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Fitspo from London Lions and personal trainer Shantelia

BASKETBALL: Mr Play pictured with LaVar Ball (right)

HALLOWEEN ANTICS and fireworks across London town were in full effect last week. I even got involved with the Halloween hype and attended a few parties myself!

A big revenge basketball match between my boys the London Lions and Team JBA USA took place at the Copper Box on Saturday. Unfortunately, the Lions fell short in the last quarter resulting in Team JBA USA taking the win! I’ve gotta give respect to LaVar Ball and Vincent Macaulay for organising this event. It helps shine a light on the British basketball culture and talent that is somewhat overlooked in my opinion. Great to also have my boy Fekky come through and watch the match!

Celebrating my roots, I also DJ’ed at the annual Sierra Leone Tutu Hall event at Manor Park, east London. It was a pleasure to be a part of this event and represent my maternal heritage. It’s a moment to celebrate Sierra Leonean culture, food, tradition alongside some great entertainment!


CELEBRATING SIERRA LEONE: Event organisers S.L. Boys UK (Sierra Leone Boys UK)

Last and by no means least, I caught up with Shantelia a personal trainer (PT) who is an inspiration to both kids and their parents, helping them to get fit and stay active together.

Here’s more on our catch up...

Q: How did you get into fitness?

A: I used to play football outside with the boys I was quite tomboyish and loved to be active as a kid. I loved a challenge. It was a way of expressing myself and I found my love for fitness when I joined a girls’ football team during secondary school, which then moved on to netball and athletics. This is then when I started going to the school gym I had access to and would literally just mess around. One day during a sports lesson I tried to lift something heavy and I did it... my love began there.

Q: Do you find the fitness industry challenging being a female PT? If so, why?

A: I don't personally think so. It’s about how you portray yourself. Although there are a lot of female PTs, it’s what you can bring that is different and genuine. As females, getting into fitness is growing on a large scale, there is more opportunity.

Q: Outside of personal training, what are your other interests?

A: I used to be a dancer and I loved singing. Which is something I will definitely be getting back into. I have a strong interest in life coaching and motivational speaking to help others mentally, physically and emotionally.

Q: What other ventures are you involved in?

A: I work with children in different primary schools at present as a play leader/sports coach, which is fulfilling as kids are the future and every day with them literally is always something new. I have a channel on Youtube called SSTV where I pick different topics to discuss such as emotional fitness; how to self-love and will be running an episode very soon.

Q: What advice would you give to an up and coming PT?

A: To be yourself, be confident and pick your strengths and enhance them – use [them] to your best advantage.

Q: Who’s currently on your playlist?

A: Tory Lanez - Miami and Geko ft Not3s - Will Smith and Tink - Surprises are my top three at the moment.


PICTURED: Shantelia (Image: Shantelia/Instagram)

Q: What is your advice for young women who are inspired by your movement?

A: Be true to yourself, don't believe everything you see on social media – it’s not real and just an app. Love yourself and own who you are as you only have one life and should live it the way you want to, not how you think it would please others. Try new things, learn, explore and grow as a person. Be the best version of yourself for yourself.

Q: What should we be expecting from you next?

A: I will be running a kids and parents fitness, dance and workshop session on the November 17 2018 at Docklands Settlements Community Centre, 400 Salter Road, London SE26 5AA.

Q: Where can we find you and follow your journey?

A: Instagram: @ssfitnessx

Additional contributions from Steph D’Sa & Lateef “Toks”

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