Exercise saves life and its one important aspect of life, you must not toil with, because it saves you from millions of diseases and health conditions – Richard Akpama
Richard Akpama is a health and fitness expert, consultant and fitness trainer to various individuals and private fitness centers in Lagos, Nigeria. He is the CEO of Bid&Fit Company, located at Folagoro, Somolu, Lagos State. Richard is a multi-talented personality in the entertainment industry; an actor, model and dancer. He is a 360 degree leader, and a native of Cross River State, Nigeria.
In this interview with the Healthfacts.ng team, he throws more light on the benefits and essence of regular exercise and fitness to all Nigerians. We make welcome Mr. Richard Akpama…
Mr. Richard how long have you being into this fitness profession as an individual?
I have being working as a fitness trainer for other fitness companies over half a decade before I started my own fitness company, alongside my dance company last year November.
With the issues of respiratory and heart diseases becoming rampant in Nigeria today, how can you relate exercise/health fitness to the current happenings in the country?
To be candid, fitness and exercise is life. Health is wealth and the most important thing you have to face as an individual is your health. If you are in a good health condition, it will enhance your working performance and productivity in life. Therefore, I’ll advise Nigerians to aim for fitness, and create time for exercise, because the body really needs it. It’s a must! Fitness can reduce the issue of heart disease, obesity and other health challenges for many Nigerians.
All of a sudden, obesity has become common place in Nigeria and surprisingly, women are not even left out. What advise do you have for obese people?
For people like that, they need more fitness awareness, good eating lifestyle and exercise to stay healthy. It is vital that they make fitness their lifestyle. No matter their health condition or size, they should try hard to do regular exercise and consult a physician for any health condition. I have had some clients who had some health conditions, but along the process of doing exercise and hitting the gym, their health condition got a whole lot better. However, I would say be careful of who you hire as a private health fitness instructor or physician to avoid incurring more damages to your health.
Do you feel it is cool to take supplement or drug even before or after any exercise?
Well I’m not a doctor, but a fitness instructor. I can’t really give much insight to that question but from my little experience about drug or supplements, all I can only say is that, here in Nigeria, we take more of carbohydrate to protein, but the body needs more protein to work best, since most of our meals can’t supply us enough of these proteins, it is advisable that we take food supplements to help produce more proteins and vitamins to the body.
What kind of food do you advise people to take before and after any exercise?
It depends on the result and aim of what you intend to achieve during your fitness exercise programme. Some people hit the gym to just to build or gain muscles, while some come around to lose weight, and gain fitness. As for me, I take lot of banana as my pre-workout food with a lot of water. Then after my workout, I drink more water, eat fruits, beans and good vegetables. For weight loss, I’m not a dietician, so I’m not in the right position to place you on diet, but the little advise I can give to people out there, is that they should eat enough vegetables, take fruits, milk and drink more water. Try stop your late night food and reduce your carbs in take.
Some set of folks will say that I want a slim body, but not huge thighs. What kind of exercise can they do to achieve that result?
The thing is, most people come to the gym with different complains and challenges, some will say they want to work on their tummy alone; some will say they want to grow hips, while some their butts. Many believe squatting increases the butt, no way, it only makes the butt firm. But if it is working to have a lean body without a huge thigh, it can’t work, because if you want to stay fit and healthy you have to do some exercise and do more work on your whole body. Actually, it depends on the type of body you have. Some set of people will have to work out for like 2-3 months before they start seeing results why some just within few weeks, they would have gotten results.
Lift weight to reduce and convert fats to muscles and gain fitness
What is the difference between aerobic and anaerobic exercise?
Anaerobic exercise is using some fitness machines in the gym to carry out your exercise, while the aerobics is without the machine, for instance the thread mill is used to run on one spot, stationary bike helps to enhance fitness in joints. It also makes the heart pumps blood well and enhances flexibility as well.
How can we maintain and sustain a good exercise regularly?
Well, too bad, if you don’t have time or you are too busy; however, you should try to exercise three times a week. But then, the best thing is to make it a lifestyle; it will reduce high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases.