Coming from a family of sport enthusiasts, Colleen Augustin was introduced to various martial arts ever since she was a child, before eventually settling on Mixed Martial Arts
By Reenassri Sekaran
At the recent 2019 IMMAF event held Bahrain, Colleen managed to score the bronze medal for the senior women’s straw-weight category. The Health sat down with this 21-year old and her journey to becoming a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) champion.
Were you always an active kid?
I’ve always been into sports. My parents instilled the importance of fitness and keeping healthy ever since I was a kid. They used to take me hiking every week as a kid. My dad used to be a boxer in the army and he used to be a basketball player so he ended up teaching me basketball when I was really young. I even got selected for the school team in primary school and trained competitively in basketball. I also did ballet!
How did you enter the mixed martial arts scene?
My parents made my brother and I do martial arts because they believed that self-defense is very important. I did a bit of karate when I was 6, taekwondo when I was eight or nine and aikido when I was 10 till the age of 17. I also did my fair share of road races then – which was then I switched from competitive basketball to running. I became a Spartan pro athlete for a while. However at the same time, I joined Monarchy to do martial arts.
I started off with Krav Maga but as time passed on my interest to try out Muay Thai piqued. My brother picked up jiu jitsu and recommended me to give it a try and I loved it immediately! Once I graduated high school, I got my first gi and was at the gym every single day. I would alternate between jiu jitsu and Muay Thai. I began competing in jiu jitsu tournaments and managed to win tournaments.
Getting into mixed martial arts was a strange thing because it was originally my brother’s interest. Agilan Thani recommended me to try out my first MMA class and there was no stopping there. My first MMA fight was all the way in Sabah.
How was your first MMA fight?
This took place in May last year. I kept throwing punches for a row in six minutes because I had so much pent up energy! My opponent eventually felt overwhelmed and I won the fight.
How is it like being a vegan athlete?
As a vegan athlete, it’s a bit more tedious because we need certain nutrients to recover. Therefore I make it a point to take Vitamin B complex drips every month because Vitamin B helps your muscles to recover faster. For me being vegan was environmental based and for the animals. My family were very supportive of this choice, in fact my dad started learning how to cook vegan food!
WILL & POWER: Colleen always had passion for martial arts since she was young, her recent endeavour into MMA gives her the chance to represent Malaysia.
Congratulations on bringing home bronze in the recent world championships! What are your plans for 2020?
I fought for 4 days, lost on the last day. So I’m determined to bounce back from my loss next year. Hopefully next year I will be able to participate in the world championship again to bring back home that gold medal! — The Health
How do Colleen Augustin starts exercising?
The Mixed Martial Artist spills tips to get you exercising for the New Years
You’ve decided it’s time to start exercising. Congratulations! You’ve taken the first step on your way to a new and improved body and mind. Colleen has some advice for you folks.
“I’m also a personal trainer. If you really don’t know what to do at the gym and are feeling really self-conscious, try getting yourself into a fitness program or if possible get a trainer. Someone to guide you, teach you the right foundation. This is because if you have no idea what to do and start lifting weights incorrectly, you are going to misalign your body and this will create bad habits that will later affect you in the future.”
Colleen recommends working out with a friend. “You don’t need even need to go to a gym, just go for a hike or a walk. I have two teenage ladies that I train, they enjoy my sessions with them but I wanted to instill that health and fitness is important and want them to do it for themselves.
“I tried to get them to run but it soon became clear that they did not like running. I brought them hiking and they really enjoyed it. I found out that their dad goes hiking on weekends and suggested to him to bring his daughters along.”
Colleen’s first MMA fight resulted in a win.