TOP TRAINER: Mapule Ndhlovu, Queenfitnass on social media, says her body is capable of doing anything she puts her mind to.
Mapule Ndhlovu, also known as Queenfitnass on social media, is fast becoming one of the leaders of the women’s fitness campaign.

She is one of the most loved, and celebrated certified personal and group exercise trainers in the country. She has been associated with some of the biggest brands such as Adidas and Shield.

One of her biggest career highlights include being a personal trainer at Virgin Active Alice Lane gym - a luxury gym in Sandton that caters for the elite.

The fitness queen hails from Alexandra in Joburg. A certified aerobics instructor and the first black female personal trainer, she was crowned as the first Women’s Health Next Fitness Star in 2016.

Through social media and her roles as brand ambassador, she inspires all who encounter her, with her vivacious personality and signature dance moves.

We spoke to the fitness enthusiast to get to know her and find out where is she is in her career.

TOP TRAINER: Mapule Ndhlovu, Queenfitnass on social media, says her body is capable of doing anything she puts her mind to.

How and why did you become a fitness advocate?

Fitness was the last thing on my mind. Growing up in Alex, health and fitness is not something that one is really exposed to. To me running was an emotional release and I decided to join an aerobics class in one of the local gyms to keep myself active.

On March 10, 2012, which happens to be my birthday, the Institute of Fitness Professional (FitPro) spotted me in Alex during their visit to the gym. They saw my potential while I was busy doing aerobics. I was offered a scholarship to study exercise science.

Describe your average day and how working out fits into your schedule?

My day starts between 4.30am or 05.30am and I only leave the gym at 9.30pm. My breaks during the day all depend on my appointments and any cancellations. I usually run errands or I’ll be busy with some admin during lunch time when the gym is quiet, but sometimes I train too.

When I’m feeling tired I’ll take a nap to make sure I’m recharged for my evening clients. I fit in some of my own training sessions by training with my clients, but most of the time I train in-between sessions. My days are unpredictable because of clients shifting and changing appointment times.

What do you love most about exercising?

Exercising is a recharge for me. It makes me more energetic and it gives me a more positive outlook on life.

Could you please list the ways in which fitness has helped you to overcome difficulties in life?

Fitness has really changed the way I look at myself as well as life in general. With all of the principles of fitness, I’ve learnt to appreciate life and turn obstacles into opportunities. Having to run at 3am is one of the challenges that taught me to push beyond my supposed boundaries.

What is the one exercise that works your whole body?

I find that compound movement and functional exercises work best. For example burpees is a full-body exercise used in strength training and as an aerobic exercise.

I’m unfit and just starting out. What advice do you have for me?

Don’t expect miracles. It’s not going be easy but it’s possible if you put in the work and discipline, and are consistent. One step at a time and get your mind straight.

How can you make your fitness exercises exciting?

It’s better to incorporate what you enjoy in your training routines. You can try different things until you get what works for you. Training with a friend or joining group exercise classes also helps a lot!

How important is diet when training?

Your overall results depend on the relationship between your training and nutrition.

What is the one thing that you have learnt about your body?

My body is capable of doing anything that I put my mind to.

Any last words?

Exercising and eating healthy are easier when they become a lifestyle choice. Believe in yourself. We’re surrounded by opportunities so be your best self all the time.