I am now a grandmother to 4 amazing kids but my story starts in grammar school…
I was the kid who was ALWAYS the last kid picked in gym. I was not a good student (due to severe ADD , which went undiagnosed until adulthood). This lead to extreme confidence issues. My nicknames were dizzy and dippy. I suffered with debilitating anxiety and depression. I spent my entire life this way. I was on every med possible for anxiety and depression and while they controlled my anxiety I went through life simply existing. I also spent my entire life searching for happiness!! I have an amazing husband and children yet that self-worth happiness was never there for me!!
Fast forward to 3-4 years ago I came down with a mysterious illness. Extreme brain fog, joint pain, numbness, shaking, my debilitating anxiety and depression worsened and I even had a seizure! It got so bad I quit my job and spent years on the couch! I went from doctor to doctor, test to test, and spent thousands of dollars on co-pays not getting any answers. I gained so much weight and was no longer comfortable in my own body. Life was passing me by.
Finally in January 2018, I walked back in to CKO Franklin and started taking classes. It was difficult at first but as I grew stronger with each class. I LOVED it and found I could do it! I still felt that I was not good at it but my trainers were always so encouraging by telling me I COULD do it. I noticed I was feeling better right away. My anxiety and depression started to lift. I followed all of the other gym members in their 10 Week Transformation Challenge last year and saw the recipes they put up on their social media pages and got lots of great tips. I also saw the members of my gym that did last year’s CKO Transformation Show and was in awe. I started to think, “hmm, maybe I can do this,” but I still suffered with confidence issues.
I continued getting encouraged by trainers and other members of CKO. Finally, in September of 2018, all of their words and all of their transformation stories clicked in my brain. I completely changed the way I ate and gave my workouts everything I had. The pounds just started to come off! I was finally feeling good at something!! I took on every challenge, and for the first time in my life, I felt like I was an athlete! My anxiety and depression are gone now and I am happy to say that I have found happiness! I love getting out of bed each morning and starting my day! My other symptoms are either gone or greatly reduced. I feel like I have my life back!! I can even play with my grand-kids without losing my breath!!
In late December, Darlene (my inspiration and owner of CKO Franklin), told me about this year’s CKO Transformation Show and said I should do it! I said, “Oh no, they will never pick me and I don’t know if I could do it.” She resoundingly said, “OF COURSE you can! I see something in you!! You can do it.” She always sees more in people than they see in themselves. I actually started to consider this and my husband also encouraged me to do it.
Up until the second I hit that send button [to submit my application CKO Transformation Show participant application] I was unsure. I NEVER thought I would have the confidence in myself to do something like that but I said to myself, “YOU CAN DO THIS!” CKO makes you believe you can do the impossible!
When I got that [acceptance] letter, it was probably one of the Top 10 happiest days of my life!! I was picked for something! People believed in me! I actually ruined my letter a little from my tears that’s how happy I was.
I have never in my life had this much confidence in myself. I now always say to myself, “I CAN DO THIS and I WILL DO THIS.” This is the best shape I have ever been in my entire life!!
Thank you CKO for making me the best me I have ever been! I feel like I owe my life to CKO Franklin! I can finally say I am looking forward to what the future has in store for me!
– Jenene K: Proud Member of CKO Kickboxing in Franklin, NJ