What were you doing when you were 19? Some 19-year-olds are busy juggling school with a social life, while others are in the midst of figuring themselves out and navigating through their final year of being a teen. After all, it won’t be long before they hit the big 20 and become a young adult.
For 19-year-old Anastasia Lim, Muay Thai is a large part of her life – and has helped shape her to become who she is today: a better version of who she was before she embarked on her martial arts journey. “Martial arts is not only about fighting, it has actually also made me a better person,” she says.
Congratulations to 19 year old Anastasia Lim, our latest Student of the Month at Evolve MMA, Asia’s top martial arts organization!
Posted by Evolve MMA on Saturday, February 4, 2017
“Through martial arts, I have gained courage,” shares Anastasia. “There are times when I feel intimidated by a big task that I might not really want to handle, but the courage I have gotten from martial arts enables me to ultimately take on that task.”
Apart from courage, Anastasia believes that her training has played a part in boosting her ability to focus. “Martial arts has also helped me to block off all my distractions,” she adds. “It helps me to concentrate better on the task at hand.”
Anastasia, who has a level 3 in Muay Thai and is also a member of the Evolve Muay Thai competition team, started her martial arts journey in 2014. She loves Muay Thai as she believes it keeps her active and happy. “I’ve always wanted to learn martial arts, but never really got around to doing it,” she reveals. “I heard about Evolve through a ONE Championship event in 2014, and that was when I decided to start training.”
Anastasia chose to train at Evolve MMA because she believes it is a clean, safe place to do so. “They have well-built facilities, and to add to that, world champion instructors,” she says. “They have the biggest hearts and lots of patience, they make sure that I understand what I’m doing, and they take care of me well.”
“I took up martial arts to learn self-defense but slowly fell in love with Muay Thai,” shares Anastasia. “After awhile, learning self-defense was just one of the reasons why I train.”
Just last month, Anastasia had her debut Muay Thai fight. Unfortunately, she didn’t achieve her desired outcome. “I went in without a game plan and felt all the pressure to win my first fight,” she admits. “Things did not go the way we had all hoped and wished for, in other words, I lost.”
Fortunately, Anastasia did not let this loss affect her too badly, and was able to pick herself up and work on fixing the holes in her game. “[Losing] didn’t really matter, because there was no time to cry over spilled milk. I had to focus on the mistakes I made, work on them, and fight again two weeks later,” she adds.
With her heart and focus in the right place, Anastasia was then able to turn things around and win her second fight. She attributes her first win to her first loss. “Before going in, I had massive butterflies in my stomach because the idea of losing again didn’t stick with me. I had to win it,” she admits. “I went into the ring telling myself that it was going to be different from the last time and that I’m just going to put my 100% effort and passion into this thing that I love.”
“From my second fight, I learned to always listen to my instructor,” shares Anastasia. “They know what they are saying and what is best for me even though I may be the one fighting in the ring.”
There’s no doubt that Muay Thai will continue to be a big part of Anastasia’s life as she intends to continue participating in future competitions. “I strive to do my very best and try to be at least 1/10 times as good as our world champion instructors.”
Her advice for fellow martial artists looking to get to the next level? “Do not be afraid to learn from those better than you, because what you learn from them can make you a better fighter or person.”