Shanmugam breaks personal deadlift record, jios Tan Chuan-Jin to be his gym bro

Shanmugam breaks personal deadlift record, jios Tan Chuan-Jin to be his gym bro
Shanmugam prepares to deadlift 125kg at Chong Pang Fitness Fiesta on Nov 27.
PHOTO: AsiaOne/Kimberly Anne Lim

Good things certainly come to those who weight.

After over a year of weight training, Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam beat his personal deadlift record to a cheering crowd at Chong Pang Fitness Fiesta today (Nov 27).

And the 63-year-old has already set his sights on his next challenge (more on that later).

Shanmugam, who weighs "around 62kg to 63kg", started off light with a 30kg warm up. He then worked his way up to complete one rep of 125kg — that's more than twice his body weight!

He smashed his previous record of 105kg, and was pretty pumped (pun intended) when AsiaOne caught up with him after the event.

Still sporting a thin sheen of sweat, Shanmugam said he was "quite pleased" with his final deadlift result.

But don't expect him to repeat the feat on a regular basis. The minister added that he actually prefers doing lighter weights and higher reps.


His personal record attempt wasn't just a challenge to himself, but also a way to encourage residents to exercise, he said.

"What I was very happy about is that a lot of people of all age groups — twenties, thirties, right up to sixties and seventies have come… So that's the primary purpose."

So what's next for Shanmugam after this personal milestone?

Don't be surprised if you see him pumping iron with Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin.

We asked Shanmugam who he'd like to challenge in deadlifts, and the minister singled Tan out, explaining, "Chuan-Jin looks as if he can do this."

Definitely a worthy opponent, considering Tan's active lifestyle and Muay Thai escapades.

It's all friendly though. Shanmugam offered a quick disclaimer, "I wouldn't call it a challenge. More of a fun thing."

In any case, the minister isn't letting up on his fitness routine, even after his new deadlift record. With a regular combination of cardio and high intensity interval training, in addition to his weight-lifting, he's been feeling fitter and more flexible, he said.

The Chong Pang Fitness Fiesta drew about 250 sign-ups, according to organiser Chong Pang Community Club. 

Participants tried their hand at a total of 20 fun stations for adults and children including golf, pull-ups, box jumps and kettlebell swings.


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