A Singer.
In February 2022, Shila announced that she officially divorced her husband, with whom she tied the knot in 2018. She also added that she’d be raising their son, Seth, as a single mother.
A year later, Shila confirmed her relationship with Malaysian podcaster and content creator Ubai Mz, 25.
Just a few days ago, Shila posted a picture with Ubai on her Instagram with a caption thanking him for the past five months. The post ignited a flurry of speculation from fans who appeared to have misinterpreted her post as a subtle admission that the couple had broken up.
But don’t worry, they’re still together. Shila later edited her caption, leaving only this sentence: “All is well, don’t worry,” along with a white heart emoji. On May 27, she made another post, revealing that the couple had gotten engaged.
Apart from that, the singer’s busy getting ready for her Journey To The Future concert tour. Oh, and living out her best #fitspo life. After all, she did lose 14kg in a year, and is now a total convert when it comes to working out and leading a healthy lifestyle.
So, how does she do it all?
8DAYS.SG: Last year you shared a post about about how you lost 14kg, that’s really not easy! How did you stay motivated?
SHILA AMZAH: To be honest, I have my ups and downs. There are days where I'm really un-motivated, and being a woman is not easy. You probably have one good week a month, and the rest of the three weeks [you] just feel bloated, and you don’t feel good in your own skin, but I think it's really important to fully accept that, and you really need to be determined and stay disciplined.
For me, I really cannot have my morning routine ruined, or there goes my day.
Having said that, every one of us should know their own body. Some people do intermittent fasting, some people probably cut carbs entirely. I think managing your stress well plays an important part. And... sleep (laughs).
What’s your morning routine?
I wake up and take a cold shower immediately. After a cold shower, I always start my morning with some form of protein — I prefer a protein shake, something liquid — and then I’ll start my workout.
So it'll be strength training, and then a good cardio session, probably about one-and-a-half hours, three to four times a week, and then after that, I'm ready to kickstart my day.
On other days I just do some stretches, and badminton, I love badminton for cardio as well.
Do you have any tips for anyone who wants to get in shape?
Just trust the process. Nothing comes easy, but I would say that shedding weight is not the main goal here. To have the right mindset to love your body is the [main goal]. If you expect the results to be like your pre-baby body, it's the wrong mindset. 'Cos everything is different. Every part of your body has changed.
I'd say one thing that gave me the biggest motivation to lead a healthier lifestyle is my son, 'cos he is three-and-a-half years old now, but he's quite heavy (chuckles).
And he's very active, so if I'm running around, [without being able to keep up with him], it’s a really sucky feeling.
So I'd like to be as active as he is, to lift him up without having back aches and things like that. That’s the biggest reason why I wanted to stay fit and healthy. It's 'cos of my son, he deserves the best.
How hard is it to juggle your career and family?
I am blessed that I just got a helper. Before I got a helper, it was really hard. [My son] was not very good with people 'cos he has a speech delay and a few other issues that I had to take care of, so instead of sending him [to daycare], I had to send him to my mum’s place, and then go to work, fetch him from my mum’s place and then go home.
It was really tiring, but I think that's just part and parcel of being a single mother, and obviously the journey will never be easy, but there's always sunshine after the rain.
Seeing him smile at the end of the day, seeing him well-fed, well-kept and well taken care of, I think it was the most wonderful feeling. Mums never give enough credit to themselves, you know.
You’re taking care of another human being, that's a big deal, so you shouldn't be too hard on yourself. And self-love is not selfish. I think a lot of people might think that once you're a mum, you have to put other people's needs before yourself, and I think that’s wrong.
You need to love yourself first in order to love others. The reason I'm doing all of this is 'cos when I figured out how to love myself, only then could I love my son better.
Hear, hear. On the work front, it's been about three years since you last toured.
Post-Covid, anything feels super amazing, especially with this tour, and considering this is my first concert in Singapore, it's extra special 'cos I received very, very, good energy from the fans when I did the New Year's Eve celebration here. I'm preparing more Mandarin songs for Singapore, 'cos I figured that that's more my niche here. There are also some dance numbers that I'm doing as well, and I added some new Korean songs, so it's gonna be really exciting.
Do you have any plans to go back to China for work?
It’ll probably be in September, and we’ll start over again. It will be challenging, 'cos it's been three years since I was last there, but yeah I love challenges, and it's going to be a beautiful journey, regardless of what happens.
Any artistes you’d like to collaborate with?
I've always wanted to work with Wang Lee Hom, that'd be my ultimate dream!
Shila Amzah’s "Journey To The Future" Live Tour 2023 in Singapore will be held on June 3, 10pm, at the Capitol Theatre. Tickets are priced from $88 to $168, and can be purchased via all access asia.
Photos: IMC Global Live, Shila Amzah/Instagram