Anisa Essop, of Bellville, is using free online fitness and self-defence classes to change people’s lives, and this Women’s Month she wants to help women look after themselves and practise self-love.
“Our emotional and mental health is of utmost importance, looking after yourself, for yourself is the best way to keep up the positive mindset,” she says.
mother of two says she was in a dark place shortly before she filed for divorce 15 years ago. She was suffering from depression, battling with suicidal thoughts and over-eating. At one point, she weighed 128kg.
That was when she decided “enough is enough”.
cooking healthier food and “thinking positively,” and after seven months dropped
her weight to 72kg, and that was without physical training, she says.
she moved to Cape Town from the Eastern Cape and became a “fitness fanatic”
following a number of fitness courses.
She also started doing outreach work in Nyanga,
Blue Downs and Khayelitsha and motivational talks at schools, teaching children
self-defence. She was helping people who couldn’t afford a gym membership get fit.
lockdown has seen her move her workouts, self-defence classes and motivational talks onto her
Facebook, Instagram and YouTube pages.
this time, we cannot mix and meet, but many people are lonely and we should be
supporting one another,” she says.
Anisa now weighs 67kg and she aspires to reach people around the world with her story, her workouts and her motivational words.