Finalists / Jesse H.

Jesse H.

77.78% change in body fat percent

*Results not typical

From dependence to independence to interdependence…..a journey of 90 + 60 + 60.

In February of 2016, I embarked on my first 90-Day Challenge, motivated by something completely different than the 60- Day Challenge I just completed. In February, I was dealing with a broken engagement, and the loss of two kids whom I had emotionally and mentally adopted. My happiness had been completely dependent on a family that wasn’t to be. My transformation during those 90 days was inwardly motivated-an alternative to less healthy ways of dealing with hurt and depression. Those 90 days created a more confident, independent person willing to face the world again. The summer 60-Day Challenge built on that independence, but was fraught with injury and a feeling that something was missing. While this 60-Day Challenge started on a healthier foundation in many ways, I feel like gained so much more from it-a better, healthier me, and the realization happiness is truly about interdependence-the fact we’re in this together and happier relying on each other.

During this 60-Day Challenge, I was able to lose 20 lbs of fat, going from 13.5% down to 3.0%: a 78% change. I participated in Alpha 5 days a week at 5am with my “Alpha Family” from 90-Day, and engaged in some form of cardio (interval training or long runs) after those workouts. Andrew White was my coach and provided the right level of coaching, motivation, and modification to work around some of my nagging injuries. Repeated focus on mobility prior to the 5am Alpha workouts has created a more mobile and flexible self as well.

The biggest difference for me this 60-Day was nutrition. Kelsey Ermels created a winning script and I adhered to a very strict diet plan consisting of proteins, the right fats, and carbs derived primarily from vegetables. I cut out essentially all alcohol, grain-related carbs (besides oats), soda, and most sugar. About halfway through, I did the 2-week D.TOX program which really helped accelerate the fat loss. To my surprise, I didn’t have near the cravings I thought I would because my body was getting good, nutritious foods.

Beyond the results and the “how,” as I reflect back on the past 60-Day Challenge, four things come to mind: Sustainability, Commitment, Compassion, and Family-four words that were either absent six months ago, or have been redefined for me personally over the past 60 days.

Sustainability: Moving beyond a short-term priority or a one-time challenge and embracing fitness as a way of life-a means to a long, healthy, and happy life. Don’t we all want to look back someday near the end of days knowing we had the energy and attitude to live life to the fullest?

Commitment: Maintaining proper balance and priority on the things that make life meaningful over the long haul, not the things the everyday world demands. Are you really committed to the things that matter?

Compassion: Genuinely caring enough about others to be just as concerned about their transformation as your own; about their lives outside of the gym as much as inside the gym, changing those in the workplace as well as the gym.

Family: In my mind, the true synonym for interdependence. What started last spring as an Alpha class became a team, became my friends, and transformed into my family. These are the people I rooted for and encouraged during our grueling workouts, and the same people who rooted for and encouraged me; the same people who ran the boot camp obstacle race as a team and helped me to the finish line when I sprained my ankle; the same group who spent an entire evening laughing around the campfire at the annual Alpha party.

In the end, this competition was not about 13.5%, 3.0%, or a 78% change. It isn’t about a 60-Day or 90-Day sprint either. This transformation isn’t even about me. It’s a reflection of the compassion and commitment of the great people at Life Time like Kelsey and Andrew who are helping people like you and me transform daily. It’s about my Alpha family, and our commitment to making each other better. Each of us are transforming. Each of us are investing in a sustainable future. What matters most is the transformation YOU commit to making from where you are at today and where YOU want to be in order to create a sustainable, compassionate, and committed life for those you care most about.

I’m not much of a writer, but I hope that over the past 3-5 minutes something in this essay has sparked your interest, something has inspired you to transform. If so, there’s no time like the next 60-Day Challenge to get started. Just remember, as you embark on the journey to your best self, inspire and encourage others….because the only thing better than living a more sustainable, compassionate, and committed life is to live that life to the end of days with those you care most about. My future mission is to help and encourage others to transform and experience what I’ve been fortunate to experience. God Bless.