To Top

Conversations with Lejla Ibrahimkadic

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lejla Ibrahimkadic.

Hi Lejla, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I moved to the USA in June of 2015 from Bosnia and Herzegovina. I guess that’s where my story starts…or the most important parts of it. I used to be a dentist in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and when I came to USA, the system requirement to become certified and practice again was too expensive. Financially it didn’t make sense to pay over $300k for something I already have. I just didn’t want to go down that path. I thought of it as a blessing in disguise because I wanted to know what else Lejla can do, what else can she become. Even though dentistry will be forever a part of me, I always wanted to have my options open for other career paths. This decision however, made no sense to anyone around me. And that’s ok.

I didn’t have many friends when I moved here to LA, so I turned to fitness and sports a lot. It was my escape. I worked as a manager in dental offices, and after work, I did lots of running and kickboxing. Unfortunately, 2018 is the year when things change for me in that aspect and fitness becomes halted. I got diagnosed with Myasthenia gravis, autoimmune neuro-muscular condition. I got diagnosed early thanks to running. It made my symptoms more obvious so I was diagnosed in time. For the next two years or so, I had struggles with everyday life activities and I couldn’t do running anymore or even some every day activities. But I didn’t give up, I kept moving even if I was able to do it for 5-10 minutes only on certain days. Slowly, with the help of my doctors, medicine, proper diets and exercise, I kicked Myasthenia gravis into full remission in April of 2021. I am able to run again, exercise and do everything without any problems. Exercise helped me mentally and physically. It saved me on so many levels.
This was probably one of my turning points where I decided to take the path of fitness more seriously and hopefully help other people too. I took NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) test, passed it on the first try and now I work at the gym and train others.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road at all, but I wouldn’t want a smooth road anyways. What’s inspiring about it? I had to go through an ego death first where I faced myself and everyone else with the life decisions I made. Move to LA and to uncertainty, changing careers and living a different life than most of the people I know. Of course, it is a lonely and scary road. I am still on it; the journey is nowhere near the finish line, and I am not sure where it’s taking me. But I can tell you I am excited to see where it takes me. One thing I am sure though is that I am brave and full of hope for the future. I have great support from my family, boyfriend and close friends. I am lucky and beyond blessed!

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Right now, I work part-time as a fitness trainer, as I am trying to fully transition into this career. My goal is to become a nutrition coach as well and get more fitness specializations. I want to work especially with people who are recovering from injuries, need to lose weight, and help change their lives for the better.

Fitness for me was never about the looks. It’s about having a healthy and functioning body that will serve you for as long as you live. I have seen through my self what difference having a strong body makes and what impact fitness has when you are trying to get through health related issues. Fitness is a lifestyle that will make you take care of yourself, build discipline and help you change for the better in other areas of your life. When you do that consistently, the looks will follow as well.

Is there any advice you’d like to share with our readers who might just be starting out?
I always tell people they should be brave above everything. Apply for that job you always wanted, switch the careers, leave the toxic relationships behind. Don’t be afraid of the change and the unknown.

Contact Info:

  • Instagram: only.lejla

Suggest a Story: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in local stories