Damola “Damz” Ladejobi is one of Nigeria’s Leading Certified Personal Nutritionist and Premier Weight loss Coach. In 2013, she began a fitness journey, which led to her shedding 35kg, and eventually, starting her own platform – Ask Damz, a weight management network where women experience transformation using her personal weight loss methods & techniques. In this interview for TW’s Women We Love, she takes us through her journey from her personal weight loss to becoming one of Nigeria’s favorite weight loss coaches, with over 50k followers on Instagram!
See excerpts from our chat below:
TW: Who is Coach Damz?
CD: My name is Damola Ladejobi, a professional nutritionist and weight loss expert. I am a UK certified personal nutritionist with a diploma in nutrition. I have a law degree from the University of Exeter with a BL from Nigerian Law School. I am the first child of my parents; I have one lovely sister (Farah). I am married to my best friend Mr Adebisi Ladejobi and the mother of two God sent children Ifeoluwa and Oluwatobiloba Ladejobi.
TW: What were you doing before you became one of Nigeria’s favourite weight loss coaches?
CD: Before I became a weight loss coach, I worked at Lagos state ministry of justice as a lawyer and then I worked as the head of a pre-school. It was a wonderful experience working with children.
TW: You push people to their fullest potential, who pushed you?
CD: I find inspiration in everything. In different situations, I always ensure to listen, grow, learn the lesson in the circumstance and move on and up from there.
If you are asking who pushed me for my weight loss journey, the answer is my health and love for fashion. Being overweight, I had severe GERD (Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease) and my size affected my passion for fashion. I wanted to be proud of the way I looked and be healthier. When I started losing weight I would go shopping and realised I could fit into a size lower than when I started and that helped me stay on track till I reached my target dress size. Thereafter, little victories kept me going.
TW: You are a woman who solved a personal challenge, and then decided to carve a niche by helping others do the same, can you share a little about the journey so far, on both the personal, and business side?
CD: Starting Askdamz was a God directive, knowing I had achieved my weight goals, all I experienced and learned through the journey became my passion, I realized I could help someone else through their journey, as well as help someone get to their finish line to achieve their body goals.
Starting something is one thing and sustainability is another. I’m a believer of daily decision, taking it one day at a time, learning and growing.
TW: Weight loss isn’t a one size fits all journey; many overweight people are said to have one underlining issue or the other, how do you handle the personal side of dealing with weight loss issues?
CD: Confidence and self-love is key when embarking on your weight loss journey. Learning and understanding how the process works would help you deal with different issues. We are all shaped differently, we have different metabolism, from one individual to another.
Some people have different target areas (belly, arms, thighs, etc.) that they would love to lose the extra fat, you have to listen to your body and know how it works. For people with underlying medical issues, I advise that you always seek medical counsel before commencing their fitness journey.
TW: Fitness and eating healthy has become another get rich quick scheme, with people falling for quick fixes and crash course diets, considering how expensive personal trainers and coaches are. What advice would you offer to someone who doesn’t have much, yet would love to lose weight without endangering themselves in the process?
CD: We are what we eat. Take it one step at a time. Do it the healthiest way possible. There is a popular saying that goes, “Rome was not built in a day”, this applies with a weight loss journey, it’s the daily decisions we make, our meals, our activity levels, and those are the elements that matter.
I would like to say that personal trainers and coach have different charges, because of the passion, level of work and dedication, time and quality we offer, so we may have varying prices.
TW: What are your thoughts/ mantra about confidence, weight loss and body image?
CD: Confidence: You are royalty (You’re a Queen. You’re a King); you have to remember that all day. I thank God I didn’t battle with a negative self-image because I believed this.
Weight Loss: We shouldn’t focus on the number on the scale; we should focus on living a healthier lifestyle, increasing our activity levels. Are you healthier? Do you have more energy? Do your clothes fit loosely on you? Have your statistics changed in your favour? These questions help you track your weight loss journey.
Body image: While it is true that we are specially and wonderfully made by God, we also know that, though you can’t change your body image, you can change your body size.
TW: Do you ever feel pressured to be a certain way, in order to attract clients?
This is a tough question, because as I grew, personally and as a brand, I sometimes would like to do things to satisfy people or any audience but I have to always remind myself why I started in the first place, am I trying to inspire or show off? What value can I add? Am I helping someone for better? These help me stay focused and grounded.
TW: What inspires and motivates you?
CD: My greatest inspiration and motivation come from my family, my friends, my team, my journey and my growth. I am nothing without God. I am passionate about helping people feel and look better.
And because we’re feeling extra generous to our readers, here are more pictures for you to drool over and get your workout juices flowing.