MY FITNESS JOURNEY

My name is Jane, though a lot of people call me Jenny. I am a mother of two lovely girls and this past August 2020 I turned 52 years. I am a Fashionpreneur , I own a clothes shop and a Co-director at a Fire Fighting Company.

Where it started …

My fitness journey started at the age of 13 while in primary school where I was in both the Cross Country and Junior Track Team. 

My passion for fitness continued to high school where I had many sports activities to choose from but continued with running and took up basketball. I was mostly positioned as a power guard, and my quick decisions that facilitated scoring opportunities, sharp shooting skills and all sorts of tricks made me very popular. I loved the game!

In high school, I was a healthy 64kg teenager and very active in sports. Immediately after leaving high school, I gradually shrunk to a petite 57kg young woman. In my 20’s, I did a course in Modeling and Wellness which laid a foundation in understanding the importance of taking care of  my body through staying active and healthy nutrition. I am conscious about what I eat, and I strive to eat as healthy as possible.

Eventually, my passion for fitness saw me enroll for a fitness course in 2006 and I graduated with a Diploma in Fitness and Personal Training. 

Staying Consistent

As real life began to unfold including getting married and having children, I have stayed active and managed to maintain my ideal weight throughout my adult life. While I was pregnant, and even after my two babies were born, I did not struggle with any weight issues. I exercised throughout both pregnancies and would slow down towards the third trimester. I noticed that I can add and shed weight very fast if I become too complacent.

So what I did over time was to make the decision to stay as active as possible by mixing up various activities. These include hiking – I climbed Mt. Kenya in 2015 and Mt. Kilimanjaro in 2016.  I also love zumba, lifting weights, taekwondo in which I have a Yellow Belt and top of my list is running.

Taking it to the next level

In early 2000, I started participating in monthly marathons that were being organized at the sports club where I am a member. I always finished among the top three ladies. I was awarded as the ‘Overall Sports Personality’ – 2nd runners up and ‘Highest Performer Senior’ in the monthly runs (between 2011 and 2012.

From then on, I started loving and enjoying marathons and participated in my first Half Standard Chartered marathon in 2006.

I graduated to a full marathon (42km0 in 2013 and participated every year apart from 2020 due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Other Marathons I have participated in include Ndakaini, First Lady’Beyond Zero’ Half Marathon, Mwea Classic just to name a few.

My achievements since then include:

  • Running from Nairobi to Machakos-70km
  • Limuru Mega Run- 76km
  • Nairobi-Kikuyu-Muthiga-Nairobi-72km
  • Nairobi-Athi River-Nairobi-70km(twice)
  • 50km Ultra Runa (a couple of times)

I am now eyeing to participate in International races in the near future.

Setbacks

I have had my fair share of setbacks too, and it hasn’t been a smooth ride all through. Early last year, I contracted pneumonia and would struggle to even run 5kms. Thankfully, I came out of it strong and this year has been a smooth sail of good health and clocking mileage. Currently, I have run over 6000km this year and feel stronger than ever before.

My motivation to stay consistent is purely derived from deep mental strength, focus, pushing my limits and total dedication towards what I want to achieve.

I believe true commitment is pushing yourself when no one else is around.

I have set my eyes on a couple of new goals and my current bucket list includes:

  • Upgrading my taekwondo skills
  • Climbing Mt.Ruwenzori and participating in the Two Oceans 56km Marathon
  • Comrades 90km Marathon and London Marathon 42km.

My Word of Advice

Especially if you have children is start the young ones early. I introduced my girls to exercise and healthy eating at a very young age. I was so proud to see my eldest at 10 years awarded as ‘Most Consistent Junior Girl’ in aerobics during the Sports Personality Awards at the sports club where I am a member. My kids love working out and I don’t push them to.

Apart from my children, I love to inspire and motivate the young, plus I have been a Personal Trainer to many along the way. I strive to make as much impact as I can to get as many people as possible to embrace a fit lifestyle regardless of their age.

To all the women out there, know your body type and find what works for you and commit to it. Never compare yourself with someone else, what works for another person will not necessarily work for you.

And apart from exercising and eating healthy, take a self defense class , practice self-care, wear sunscreen come rain or shine, never go to bed with make up on, take a weekend getaway alone, read a book or watch a series, put off the phone and relax. Pray. It’s important.

And if you have been putting off exercise all these years, it’s never too late to start. The time to start is now.  Do something. Get Moving.

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