Finalists / Jennifer M.

Jennifer M.

21.75% weight loss (41 lbs)*

*Results not typical

I’m a 35-year-old wife to a fantabulous husband and mother to 4 super busy kids: Quinton 17, Brieanna 13, Sopheea 9, and Harley 3. I have been overweight almost my whole life. I played softball, basketball, volleyball, and golf growing up but was always the big girl out there. I knew nothing about proper nutrition.

After having my 3rd baby I developed a heart condition that prevented me from working out. My heart rate would jump to over 200 just sitting on the couch. I had 2 unsuccessful heart surgeries trying to fix the issue. At 30 years old a doctor told me I would be broken forever. That was not acceptable to me. I wanted to exercise and get healthy for my family. I found a doctor at the Mayo Clinic who said there was one more thing we could try, so I underwent a final heart surgery.

Six months later I was running!! I could finally use my membership at Life Time Fitness for more than just the pool with my kids! For several months I worked hard with my husband and started to finally drop some weight for the first time in my adult life. Then we decided to have another baby. Four months after delivery I was able to hit the trails running again. My husband and I met with a personal trainer, Mark Strauss, at Life Time and he got us set up with a solid plan to meet my weight loss goals. I managed to lose 60 pounds with personal training, TEAM training, and group classes. I quickly realized kickboxing was a lot of fun but I sure am uncoordinated! The LifeCafe was a lifesaver! We could work out then grab a healthy dinner.

Then life got in the way and I gained 10 pounds back. We moved and my healthy eating started to fail. But I started training for my 1st triathlon so my workouts were still solid. Two days after my 2nd triathlon I fell and dislocated my ankle and tore my meniscus. I was on crutches for 6 months between recovery for my ankle, knee surgery with recovery, and a stress fracture. I gained 30 pounds from not working out and emotional eating. My meniscus was torn so badly my doctor had to remove 80% of it. My doctor put me on a transplant list and the wait was on. But I chose not to sit around waiting. I could do a modified swim, bike, and sort of “run”…more like a jog-walk with a big metal brace, but I did it. I completed my first half Ironman but I weighed almost 200 pounds! I was working out but eating crap. Something needed to change.

An email popped up from Life Time about an upcoming 60-Day Challenge and I knew that’s what I needed. My husband signed up with me. We were going to do this change as a family! We set up an appointment with Brandon Goeman. I had worked with him in the past with my triathlon training, to go over goals. I met with Brandon twice a week for strength training. The other 5 days were triathlon training of swimming, biking, or running. I worked out for 2 hours a day. But most important was getting my eating figured out.

Eating low carb worked before so that’s what I went back to. I was back on track working out, eating right, and losing weight. Then I got a call from my doctor that they had found a meniscus match and scheduled my surgery. It was 3 weeks before weigh-out. I knew getting stronger and losing weight would help with my recovery so I worked hard right up until then. Recovering was a lot of sitting around. I stuck to my diet and lifted light weights sitting on the couch since I couldn’t go to the gym. I didn’t give up! I was able to lose 41 pounds during the 60-Day Challenge.

After fully recovering from my knee surgery, I plan to get back to my triathlon training. I want to complete a full Ironman in the near future!

It’s more than just me losing some weight. It’s the changes I have seen in my kids. Quinton plays football, runs, and recently fell in love with mountain biking. He has dreams of doing the Leadville 100MTB race. Brieanna is a cheerleader, runs track and spends a lot of time running with her dad. Sopheea swims and was so inspired watching her dad complete a triathlon that she is now signed up for her 1st tri. And Harley…well he’s a 3-year-old boy.

My goal is to raise healthy children and be a great example for them. Thank you to Life Time Fitness for helping me develop the habits to accomplish this!