A while back, a curious teenager was impressed by her mother’s fitness lifestyle and decided to follow suit. Today, Mitchelle Adagala is a certified personal trainer and fitness content creator with almost 80,000 followers.
The 23-year-old talks all things fitness to BDLife.
How long have you been working out?
Nine years. I decided to turn it into a career a year ago. I started with home workouts, but I always craved extra challenges.
My mum used to go to the gym and she would ask me to join her. That’s when my passion and obsession for weightlifting started.
What was your motivation at the beginning?
My mother and curiosity to see what my body is capable of doing.
What inspired you to start Thrive Fitness?
It wanted to help people become the best possible versions of themselves both physically and mentally. There’s demand for personal training.
How do you ensure each training is personalised?
I first do assessments, in the form of questions, as well as movement to gauge someone’s body.
What’s the one thing you never skip in your workout?
Warm-ups. I do 10-minute cardio exercises to loosen up joints and increase core temperature. That readies me for weightlifting and minimises chances of injuries.
What weight exercises do you do and how heavy do you lift in each?
My personal record at the squat rack is 140 kilogrammes (kgs), dead lift is at 130 kgs, leg press at 240 kgs and hip thrust with 110 kgs. I’m working towards hip thrust with 200 kgs.
What fitness goals do most of your clients seek to achieve?
Improve cardiovascular endurance, agility and speed, weight loss, strength training, weight gain, recovery and rehabilitative training. The list is long.
What essentials does someone need at home to get the same fitness results as she would at the gym?
Home and gym workouts are not the same due to intensity in training. For a home mini-gym, I’d suggest dumbbells, resistance bands, a pull up rack, skipping rope, mat and a bench. You can cook up a great sweat session with those, and lose weight.
Who are your fitness idols?
I don’t quite have any idols, but I do draw inspiration from Massy Arias (from Dominican Republic) and Simeon Panda (one of the most influential fitness professionals). I compete against myself and strive to be better than I was yesterday.
What do you think is the top reason people fail to meet their fitness/weight loss goals?
Relying on motivation to exercise rather than discipline. You won’t feel like working out every day but if you’re disciplined, you will do it.
What are the little fitness luxuries you can’t live without?
A foam roller for sure! The muscle soreness can get really intense, foam rolling eases it up immensely. I love it.
What’s one piece of advice most people ask you?
How to stay consistent with training. You don’t necessarily have to achieve fitness at the gym. You can take up swimming, cycling, hiking, yoga, karate, whatever interests you, just pursue it with vigour.
What do you consider a workout ‘heaven’?
A fully equipped, clean, hygienic traditional gym. I love training at a traditional gym, functional bodybuilding is my go to!
A number of people toil in gyms and never lose weight. Is there a secret to losing weight and never regaining it?
Weight loss has everything to do with what you eat. Your top priority should be nutrition. When that’s paired with a solid exercise regime, it works. In regards to nutrition, you are required to be at a calorie deficit, which means consuming fewer calories than you require. Find out how much you need from a certified dietitian or nutritionist.
Do you watch what you eat?
Yes, I do. I practice mindful eating. That’s not to be confused with restrictive eating. I am always aware of how many calories I have consumed by the end of the day, if I have met my macronutrient goals or not and if I’m going to have a treat. I always factor it into my daily calories, so that I don’t end up over consuming (calorie surplus) more than my body needs.
What’s your work out regime like?
I train for six days a week. Three days for the upper body and three for the lower body. I use a hypertrophy (increase muscle-size) programme I drafted for myself. A typical training session lasts 60 to 70 minutes. I’m always on the move from 5am to 7pm training clients at the gym.
Monday is leg day with a focus on the quads. Tuesday is upper body with a focus on chest and triceps. Wednesday is leg day again, with a focus on hamstrings. Thursday is upper body again, with a focus on back and biceps. Friday is leg day three, with a focus on glutei. Saturday is my final training day— usually a mixture of core work and high intensity interval training cardio, plyometric and mobility work.
How important is weightlifting to women?
I’ve changed my body composition thanks to weightlifting. I started out very petite, but I’ve stacked up on some mass through lifting weights. My fat to muscle ratio keeps on getting better. I have more muscle mass and less body fat. My metabolism is also at its healthiest. I’m stronger and more confident.
Current height and weight?
I am 5’7 and 78 kgs.