Kelebogile Serokolo opens up about how she managed to get her life back on track after dealing with family politics, friendship fallouts and, ultimately, depression.

“Even though I’ve always been bubbly, I grew up with a shell of unhappiness inside me,” says Keleogile.

It was in the way she felt (about herself and the people around her), the way she looked and how she led her life – none of it made her genuinely happy.

The journey

She had to make some serious life adjustments in order to find happiness again.

“Growing up, I went through a lot at home. Most of the time I just wanted to leave because I knew it wasn’t really a healthy environment for me,” she admits.

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Kelebogile found that fitness helped her to escape from her thoughts.

“It helped make me spiritually, mentally and physically stronger. Seeing the results made me happy – the type of happiness I’ve always looked for,” she says.

Physical and mental health

“My friend jumped off a building last year because she couldn’t get out of that depressive state of mind. I don’t want anyone feeling like they have no other choice, and that’s what keeps me going,” says Kelebogile.

“I don’t want to be average – I give everything I do my all because I enjoy inspiring people.

"When I get messages about how I inspire others, it fills my heart every time, knowing that I might be the reason someone wants to better themselves… I can’t be preaching ‘keep going’ when I can’t do it myself,” she says.

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She keeps going so she doesn’t return to that dark state of mind – and tries to help others who feel the same way through fitness.

“It feels good to be in control of my life. I want others to feel that there is that option,” she says.

Food and fitness

“I started getting into proper health and fitness at varsity. I ate healthily, cutting down on sugar, fizzy drinks and even chocolate, which I was once very addicted to,” she says. It was a bit challenging in the beginning, but it got easier and fun.

Kelebogile doesn’t even crave junk anymore and her body just won’t take it in either.

She wakes up to a bowl of oats, lunch is a pesto, chicken breast and veggie wrap with a shake, and for supper she’ll have protein – beans or meat with vegetables.

“I avoid carbs at night for digestion purposes,” she says. Through all this her body has changed. She feels better, cleaner and happier.

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And on the fitness front?

“I was a drum majorette for five years, and in the North West team for two years, so I’m no stranger to being fit – working a flag and spinning a mace is harder then it looks,” she says. It strengthens your arms proper. Trust.

Now she trains regularly at the gym and, on Mondays, she has her VOOV live training advice at 18:15 on channel 196. On other days, she trains students. We say she’s defs hit fitfluencer level!

5 facts about Kelebogile

Image: Supplied

— She always has resistance bands and thermo belts in her gym bag.

— Her favourite workout is on the leg extension machine.

— She’s inspired is Kathy “Drayton” Freeman.

— Her cheat meal is pizza.

— She’s currently in the process of launching a bootcamp called “Jaivafitness”.

This article was originally published on Women's Health South Africa.