Athlete Profile: Meet Jen Green - Full of Life!

Stay-at-home mom Jen Green lost 41 pounds in 12 weeks, becoming the first woman to win a local "Biggest Loser"-style competition in its five-year history. In the nine months since winning Green's lost more weight all while encouraging others via her blog Setting You Free.
Green's currently training for a fall marathon and is thinking of training for a triathlon.

LOGISTICS:
Two teams of five adults met several times a week as part of The Gazette Healthy Challenge. The men and women worked out with trainers three times a week for an hour and weighed in at a local hospital once a week.

"The first thing we did was go to the hospital to get our "vitals" checked," says Green. "They did our weight, BMI, blood pressure, and our measurements. Our weight was checked every week, but the blood pressure, BMI, and measurements were done at the end."

Team challenges included:
- a five mile run
- a cooking challenge
- an obstacle course challenge (run 1 mile carrying his/her weight loss in pounds, answer 5 nutrition questions and then swim 1 length)
- and a soccer team challenge (kick a goal against the Washington Freedom (girls soccer) team mascot.

"My favorite was the soccer challenge as I scored the winning goal," says Green. "I also liked the cooking challenge because we worked with real chefs in preparing a healthy meal." Green's team won all of the challenges, but lost the overall competition because the other team lost a higher percentage of weight.

TAKE-HOME HAPPINESS
Green's whole lifestyle has changed as a result of this opportunity. "We're eating healthier, getting exercise and feeling so positive and full of energy," says Green. "I'm happy."

She's also more comfortable using the gym equipment at her fitness club. "I had a gym membership for two years prior and just was intimidated," she says. And Green's grateful for her personal trainer and friend Benny Dorsey, her personal trainer during the competition.

Being the best at losing brought Green many prizes: yoga, dayspa, whitening kits, health club membership, mall certificate, hotel & airfare to Florida, grocery store certificate and more!
Other fun perks include her TV and newspaper ad helping promote the 2010 competition. See the ad here.

And thanks to her new strength and fitness she's confident she can complete the October marathon she's training for and even a triathlon one day, she says.

"Emotionally, I feel like I have been given a second chance at life," says Green. "I feel stronger inside and out. I am making better decisions in all aspects of my life because I am more confident. I feel like I deserve to be treated fairly... and have even disassociated myself with "friends" who were not really my friend. I feel like I deserve happiness."

Green's choices have influenced her husband and kids too. "My kids see me go run and they want to run with me," she says. And Green and her husband Lyle are doing sessions with the Personal Trainer together and daily sessions of P90X. "It's awesome," she says.

GREEN'S ADVICE:
1. First, record EVERYTHING you eat for 1 week. And don't cheat... cause you are only cheating yourself!
2. Examine that food journal and you will be surprised. Maybe even take it to a nutritionist (most health insurances cover this).
3. Find a plan that works for you. I eat more protein, less carbs and A LOT more veggies.
4. Drink more water!!!!! I drink 90 - 100 ozs a day. Most of the time we think we are hungry and we are really just thirsty. If I think I am hungry, I drink a glass of water and wait 5 minutes... if I am still hungry, I eat.
5. Eat LESS more Often. Don't deprive yourself... just eat smaller portions.
6. Start an exercise program. Maybe just walk to your mailbox and back. The next day, walk to the next mail box and back. Before you know it, you will be walking miles. Then maybe start running (if you body allows it) a little. A gym membership is NOT essential to losing weight.
7. Find someone to do it with you. This was one of my failures before. I had no one to pick me up when I fell. The competition gave me that support and now... I am supporting others. It doesn't have to be someone who is overweight (it can be though). Find a healthy friend and ask if they want to help you... they probably will consider it a compliment if you are serious. If it is someone that is over weight, set ground rules. Find out what each other's triggers are. Set goals.

Questions for You:
- Please take a moment to encourage Jen and thank her for sharing her story.
- Which team challenge sounds most fun to you?
- What makes you successful in your fitness journey?

photo: submitted by Green. The photo was taken seconds after hearing that she'd won, beating a guy by .1%!

6 comments:

Dianna in Maui said...

Go Jen! I encouraged (OK, badgered!) some of my coworkers to go to a local boot camp class for 4 weeks. I told them it would be fun! :-) They cursed me during the class, but we've continued doing fitness-related things with each other at work, include weightlifting, running, a 60-in-60 challenge, etc. Each time we finish a challenge, we come up with a new one to keep us going.

Right now we are all on our own programs and I am training for my first triathlon in June. As someone who has always trained alone, I've found that I love our group atmosphere, encouragement and healthy competition. Keep doing what you do! Aloha!

Victory is Finishing said...

Jen,
Awesome job! You sooo deserve all that comes your way.
Best of luck with your upcoming marathon. Hopefully you'll let us know how the day goes.
Warning to you and Dianna once you do you first Triathlon you'll be hook! All the Best with your new journey.
Brian
ViF - "Victory is Finishing"

Velma said...

Great post - nice work Jenn!!!! I think that food journaling is the way to go.

Judy said...

Great job Jen! I've lost 4 lbs in 12 weeks and worked my butt off so I can only imagine the work you've put into your weight loss. Keep up the good work!
I would have loved the obstacle course. Especially the run - for us to remember what it used to feel like with that extra weight (I've lost more than 4 lb total *lol*).
Food journaling is huge - it's so easy to underestimate calories or perhaps do good on calories but eat too many carbs or fat. It's all about balance. Finding exercise that is fun and challenging is the key to continuing for me.

Big Daddy Diesel said...

- Congrats!!! That is great!!

- Run a mile with the weight in books, quiz, and swim a lap sounds like the toughest

- Just being able to exercise is a success

Karin & Brian said...

Such a great story. Great job! This might sound boring but the 5 mile run sounds like the most fun challenge to me (only because I love to run!). Staying healthy for myself and my family is what's most motivating for me. Eating the right foods (veggies, fruits, veggies, veggies, and no added sugar) make me feel incredible and that helps me have lots of energy to workout and keep up with my little running toddler!