• Jen Widerstrom, a trainer on the NBC series The Biggest Loser, recently opened up about her own physical transformation on Instagram
  • She says she saw results when she started working out to feel good rather than just to look good
  • While she experimented with the keto diet earlier in the year, she’s taking a more balanced approach to eating these days

FYI: Jen Widerstrom didn’t emerge from the womb totally ripped—in fact, it’s quite the opposite.

For years, The Biggest Loser trainer has cheered on contestants as they embrace healthier lifestyles. But now, Jen is opening up about her own weight-loss journey, revealing she went through a major mental and physical transformation to get where she is today.

Jen shared a before-and-after picture of herself on Instagram. “For a long time, I was completely unaware of how unhealthy my eating habits & routine were,” she wrote. “Even though I was active, the sheer volume that I was consuming was out of control and I put no thought behind the foods I was eating.”

Jen also wrote about how she finally decided to make a lifestyle change:

“I chose workouts that I enjoyed vs. ones that I felt were like punishment. There are foods that I knew were healthy that I hated so I just avoided those. But I did focus on eating more vegetables, higher quality proteins and less food on the go/eating out. The biggest mental shift happened when I finally stopped working out just for my waistline and really began to make these decisions because I felt at my best when I did so. I own my #health now because I love who I am when I am connected to it. That’s what makes it stick for me, it’s never about fitting in a dress.” amazon.com; $16 amazon.com

The star trainer has long talked about the importance of finding or creating an individual diet plan, taking into account a person’s personality and behavioral traits. (Her 2017 book Diet Right for Your Personality Type takes this approach to weight loss as well.)

Earlier this year, Jen shared details of her 17-day run with the keto diet, which she turned to after “drinking a lot, eating fast food, and mentally checked out.”

And while keto may have worked for her, Jen admits that it’s not necessarily right for her, long-term: “…even though my body does respond well to high fat and protein fuel … My body NEEDS starch so I choose not to live in ketogenesis.”

In her most recent post, Jen shared what her diet looks like today:

“Wake up water chug! (8-12oz) *try to hit over 75oz daily💧
Meal 1: Algae (chlorella/spirulina), 1/3 cup blueberries, almond latte w/ collagen
Meal 2: 3 eggs, avocado, roasted tomatoes, butter
Meal 3: 1 serving cashews and 1-2oz jerky
Meal 4: Shake (collagen protein powder, vanilla protein powder, spinach, cacao, unsweetened almond milk, chia seeds)
Meal 5: 6-8oz roasted salmon, 2-3 cups roasted cauliflower, medium baked sweet potato”

We’ll have what she’s having.

Temi Adebowale Temi Adebowale is the Editorial Assistant at Men’s Health.

The Biggest Loser Trainer Jen Widerstrom Posts Photo of Stomach Rolls

Instagram

The Biggest Loser‘s Jen Widerstrom has an insanely ripped stomach – as frequently evidenced on her Instagram page – but the trainer decided to share a not-so-flattering photo on social media to show that everyone has bad angles.

On Sunday, Widerstrom, 34, posted side-by-side photos on Instagram wearing a two-piece belly-baring maroon workout outfit.

On the left, Widerstrom is sitting down and takes a photo from below, making it appear that her stomach is bulging out over her pants. On the right, Widerstrom is standing and showing her usual toned tummy.

“We all look like this when we sit,” she posted. “Don’t stress about the way your body looks in certain positions. These photos were taken 2 minutes apart!”

“I was recently doing a photo shoot and feeling great about the day, yet I looked down and saw my stomach and immediately got insecure,” Widerstrom tells PEOPLE of the inspiration behind her photo. “I started to get in my head and really down on myself for my body. Even glammed up and in amazing clothes, I experience these thoughts – it’s normal!”

“As quickly as I started to spiral down, I redirected my thoughts and took a few quiet moments to get myself back to reality,” she continues. “I stood up to take a new picture. I put a stop to my unreasonable remarks by showing myself the truth and reminding myself what a healthy, full-bodied woman I am, and how that’s beautiful.”

The post has 18.4 thousand likes, and hundreds of comments.

“I had to post this because I need people to feel less alone,” says Widerstrom. “I experience the same insecurities and negative headspace that everybody else does. I feel the reaction has been so large because it perhaps has given others permission to accept their bodies, and not label them in certain ways just because they’re sitting in certain positions. I may be in the public eye, but we’re all the same.”

Trainer on NBC’s “The Biggest Loser,” Philanthropist, Fitness Expert, Motivational Speaker
Jennifer Widerstrom is a leading fitness expert whose passion is people and uses the vehicle of health and fitness to help others love the lives they’re living. She encourages her audience to find their best selves through the principles of healthy nutrition, dynamic physical exertion, mental well-being and most importantly, having fun. She helps teach them to develop the power of their word and to show people how to believe in themselves. Most recently Jennifer became a member to the hit NBC show “The Biggest Loser” as the new female coach, giving her the opportunity and platform to share her approach with others.
Jen also strives to maintain her ability to live her mantra of helping others through philanthropic endeavors. She has volunteered at orphanages and schools in Rwanda, Kenya and Malawi, Africa, helping children to find self-confidence and esteem through sport and play. She has also supported the armed forces, going on Goodwill Military Tours for troops stationed in Kuwait, Iraq, southwest Asia and in Korea’s Green Zone to help raise the morale of service men and women.

  • University of Kansas – Sports Administration
  • Formerly a star of NBC’s television show American Gladiators
  • Elite personal trainer/group fitness instructor certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine with an emphasis in balance training, cardio performance, reactive and resistance training as well as in neuromuscular stretching
  • Master Trainer for Dynamax Medicine Balls
  • Crossfit Level 1 Certified
  • Lead female trainer for InterContinental Hotel Group’s new Even wellness line
  • Former life coach for MSN.com and a fitness expert for Fitbie.com

Jennifer Widerstrom, star of NBC’s Biggest Loser, will be at the WTHR Health & Fitness Expo with fellow trainer Jessie Pavelka.

For a full schedule of events, visit wthr.com/expo

Biggest Loser Trainer Jennifer Widerstrom: How To Stop Letting Your Weight Define You

Today, I’m a huge advocate for owning your shape, embracing it and having confidence in your own skin. But I wasn’t always that way.

I’m a naturally muscular, 150-pound woman—I even joke with my sister that, as Swedish-Germans, we’re sturdy women who are built to work outdoors—and so much of my value when I was on American Gladiators was tied to my appearance. I had to be strong, obviously, but I also felt a lot of pressure to be smaller and very lean. I followed strict diets so that I could feel fit enough to be in the outfits I needed to wear for TV, photo shoots and appearances—and then binged because I’d be training so hard and was literally starving.

I lived in extremes, and constantly condemning and shaming myself left me in a very unhappy place. It got to the point where I actually considered throwing up after I ate. When that thought came into my mind, I realized I’d let things go too far and that if I let this become my normal, I’d lose a piece of who I am. From that point on, I started to cultivate a better headspace for myself. And now, as a trainer, I make it a point to give my clients connected coaching that can help them get not just physically healthier but more mentally balanced, too.

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Get out of the cycle of comparing
On a regular basis, I find myself teaching how harmful comparing yourself to other people can be. It’s such a relevant topic. It’s easy to be like, “Wow, my butt doesn’t look as tight as that chick’s does” or “Ugh, my arms will never look like that.” I think the comparisons are naturally going to happen. So if we know we’re going to assess ourselves, we’ve got to change the conversation. When you see someone, instead of saying, “I wish I had her hair,” say, “Wow, what beautiful hair. What can I do to improve mine?”

You’re never going to look like me, and I’m never going to look like you, so don’t let comparison spiral into feelings of self-doubt. Instead, turn your words into appreciation and action.

Use the scale as feedback—and nothing more
My recommended strategy here depends on you. If you know you get into an obsessive headspace when you weigh yourself daily, only step on the scale once or twice a month—tops. (And also keep in mind that “gaining” a few pounds is no reason to panic—it could just mean you’re really well hydrated, you’ve increased your lean muscle mass or even that you haven’t gone number two in a while.)

If, on the other hand, you’re someone who has avoidance tendencies, I recommend weighing yourself every day. The trick here becomes using the number as feedback, and nothing else. We often allow the emotional voice to be louder than the practical one, but you have the power to look at information—even when you don’t necessarily like it—and say, “How do I feel? What decisions have I made this week? And what can I do to make myself feel better next week?” That way you’re a part of your solution, versus a part of what’s going to set you back.

Invest in yourself
Initially at least, making healthy choices has nothing to do with the outside and has everything to do with saying, “I’m going to choose three things this week that make me happy and that bring out my best qualities.” That could be 20 minutes of walking a day, that could be drinking a certain amount water, that could be sending a letter to one of your best friends. When you make decisions that make you feel good, you’ll end up with a life you’re proud of—and, by the way, you’ll end up looking great, too.

And at the end of the day, who cares if you could technically lose a few more pounds? It’s so much more important to honor your shape, your happiness and who you are.

Jennifer Widerstrom was formerly on American Gladiators and is currently a trainer on The Biggest Loser.

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Jennifer Widerstrom Biography

Jennifer Widerstrom is an American fitness model as well as a personal trainer. The thirty-six years old appears on the NBC reality series The Biggest Loser as a trainer, replacing Jillian Michaels.

As of 2018, her net worth is approximately $7 million. Furthermore, she has maintained a low key personal life. She is possibly single and unmarried.

Jennifer Widerstrom Early Life

Jennifer Widerstrom was born on August 24, 1982, in Downers Grove, Illinois, to Lynn Widerstrom and Norm Widerstrom. Her star sign is Virgo. As per nationality, she is an American and belongs to white ethnicity.

She was raised in her hometown by her family. As a student, she participated in gymnastics, diving, and other athletic activities. After high school graduation, she enrolled at the University of Kansas where she eventually became a Division I hammer thrower.

Jennifer Widerstrom Professional Life

After college, Widerstrom decided to pursue a full-time career in the field of fitness and began working towards achieving her goal of becoming a personal trainer and fitness model.

A chance meeting with a casting agent for ‘American Gladiators’ changed the path of her career and she was offered the role of the gladiator Phoenix in the show’s second season in the year 2008. Her television experience also earned her considerable publicity and mainstream fame. Upon leaving the show, she once again concentrated on her career as a fitness trainer and adopted an even more stringent regime by adding Pilates and CrossFit to her workout.

Later she landed on the NBC’s reality show ‘The Biggest Loser’ as a trainer, replacing Jillian Michaels. Furthermore, she worked alongside big names like Bob Harper and Jessie Pavelka on the show which helped her become even more popular.

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THANK YOU @bennyhaddadphoto for this very sunny blast from the past! #HEALTHYLOOKSGOODONYOU #nofilter #tbt ··· #Repost @bennyhaddadphoto ··· #FunInTheSun! @jenwiderstrom photographed for @socallifemag. . . . #Portrait #beauty #instaportrait #fujifilm #lifestylephotographer #portrait #portraitphotographer #losangelesportraitphotographer #commercialphotographer #commercialphotography #portraitvision_ #fujixphotographer #bravoportraits @bravoportraits #portraitvision #Athlete #sports #fitness #fitlife #inspiration #socal #calilifestyle #portraitplay #whitebikini #fitness #healthandfitnessgoals

A post shared by Jen Widerstrom (@jenwiderstrom) on Nov 8, 2018 at 2:30pm PST

Her career success doesn’t end here, as she also made her appearance in the documentary titled “Why Am I So Fat” in 2015. Likewise, she published a book named Diet Right for Your Personality Type: The Revolutionary 4-Week Weight-Loss Plan That Works for You in 2017.

Jennifer Widerstrom Personal Life

When it comes to her personal life, Jennifer Wilderstrom is a quite confidential person. Till the date, the fitness model has never mentioned her love life and boyfriend or husband to the outer world including media and public. However, she was once rumored to be in a relationship with Jessie Pavelka. Without concrete proof, the buzz cooled down later.

Also active in social sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Facebook, she has not posted a single picture with a guy who is assumed to her potential partner. Hence, she is assumed to be single and unmarried.

Apart, she boosted her clients to live a healthy and successful life through the principles of proper nutrition and healthy exercise. She is a great fan of Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Jennifer Widerstrom is also admired for her glamorous images. She has an exotic body figure. She stands 5 feet and 7 inches tall and weighs around 156lbs that is around 70.8 kg. Furthermore, she has a body measurement of 36-27-36 and she looks stunning in her bikini avatar.

Jennifer Widerstrom Net Worth

The significant source of Jennifer Widerstrom is her fitness modeling career and TV career. Also, she is the popular face of SHAPE, Health, Women’s Running, Oxygen, The Biggest Losers, PEOPLE, FITNESS RX, and Muscle & Fitness.

As of 2018, Jennifer Widerstrom has an estimated net worth of $7 million. Back in 2016, her net worth was reported to be $2.5 million.

How Jen Widerstrom from ‘The Biggest Loser’ Crushes Her Goals

Instagram @jenwiderstrom

Jen Widerstrom is a Shape advisory board member, a trainer (undefeated!) on NBC’s The Biggest Loser, the face of women’s fitness for Reebok, and the author of Diet Right for Your Personality Type. (And she gets real about body image on Instagram.) Here are her tips for setting-and crushing-your health, fitness, and weight loss goals.

Step 1: Acknowledge Your Importance

Why are the promises you make to yourself the easiest ones to break? Is it because the only person you’ll end up disappointing is yourself? Or that you’ve prioritized pleasing others over your goals? Either way, you deserve better than that. Think of a promise as a powerful muscle-like the glutes or lats-that can affect how your body looks, moves, and feels. Just like a muscle, you can strengthen your promise over time and develop it into one of your assets. The stronger your promise becomes, the more probable it is that you’ll be able to commit to reaching your goals, whether that’s to move more, eat better, or finally sign up for a race. (Related: 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Own Will Power)

Step 2: Train the Power of Your Word

I first experienced this concept when I promised myself that I wouldn’t eat dessert in restaurants. I focused on one dinner at a time. It felt a little low-impact in the moment, but looking back, it was the just-right start: a small, clear goal that was surprisingly hard to accomplish. I told no one about this, which forced accountability and strength to come from only me. I made it through that week. And I used this small exercise to prove to myself that I could trust myself. This dessert challenge marked the end of my empty promises. My confidence grew every time I kept a promise I made to myself. Whenever I failed, I used that as information about where my system was faulty and applied it to the next opportunity to fulfill my promise.

Step 3: Know That Your Word Matters

Every time you stay true to your word, you’ll find that each challenge becomes less daunting because you’ll know that your word has substance and that it leads you closer toward reaching your big-picture goal: that exciting life you want to lead. This creates a self-powered momentum. Each accomplishment builds on the next, and suddenly, before you know it, you are unstoppable. (Need more motivation? Trainers share their go-to morning mantras.)

  • By By Jen Widerstrom

Former ‘Biggest Loser’ trainer Jen Widerstrom: Butt selfies can inspire

Diet expert and personal trainer Jen Widerstrom has no issue with people aspiring to look like celebrities.

“If don’t take care of themselves, they cannot perform,” the former “Biggest Loser” trainer told Page Six over the weekend. “Same for a mom, a dad, a nurse, a doctor, whatever — if we don’t take care of ourselves, we can’t perform in that role.”

In terms of staying motivated to hit the gym, the trainer has embraced Instagram.

“I will tell you, there’s a lot of great butt selfies out there,” she told us at the Movement Foundation’s “We Dare to Bare” fitness event. “Even if it inspires one person to do a squat, do it!”

Widerstrom, 36, starred on the fitness reality competition show from 2014 to 2016.

Widerstrom (center) at We Dare to Bare in Union Square.Courtesy of The Movement Foundation

“It was such an impactful show because it’s the story of the human condition. People of all walks of life, shapes and sizes, watched it because there’s a piece of their story that’s being told,” she said of the popular NBC series.

Aside from her time on television, Widerstrom also penned “Diet Right for Your Personality Type.”

One option many celebrities seem to be touting is the Keto diet, a low-carb, high-fat approach to weight loss. While she told us the strict program works, having tried it for herself, she insists it’s only beneficial in the short term.

“I think for a lot of successful celebrities and people that are in the public eye, it’s great,” she said. “It’s something to kind of reset your system and it’s very fast and effective but it’s not sustainable.”

“The principles of it are very valuable,” she said, explaining that increasing greens and protein is a benefit of the diet practiced by Jenna Jameson and Vinny Guadagnino.

And her one tip that’s a fit for everyone? Sleep.

“People are injecting things into their faces, and I’m just like, ‘Dude, go to sleep an hour earlier,’ you will sleep off wrinkles!”

The Biggest Loser Trainer Jen Widerstrom Says the Best Way to Lose Weight Depends on Your Personality Type

Jen Widerstrom NBC

If you’re having trouble losing weight, it might be because you aren’t taking the right approach for your specific personality type.

“There’s so much information out there and we all know it: we all know that protein is important, we all know to eat vegetables, we all know to eat healthy fats, we all know to drink water — but why is America still fat? It’s not the information that’s available, it’s the application of the information,” The Biggest Loser trainer Jen Widerstrom tells PEOPLE. “As a fitness and nutrition coach, I don’t coach any two people the same because we’re all unique and we’re all different.”

In her upcoming book Diet Right for Your Personality Type, Widerstrom, 34, identifies five distinct personality types and what approach to diet and exercise works best for each of them:

1. The Organized-Doer
“They like organization, structure and routine,” says Widerstrom. “They’re self-starters and they’re motivated, but they have a hard time celebrating success. There’s nothing they like more than writing lists — except crossing something off of that list. They need structure, and therefore in their program from sunrise to sunset, I have programmed what they’re eating, what their snacks are, specific recipes and portions. Everything’s right there for them.”

2. The Swinger
“Swingers are the social extroverts. These are the people that are into adventure and love new experiences, but they struggle to stay connected to something. They end up bouncing from program to program or diet to diet without really fully giving anything a chance to be successful. Then they say, ‘Nothing works for me,’ because they simply get bored. When it comes to diet and workouts, accountability is everything. In order to sustain interest and consistency variety is their savior! They should be sure to execute different kinds of workouts, not replicating any one within each week, as well as switching up proteins and core meal flavors in the kitchen.”

3. The Rebel
“Rebels are the tornadoes of the world — they’re destructive at times but effective. But restrictions drive them crazy. They’re never going to be at the same spin class every day, but they are the personality that if I gave them a template of, you’ve got to move three days out of your week, they will make it happen. It’s going to be a gym bag in their car, and when they have a free hour they’re going to run and do it, and once they’re there, they kill it. They also celebrate their success and have the best body images and best self-talk of the personalities.”

4. The Everyday Hero
“These are the people that are always last on their lists. They tend to put their families, their relationships, their friends, everyone’s needs in front of their own, so they put the least investment in their own lives. They feel burnt out and overwhelmed. Oftentimes, it’s my job as a trainer to give them the opportunity to invest in themselves. Preparation is key for their success. They should have healthy grab-and-go snacks in their home and with them, so when they’re in the midst of a full day they know they have good fuel with them — so they can drive right by the drive-through. Also, they should be sure to schedule in workouts and meal times just as they would any other appointment they would prioritize in their life.”

5. The Never Ever
“These are the people that are a little bit stuck. If one day they can’t zip up their pants, they simply buy a bigger pair. They avoid information because if they knew it, they would have to do something about it. They have to look at the big picture. If you’re a parent, I’d say, ‘Do you want to live to your 60s? Because your kids are going to need you.’ That’s going to motivate them more than me saying, ‘Let’s work on your mile time today.’ “

WATCH: The Biggest Loser Trainers Share Quick Fitness Tips!

Even though everyone is different and is motivated differently, there are some universal rules for being healthy that Widerstrom gives across the board.

The first is making sure we don’t under-eat.

“ people simply don’t get enough food into their system, and because of that they end up overeating at their next meal,” says Widerstrom. “There’s people with extra fat in their body simply because they’re not eating enough; if you , your body goes into ‘fight or flight’ and holds onto fat.”

To combat this, Widerstrom recommends keeping a healthy snack on hand to make sure your body is always satiated.

“Add in a serving of nuts, like almonds, which have fiber and protein and healthy fat,” she says.

In addition to eating enough, Widerstrom says it’s essential to drink enough water and get enough sleep.

“Focus on consistent hydration, consistent sleep and consistent food,” she says. “If you can simply do those three things, your body will lose weight. When you feed your body, when you rest and when you water it, it’s going to trust you, because your body doesn’t want to be fat. Give your body the chance to be successful by simply completing those three things.”

She also recommends doing workouts that are sustainable, rather than working out too intensely one day and being sore for the next two or three.

“Don’t get overwhelmed with movement,” says Widerstrom. “I’d rather have you move moderately three times a week and keep that consistency versus one time once a week and then dread going. And if you move consistently, your food choices are better too.”

Finally, Widerstrom emphasizes the best way to get healthy is to make small changes rather than doing a major lifestyle overhaul all at once.

“You’ve got to take it day by day,” she says. “Take one thing that you’re going to do better this week and do it every day. The next week, maintain the one thing and add one. It’s not a sprint, this is about sustainable life and healthy choices. It comes by being aware of yourself and investing in how you feel, because if you feel good you’re going to look great.”

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