It’s 5 am on a Monday morning and the first of what would be a slow and steady caravan of vehicles trickles into the south parking lot of the GUTS Youth Center. One by one, they slowly pull in and their occupants stay put, using the few remaining minutes before their instructor arrives to shake off the blanket of sleep they had to fight in order to get out of bed, don their workout attire, and drive to this morning session of bootcamp. Their wait isn’t long.
Jeremy backs up into his usual parking spot and alights from his truck with an enthusiasm not at all daunted by the early hour. He walks up to the closed building, unlocks the door, and disappears inside, the cue for the women to finally get out of their cars and follow suit. While their gait doesn’t quite match that of their trainer, it would only be mere minutes before an intense plyometric warm-up on the indoor turf obliterates any memory of the sleep they had longingly left behind. It’s 5:15 am, and Reset is underway.
Jeremy, 37, wears many hats and does so with a charismatic ease and strength. He is the loving husband to Nina, doting father of two girls, Stella, 3, and Mila, 8 months, and minister at GUTS, a thriving church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Observing him during his training session, it would be easy to assume that he has always been in superb physical shape. Without close scrutiny, it would also seem that fitness and weight-loss are the sole driving forces behind Reset, after all, Jeremy’s workouts demand that participants give it their all and then some!
The 12-week course meets four days a week, and includes plyometrics, weight training, cardio, high intensity interval training, and full-body functional training similar to Crossfit classes found in fitness centers, and the intense workout delivers results. Still there is so much more to Reset than meets the eye.
It’s 6 am, and like clockwork, men begin to file in ready to replace the ladies for their own workout. They begin their warm-up run as Jeremy prays for the ladies’ bootcamp class before their dismissal. Right away, you get the sense that Reset isn’t just another gym, and that Jeremy, affectionately called “Dubbs” by those who know him, isn’t just another fitness instructor. And you would be right.
This Tuned in Parent embarked on his own fitness journey; a journey that leaves him with a powerful story that gives him the ability to identify with and motivate his clients; a story that has inspired and continues to inspire the hundreds of people whose lives have been touched by Reset; a story that anyone who has fought the weight-loss battle would be encouraged by; a story that I simply have to tell. Jeremy and Nina were kind enough to allow me to take time out of their schedule to sit with him and find out what Reset – and “Dubbs” – is all about.
Yari: Tell me about your own fitness journey.
Jeremy: I had an active childhood and played sports in high school, but as a young person growing up, my mother was a single mom raising three boys. So I did a lot of after-school snacking. Although I was active, I developed some bad food habits. I was always sensitive to gaining and losing weight so I fluctuated a lot. I remember being places with friends and I realized that I wasn’t living life to the fullest. Something as simple as being at a track-and-field meet and hanging out by the high jump with thinking, “I wonder if I could jump that,” but I was so fat and out of shape that it wasn’t even reasonable to try. In my heart I could, and in my heart I wanted to, but my mind was going, “Forget it dude! You could have given it a try 40 pounds ago!”
I didn’t even have the zeal to try and fail. I was tired of wearing the same two pairs of jeans. I hated getting dressed in the morning. You know, you’re reluctant to go to pool parties; you’re reluctant to go climb a mountain with friends; you’re missing out on relationships; you’re missing out on everything! So I was mad. I was irritated, and I got fed up.
I was already coaching at a Crossfit gym that I found through the church, so on March 14th, 2011, I committed to four days a week at the 7 am class. I was just going to show up and not worry about what I could or couldn’t do. I was just going to start getting better! In Crossfit they talk about the Paleo diet or the Zone diet. The Paleo was just about quality food so I decided to try the Paleo diet. I did it for a month and things began to go really well. I ended up doing it for 6 months and lost 75 pounds in six months!
I was just going to Crossfit 4 days a week, and just eating lean meats, fruits and vegetables, and nuts and seeds: clean eating. Honestly, it was so significant! That’s why Reset is happening today – because of that year.
Yari: Do you remember the moment that you decided to make a change?
Jeremy: Yes I do. I know exactly where I was! I was sitting on the couch right where you are, and my wife and I were talking. She was pregnant and I told her, “For the next three weeks, you can have whatever you want, but just don’t include me. Please don’t ask me to stop and pick you up ice cream or a pizza. Please eat it as often as you can when I’m not here.” I had to be that drastic for myself for the first few weeks until it became my new routine, and of course she did her absolute best to honor that. I had made my mind up. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired.
For me, it wasn’t about getting to where I wanted to get to; I was just tired of being this way. You’re not going to change unless you’re tired of it. You just won’t. And I was tired of it! I was 281 pounds, and at 5’11” it’s not where you wanna be. I was wearing size 42 pants.
I went in to the gym knowing I was out of shape, knowing I couldn’t do what my heart thought it could still do. I wasn’t looking at what everyone else in the gym was doing. I might have been irritated that I should be able to do those things, but I didn’t care. I decided, I’m gonna get in and start getting better, because I’ll get there!
Everyone can get there, if you just show up one day at a time, one meal at a time, one workout at a time, one rep at a time, one step at a time. You’ll get there!
And it is this same mentality that Jeremy now instills in his Reset participants class after class. It’s not unusual for him to call out charges like, “Get your mind right for this workout!” “Check your pride at the door!” “Think about what you want to feel like at Christmas time!” “Be intentional guys!” “Make every rep count!” “Set your goal and work towards it!” In a followup article I’ll talk more about the importance of mental focus when it comes to fitness and health.
Yari: What is Reset all about?
Jeremy: Truthfully, my heart behind Reset is this: I wanted people to get a new lease on life again. People that feel like I felt in 2011, that just want to live their life again! I know what it’s like to be healthy and energetic. You become a better spouse; a better parent; a better neighbor; a better employee; you have more energy at home, and you have a better attitude; you’re a better dad; you’re more patient; you’re more willing to do projects around the house instead of waiting for your spouse to tell you to do it. Now there’s more peace in the home.
It’s way more than fitness for me. Fitness is just the tool to help you get momentum in your life. It’s not about how much you could bench press; it’s about being a good steward of your health.
Everyone has a mindset, which means that your mind is set in a certain direction. Pertaining to food or health, people look at it as a huge obstacle – this huge mountain to climb! But you can learn to reset your mind towards food and look at it differently.
So I want to help people reset their minds.
Yari: What is your biggest motivation for doing what you do?
Jeremy: People! I like seeing people experience breakthrough. I like watching their stories unfold. I like seeing people experience results. I like seeing people live with a new enthusiasm and excitement! I understand it, because I’ve been there and so I enjoy watching it. I’ve had people thank me for promotions they got at work or for having better marriages, and I’m thinking, “All I’m doing is giving you a workout!” That’s what I feel like I’m doing, but I really do know there’s a bigger picture.
It’s seeing people come in feeling exactly like I felt in 2011 and watching them become different! There’s a guy who did the program for 6 months and that summer he went swimming without his shirt on for the first time on his family trip. It started a new lifestyle for him and that’s why I call it Reset: To get a fresh start.
Reset your perception towards your little ones.
Jeremy: Romans chapter 12, verse 2 says that you must be transformed by renewing your mind. You take the principles of that verse and apply it to every aspect of your life. If you change the way you think toward parenting, for instance, if you see your kid as a nuisance to you instead of as a responsibility to help frame her mindset, it changes your approach towards your child. If I can renew my mind toward my spouse, understanding that she’s not there to serve me, but that I’m there to serve her, I get a different outcome! But we have to renew our mind. So for me everything about performance – whether it’s fitness, marriage, parenting, business – is all in your mindset.
When it comes to parenting Stella and Mila, Jeremy is cognizant of his role as their Dad in affecting their impressionable minds and does not take that responsibility lightly. Since Reset comprises both early morning and evening sessions, Jeremy has the girls all day while Nina works. It is something that he thoroughly enjoys, and Stella has even eagerly accompanied her dad to the gym on the rare occasion.
Resetting your little ones’ perception!
Jeremy: I love being a dad. I love it! I love the honor that comes with it, but it’s fun. When Stella got here, I understood that I was responsible to frame her mindset. She was a blank canvas, and I’m the number one person, along with Nina, that’s responsible for how she sees life. That’s going to come through my instruction, coaching, teaching, and parenting. When she was born, I remember exactly what I was thinking. She arrived and I was aware of the wonder of creation. Not that it was just amazing; it was the wonder of it! First there were four people in the room, and now there were five! It was overwhelming! And I immediately felt the humility that had God trusted me with her, then on the heels of that came the responsibility to raise her to fulfill whatever her call in life is.
Reset “negatives” into positives!
Jeremy: I always make an effort each day for us to go outside at least once. Well, one day it was raining and I didn’t want her to think that rain is a bummer, so we went outside and played in the rain. I wanted her to know it’s fun. You can’t always go out and get wet – we’ve had that conversation since – but she can either think rain is a bummer or she can think rain can be cool!
I say this about my girls; it’s like the greatest present I’ve ever opened and it never weathers or fades. You get a new car and you’re excited about it for a while and then it’s not a new car any more. But every day is a new ride with Stella and she’s three now. Pretty soon she’ll be four and it’ll be another new ride. And the affection for your child doesn’t change. It doesn’t wither; it just gets better and better. It’s the best gift I’ve ever been given.
Reset play time.
Jeremy: With Tudy (their nickname for Stella) I love to sit down and color with her. I understand the value of coming down to her level and playing with her. Coming down to her table in her play room and playing tea party with her. Pretending along with her. I like her to get involved even while I’m making lunch. I never want her to feel distant or uninvolved with my life!
Reset your health, reset your life.
Coming up on Tuned In Parents, part 2 of Jeremy’s interview. In it he shares a video of his amazing weight-loss transformation, explaining how he achieved it, and offers valuable nutrition, health and fitness tips to help RESET positive change in your life!