img_2944Growing up in moslem home on the Cape Flats, and developing Asthma in my late teens, my mother never really wanted me to participate sport. I guess it was her way of protecting me, but I knew there was something missing. Seeing my action hero’s Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Dolph Lungren , Van Damme , I became fascinated with their sculpted, toned physiques. I had posters of them on my walls and visualized myself looking like them one day.

I attended gym and swam, but more for recreational purposes just to let off some steam, without a defined goal. I got married in 2001 and left for U.K to work abroad, it was an amazing experience getting to meet a large variety of nationalities from different backgrounds. Living in London,with the weather being cold most of the time, and not knowing where the closest gym’s or parks were, I would usually stay indoors and eat.
When I returned to Cape Town, I was at my heaviest I have ever been ….110kg’s!! Although family members and old friends were happy to have me back home, the first they mentioned was how much weight I have put on. I will never forget what they said and how they made me feel! That gave me the fuel and desire to want to change my lifestyle, not only for myself but for my wife and future family too. I kept thinking, “I am not going to be like a lot of parents out there, who can’t run and play with their kids because of being overweight and unfit” After all, those are the most precious moments that can’t be bought.

shaheem_fit_factory_saI started doing research, started eating better, tried different methods of training and the lightest weighed was 75kg. I was happy I lost the weight, but bodybuilding training started to intrigue me.
Being mentored by a professional body building, learning various ways to sculpt your body and most importantly, diet, has been a priceless experience. After just more than a year of solid training and eating I reached 90kg’s of muscle mass. I enjoyed the look and sense of accomplishment knowing I have achieved my fitness goals, but I wanted more. I wanted to have the muscle tone, strength to lift heavy weights, be physically fit inside gym, be comfortable with a short run and hike! To me, that is power! Not just be aesthetically pleasing to the eye but being able to push the pace at any given time! That’s when the fitness bug bit me, as it teaches you so much about yourself mentally and physically and what can be achieved if you have a plan in place.

People started to notice the changes within me and my body. I always got asked for advice, helping people to achieve their goals too….and that’s when I decided to make my passion my profession.