Queen Estelle, a Lagosbased jeweller and web developer recently told Independent that she used to be overweight, stiff and hardly engaged in any physical activity, but regular visits to the gym has reversed this. Excerpts:
How long have you been engaging in physical exercises?
I have been engaging in fitness for about a year and few months.
How many times in a week do you engage in exercise?
I exercise five times a week.
What were your initial complaints before you started exercising?
I was overweight and could barely engage in any physical activity. I was very stiff.
Can you say there are positive changes?
Oh yes, a lot of changes.
Can you specifically outline the changes?
I feel lighter, more energetic and flexible. Exercising helps me sleep better. Exercise has helped me prevent excess weight gain and maintain weight loss. By engaging in physical activity, I burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories I burn.
What were you weighing before and now?
Before I started exercising, I was weighing 110kg, now weigh 87kg.
What can you do now which you couldn’t do before?
The list is endless, but I will say my endurance level has increased. Regular physical activity improves my muscle strength and boosts my endurance.
Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to my tissues and helps my cardiovascular system work more efficiently. And when my heart and lung health improves, I have more energy to tackle daily chores.
Has regular exercise reduced your visits to the hospital?
Yes it has. Besides, regular physical activity gives me an emotional lift. It also helps me to blow off some steam after a stressful day. A gym session or brisk 30-minute walk can be quite helpful. Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals leaving me feeling happier and more relaxed.
I also feel better about my appearance and myself when I exercise regularly. It also boosts my confidence and improves my self-esteem.