There are some people in the world who believe they were born to help others. Celebrity fitness trainer and model Jennifer Widerstrom is one of those people. You may remember her as the dedicated coach on the NBC competition series The Biggest Loser, where she helped her trainees reach their individual weight-loss goals. Of course, a lot has happened since her TV days, and while she may no longer be involved in reality television – she has been making quite the name for herself in the fitness industry.
Over the last few years, she has become a best-selling writer for her incredibly popular book Diet Right for Your Personality Type: The Revolutionary 4-Week Weight-Loss Plan That Works For You. She also has become a true mentor and inspiration to thousands of men and women all over the world, who look up to the fitness star for her honesty, big-heart, and incredible healthy lifestyle tips.
The former star of The Biggest Loser, and not to mention American Gladiator, has accumulated well over 274,000 followers on her Instagram account. She is frequently offering words of advice to her many fans, motivating them to go after their goals and aspirations and to live a fit, healthy, and happy life.
The fitness model and personal trainer, Jennifer Widerstrom, has been inspiring and impressing others with her incredible strength and fit body for several years. She first rose to prominence back in 2008, after she appeared as the female gladiator named Phoenix in the athletic competition series American Gladiators’ second season. During the contest, she was often seen intimidating and tackling contestants during challenges. Of course, a lot has happened since her gladiator days, and her gig on the competition series was only the beginning of a successful career in television and fitness. Six years later, she landed her next big TV job, the one that many recognize her for today…
In 2014, Jennifer was cast as one of the trainers for the 16th season of the popular reality show The Biggest Loser, replacing former coach Jillian Michaels. In the series, which features overweight contestants competing to win a cash prize by losing the highest percentage of weight, Jennifer was one of the coaches who tried to encourage and push the contestants towards reaching their weight-loss goals. When talking about her time on the series she said, “I love people and connecting with them. I think I’m very good at helping people find their way. I chose fitness and health as a way to do it.” Jennifer continued to train until the series was canceled after the end of the 17th season.
During Jen’s time on The Biggest Loser, she became known for her unique method of training. Unlike her predecessor Jillian, who had a tough love approach, Jen took on a less-strict approach, and believed in focusing on making her trainees have fun and smile while working out. She once said in an interview in regards to her clients on the series, “There is never a workout on the show that we don’t smile over and celebrate at the end.”
Social media queen
Although Jennifer has taken a break from reality television since The Biggest Loser, she is still keeping busy. The fitness mogul has accumulated quite the large fanbase over the years, and frequently updates her 274 thousand followers on her Instagram page with her newest photo shoots, workout routines, and diet tips. She is constantly receiving thousands of likes and comments from her fans, who tell her how inspiring she is. One commenter wrote, “Woman, you are my idol!”
Although the trainer is often looking flawless on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, she is definitely not afraid to be honest with her online followers, and show how deceptive social media can be. The 35-year-old shocked the internet after sharing two pictures of herself on Instagram. The first picture, taken from a low angle, showed off Jen’s “rolls” in her stomach, as the second photo was a mirror selfie showcasing her slim, toned figure that we are used to seeing.
Jen revealed that the two photographs were taken only “two minutes apart” and were not edited whatsoever. She wrote, “We all look like this when we sit. Don’t stress about the way your body looks in certain positions.” The post was quick to go viral, reaching over 22,000 likes. Her followers flooded her comments with words of love and support. The trainer was able to prove that even someone as fit as her has rolls in her stomach.
The celebrity trainer is now sharing her weight-loss tips in her newest book titled, Diet Right for Your Personality Type: The Revolutionary 4-Week Weight-Loss Plan That Works For You. The book, which guarantees finding each individual a customizable weight-loss plan based on their specific personality, has been a huge success and is already a best seller. On her website, she told her fans, “You know how much I love and care about you all, so I wrote this book – just for you.”
Since her Biggest Loser days, Jen has been making several guest appearances on talk shows from Conan to the Dr. Oz Show. Recently, she appeared on the popular ABC morning talk show, Live! with Kelly and Ryan for the second time, her first time being in 2017. On the show, she promoted her new book, and shared her Hybrid Body Boost workout, a routine that features three systems of movement to help you burn fat fast.
A stressful time
The health guru is always quick to share her workout and diet tips with her many fans. She is also always honest and open when it comes to her own, individual fitness goals. She recently confessed on Instagram that she had undergone some “stress” and unhealthy habits of her own. She wrote, “I’ve had a very chaotic six months and for the first time I visually see how that chaos is reflected in my eating habits and mental health.”
Jen announced to her followers that she was going to try out an intensive ketogenic diet – a high fat, high protein, and low carb diet. She confessed, “I have been drinking a lot, eating fast food, and to be honest been mentally checked out.” After 17 days of committing herself to the strict health plan, she took to Instagram to share her incredible, ab-filled results. She explained that she was impressed with the quick results, but would never think of sticking to the intense diet 24/7.
The coach enjoys sharing healthy tidbits with her online followers, and recently answered one of her fans questions via video on Instagram. The question asked was, “Do you believe that a person that was 300 lbs + can get lean like you?” Jen thanked her fan for the sincere question and answered, “When nothing is certain, anything is possible.” She added, “You’re comparing yourself to me, don’t do that. We are different bodies, we have to embrace what we do have.”
Besides from being an inspiring trainer, Jen is also devoted to charity. She encourages her fans to give back and wrote on her Instagram that, “It will transform your life in a happy way.” The fitness guru recently shared this photo of her during her visit in Rwanda. She was there volunteering for Kids Play International, an organization that educates children about the importance of gender equality with the use of sports and other teamwork activities.
Jen is all about being open and honest with her fans. The former Biggest Loser trainer recently shared an old photo of her on Instagram in order to point out that all of us, even her, have to start from somewhere. In the picture, showed the fitness star looking a lot less toned and muscular than she is today. She captioned, “THIS IS ME. I’ve never posted this photo, embarrassed by what you may think of me today.” She added, “We all have a place where we started.”
The 35-year-old isn’t only sharing her wise words of advice with her social media followers, she also is often spotted in some of the biggest fitness magazines. Muscle & Fitness recently featured the former Biggest Loser coach, where she shared “5 Food Rules to Live By.” The trainer’s rules include the following: eating more mindfully, sticking to one-ingredient foods, eating better fat-burning fuel combos, avoiding portion distortion, and filling up with fiber. She guarantees that by incorporating these healthy eating habits, you will be able to reach your weigh-loss goals more easily.
The celebrity trainer doesn’t only like to educate others on eating healthy, she likes to cook healthy recipes herself! In Muscle & Fitness magazine, she shared a list of her all-time favorite post-workout meals. She included recipes that she promises will make you feel both satisfied and recovered after a nice, challenging workout. The meals included her very own shrimp pasta and a lettuce-wrapped turkey burger with baked sweet potato – both which looked incredibly scrumptious.
As if being an inspiring fitness guru, writer, volunteer, and trainer is not enough – Jen proved to her Instagram followers that she is also a talented musician. She shared a video of her impressive piano playing skills and wrote, “Music makes me happy – so I play.” She encourages her fans to “spend just five minutes today journaling/thinking about what makes you happy and set out how you’re going to start to put it back in your life.”
In an interview with Muscle & Fitness, the celebrity trainer explained how she discovered a passion for fitness early in life. When she was a child, her father Franco, who was a bodybuilder, would often tell her about his bodybuilding idols such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Franco Columbu. She recalled, “He had all these amazing photos of bodybuilders in our basement.” She continued, “We would lift together and I would get inspired myself.” As she grew into her teens, she discovered a passion for sports such as gymnastics and diving.
When it came time to go to college, she attended the University of Kansas, where she became a Division I hammer thrower. As soon as she graduated, she knew she wanted to pursue the field of fitness full-time. So, she moved to Los Angeles in order to follow her dreams of becoming a fitness model and personal trainer. She received a variety of training from pilates, bodybuilding, boxing, and CrossFit. She recalled, “I realized how powerful it could be to help others take responsibility for their own health and well-being.”
Jen worked as a fitness model for some time, posing for a variety of different fitness magazines. It was during one of her photo shoots, that she caught the attention of a casting agent for American Gladiators. Which, as we know now, is what eventually kickstarted her career. When looking back on her experience on the show, she said, “It was an amazing experience, doing all crazy games and competing with the contestants and other cast members.”
A long way
Of course, a lot has happened since getting her first big break with American Gladiator. She has become an inspiration and mentor to thousands of men and women all over the world. And she has no plan on stopping anytime soon. She said, “I want to always keep my own momentum going. My purpose is not just to be a trainer from The Biggest Loser but also to be ‘Trainer Jen.’ If I can instill in others the idea that it’s possible to achieve greatness no matter where you’re starting from, then I have succeeded.”