No better interview to end the year and inspire you for the coming one than this one I had with Ebun, CEO of Fitrix, a weight loss and wellness company that operates out of Ibadan and Lagos, Nigeria. I am certain you will enjoy reading this and as with every other interview in this segment be left inspired. You can do or be anything as long as your mind can think it.
So of course I am starting this interview with the curious question of how you lost nearly 40kg. That’s a humongous feat and I am dying to know how?
There’s a lot to it, but long and short is that I achieved that by changing my lifestyle and was consistent at it. I decided I needed to be healthy and fit and also I wanted to look appealing and change that myth that once you start having children you loose yourself.
Combining the periods, it took about 11 months of consistency. What I mean by this is that I lost about 22kg in about 5months then got pregnant with my third baby. By this time I knew how to eat right, I didn’t add too much weight. So after I weened her, it took me another 5/6 months to reach target. So from 104.8kg to 67kg in total
So I’m guessing lot’s of exercise? What did you eat, what did you not eat, how did you avoid them, I’m still curious.
On the contrary I did’t do so much exercise. What I did mostly was watching what went into my mouth. I changed my lifestyle especially food wise and tried to skip or do mini aerobics in my room maximum of three times a week. I know that I reduced my carb intake very drastically and if I was going to have carbs at all, it was in it’s complex form. I ate more proteins and included good fat in my diet. I sort of carried my family along too as it isn’t only about weight loss for me but general well being. So we reduced junk food and tinned stuff in the pantry and upped fruits and complex carbs.
Your weight gain was mostly after having kids then?
I have always been a chubby big girl. I have 3 sisters and I was the biggest. Around year three in college, I got conscious about it and went from a UK size 16/18 to about 12/14 by the time I was in law school and getting married. But then again, with having kids, I blew up again and even much worse.
What is what you may call the worst feeling you felt when you were at your heaviest?
Total insecurity! I mean I would get invites to weddings and parties, even go as far as buying the aso ebi and still won’t go.
Did family and friends mention that you were getting over weight? And if not, did you spite them for not telling you after you came to a full realisation of the transformation your body had gone through?
I remember after my first baby, hubby mentioned it casually and I went into starvation mode then ended up in hospital for a serious bout of ulcer. After that incident, no one really bothered me. But I was upset with him and my sisters only when I had started working on my weight loss and stumbled on old photos. I didn’t realise I was that huge.
Did words like fat make you upset back in the day? It seems to be a very touchy word to use these days and politically incorrect too.
By my nature I can ignore and overlook stuff so I won’t say those kind of words made me upset. What made me upset was what I saw in the mirror, day in, day out.
What’s your take on the internet craze of “snapping back” after pregnancy and child birth.
You see, the earlier you try to get back in shape the better for you. However, that being said, we are all different and should learn to listen to our bodies. It’s not a one size fits all.
I gathered from following your story that you made a successful business out of your decision to begin a healthy lifestyle. Please tell me how that’s going?
Tope ooo. Yes I did, only because I decided to leave paid employment so as to have more time for my munchkins and wanted to spend my time doing something I was totally passionate about aside fashion or event planning.
It’s been awesome. We have evolved over the years and though we started as a full consulting company for wellness, we have a production arm now that produces pure virgin coconut oil, healthier treats and our latest baby – Greek yoghurt made only from fresh cow milk.
That’s totally incredible. However, what was leaving your career to start your own thing like?
For me it was a no brainer. I sort of have a rebellious streak. hehehe and a tad too restless to enjoy routine work. So I embrace the challenges and stress and fulfilment that comes with doing what I am totally passionate about.
Are you a coffee or tea type of girl?
If this question had come 5 years ago I would have said neither but with the whole wellness thing I like both equally.
Lip stick or eye pencil, which will you never leave the house without.
Err I can be quite erratic when it comes to make up. I have mood swings on this matter. Sometimes it gives me life other times, I just can’t be moved. But if I need to choose between the two, eye pencil is what I won’t want to leave the house without. It will wake up any tired eyes.
I know you are generally team fit fam but, team puff puff or team pancakes?
Pancakes any day. I can make it into a blanket and wrap up my sausages in it if I need it savoury, or let it dribble in syrup if I’m craving sweets.
What vital thing have you learnt about people since starting your wellness company Fittrix?
Oh a whole lot. Most importantly, people are a lot more vulnerable than they appear. But I would like to add I have learnt more about myself and capabilities. My patience has been tried and tested many times but #Godwin.
Is the myth that some people are biologically big boned so can’t necessarily lose weight no matter what they do true?
I would rather buy the idea of a bone mass that is a bit heavier than the norm than imagining it’’s “big” Meaning you can lose weight and look lean and wear a size UK 12 and still climb on that scale and be heavier than another woman that wears a size 12.
There’s a lot involved in your wellness business. How do you wind down?
As I am not really a Tv person, I am happy on social media and I need that dose of a hangout with my girls and siblings and hubby every now and then. Karaoke is my thing too.
I’m jealous of your flawless skin please drop secrets o. Must be all that coconut oil making you shine.
Ahh Tope, that one is abinibi o.. It’s different from ability. You have seen my mum right? Lol. But I’ll say I don’t use harsh products on my skin. I am very organic. We use in my home, the coconut oil we produce. And I try to eat real food way more than junk. And when I sleep, I sleep well. I don’t joke with that at all.
What do you struggle with at the moment?
At the moment, I struggle with loosing the weight I recently gained due to a hormonal family planning I started last year. And as I tell people, weight management is a journey NOT a destination. If you deviate from eating right and all that, YOU WILL GAIN WEIGHT.
So you’ve done cooperate work, you have tried your hands on your own business and you have a family to run. Can women have it all?
It’s about perception and contentment. Once those two things are in place you will have it all and be content.
Three quick tips for days we feel perkish and want to eat unhealthy meals.
By all means, Life is all about balance and enjoying it. On the days I need to indulge, I plan ahead, make it one meal, control portions and won’t eat it late at night. Sometimes, because I know I would be going out maybe at night with my friends or hubby, I keep it light all day, sorta like hoarding my calories. hehehe.
What’s an alternative yummy christmas meal you might suggest?
I believe in balance, so I’m not going to come here and say I have not had pizza or ice cream in the last four years. That said, a yummy dinner for me would have to be roast chicken with some veggie stir fry and baked sweet potatoes
Any thing more to look forward to from your company in the coming year?
Oh absolutely! Like I mentioned earlier, we started coconut oil about three years ago and recently introduced our line of Greek yoghurt made from fresh raw cow milk. We also have smoothies and juices and salad. We are working on creating healthier snacks as well as partnering with other wellness outfits to help individuals, families and the community at large. It starts with us.
I wish you all the best with your wellness company. Thank you so much for speaking to me and inspiring others with your wellness journey.
Thank you for having me.
***In the spirit of the jolly season we are in, I am giving out a 200ml bottle of Fittrix’s pure virgin coconut oil to a lucky reader today. To win, make sure you follow the blog and leave a comment on why you think you should win. This is the 8th day on my christmas giveaway and you can still win lots of gifts up till the 26th of December. Follow on Instagram @eclectictope and also my Facebook to see how you can win.
It’s the season to be giving.
I hope you enjoyed reading this interview and it has left you inspired for the coming year ahead. Catch up on previous ones too and remember that your mind can do anything it sets out to do.
Have a merry christmas people.