Shihaam is a female-only personal trainer, a mother, and a wife! We chat to her on her journey in fitness and how it’s made her a #Strongwomen!
How did you discover your passion for —–? OR How did your fitness journey start?
My journey started after my first pregnancy and the birth of my son, who is now 10 year old. Each day when I looked in the mirror I was not happy with what I saw. I was unhappy with my physical appearance and unhappy with how fatigued I felt. It was then that I decided to make a change.
As I progressed and saw the changes it motivated me to want more and do more; I started pushing myself even harder. As I shared my journey on my Instagram profile I saw that it inspired other women. I knew that moving forward, I wanted to inspire women so they could feel as amazing as I did.
What has been some of your challenges and triumphs throughout your journey?
The biggest challenge I have faced is getting myself to where I am today. It took a lot of sacrifice and hard work, especially juggling a demanding career and being a wife/ mother. I would say it is more of a mental challenge than a physical one but I get to wake up every morning and love what I do. It was also initially difficult for me being a female in a male-dominated space, however, I received a lot of support and encouragement from family, friends and clients. That being said, a triumph of mine is being a female figure in the industry and being able to inspire and empower other women- looking back, I am proud of how far I’ve come and how many women I have connected with.
What are your views on exercise and nutrition as part of a healthy and balanced lifestyle?
It is extremely important to adopt some form of exercise in our daily lives. Our bodies benefit from exercise not only physically, but mentally and emotionally too. My goal is to educate people that exercise does not only benefit us aesthetically, but it improves our health too. I always encourage my clients and followers to start off slowly and find their pace. Do what is comfortable for you but don’t forget to push yourself a little bit each day. Make small changes to your eating, ease into a routine and watch it become a lifestyle. Challenge yourself in a healthy way and it will become enjoyable. It all depends on what your goals are.
Talking about living the lifestyle, a brand I have associated myself with is LottoSport, as you can see from the pictures, it’s about keeping fit while doing everyday things, looking after your kids, or going for a walk. I resonate with that I also love that they were one of the brands that supported me from day one.
How do you find motivation and the energy to pursue your passions, your business and still stay active and healthy?
I love what I do and I am driven each and every day to be more and do more. Besides seeing the changes in myself, seeing my clients achieve their goals and progress inspires me to keep going. It definitely isn’t easy, each day is different and comes with its own challenges, but seeing the small changes is what does it for me!
Why do you think it is important to have balance?
As I said before, balance is important for mental, emotional and physical health. We need to establish times where we discipline ourselves and times where we allow ourselves to relax.
Take us through a day in your life.
This is definitely a question that is not unfamiliar to me!
I start off my day by seeing to my kids- depending on the day, I have to help my son get ready for school which includes making breakfast and helping him get dressed. After that, my little one wakes up. I prepare her bottle and feed her. Then I prepare breakfast , drop my son at school and when I get home I get baby settled into her routine.
I prepare lunch for hubby and off I go to work (all before 10 am)!
My first client arrives at 10 am and I see my last client at 5pm.
Once I get home I host my zoom classes (6 pm) and prepare supper. Once supper is done I have to get the kids washed and settled into bed- then it’s finally me-time….and hubby, of course! Rinse and repeat!
What does your diet/nutrition look like?
At the moment I am eating about 2400 calories per day, sometimes slightly less. To the readers: remember your calorie intake is goal-dependent! At the moment my goal is to maintain my muscle mass. Just to give you more of an idea of what I eat:
– Breakfast: Future Life High Protein or overnight oats
– Snack: avocado/ hummus/ cheese on toast or Provita crackers
– Lunch: a Kauai wrap (I choose a wrap according to my calorie intake)- or I make one of my favourite wraps which includes chicken, hummus, cheese, Pepperdew, and carrots- again, the portions correspond with my calorie intake.
The idea of an eating plan may seem daunting, but as you can see I am very inclusive with respect to my food groups! I have also worked with a nutritionist to establish eating plans for my clients, based on their goals.
What does your training look like? What kind of training do you believe in and why?
Again, the type of training you focus on is goal-dependent but it does not mean that you should stick to one type. Each type of training has its own benefits. I love doing a bit of everything to achieve a good balance. Some days I focus on strength training but I also love to do my superset workouts to get in some high-intensity training. If I could choose a favourite (and again, this does not mean I exclude the rest) I would definitely say core strengthening. If you know me or follow my page you’ll see that I always try to push myself and come up with new workout combinations, just to keep my clients on their toes.
How do you stay mentally healthy and strong?
As I said, exercising definitely keeps me mentally and physically fit. I also have a good support system, wonderful children, a loving husband and a positive mindset, but I also believe that practising gratitude plays a huge role in keeping myself grounded and strong.
What message do you aim to portray to your followers? How do you aim to inspire them?
I aspire to inspire; to teach my followers and clients to set goals for themselves and work towards achieving them, no matter what. From the content that I post and the stories that I’ve shared, I’d like my followers to know that achieving your main goal means that you have to set little ones along the way, and this is not a straight path. If you fail- that’s okay! Just make sure you keep trying and come back even stronger. Life isn’t perfect and things take time, but the miracles happen just beyond the point where you feel like giving up.
Who/what inspires you?
All women inspire me! I believe each person you meet in your life has something to teach you. Even if they don’t know it. Women are versatile- we can be soft and caring and at the same time we can be fierce and protective.
What is your favourite #strongwomenquote
“Make strong women stronger.” That is a phrase that I live by and also part of my brand.
Who inspires you to be a strong woman?
My kids; because first and foremost: I am a mama bear! My family, my clients and last but not least: myself!
Do you have a strong woman moment to share with us?
Well I guess giving birth to 2 amazing kids and being a mom can definitely be considered a strong woman moment (for any woman)! It’s the most challenging but also the most rewarding. I try to be the best I can for my kids, to nurture and rear them so that they become the best they can be. Also- let’s not forget that one time I planked for 12 minutes! (I told you guys I loved core strength!)
Yay or Nay what does Shihaam say?
- HIIT training? Yay
- Functional workouts?yay
- Mobility sessions? Yay
- Meat-free mondays? Yay
- Protein shakes? Yay
Author: Logan Leigh Rix
Logan blends her passion and profession by working as a digital and social media marketer and content creator in the fitness, health and wellness industry. She’s also a personal trainer, former Face of Fitness finalist and Fitness Magazine featured athlete.