MALI RAMARA

Brain Lupus is a rare and debilitating autoimmune illness. When it attacked me in 2000, I knew something was wrong with me but I could not put my finger on it. My body gave me signals all the time but I did not listen. I became loud in public which is very out of character for me, my sense of hearing increased, the sound of watre boiling in a kettle became unbearable, I suffered days of insomnia. I cried uncontrollably, my skin turned black and peeled off. My sculpt burned from the inside and caused me to lose my hair.

Today , I understand my health limitation and what my brain can do and how much it can take. Through my company Bophelo ke Matla ( Health is Strength), I have developed Mind Body Nutrition programmes, a unique integration of  Yoga, fitness ,meditation, nutrition and Body IQ. It is  a path to health, wellness, weightloss and happiness. The programmes are designed to help people to connect to their true health by guiding them on the health principles I have used to heal myself naturally and loose weight effortless and live a normal healthy life.

Read my full story here.

What does fitness mean to you?
Fitness means being able to function optimally in everything I do . Being able to manage my mind, body and emotions at all times and use my body effortlessly

Why should someone attend FIBO Africa in October?
The fitness industry in South Africa has come very far. When I started, there were no real opportunities for African women fitness professionals. Today's fitness landscape is very different. Attending FIBO Africa will expose trainers, fitness fanatics and upcoming fitness trainers to various products and services as well as technology to advance their careers. 

What is your top fitness tip?
Fitness is not only about having a six pack and tight bum. It is also about having a healthy mind. A healthy mind is the cornerstone of a healthy body. My tip is to be the gate keeper of your mind. A healthy mind equals a healthy body. Our bodies are not machines. Listen to your body, it knows what it is good for it and it will tell you. Exercise, eat healthy, meditate, rest, sleep and drink water.

What is your advice to someone that is wanting to start a fitness journey?
Start slowly. Make healthy living and fitness a journey and not a destination. Discover what works for you with exercise and nutrition, there is no one size fits all. Do not compare yourself with anyone. Run your own fitness race. Be gentle and kind to yourself, no one is perfect. Speak kindly about your body in silence and with others, use positive and affirming words, your body will love you for it. Allow yourself to eat a doughnut with a smile!

Follow her on Instagram