By Liana Jacob
THIS GRANDMOTHER kicked her unhealthy eating habits and found her passion for bodybuilding which helped her shed over TWO-STONE in just six-months and is now mistaken for being her daughter’s sister who is half her age.
Refinery process operator and grandmother of two, Jeana Jones (44) from Texas, USA, embarked on a journey of self-love after ending her 23-year marriage. During her marriage, she was unhappy and this lead her to indulge in junk food and soft drinks which resulted in her peak weight of 11st 10Ibs and UK size 20-22.
In 2012 she decided she couldn’t deal with the relationship anymore and left him, Jeana began entering bodybuilding competitions from October 2014 and she got re-married in July 2017 to husband, Kurt.
She came third in two competitions in 2016 and 2017 and has since sculpted a six-pack figure, slimming down to 9st 7Ibs and a UK size six. Jeana says she is in the best shape she has ever been, and strangers tell her she looks like her 25-year-old daughter’s sister.
“I was married to their father since high school and our relationship was a challenge to say the least,” Jeana said.
“I loved him dearly and always thought he would change. He couldn’t keep a job usually more than two weeks and I worked as an air hostess/waitress at a local restaurant for sixteen years.
“He loved us all, but he couldn’t let his demons go. It was off and on all the time from doing good to hearing the voices telling him all kinds of lies.
“So, during the time of my crazy home life and poor food choices is how my figure became out of shape.
“In 2012 we were bringing up our new unit in the refinery and things at home were just escalating in the wrong direction and I couldn’t deal with it anymore, so I left him.
“In 2014 I just gave it all over to God and had to start making some different changes mentally and just started to pray differently.
“I first got into bodybuilding October of 2014. I’ve done five competitions altogether with the first two just being an escape from reality (they were in 2015).
“I did one in 2016 and placed third in my group and 2017 I did two and was placed third. Each one I have felt more confident and stronger.
“I now achieve my physique by diet and exercise, really just eating clean. This has changed my life by giving me the confidence to step outside of my comfort zone and believe in myself.
“I feel like a new woman and feel I can help others and give advice to other women struggling. My grandchildren think that their ‘NeNe is super strong’.
“People tell me I look to young to be a grandma and have so much energy. I now look at food as fuel. I do go out and celebrate for different occasions but the way we eat is a lifestyle.
“When me and my daughter are in public we have been asked if we are sisters which I think is great of course and she is annoyed by it.
“I love going places in public with my grandchildren because I love the reaction when I correct strangers in telling them I’m not their mother.
“They mostly say ‘wow, you are very fit and must take good care of yourself!’ and my reaction is ‘I do because I want to be able to hike, climb and keep up with them as long as I can!’
“We stay having a very active lifestyle. My job also is very active being an outside operator on the unit.”
With her demanding job and working out, whilst cooking clean meals, Jeana says finding that balance and giving her a chance to rest has been the hardest part of the process.
While prepping for the bodybuilding contests, she slimmed down to just over eight-and-a-half-stone.
“The hardest thing for me about achieving my physique was and still is getting the proper rest I need. I am a shift worker and I work long twelve-hour rotating shifts in the heat and cold,” she said.
“Anytime I have prepped for a show and trying to make my food last all day and drinking all the water I need and having to constantly go in to pee at work is all a big challenge for me.
“I want to compete again soon, and I have to mentally prepare for it because I’m extremely fatigued after all I do in a day.
“People tell me how far I have come and that I am an inspiration to them and that I motivate them. It makes me feel very humble.
“I had someone ask me about getting into bodybuilding and I told them they should at least try it. I love the challenge of denying myself of things; I just want to see how mentally strong I can be.
“It’s a growing experience as much as it is a transformation. We should set small goals and keep achieving them to get to a big one we set. Our mental state of mind can bring us so much farther if we just believe and stay positive.”
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