58-YEARS-YOUNG IPL PRO JENNIFER MICHELI!
*NUTRITION CLUB OWNER *INTERNATIONAL SPEAKER *HEALTH/WELLNESS COACH *PERSONAL TRAINER *MOTHER OF 3 *IPL PRO CHAMPION
INTERVIEW BY BEN YOSEF | MICHAEL BROOKS PHOTOGRAPHY
Jennifer Micheli splashed onto the IPL stage for the first time in 2019. Throughout the season she would skyrocket to the top of the league with not only Pro Qualifications, but also Pro victories. Including earning the IPL APEX IV Pro Masters Women’s Athletic title.
In addition to being an incredible athlete, Jennifer is so much more. We just had to get her on the cover of NATURALMAG and dive deep into her amazing background.
“I FEEL GRATEFUL, HUMBLED AND ULTRA INSPIRED TO SEE WHAT THIS SOON TO BE 60 YEAR OLD CAN ACHIEVE!”
BEN YOSEF: So much amazingness happening with you, I don’t even know where to start! –laughs- First, I just have to say that you are such an inspiration and positive influence on so many people. Congratulations on the incredible impact you have had over decades and continue to have today. You recently turned 58 years young. How are you feeling about all that you have achieved as you head into the last two years of your 50s?
JENNIFER MICHELI: I feel grateful, humbled and ultra inspired to see what this soon to be 60 year old can achieve!
BEN: Love it! What started you on your amazing health and fitness journey?
JENNIFER: I started dance at age 4. Running at age 11 and was teaching group fitness (aerobics) at age 17. I found my passion at a young age. I love fitness, feeling good and helping others.
BEN: You would eventually have three children. At what age did you have your first child and how did giving birth affect your health and fitness goals?
JENNIFER: I was 28 when I had my first. I loved being pregnant. At 19 I struggled with anorexia for a year and got down to 80lbs. I eventually got back up to 92 lbs. Got married and a few years later, pregnant. So I was thrilled to see my body change and create a new life. I worked out all the way thru my pregnancy and 4 weeks after birth I was back at it!
BEN: When did your next two children come along? Also, with regards to anorexia, how did you end up changing your lifestyle, mindset and overcoming this disorder? And I’m sure that what you learned has helped you as a health and wellness coach, yes?
JENNIFER: Matthew came along 15 months later. Then Vanessa 2 years after Matt. I was living in Maui during my anorexia and my parents came to visit. The look of Horror on their faces when they walked off the plane and saw me was heartbreaking. They visited for two weeks and asked me to come home to San Diego. I did.
My father was a drug and alcohol specialist and one of his nurses was a recovering anorexic. She invited me to a beach walk where she asked me if I wanted to live, get married one day and have children. I said Yes. Then she said food is fuel. Just like a car needs gas to get from San Diego to San Francisco. You can put in good quality food. I made a decision at that moment to turn my life around.
I crept my way back up to 92lbs. Shortly after that I got married and had three children. We then traveled and moved abroad for my husband’s work. After three years of that we moved to Daytona Beach and opened a gym. A year later Herbalife found me and I was able to gain 40lbs. A new opportunity was born for me to coach and help others become their best. It’s been almost 22 years now! I love what I get to do daily.
“…I LOOK FORWARD TO WHAT MY SIXTIES WILL BRING! HOPEFULLY A FEW MORE TITLES, MAGAZINE COVERS AND MANY, MANY LIVES TRANSFORMED!”
BEN: What an amazing story. When did you open your nutrition club? And was it at the same time you ran the gym?
JENNIFER: I opened up my Nutrition club eight years ago on April 16th. It’s been amazing the impact we have made in our community. We offer complimentary fitcamp style workouts, run club bike and weight loss challenges, serve healthy shakes, energy teas and so much more! I had my gym 23 years ago for 3 years and that too created a massive impact in our community. Best part is many of those women have come back around today.
BEN: You are also an international speaker? What can you tell us about that?
JENNIFER: Yes, I have been blessed to be a part of Herbalife Nutrition for 22 years. I have been asked to share my journey across the USA and also abroad. I am so grateful for the opportunity to travel to other countries and connect with so many people. I love to travel, so it’s definitely one of the many perks of being a distributor with Herbalife.
BEN: Let’s talk IPL and competition. You had an awesome rise to the top in 2019. How long had it been since you last competed (before 2019) and what was it like stepping back on stage?
JENNIFER: I competed again in 2017 after five years off. I competed in a local NPC show. I won and it qualified me to go to the Nationals. I went and placed 5th in the Masters. Had a great time. Yet the decision to compete in the IPL was the best decision ever since I always compete as a natural athlete. I love this league. I love what it stands for. I love your commitment to all the athletes to give them a great show and an opportunity to shine and become their best. I am excited to continue as an IPL athlete and also a show Promoter in Florida. I feel like we are just getting started!
BEN: Love it! And I feel incredibly honored to have you! You were just amazing onstage last year. This next question might be a tough one, because of all that you accomplished. But, which contest or achievement would you say was your greatest? And finally, what is next for you?
JENNIFER: Very honored to be a part of the league. I would say earning the first Pro Card. I started competing at age 40. It took me 17 years to earn it and lots of life in between. I am known for being persistent and resilient. To everyone out there reading this, never give up on your dreams. They are in your head for a reason. So do the work and see them through.
I am in prep now for my Pro Bikini Debut in October 2020. I plan to continue to compete, coach and promote IPL Florida for as long as I can! I am grateful and excited for every part of my life and I look forward to what my sixties will bring! Hopefully a few more titles, magazine covers and many, many lives transformed! Thank you for everything! NMI