For now, Filipino Olympian figure skater Michael Martinez’s skating boots hang by their lonesome. He takes a much needed respite from the grueling, punishing and yes, rewarding world of figure skating.
After the Pyeonchang Winter Olympics in South Korea, this young man of twenty-one summers targets other possibilities and opportunities.
His added poundage looks great on him, my first impression upon seeing the super model tall, Michael.
He seems more relaxed, can easily pass as a leading man for an Asian drama because of his interracial looks that is very Japanese Filipino. His congenial vibe becomes more palpable because of his winsome smile and hearty chuckles. He can charm his way, even to the most jaded or snobbish.
He does not deny that he was crushed with his 28th overall finish in the Winter Games, “It was a difficult situation,” Michael begins. “You worked so hard for the Olympics, tapos the reality that you did not make the cut, I was really crushed. I had no choice but to pick up myself. You cannot control things. I did a lot of assessment. I realized what I should and must be doing. I became more positive, aim at higher goals and set my life in a different path.”
He adds, “I never expected to compete in it since I did not qualify. For five months I did not skate or trained, lived a regular life. I had a job, I was an assistant in a law firm. Suddenly the federation and the Philippine Olympic Committee contacted me and told me that I will be competing in the Olympics after all. With practically no idea how I would do it, I packed my bags and got my skates and quit my job, went back to the ice and trained for two weeks for the Olympics.”
Considering the circumstances and the turn out, Martinez believes that is was all for the best and yes, he gave his heart, soul and all during the Pyeongchang games.
As of the moment, he is on “break,” studies carefully his options, rest his body from the competition and focuses on exploring what will come his way, be it modeling, media influencing, and guess what, even show business.
People always picture Michael as a boy in costume, twirling on ice thus, when he first shared his half naked photo, most of his followers went ballistic.
Standing at 5’11” and with a lean and mean body, modeling for an underwear brand is an opportunity that the young man welcomes.
“When I first posed my shirtless photo, nagulat ako how people reacted,” Martinez comes clean. “I am happy about it, I will not deny that I am thankful for all the likes.”
He maintains his frame by, “I hit the gym for one to two hours every day. I have a program that I follow for my specific body parts, especially the ones that need improvement. Also, I lessen my carbs intake.”
He loves to model, “Honestly, I always loved modeling. When I was young, I attended workshops, for ramp modeling, fashion editorial posing. I really don’t mind posing in an underwear, if it is possible.”
“I considered it, if the opportunity opens up, I will no mind to try and do something else,” his reply when asked if wants to enter show business.
He says he has many showbiz crushes. On top of his crush list is Maris Racal.
“I hope her fans won’t mind my having a crush on Maris. I know she is with Iñigo Pascual, if I were to believe the things I read. I am also very much taken. I have an El Salvadorian girlfriend.”
A singing career, he also considers since during his wonder years, he attended formal voice lessons. He shares, “I sound good in the shower,” laughing, he adds, “My favorite shower song now is “Dancing On My Own” by Callum Scott, it is dramatic and soulful.”
Michael says that retiring from figure skating is the farthest from his mind. He even encourages more people to give it a try, “Figure skating is something that most Filipinos can excel in. We are very artistic as a people and this sport is one great arena to can express that artistry.”
He concludes, “Whatever you want to do, be it figure skating, basketball or other fields, don’t go in it half-hearted. Don’t do something because people are doing it. If you want to do this, or something else, you have to give your all.”
Michael Martinez’s journey to other worlds has just begun. Let us all embrace and support his new endeavors. He will be in Manila until Oct. 17.
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