Living the simpElle life: Nneka

The end of September is now here! Let’s continue the month with some inspiration from someone I’ve met on my journey over the past couple of years.

This fortnightly mini series – Living the simpElle life – is where I talk to someone who has been empowered to change.

I heard a great phrase last year –

“The Universe is made up of stories, not of atoms”

– so that is what I want to share with you, stories, to open up the Universe to us all!

Each individual we meet embodies what this blog is about. They have dug deep to find motivation, they have sought inspiration and in doing so become inspirational to others. They have been empowered with knowledge to change and I hope that is what their story will do for the rest of us…

Meet: Nneka Osedumme

I met Nneka when I started teaching Nike Training Club (NTC) sessions in East London. When I first met Nneka, she was pretty new to all this training stuff! Soon, she had started running and I could hardly keep up with her! Nneka will also be running with Nkeiruka and I as 1 of 3 in a relay team for the Garmin Kingston Run Challenge on Sunday 12th October! Click {here} to sign up for the event yourself!

…here’s Nneka’s story…

– {THEN} – 

Elle: What made you decide to start training / running? …What were your plans / goals?

Nneka: I started training to maintain my weight, keep fit and tone up as I wanted to become a stronger and healthier individual.

– {HOW} – 

Elle: What’s your favourite way to workout?


  • Training
  • Running
  • Yoga

Elle: What’s your typical weekly exercise schedule? 

Nneka: My typical weekly exercise routine consists of a training class on Monday and Saturday. I also go to yoga on a Tuesday and on Thursday I go to Stratford Run club; all ran through the Nike community at my local store in Stratford; a brilliant team of guys and dolls who have motivated and encouraged my progression since day 1.

Elle: What / who has been your inspiration?

Nneka: My inspiration has come in many forms from the Nike trainers, who have consistently pushed me from day 1 (February 2012) to all the lovely ladies who I have met in various classes.

Elle: What was the first big difference in you, that made you feel proud and excited?

Nneka: I would have to say that my biggest achievement to date was when I completed my first half marathon (Hackney Half) on Sunday 22nd June this year. It was quite an emotional experience as the furthest I had run prior to my training for this race was the 10K mark. When I initially heard about the race I thought ‘I can’t do that’, however through the encouragement of some of my peers at my local run club I summoned up the courage to sign up for it.

Training for the race was quite difficult at first as I had to wean myself off of the Nike Training Club classes I was so used to attending and commit myself to solely running for 6 weeks – 3 times a week. The running became easier as I learnt to keep at a steady and slow pace and most importantly focus on my breathing technique; which were wise words from my friend (Ogechi) which to this day I will always follow when doing any long distance run.

I vividly remember the morning of the Hackney Half as I woke up feeling extremely nervous but at the same time excited as I had trained for many weeks and could not wait to run through the streets of Hackney. The crowds of people and volunteers waving the runners on were amazing and there was a great atmosphere throughout the race route all the way to the end.

Elle: Did you make any changes to your diet once you started training?

Nneka: To be honest I have never had the best diet! I tend to yoyo between weeks of eating clean and eating crap; mostly dependent on my state of mind and the mood I’m in!

However I have learnt about how to eat before and after training…carbs like sweet potato pre training and protein like boiled eggs/chicken/lean meat post training.

– {NOW} – 

Elle: How do you track your progress?

Nneka: I track my daily progress by using the Nike + running app, the NTC app and my Nike Fuel band.

Elle: Have your goals changed since you started your journey?

Nneka: Yes my goals have changed since I started as initially I would never have thought I could do a 10K run yet alone a half marathon. I started off wanting to get fit and did only NTC classes but as I grew in confidence and having spoken to other women through NTC classes who also run, I decided to change my training and take up running too.

My goals have changed because I now include weekly yoga (which helps stretch muscles after training) and running classes (which helps as a great de-stresser  – for me anyway!) into my fitness routine.

Elle: How do you keep yourself motivated?

Nneka: I keep myself motivated by pushing myself to go to classes every week.

Since my first 10K (We Own The Night 2013) I have signed up for various races to improve my pace as well as running challenges (set up by friends on the Nike Running app), which have helped me stay motivated as part of my training.

Elle: If you could go back and give advice to the “before” you…or any other person contemplating changing their lifestyle…what would you say?!

Nneka: I’m not too sure what advice I would give the before me…maybe to believe in/have more confidence in myself as anything is possible.  Who would have thought that the ‘before’ me 2 years ago would be running a half marathon in 2014.

To any other person contemplating changing their lifestyle…my advice would be to Just Do It!!! I have met many inspiring women (of all shapes and sizes) throughout my journey including new mummies who have joined NTC and run club. Anything is possible and never say never; if I can train and take up running then anyone can.

…so what d’ya think?! 

If you’d like to leave Nneka a comment below please do!

If you would like to share your own story please get in touch with me: {Contact Elle}

Until then, keep living that simpElle life 😉 

Elle 🙂 


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