We Interview: Eziaha Bolaji-Olojo - Food & Fitness Coach, Christian Blogger and Writer!
I've known Eziaha since our first year days in University. We weren't particularly close, but an image I have of her is one of brightly coloured hair, nails and contact lenses, always chatting exuberantly and gesticulating! She's been a ton of inspiration to me recently in so many ways - not least is her losing over 30kg in just a few months. Her personality is pretty infectious, and you may catch a glimpse in this interview! Enjoy.
What does your name mean and if you had to pick a new name for yourself what would it be?
- My name Eziahakaego literally means "a good name is better than wealth", and I am absolutely in LOVE with it, which is funny considering how much I HATED it back then because it was so strange and nobody else bore it. So I promoted my other name Ngozi up until just before University. My mom and sibs still tease me about my love for Eziaha today. Yup, Eziaha it would be if I had to pick a name now. But my second name would be Olaedo. It means gold. Or something precious.
What's your favourite place to be in the whole world.
- I would say the United States of America. Because it has all my favourite people and events in the whole world (outside Nigeria). But if you don't mean place as in country, I'll say (aside from hubs) with my besties, on a girl's only trip (no babies please)!
You recently turned 30, how would you describe being 30?
- Too young to quit. Too old to 'people-please'. Perfect!!
One advice for girls still in their teens and twenties?
- Chase pretty hard after Jesus. Even if you are the ONLY one in your Circle. He is absolutely worth the chase and pays off for life.
Cats or Dogs?
- Dogs!!! Aren't cats witches? Loooool. #kidding
What's the most expensive item you've ever bought?
- That's hard. I'm so prudent. I do spend a lot on Bibles and Books though. Maybe when I'm richer, I'll splurge on bags and shoes. Definitely can't wait to have my first original 'red-bottoms' and Gucci/LV bag. For now, I spend just as much as my season (and bank account) allows on them.
You failed from Pharmacy in University of Ibadan, and then went on to graduate from the same Uni with a first class in Sociology and as the best graduating student. What's the major lesson you learnt from that?
- That God is a Boss!!! A Boss that sits atop it all, knows and sees it all, and if only we realise that NOTHING, absolutely nothing takes Him by surprise, we too would chill... Boss-style! Gosh, what an irony that I got to be called to speak in the same place on something related to failure.
If you could give only three weight loss tip, what will it be?
1. Rid yourself of those silly mindsets. It is hard; it is boring; healthy food is not sweet; I am big-boned; maybe I am supposed to be fat. We are fat in my family etc. Lose the mindset and over half the job is done!
2. Your taste buds can be re-trained. You can LEARN to LOVE your fruits and veggies and actually enjoy it.
3. Do it for the right reasons. You want to honour this body God lives in by treating and nourishing it right. You don't lose weight for the opinion or approval of anyone. We are all approved by God and because we are, we treat His temple honourably and not like a dustbin.
When you're tempted to throw in the towel, this one thing keeps you going?
- I hope I don't sound 'somehow' but frankly, I hardly ever think of throwing in the towel. I slow pedal and don't give 'all' some days for X or Y reason, but I never think of quitting anything. My mama didn't raise no quitters!
Weirdest food you've ever eaten?
- Maybe Dog meat. Won't try it again.
In starting as a Food and Fitness coach, what challenges have you faced?
- Reading personalities and treating them in ways that help foster cordial relationships especially as I am really into building relationships with my clients. Gosh, humans are work! But hey, Sanguines unite! Each Online set of ladies have differed so it means I have to keep reinventing the wheel and stay praying too for wisdom from on high. Because I'm all about that RESULTS life for my weightloss students.
- As a newbie in business, publicity and getting Word out there. So I am doing the ground work and then praying the Blessing of God because Proverbs 10:22 in one of my fave Bible version says 'The Blessing of the Lord maketh rich and no amount of hard work can add to it..' So not neglecting diligence and excellence but certainly not putting faith in it over and above the Blessing.
Are you a feminist? What does Feminism mean to you?
- I don't even like to get into this. I'll just say woman, live your best life and bless the earth with your gifts! Sooner than later, the earth will align and reward you too. HE is the God of the Earth, so rest.
What inspired you to get your body back?
At first, Me! I always wanted to be a HOT mama in tank tops and shorts anytime I wanted. And dreadlocks and glittered multi-coloured nails, driving a tinted jeep with bad-ass glasses and when I alight with my babies, people will be like 'are these your kids?' and I would smile and very off-handedly say YES and strut away happily. So it was a gift to me! On the journey though, I discovered a higher purpose. I really want to honour God with my life and my Body is His Temple so go figure! That is helping me KEEP my body and NOT let it go again!
The most common weight loss myth we need to forget?
Fat runs in the family. What a lie! Please don't say that around me!
What do you think of the Natural Hair trend? Would you let your daughter relax her hair and what's your favourite way to wear your hairstyle?
- I am a Naturalista and I'm pretty done with perm. Too painful so I'm all for the trend, if we can even call it that. It is here to stay, so it is not just trending for now. About my kids, I've never thought of this. My daughters (twin girls) are free to do whatever. I would actually love for them to stay natural early in life, try out a perm sometime in their teenage years (if they are open to it) and revert to dreadlocks in University. The best way to wear my hair is exactly how I wear my hair now... DREADLOCKS. It has been my dream since late teenage years and I'm thankful to live it now. Had an artificial loc' for my wedding but now I wear it natural. Other than dreads, gimme a nice crop in gold!!!
Beauty item you'd rather not do without?
- This is hard. I've done without it a lot but if I had my way, I'd never be without a perfect mani and pedi complete with popping colours and glitters. Which is exactly the treat I am giving myself as soon as my book is out!
Money is such a source of disagreement in Marriage: What's your advice for couples?
- Can I just talk to the women because I made this mistake. Your husband is NOT your Source. Yes He provides and that's awesome and Biblical. But you need to see God as the Source. Takes away almost all the pressure. I would also say. And of course this is me assuming you married a good GOD man.
Best thing Marriage has brought you?
- Someone who got my back at all times. And when that someone has and manifests the wisdom of God? Girl! #Heaven
If you could spend a weekend away with your husband in Nigeria, all expense paid, what will be on the itinerary?
- Will definitely be locked in having loads of sex and eating and gisting. And more sex. And more sex! I'm in a long distance marriage. So when we get time together, it is just the two of us please!!!
You said "I won't do this when I'm a mother". But you've done it anyway!
- Sleep with the kitchen not exactly spick and span (by which I mean dirty dishes in sink).
- Go without brushing my teeth for a day (or three).
- Have a scattered home and still be able to sleep at night.
- Choi!!! My life now. I'm thankful for my 'village' that helps out though.
Favourite Bible Verse?
- The entire Bible is really good. Ok, Genesis 1:28 because God literally dashed it to me as a life principle! "And God blessed them [granting them certain authority] and said to them, “Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth, and subjugate it [putting it under your power]; and rule over (dominate) the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and every living thing that moves upon the earth" And because I literally can't live without the Proverbs 31 woman, let's throw in verse 16 (AMP): "She considers a [new] field before she buys or accepts it [expanding prudently and not courting neglect of her present duties by assuming other duties]; with her savings [of time and strength ] she plants fruitful vines in her vineyard".
3 ways motherhood changed you?
1 My heart shatters when I see a mom who can't provide for her kids, especially where they are babies and toddlers.
2. No longer judgmental of the choices moms make for their kids even if parallel to mine. But if those choices are flat out negative, I just pray. And if God leads, I counsel. But gosh, I appreciate moms now.
3. Always been a pretty disciplined and diligent woman but just knowing I am setting an example for my kids takes it all to another level! I'm pretty intentional with my Spiritual disciplines and life generally.
I'm literally living (as a mom) for Proverbs 31:28a "Her children arise and call her BLESSED"!
If you could live with 3 women for one day each, who will they be and why?
- Joyce Meyer (this is assuming Christine Caine, her spiritual daughter and friend, would be spending the day and night at hers too); Lisa Bevere (Jesus please!) and TY Bello (assuming she's shooting Chimamanda Adichie that day too).
Just this year, you've launched your You-tube channel, started your own business, written a 31 day devotional, spoken at events and been interviewed on TV. What else is up your sleeves for 2016?
- Write my first Book and 2 more Devotionals.
- A lot more TV, Radio and Print interviews
- Launch Propel Lagos
- Launch The FAB Sistership Academy.
- Meet Joyce Meyer and Christine Caine.
- Launch #FruitfullE' Vlog
- And a few more personal stuff
I have a crazy accountability partner and a pretty badass squad so we are doing this. Amen!
If you could give a short bio of yourself, what would you say:
- Eziaha Bolaji-Olojo wears many fancy hats but lives one integrated life and that's the one to be found in Christ. She is a wife to her 'perfect slice of heaven' Bolaji Olojo, a mama to a Giant Slayer KingDaveed (and twin girls to come), a Christian Blogger at www.eziaha.com, a Food&Fitness Coach at SavedFitnFAB and a Mentor to many. She is also an Author, a Speaker, and still has 'the-girl-next-door' personality. Eziaha is super extroverted, smiles and compliments people a lot, loves Joyce Meyer with a passion and rocks life totally as a WARRIOR in Heels!
I hope you enjoyed reading this. Eziaha's personality and love for Christ is infectious. I thought I used a lot of exclamation marks and ellipses, but she thoroughly beat me to that. Her online weight-loss class for the month of August begins on the 5th and it's N10,000 for 4 weeks. You can see pictures and details from her current July class here. If you'll like to join, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. She's also having a special class for all of us with bingo wings. You know how I feel about my arms - I need to get my arms toned once and for all, so I'll be joining that and happy to do a giveaway to someone who is pretty okay with her weight but would love to work on her arms, and is ready to put in the work (and encourage me!) Simple rules: Like our page on Facebook here, Share this post (from our Facebook page so I can see it) and just leave a brief comment here or on Facebook as to why you you'd like to join. I'll select randomly.
Finally, if you're Christian, I totally recommend Eziaha's blog www.eziaha.com. I've also used the devotional and it's awesome. Please email her if you'll like an e-copy. It's free. Twitter; @EziahaA; Instagram: @Eziaha; YouTube: Here
pS: She's also Igbo and her Husband is Yoruba. I initially interviewed her for the Nigerian Inter-Ethnic LoveStories series, which was such an interesting interview. Maybe I'll share some day!