Saturday, June 30, 2012

Why Jennylyn is into Jiu-Jitsu


To use a caliper on TV host-actress Jennylyn Mercado would be a waste of time. Not even the tiniest pinch of fat exists anywhere on the 25-year-old celeb’s ultra-slim figure. Her face is chiseled, with her cheekbones, chin and jawline as prominent as can be.

She told The Manila Times on Wednesday night that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is what keeps her lean and energized these days, after she trimmed many sizes down when she decided to take up several sports in late 2011. She had some down time from her last primetime series, Futbolilits, in October, and took up triathlon and Muay Thai, aside from Jiu-Jitsu.

Now that Jennylyn’s schedule is packed with three different projects—her hosting duties on entertainment talk show Showbiz Central and talent search Protégé, and her starring role in the upcoming afternoon soap Hindi Ka na Mag-iisa—she had to cut down on her sporting activities, and chose to concentrate on her favorite among the pack.

Having already competed in two triathlons—with a decent finish on both races—Jennylyn said, “Ang hirap kasing humanap ng oras for training. Between the two martial arts naman, mas pinili ko ang Jiu-Jitsu, which tuloy-tuloy kong ginagawa ngayon.”

A quick search on Wikipedia defines Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as “a martial art, combat, sport and self-defense system that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting.”

For Jennylyn, every one of the sport’s three elements is appealing for a variety of reasons.

“Hindi lang siya exercise; nakakatanggal din siya ng stress,” she started counting off. “Tapos yung pag-pa-pawis mo, ang ganda sa skin—para kang naka-sauna.”

It also goes without saying that the combative moves, which practically utilize every muscle on the body, are major calorie burners.

“Tapos,” she finally, and quietly, added with a meaningful smile, “self-defense pa siya.”

It can be recalled that Jennylyn figured in a highly-publicized breakup with actor Dennis Trillo in 2011, after she revealed that a petty argument led to a violent fight between the two of them. Her early life as a battered child is also an open book. To learn that she has chosen a sport that teaches her how to fight, is therefore, a very good thing.

Thankfully though, it doesn’t seem she will need self-defense in her current relationship with TV host-actor Luis Manzano. Jennylyn’s glow shows that she is very happy with the 31-year-old scion of showbiz royalties Edu Manzano and Vilma Santos, with talks of engagement still very much in the air despite their recent denial.

Moreover, her career is once again on the up, especially with Hindi Ka Na Mag-iisa.”

“Ako si Elise sa storya; api-apihan siya!” Jennylyn laughed at the irony.

Hindi Ka Na Mag-iisa marks Jennylyn’s return to afternoon drama after appearing in various top-rating afternoon soaps including Paano Bang Mangarap, Gumapang Ka Sa Lusak and Little Star.

Playing her leading men in the series are sought-after actors Sid Lucero and Frank Magalona. Anticipation is high for Jennylyn, Frank and Sid’s first love triangle , which promises to enthrall viewers with their stellar performances.

Hindi Ka Na Mag-iisa is an original story from GMA’s Drama Group and is directed by Gil Tejada, Jr. It premieres on July 9 after Eat Bulaga on GMA 7.


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