Zoe Tay wants to gain more muscle and look more toned

Bak kwa, abalone and honey-flavoured sunflower seeds.

These are Chinese New Year goodies that MediaCorp ah jie (big sister in Mandarin) Zoe Tay can't do without.

In the past, she could eat anything she wanted and still maintain a svelte figure.

Now, the mother of three is worried that she has piled on the pounds.

This Chinese New Year, the only thing that she has bought for herself is a pair of jogging shoes. And she plans to start exercising for the first time since giving birth to her first son in 2005.

Tay, 46, told The New Paper: "You can't see (the extra fat) because nowadays I choose to wear bigger dress sizes. I want to exercise so I can gain muscle and look more toned.

"I eat everything I want, but once I feel bloated from a few days of continuous feasting, I will try to cut back on my food."

Her goal is to jog once a week or, when she's too busy with work, once a month.

She said cheekily: "I'm not going to share with you my weight.

"I'll advise people who also want to lose weight this year to eat more plain stuff like Teochew porridge and steamed fish."

Tay also spoke about an interest of hers - learning about history.

Last year, she said, she was fascinated with Egyptian history and spent time reading up on the pyramids.

This year, her country of choice is China and she will be diving into an array of Chinese history books to learn all about her roots.

Said Tay: "I want to relax more this year and read a lot more.

"I'm lucky that I have an efficient helper whom I hired last year, so this Chinese New Year we cleaned a lot more and I threw out a lot more old stuff.

"My house is done up in white so I added more red decorations... and changed positions of the furniture.


"This is the first time in 10 years that I'm doing this so I'm really enjoying it."

Tay also wants to feel less parenting stress.

She said her three boys - aged three, six and eight - can be a handful and she wishes they would be more obedient and listen to her.

Her dream is for them to be well-behaved in public.

As a loving mum, she feels that spending quality time with them is her top priority. Her strategy? Giving her kids play time whenever it is possible.

Said Tay: "Through play, we can learn and grow together.

"Yes I know that one day they will be old enough and want to date.

"As for them having girlfriends, I try not to think about that. I hope they can stay young forever!"

She said: "Although there is the Chinese tradition that children should stay up late on Chinese New Year's eve so that their parents will lead a long life, I don't enforce it.

"Kids must sleep early!"

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