MEET BRAND ATHLETE, JEFF
Last month, we introduced our newest brand athlete, Jeff. Him and I met here in Alaska working out at the same gym, SunDog CrossFit in Fairbanks. From the moment we started talking, I could tell how passionate he was about health and fitness; his values completely align with our mission and purpose here at Thirteen Fit so when he expressed interest in reppin' the brand, it was a no-brainer.
Instead of sharing small snippets about him here and there, I thought it would be nice to give you insight on where he comes from and what he's all about. So without further ado, here's Jeff's story - in his own words:
You may not know me, but I guarantee you know someone that has or is going through my story. My name is Jeffrey Hull, you can call me Jeff (that's what all the cool people call me). I currently reside in Fairbanks Alaska and belong to a beautiful woman and two beautiful daughters. My family is one of the many reasons why I do what I do. However, I am actually a southern boy from east Texas where saying “yes ma’am” and “yes sir” are signs of respect, not that I think you are old. Now before I bore you with my southern charm, let me share with you my story.
AHHH Zabenya!!! Wait... that’s the Lion King. Wrong story, my
My story begins in my childhood at around age 10. I was in middle school and played football and baseball. I love sports and have always had a dream of becoming a professional athlete. I thought it would be so cool to be able to play the sport you love as a career. However, I never thought I could do it because of my weight and mindset at the time.
During this time in my life is when I began to see the struggle my family and I were going through. As a child, to see your parents struggle with weight and try every diet or pill that promotes weight loss is heart breaking. I have always struggled with my image and use to get picked on about my weight. I was even told, and I quote, “your fat ass won’t ever have abs like these” (gotta love middle school locker rooms). When that was said to me, all I could think about was getting abs. I searched for different diets and exercise programs that advertised abs and every time I did one I failed.
I went through my entire childhood and even through high school over weight and confused as to what to do about my weight. I was ashamed of myself and my body. I was even mad at my family because, then, I thought they were the reason I was fat and didn’t know how to lose weight.
In high school when I became passionate about one sport, tennis (I’m going down a rabbit hole, but will get back to my confused weight loss shortly). I loved the one on one competitions and would spend hours after practice working on different shots and my serves. It was at this point in my life that I wanted to try to become a professional tennis player. When I started to look at colleges to go to I noticed the one I wanted to go to (East Texas Baptist University) had a new tennis team. I reached out to the coach and met with him a few times to see if I would be able to make the team. Sure enough he messaged me one day to tell me I made the team. I was ecstatic! I was going to be a college athlete, one step closer to making it to pro status! However, things didn’t go as planned. I wasn’t as good as I thought I was. I got picked on and teased about wanting to go pro. A couple people I knew even made up a saying “go pro” and every time I was around they would shout it out so I could hear it. I was upset, quit the team and gave up my dream of becoming a professional athlete.
With the extra time I had (not having to go to practice and workouts) I decided to figure out how to lose weight and be healthy. I hit the books hard and experimented on myself A LOT.
Time and time again, I would try something and not see results. I would get disappointed and depressed that everyone around me was losing weight but not me.
This is when I decided to study nutrition and how it communicates with our bodies. While studying nutrition, I spoke with my nutrition professors and together we were able to figure out a plan that worked for me. I earned my degrees in psychology and kinesiology, and I am currently certified in nutritional psychology and epigenetics (which is the study of how the environment around us impacts our genes). When I was in college figuring out what I wanted to do, I knew I wanted to help people find their true potential.
After experiencing a break through with my own health, I knew I had the knowledge to help others that struggle with their weight and health the same way I did. This led me to want to know more about what makes people tick. Come to find out, the food we eat has a lot to do with that. Once I realized that, I knew I needed to learn more about nutrition and better understand how it impacts our mood and decisions.
After getting my degree and staying up today on the latest research, I realize what was actually my gut causing me not to lose weight. After taking a few months to restore and heal my gut, I started to feel better both inside and out. This is the reason I started Cortex Health and Fitness. I want to help people that were or are just like me reach optimal health and feel the way they should feel.
Side note. The reason I named my business Cortex (is mostly because I’m a nerd) is because everyone has to make a decision to change their life. However, people wouldn’t be able to make decisions if it wasn’t for their prefrontal cortex (found in the frontal part of the brain...if you couldn’t tell by the name prefrontal).
The truth of the matter is, I am still determined to optimize my health even more to find my ultimate self. I am now a CrossFit athlete training for competitions around the globe to hopefully one day fulfill my dream of becoming a professional athlete. I hope to inspire people around the world (including my daughters) that they can do what ever they set their minds to and be their ultimate self!
I feel like so many people can relate to this story - I know I surely do. Today, Jeff is helping people left and right, decoding their genes and giving them a game plan to help them reach their #UltimateSelf. Bad ass AF. Also, smart AF.
'Til next time,