A proper diet and disciplined approach to fitness are the first steps towards good health, according to this SCDF ORNSman.

TEXT: AUDRINA GAN
PHOTOGRAPHY: ANGELA GUO

It may be hard to imagine that lean, athletic SSG (NS) Azlan Bin Ithnin had trouble passing his Basic Rescue Training while at SCDF’s National Service Training Institute in Jalan Bahar. “I did not perform well in the running test, so my friend started training with me. That’s how I got interested in ultramarathons,” he shares.

Then, fuelled by a desire to better his marathon timing and gain greater sports insights, he decided to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science.

Although his degree has no direct relevance to his IT-focused job at the Singapore Institute of Technology, Azlan says that juggling his studies with his career and marathon training has helped him to manage his time efficiently.

While pursuing his degree, the 30-year-old also learnt that health and fitness work in tandem. “Being healthy isn’t just about not falling sick. You need to exercise, eat in moderation, and avoid over-indulging in sugary and fatty foods,” he adds. Azlan’s background in sports science has also given him deeper insights into the human physiology. “If you want to improve your sports performance, you need to increase the frequency of your training and do a lot of strength training,” he explains. “Consistency is key, as many people will quit a sport after three months due to injury or lack of motivation.”

Apart from pursuing his passion in ultramarathons, Azlan also responds to emergency medical incidents with the Emergency Medical Services crew of Bishan Fire Station.

Here, the duties he performs require both physical stamina and a strong constitution, which, thankfully, he possesses. Take, for instance, the time he had to tend to a patient who had his finger severed in an industrial accident. Azlan helped to keep the man’s finger intact so that the doctor could reattach it at the hospital.

“I’m glad we’re able to provide medical aid to people in times of emergency,” he concludes.