Marjolein Blokland is a reigning fitness pole dancing queen, kick ass kickboxer and gym instructor not afraid to pursue her interests
When she appeared on K24’s Nairobi Diary, Marjolein Blokland was new to many. She appeared for two seasons. Her character was calm and composed But it is not often a young girl in her 20s understands and appreciates what counts in life. However, Marjolein is a different breed since she defines an unapologetic doer.
At only 24, her life cycle in the true form began six years ago and has steadily been out to create a name. The half Kenyan/Dutch lass is a personal trainer with an affinity towards the male-domineered occupation. After her A levels, Marjolein, then 18, started hustling as she hated being broke and dependency.
“I pursued modelling for about three years on parttime basis, but it never quite worked because gigs were few and far apart. I also tried my hand at hosting and ushering, but none really got me turned on,” she recalls. At 22, life began making more sense to her and she readied to make sacrifices.
She figured finding a job would make her independent. “I needed a solid income, so I had to go out and get something done,” she quips. She really wanted to make it on her own and skipped university. “I interned under my current boss in the hope of becoming a trainer and I recall initially approaching him seeking a job as a cleaner at the gym.
He ran a gymnasium, which I currently work in and that was where I learnt the ropes of my trade,” says Marjolein who’s a specialist in kick-boxing, pole dance for fitness and resistance training.
Her parents had conflicting opinions on her new job, but she stuck to her guns nonetheless. “My mum was liberal and encouraged me to make my choices while my father was a little apprehensive and jittery,” says Marjolein who is an only child.
Her love for physical activity is traced way back in school where she engaged in many a sporting activity. That she made it through blood, sweat and tears is not in contest because of her attitude and focus on the whole. Initially, she had struggled with bad company, poor eating habits, excessive partying and had to change her lifestyle.
“I knew that if I did not embrace a shift in my character, I would be lost. I learnt basically the need of staying healthy and giving my life a new dimension,” she notes. She works averagely 16 hours a day, sleeps for six hours, but still fancies all of it. Meeting new people has made her survive the aches and pains of the trade.
“I view it as an opportunity to network, build my friendships and learn different cultures on the go. Averagely, I meet about 15 people on a daily basis in this field,” she says. She has been able to demystify the notion about women coming into the fitness space and has stood her ground.
“Demographics keep changing and as such, more young girls are pursuing fitness. I use my position to empower and educate people,” opines the confessed ambivert.
Not an easy journey
In fact, Marjolein had to struggle to make it. “It could not have been busy. At my workplace I share the premise with 10 men, it can be challenging,” she reveals. Ironically, some men still find her a tad intimidating, yet she laughs it off.
“There is a mindset that cannot easily be changed, but I’m happy in my body nonetheless.” In spite of her schedule, Marjolein still balances her work and social life. She fit it all together in a single basket.
“I am currently dating and I got friends as well,” says the hiking, cooking and horse-riding fan. She is a firm believer of good work ethic and standing up for oneself. “I used to struggle with my confidence before, but slowly I got to toughen up and face life,” she concludes.