11 years ago, I was rushing getting ready for work and all of a sudden my pants ripped. I was super annoyed because 3 weeks earlier the same pants fit loosely and now so so tight. 

While only dressed in a bra and ripped pants I sat on the bed upset. I then looked up and stared at a full-length mirror that was right in front of me…

Who was this person staring back at me? I grew up a chubby teenager and was chubby most of my life. My weight had never bothered me, but oddly enough, on this particular morning, I didn’t like what I saw in the mirror…

My belly was bulging, boobage was pouring out of my tight bra, I looked tired despite 8 hours of sleep and was always exhausted and sleepy. I consumed 3 red bulls and many cups of coffee to keep me energized throughout the day and seemed to be gaining weight every single day. It was as though I was watching my life spiral out of control, but wasn’t an active participant. I was existing instead of living.

You see, 6 months prior I had walked away from my marriage and divorce was finalized.  Somedays I wondered if maybe I should have forgiven my ex-husband and tried to make things work 1 more time…and others I knew I did the right thing by walking away from domestic violence/domestic abuse…

[Would you like to know more about my experience with domestic abuse and what gave me the strength to leave? Drop a comment at the end of the post and if I get enough comments, I just might write about it]

I stress ate for 6 months and felt like a failure. It was this particular morning in April 2008, after pants ripping, after the mirror confrontation, that I decided enough was enough and promised to do something about my weight, about how I felt and get my life back on track.

That same evening I walked into a gym for the very first time in my life…I was 28 years old.

Like a mad woman, I spent hours every day researching how to lose weight. I bought fitness magazines, was surfing the internet endlessly trying to find a quick solution. “How hard can this weight loss thing be?” I thought…There were so many programs, so many diets…It was overwhelming!

Every Monday I’d start a new diet then quit 2 or 3 days later. The diets that seemed to work had me lose a lot of weight very quickly, then gain it all back and then some in a few days – Would you like to know about the many diets I tried? If so, drop a comment and I just might write a post outlining them…I did some very crazy and extreme things LOL)

Workout wise, I did outdoor boot camps, then kickboxing, started to run 4 to 6 miles per day 6 days a week, ran 3 half marathons in under an hour, slim in 6, Tae bo, p90x, hired and fired 3 personal trainers you name it I did it…

I was obsessed and committed to whatever it took to achieve my goal because I knew that losing weight would inherently make me stop ripping clothes and help me feel good about myself.

2 years later (2010) I had only lost a measly 2 kilos [4 pounds] and looked the same even though I was working out super hard. The only thing I gained in those 2 years was workout experience. Working out had become a habit. I couldn’t understand how 2 years of working out 6 sometimes 7 days a week, sometimes twice a day, didn’t yield the beautiful body that I desired.

I started to think that perhaps I was one of those people who could never lose weight or had heavy bones. Perhaps what they said about me growing up was true – that I had a body just like my grandma’s (who was overweight) I remembered the many times when strangers thought that I was my mother’s mother because I was way bigger than my mother. I started to buy into self-limiting beliefs that were tucked away deep in my subconscious.

When I embarked on this journey, my goal was not to simply lose weight! My goal was to look like the girls in bikinis on the cover of magazines. Although I had never looked like that in my life, and it seemed so far out of reach, so impossible, it was my heart’s desire.  I constantly visualized it and knew by hook or crook I would get there, I just didn’t know how.

After 2 years of disappointment, I decided liposuction was the answer. I consulted with several cosmetic surgeons here in Atlanta over a 3 month period and settled on 1. It was going to cost me $7000 (700,000/=) to get rid of my fat once and for all…or so I thought.

 2 weeks before my procedure, I was venting to a friend that I hadn’t talked to in a while, about my weight loss woes and my liposuction solution. She pleaded with me to halt the procedure and referred me to a coach that she said would help me achieve my goal. I was very resistant but after I saw her transformation and those of others that the coach worked with, I was willing to give him a try.

Roc Shabbazz is an IFBB Pro bodybuilding coach and coach to athlete celebrities like NFL Hall of Famer  Shannon Sharpe, infamous retired NBA basketball star Shaquille O’Neal just to name a few. It was under his tutelage that I learned the ins and outs of weight loss and In 6 months accomplished what I had failed to do on my own in 2 years #bikinibody

During those 6 months, I got fascinated by the body, nutrition and training (working out) as I watched how my body reacted and changed from different foods and workouts. My coach challenged me and pushed me to compete in bodybuilding which I did between 2010 and 2013.  It’s from bodybuilding that I was able to fully tap into higher levels of commitment and discipline, not just for fitness, but for life. The culmination of my obsession, a new path, and a great coach hatched my passion for health and fitness and ignited a fire that still burns strong today.

Roc + his wife Gina – My fitness parents

Everything I have accomplished over the last 10 years personally, professionally, in health and fitness, I owe to my first fitness coach Roc Shabbaz. The 4 years I worked with him were life-altering and completely changed the trajectory of my life as I knew it. You see, Roc not only taught me what it takes to lose weight, but he also imparted life long lessons that elevated my life in all ways and that eventually empowered me to walk away from my 18-year I.T (technology) career, follow my passion to be a servant leader whose goal was and still is to transform women’s lives like he did mine.

My divorce, however unpleasant, changed my life for the better. It catalyzed my need to seek what I thought was simply weight loss and that took me through a journey of self-development, self-realization and totally transformed my body and life.

From a sad, fat 28-year-old divorcee that was eating her sorrows away to a confident, happy lady turned bodybuilding athlete turned health coach.

Facts – Life will always have ups and downs that can leave you broken and beat down but as they say, when life serves lemons, make the best lemonade. Every bad situation can be a great lesson that can pivot you to the next season of your life.

If you Identify with my story, If you are tired of trying diet after diet with no luck, If you truly are ready to lose weight and transform your body, know this…I’ve been there. I know what it feels like to feel stuck and as though nothing works. I understand the path and journey that you need to take to achieve your goals sometimes you need help, for you don’t know what you don’t know. I can walk with you as Roc + G did me.

If you are ready to finally achieve your goal, let’s talk. I have opened up a few consultation slots and would love to chat with you, understand your goals, challenges and how I can support you through your journey. Click this link and follow the process outlined ->  btp.janemukami.com <- This is an active link please click it > I look forward to speaking with you soon.

PS: From last week’s email – The most underrated form of exercise is WALKING. Walking 40 minutes a day 4 times a week can make magic happen if you’re a beginner to exercise but ONLY IF you also make necessary nutrition changes 🙂


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