Jen Heward is an American fitness model known for her training programs and diet guides. She initially began her fitness journey at the age of 16.
However, it wasn’t until Jen turned 21, when she began looking into her nutrition and training more seriously. Prior to this, she led a lifestyle of poor choices; eating junk foods and drinking soda. On top of this, Jen didn’t know how to exercise correctly.
All of this resulted in Jen becoming overweight and unhappy with the direction in which her life went. One day, however, Jen said enough was enough, and began her quest on getting back in shape.
After years of educating herself on healthy nutrition and strength training. Jen Heward lost all of her excess fat, and also became a certified sports nutritionist in the process. Jen now uses her knowledge to help others avoid dieting difficulties she once had – this is her story:
“Never settle, never give up, no matter how tough the journey is. Life is meant to be experienced in all forms, good and bad, so we can grow and evolve to be better then we were yesterday. Always strive to be the best version of yourself mentally and physically.”
Full Name: Jen Heward Weight Height Age Date of Birth 135 - 145lbs (61.2 - 65.8kg) 5'4" (162.5cm) 34 September 11, 1985 Nationality Profession Era American Fitness Model, Nutritionist, Bikini Athlete 2010 Weight 135 - 145lbs (61.2 - 65.8kg) Height 5'4" (162.5cm) Age 34 Date of Birth September 11, 1985 Nationality American Profession Fitness Model, Nutritionist, Bikini Athlete Era 2010
- Bikini Athlete
- Fitness Model
- Social Media Influencer
Jen’s Start to Fitness
Born in 1985, Jen Heward’s interest in fitness began at the age of 16. Around this time, she started working a part-time job which was close to a gym.
As Jen was active her entire life, she didn’t hesitate in signing up to the gym.
“When you are young you are involved in a lot of sports or school activities or just playing random games you create with friends! As we get older our preferences change and for me that was the gym! I had to get my energy out somehow!”
However, Jen didn’t know anything about working out when she first stepped into a gym. She didn’t know how to do a correct squat, or how to train other body parts. As Jen said; “Tricep, what is that?”
Moreover, during this time, health wasn’t one of Jen’s top priorities. She says she worked out to “fit in”, instead of keeping in shape. She would do mostly cardio hours on end, or train abs with an endless number of repetitions.
Needless to say, doing just cardio and ab exercises didn’t yield the results Jen wanted. In fact, she regressed in her health and fitness as a result of her diet which was based on fast foods and soda drinks.
As years went by, Jen’s health became worse and worse. Eventually, her unhealthy lifestyle caught up with her, and she became overweight.
Here’s Jen describing her life during this time; “Health wasn’t my priority, just fitting the ‘standard’ was. I found I started gaining weight in more areas I didn’t even know was possible.
I was tired all the time, couldn’t focus, my clothes starting fitting tighter. Diet only got worse because I found the convenience of fast food…all the time! I also found a love for energy drinks. Yes, it all caught up to me.” – Jen Heward
Jen Heward before she started her fitness transformation.
Making a Change
It wasn’t until the age of 21, after a number of depressing life situations, when Jen eventually started looking into her diet and training.
Some of the situations Jen went through made her reevaluate her lifestyle choices, realizing that she was doing herself too much harm. At this point, Jen firmly decided it was time to make a change.
She started researching and educating herself on how to train with weights, and what foods to eat. It wasn’t easy learning everything from the ground up, but Jen says giving up wasn’t an option for her.
After months of trial and error and countless ups and downs. Jen started grasping concepts of strength training, as well as a having healthy diet. Soon, an improvement in her physique followed – she began losing her excess weight.
Setting a New Challenge
After Jen accomplished her goal of getting fit. She decided to take on a bigger challenge – entering a bikini contest.
In the Spring of 2013, Jen entered her first ever bikini competition. She had no expectations from the show, her goal was just to prepare for the competition and enjoy her time on the stage.
After the competition, Jen set a new goal to help others who struggle with diet, just like she once did.
She started taking nutrition and diet classes. Soon after, becoming a certified sports nutritionist.
Jen Heward Now
Ever since she became a nutritionist, Jen’s career went from strength to strength. Through her workout programs and diet plans, she’s helped people get in shape and live an enjoyable lifestyle.
As for Jen’s own fitness journey, it remains a huge part of her life. She stays motivated by training in the gym several days per week, ensuring she maintains a lean physique and stays on track with her personal fitness goals.
In addition to her programs, Jen also posts workout videos and dieting guides for her loyal fans on social media.
By doing so, Jen shows everyone how fitness is not just an individual sport. It’s also about helping everyone who tries to better themselves and live a healthier life.
“Sometimes we don’t know or even forget about the journey. I have experienced unhealthy weight gain and weight loss. I have been through bad accidents, injuries, heartache, loss…you name it.
But in the process, I have learned so much about myself and this thing we call life. And I continue to chase after the never-ending dreams and goals I am passionate about.”
Basic Principles of Training
Jen changes things up in her training every couple of weeks, but she has a few general principles which she always follows.
These principles include going to the gym six times per week no matter what. As Jen says, if she doesn’t have enough free time to workout, she’ll make some free time.
Other principles include training with high intensity using moderate to heavy weights. As well as doing cardio such as plyometrics 4-5 times per week for 10 minutes.
Jen Heward’s Shoulder Workout Routine
Just like in any other workout, Jen makes sure to maintain slow and controlled movements in each exercise; keeping her muscles contracted the entire time.
She avoids swinging or bouncing the weights, and stays focused on the “mind-muscle connection”.
- Cable Lateral Raise (pull from behind), 2 sets x 15 reps
- Cable Lateral Raise (pull from front), 2 sets x 15 reps
- Lying one arm lateral raise (pink up), 2 sets x 15 reps
- Standing Dumbbell Lateral Raise (palms together), 2 sets x 15 reps
- Standing Dumbbell Lateral Raise (palms forward), 2 sets x 15 reps
- Elevated Arm w/ Single DB Lateral Raise, 2 sets x 10 reps each arm
Triceps Workout Routine
In her triceps workout routine, Jen goes for the weight that’s heavy enough for her to only do 8-12 reps. But also, light enough so she can do the movement with a slow and correct form.
As Jen says, if the last three reps of the exercise don’t challenge her enough, then she’ll increase the weight. Likewise, if she feels her form suffers because of too much weight, she’ll drop the weight down.
As for ‘finisher’ exercises. Jen opts for extremely light weights, or even using only her body weight. This way, she’s able to keep a constant contraction, and keep her muscles ‘burning.’
- Angled Tricep Push Up (off bench or bar), 3×12
- Dumbbell Pull Over, 3×15
- Dumbbell Skull Crusher (forearms only move), 3×15
- Cable Overhead Tricep Extension, 3×15
- Single Arm Tricep Side Extension (arm should be raised parallel to shoulders, forearm extend out), 3×15 Each Arm
Jen Heward’s Core Workout Routine
When combined with her clean diet, this 15-minute core workout routine keeps Jen’s midsection chiseled and lean.
Moreover, all of the exercises in this workout are simple to do and can be done anywhere. Here’s how it looks;
- Straight Leg Lift
- Alternating Straight Leg Lift (create a L with your legs)
- Bicycle Leg Lift
- Wide Feet to close Feet Leg Lift (feet go wide at bottom, come together at top)
- Mountain Climber
- Sitting Reverse Crunch
- Regular Bicycle Crunch (slow movements)
- Sitting Side Oblique Crunch (both sides)
- Jack Knife
- Regular Crunch & Reverse Crunch (movements at the same time, fully extend your legs out before crunching back in)
- Lying Heel Touches
- Lying Oblique Crunch w/ Single Leg Reverse Crunch (opposite elbow and knee crunch together, fully extend out leg before crunching back)
- Regular Crunch (feet up)
Here’s Jen’s talking more about core training;
“Everyone thinks you have to do thousands of reps and different exercises for a strong defined core. No, you don’t. You just need to incorporate a variety of core exercises that target upper/lower/full core, about 25-30 reps 1-3 sets and being consistent with them.
Depending on your goals, you may only do bodyweight exercise, weighted exercises, stability/balancing exercises or a combination. Build core strength and definition, without overdoing it.” – Jen Heward
Leg Workout Routine
Out of all Jen’s workout routines, her leg training is the most intense one. In fact, it’s so intense that Jen changes her diet to include more energy sources so she can get through her leg workout.
As for the workout itself, it consists of various movements which work on Jen’s quads, hamstrings, thighs, and glutes. Just like with any other workout, Jen keeps her movements slow and controlled, making sure to get constant contraction of the targeted muscle.
- Standing Single Leg Extension 6×12 each leg
- Standing Single Leg Inner Thigh Lift (abductor/inner) 4×15 each leg
- Glute “Push Back” (your body should be bent over parallel to floor. Keep leg elevated the whole time, knee to chest then push straight back with foot flexed) 4×15 each side
- Side Cable Squat 3×15 each side
- Standing Single Leg Side Raise (adductor/outer thigh) 4×15 each leg
- Side Cable Squat with Pulse (pulse 2x) 3×8 each side
- Standing Single Leg Reverse Curl 6×12 each leg
Favorite Muscle Groups and Exercises
Jen’s favorite body parts are her shoulders and glutes. As Jen says, “they are the best humps on the body!”
For glutes, Jen uses exercises such as glute kickbacks and squats. As for her shoulders, her favorite movements are side lateral raises and barbell rows for rear delts.
“I know there are some of you out there that have busy schedules, that don’t allow much time to prep all the meals you want. And if you are trying to achieve a certain goal, diet is always going to 100% key!! I love using prep and delivery services for my meals when I need them! The options are raw, healthy and amazing! They fit easily into what you need!”
If It Fits Your Macros (IIFYM)
Being an advocate of healthy and balanced dieting. Jen has found that her body responds best to flexible nutrition, aka IIFYM.
IIFYM allows Jen to eat what she likes on a regular basis, while keeping a fit and firm physique. The way she achieves this is by tracking her daily macros; making sure she doesn’t exceed the calorie limit she sets for the day.
Pre- And Post-Workout Diet Regimen
One hour before her workout, Jen will consume some sort of protein. The source of this protein can be anything – from a protein bar or shake, to a piece of lean chicken.
Immediately before training, Jen will consume a fast-acting carb supplement. This will give her energy to push through the workout, especially if it’s a demanding one.
For post-workout, Jen will consume a regular protein shake. One hour later, she’ll eat a meal which consists of carbs and proteins.
Supplements Jen Heward Takes
While Jen changes her supplementation routine quite often. There are some supplements in her regimen which she always uses. They include;
- Protein Powder
- Carb Supplement
If Jen feels she could use some help burning fat. She’ll opt for a good quality thermogenic fat burner.
This, combined with her diet and exhaustive training regimen, helps her lose fat in the shortest space of time possible.
When Jen wants to give herself a break from dieting. She’ll go out and eat some of her favorite cheat meals, such as pizza and chocolate.
Jen’s Healthy Kale Salad Meal Recipe
Whenever Jen wants to include more green vegetables in her diet, while keeping it delicious and simple, he’ll use recipes like this one below;
- 2-3 kale leafs (green lettuce is a healthy alternative)
- 2 tablespoons of chopped almonds
- 1 tablespoon dried cranberries
- 4 ounces of chicken (preferably lean chicken breasts)
- 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon of favorite salad dressing (try not to choose one with too many calories or additives, keep it simple and healthy)
Healthy Protein Pancakes
One of Jen’s favorite healthy foods is protein pancakes. She says they are simple to make, and are packed with protein.
Jen uses egg whites as her main protein source, which she blends with fruit, kale, and oatmeal.
Once she’s blended everything together, Jen’ll then cook it and leave everything to cool down.
Idols and Influences
Jen first turned to fitness out of curiosity, as she says, to “fit in”. However, after her health started getting worse and worse, Jen realized fitness was something she should do for her personal reasons, not to please others.
At the age of 21, she decided to make a change in her life and educate herself on the fitness lifestyle. After years of perseverance, Jen reached her goal, and much more – she built an awesome physique and became a certified sports nutritionist.
One of the people that have helped Jen reach her goals is her partner, whom Jen describes as her “biggest motivator.” Jen says her partner sometimes works 13 hours per day, trains martial arts, and lifts weights in the gym. With this hectic lifestyle, Jen’s partner still manages to find time to be with Jen and support her on her own journey.
Alice Matos is another influence Jen looks up to. Alice is a social media star and fitness athlete who, just like Jen, she inspired countless people to lead a healthy and active lifestyle. Talking about Alice, Jen stated that she’s a “beautiful hard working woman.”
“I believe we come to different points in our lives that demand change and push us to grow, that can be overwhelming and scary, but if you remain open to them, you only evolve to something better.”
What we can learn from Jen Heward
What we can learn from Jen Heward is that if you’re in a situation which makes you unhappy. You should strive to improve that situation, instead of waiting for better times to come.
Jen wasn’t satisfied with how she looked or felt during her early fitness journey. As a result, she made a firm decision to improve her life, and become a healthier person. In this process, Jen not only accomplished all of her goals, she also become an inspiration for others.
What we can learn from Jen’s story is that you’re the only one who is in control of your life. Others can help you, or give you useful advice. But at the end of the day, it all comes down to how hard are you willing to work for your dreams.
If you can stay consistent and perseverent despite the obstacles, then making your goals a reality is always possible.