Super Mom: Beating Cancer, Losing 40lbs & Finding Fitness (CFC Spotlight Thursdays Interview)

Jeanette & Ava

When I started working out with Jeanette, I knew at some point that I had to invite her to do a Spotlight Thursday interview on chicfitchef.com. She is an amazing mom and a truly inspiring person- check out her story after the jump!

Tell us about yourself!

My name is Jeanette, and I’m a 34 year old mother of 2 girls (12 and 2). I’ve been using Shaun T’s Beachbody programs Insanity and T25 since April 2014, and MyFitnessPal on and off for about 18 months. My fitness journey did not start off smooth, and I continue to work hard and push every day to achieve what I never thought was possible in health and wellness.

When did your fitness journey begin?

My fitness journey started around 2003. I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma when I was 22. I survived the treatments, but began gaining weight soon afterwards. It never really occurred to me to do anything about my weight gain; I was a 16-year smoker who couldn’t even talk on the phone without being out of breath, let alone do any kind of exercise.

In June 2010, I decided enough was enough and decided to quit smoking. So my heart now had the opportunity to heal, but my fitness was still in the toilet. I hadn’t ever stepped foot into a gym until around November 2010, and that lasted for about 3 months. It was very expensive to keep a gym membership that I didn’t use because I had a hard time staying consistent. I didn’t have anyone to be accountable to or who would cheer me on when I was struggling. There was no one to challenge me or show me the best exercises to get results. It’s difficult to stay self- motivated, and with Beachbody, I found that there was a community of people who were similar to me and my goals, experiencing similar struggles.

Jeanette B&A

How much weight have you lost?

To date, I’ve managed to drop a total of 41 pounds, gain tons of muscle, heart health, and a new appreciation for fitness and health. I put my teenage and 20-something self to shame. When I look in the mirror, I am so proud of who I’ve become and what I’ve accomplished. I know I can do it. My life has never been better and I credit ShaunT and his amazing line of programs with a huge part of that success. I was a huge skeptic of myself and my ability to become a healthy and fit person. I will never be able to thank Beachbody and Shaun T enough for changing my life – my only hope is that I am able to inspire and change the life of another person as a Beachbody coach so that I can pay it forward.

You’re a mom of two. Did you struggle with losing post-baby weight? How did you lose the weight?

After I gave birth to my second child in 2012, I was over 40lbs over-weight and knew I needed to do something. It was at that point that I started using MyFitnessPal more frequently to lose some weight, and dropped about 15 pounds. MyFitnessPal helped me by keeping a food journal and knowing not just what I was eating, but the different types of food I was eating. Looking back, I think I would have started on Shakeology earlier. I was a huge skeptic about Shakeology and whether the benefits outweighed the cost, but now I realize how beneficial it is to my overall health, and would have started me off on the right foot right away instead of having to go through a trial and error of different foods to find a healthy lifestyle that works. Also, I’ve found that with Shakeology, I almost instantly lost a pound of bloat simply because the product is packed with so many good nutrients that it was like a mini-cleanse.

Unfortunately, I fell off the MFP wagon around August of 2013 — at that point I was looking at wedding dresses and felt again, unhappy with my body, and did not want to even bother trying on dresses because I didn’t like how I looked. Shortly after trying on dresses, I made a firm resolution to get in shape, so I got back on the fitness wagon and began my fitness journey again with the help of the InsaniT25 hybrid workout. With the help of this particular calendar, I was able to integrate Insanity at a rate I could manage, and began to accomplish things I never thought possible. I made it through holidays, emotional ups and downs, and aches and pains.

What has been the toughest part of your fitness journey?

I’ve overcome a lot of obstacles in my life, but the toughest was overcoming my own self-doubt. It wasn’t until I started working out with Shaun T programs, that I found ultimate success. I had someone motivating me. I found myself hearing his words of encouragement in my head, even when I wasn’t working out. I began to believe that I really could do it, and I did. Shaun T provides more than just a workout for the body he inspires the mind to achieve a level of fitness you’d never think possible. Before Insanity and T25, I was very uncomfortable in my own skin, and unhappy with how I felt in my body, mind, and spirit.

Jeanette & Teen

How can fellow moms/interested people reach you if they want to workout with you?

I hope that my story inspires even just one person to start their own fitness journey. I am beyond blessed to have the gift of health in my life, and I’d love to have some amazing friends along for the ride. If you’re ready to start your new life of health and fitness with me as not just your personal mentor and cheerleader, but as your friend and partner in fitness, email me at fitpattimom@gmail.com (or follow me @fitpattimom on Instagram). Let’s do this together!

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About ChicFitChef

My "deserted island" checklist: a BCBG dress, a healthy & diabetic-friendly meal and a few workout DVDs. ;-)
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