2003 Champion - Angela Uytingco

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Angela Uytingco, 24-year-old Go Kan Ryu karate dynamo, captured back-to-back Champion of Champions titles at the NAS National Championships in December. With a display of tactical brilliance over club mate Claudine Chicheportiche, the 2nd Dan Sydneysider again proved that she is a sport-karate force to be reckoned with.

Fellow Go Kan Ryu 2nd Dan, Sydney's 28-year-old Craig Lennox, won his first Champion of Champions title by using cunning and speed to beat a larger and experienced opponent in 2001 winner Glenn Hutchison, also from GKR.

Here are a couple of excerpts from the fabulous interview with the winners written by Ben Stone that you can read in the current issue of Blitz Magazine.

What has been the biggest obstacle you've had to overcome to become Champion of Champions?

chris-angela-medalsCraig: Myself. Taking the doubt out of your mind, knowing and believing in yourself that you can do it. Once you plant that seed of doubt you'll come unstuck.

Angela: Definitely self-doubt. I didn't think I wanted the title nor deserved it more than Claudine did. She has worked so much harder than I did all year. Being able to know and understand what you really want; otherwise you can't do anything about it.

What advice do you have for up-and-coming NAS players hoping to one day become champion of Champions?

Craig: Never get frustrated, never give in. You could ask anybody that has won a national or state title and you will usually find it has taken a lot of blood, sweat and tears to get to that position, so with that in mind, never give up. Always have set goals; without set goals you are not striving for what you want from your training.

Angela: Train hard, spar different people and watch a lot of sparring to see what works and what doesn't work. Most importantly, enjoy the journey.

Do you follow a specific diet?

angela-2003-lCraig: No, but I do eat a well balanced diet. One thing that's great is that I rarely fall ill. I like to think it is because I eat lots of fruit and veg', also I drink freshly juiced fruits daily.

Angela: I try to eat less sugary food but more fruits. At one stage I was watching my fat intake and decided to cut down on junk or takeaway food. I bring my lunch to work now; I prepare the food at home so I know what I'm eating. I sometimes succumb to temptation, but only in moderation.

How did you come up with this training and/or eating formula?

Craig: I have an incredibly high metabolism so I need to eat frequently. From early childhood I've always eaten a healthy, well balanced diet but I still love to have a beer and pizza every now and then!

Angela: It's not a formula, I just try to understand what my body needs.

How do you find karate and/or your involvement in NAS help you in other areas of your life or work?

chris-2003Craig: The ability to focus on any given task, be it at work or school, I think is a product of the hours one puts into perfecting their technique in the dojo. After a hard day's work it is a good release to go to the dojo and just sweat it all out.

Angela: I find Karate and NAS competition helps build my confidence. I am no longer afraid to make mistakes, because through mistakes can I learn and develop.