The Shape You’re In

The Shape You’re In

Jeanette Jenkins began her personal fitness business in 1990 wanting to do more than just get bodies in shape; she wanted to provide clients the information they’d need to make lasting changes.
In 2002, she launched the Hollywood Trainer and has since developed a cross-training DVD series of the same name. Jenkins is very aggressive about achieving results for her clients, which include celebrities like Queen Latifah and Terrell Owens. In one instance, Jenkins worked with a woman for several months who could not reduce her body fat although she was on a food delivery program and being personally trained. Jenkins finally called the client’s psychotherapist, who agreed to lower the number of medications the client had been taking — from four to one — and prescribed a lower dosage. The woman lost 30 pounds.

Jenkins notes that many factors make weight loss a challenge, such as hormonal interference and stress . That’s why she runs a battery of physical, mental, and emotional tests before designing an individual program. Gauging how a client burns calories when not engaged in any activity, tells a lot about stress levels. Research shows that while a body is at rest, at least 60% of calories burned should be from fat. “If I’m doing your resting metabolic test, [and] you’re burning over 50% of your calories from sugar, then other lifestyle factors may need to be looked at.”

Because the health and fitness market is particularly susceptible to quick-fix claims, Jenkins believes it’s important for clients to understand the science behind the programs they select. “It’s hard to compete against the person who says, ‘Take this pill and lose 50 pounds in a week,'” she says.

Here Jenkins offers advice on what to consider as you embark on your commitment to greater fitness:

Be meticulous about your food. “You are what you eat. The food industry is [no] different from any other sales industry. They’re selling a product.” Read labels. Jenkins recommends organic foods.

Drink water. Drinking coffee, soda, and alcohol strongly contributes to dehydration, the cause of many ills, says Jenkins. She believes most people are chronically dehydrated. “Sixty to 70% of your body is composed of water, and we don’t replace it.” She recommends drinking half your body weight in ounces every day.

Consider taking an active and resting metabolic test. Jenkins recommends New Leaf Fitness ( Just type in your zip code to find the nearest testing center. (Prices range from $40 to $200.)

For more information on Jenkins, visit