I’m Lindy Mei. I was born in Taiwan but raised in San Francisco. I eventually migrated back to Taiwan and lived there for eight years before returning to California. I was raised by my single Taiwanese mom so while I’m bi-racial and spent my childhood in America, I identify heavily with my Taiwanese culture.
How long have you been modeling and what do you love about it?
I’ve pretty much been modeling for about 14 years. I started at 15 but didn’t decide to do it full time until age 20 because of school. People always ask if it was my dream to be a model but the truth is, it was never a dream of mine. It was actually my mom who encouraged me to do it since she was in the fashion industry.
I suspect maybe it was always her dream to model but she was too short so she wanted to live vicariously through me. I did grow to love it though!
What inspired you to be a personal trainer?
Obviously, as a model, your body is highly scrutinized and you have to stick to very rigid measurements. I would see girls in the industry do outrageous things to meet these guidelines. They didn’t know much about working out and they had these crazy diets, usually assigned to them from their agents or suggested by another model.
As someone who always loved working out and spent a lot of time in the gym, I would encourage them to try healthier diets and show them how to work out. I knew I couldn’t model forever so this seemed like the perfect transition to make.
Do you follow a strict diet and exercise regime daily?
I follow a strictly vegan diet, meaning absolutely no animal products (no dairy, eggs, honey, meat, fish, nothing that comes from an animal). That is purely for ethical reasons though. In terms of fitness, I eat whatever I want that’s vegan but I track my calories and macronutrients meaning, I make sure I hit a certain number of grams of protein, carbs and fats daily. I do this for myself and coach it to my clients as well.
So while my diet is a little more on the relaxed side, I do take my exercise program very seriously. I work out anywhere from 3-5 times a week. People assume I work out every day but recovery is just as important as working out! My days off from training are usually “active recovery” days where instead of lifting weights, I’ll go for a long walk or do animal flow.
For those who are not into fitness, what do you recommend for them to get started and get going?
Of course my first recommendation is to get a trainer, but I know that isn’t possible for everyone. Learning from a professional is the best way to jump start the process and on top of that, you now have a commitment to someone else. Being self-motivated is the hardest hurdle for people to get past. It’s a lot harder to sneak your way out of your workouts when you have a trainer checking in on you. Having a professional tell you exactly what you need to do makes the process so much easier.
The second best thing to do is get a workout buddy and set an actual schedule with that person. It’s so much more fun with a friend when you’re new to working out and maybe feel shy about trying new exercises in the gym. Plus, you also now have an obligation to another person to actually show up and work out!
Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but have yet to find the time for it?
Skydiving! I have a major fear of heights but I’m a total adrenaline junkie and love roller coasters. I’ve always wanted to do it but never actively pursued. Maybe I am secretly too afraid.
Would you rather have the ability to teleport or stop time?
I would much rather teleport! The 14 hour flight to Taiwan is brutal so teleportation would definitely come in handy!
What is a cringey attempt a guy has tried to know you?
It’s not even a single attempt but an approach I see a lot. When guys slide in my DM’s and say, “We should work out”. It’s literally my job. Are you asking to work with me? In which case, I expect to be paid since this is what I do for a living.
If you’re asking for a free session, that’s also unattractive. Yes, I may be a trainer and love fitness but if that’s the only common ground you can find to connect with me on, I’ll pass.
Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions Lindy. One question before we end, how do you define “sexy”?
I define sexy as an energy more than anything. It doesn’t really matter what a person looks like, it’s a combination of their attitude, confidence, humour and how they make you feel.
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Images from Lindy Mei
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