· Interviews

Tizi Talks with Mikhala Barasa

"Once you figure out the schedule it is pretty much the consistency that you need to work on."

Dear Reader,

Its that time again and we are pretty excited to be sharing with you this feature! Welcome back to episode twenty eight of Tizi Talks with our learned fit friend, Mikhala Barasa. She is a legal officer in an insurance company and has partnered with a few friends to set up her own legal practice.

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Mikhala is also a body builder and was placed 2nd in the bikini category in the 2017 Mr and Miss Kenya Open Bodybuilding Championship. We had to get her on this segment and hopefully inspire you to do some weight training this week!

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TIZI: How old are you?

MB: I am 28 years old.

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TIZI: How long have you been working out?

MB: It will be exactly four years in August 2018.

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TIZI: What made you start weight lifting?

MB: I got into fitness with a plan to add weight since I was underweight. I weighed almost 47 kg then, and my mother suggested going to the gym with a goal to adding weight. I honestly didn’t think it would work, but I am here today, weighing 60 kg.

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TIZI: Do you feel like working out has made a difference in your life?

MB: Working out has changed my life in ways I could not imagine. If you told me 2 years ago that today I would have the dream of being crowned Ms. Kenya Bikini Category I wouldn’t believe it, but now this is definitely a dream of mine. Fitness has changed the way I relate to people and how much I believe in myself and my abilities, I am a lot more confident now and a lot more open to challenges whether it is in the fitness circles or general life challenges. I finally managed to grow a visible (apparently perky) peach too! That’s a plus.

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TIZI: Can you please take us through your daily fitness routine on a weekday? And the weekend?

MB: I train at least 5 times a week for a period of 45 minutes to one and a half hours per session. I train from 6 pm to around 7 pm every evening at Ultra Fitness Centre. So I do lower body workouts on Mondays, Wednesdays and Friday; and upper body workouts on Tuesday and Thursdays. I like to rest on weekends.

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TIZI: Do you find it difficult to include your workout in your daily routine?

MB: Not really. It is always a struggle at one point or another but I have developed a schedule that allows me to work out after my day, in case I cannot make it in the evening I wake up to train at 5.30 am. It takes a lot of discipline and commitment to get the balance, but once you figure out the schedule it is pretty much the consistency that you need to work on.

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TIZI: Do you have a cheat meal? If yes, what is it?

MB: I don’t do cheat meals during competition seasons so I maintain a clean diet with minimal carbs and lean protein and vegetables. During off season I add more carbohydrates to my diet and eat any healthy proteins I can get my hands on. When I have a cheat meal, I like to go all out, so there will always be fries involved. The one thing I always look forward to eating is Biscuits though. That’s my guilty pleasure.

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TIZI: What keeps you motivated?

MB: The thought that I can actually win the Ms. Kenya Bikini Title one day. The thought that I can always do better than what I am doing today. The fact that a lady somewhere looks up to me, that someone looks at my physique or Instagram page and decides that they want to look like me. I can’t let that person down, if I do, then I let myself down, and letting yourself down is never an option.

TIZI: What would you advise someone who wants to start their fitness journey?

MB: A fitness journey is very personal. All you have to do, is to figure out what works for you and stick to the program; don’t be sucked into the pressure of an activity just because everyone else is doing it. Learn to appreciate your fitness journey however difficult and celebrate even the slightest progress. You have got to be your biggest cheerleader.

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Photography Credits: Brian Koome

Location: Fitness Revolution

Video Of The Week

If you have 13 minutes to spare, make sure to check out Mischa Janiec's Ted Talk on how natural body building can be used as a tool to become the best version of yourself. You won't be disappointed.

Yours in Wellness


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