Member of the Month – June 2013

Jen Warnock

Our Member of the Month for June 2013 is not only a trainer at CEKB, but she is also a client. After a stunning transformation leading to two Top 5 Bikini Competition finishes in the last two months, we decided to feature our gym's longest standing member and show you all that she hasn't always been the Jen you know now. Here is her story:

Bikini Competition Ready at 42

Jen Before Kettlebells

Jen Before Kettlebells

Most of you know me as Jen, kettlebell trainer, nutritional counsellor, and bikini competitor, and you assume that I have always been this way. The real story couldn’t be farther from the truth. I started my journey here just the same as every other member of Cutting Edge Kettlebells, as a client.

In the Spring of 2008 I was 20 pounds overweight and ready for a change. I had lost and regained the same 20 pounds time and time again since I had my daughter in 2000. I had tried every fad diet and exercise plan under the sun but nothing stuck and every pound came back as soon as I fell off each extreme plan I tried.

I began training with kettlebells at CEKB in August 2008 and fell in love! I worked out 4 to 5 days per week and strictly followed the Nutrisystem Diet Plan and lost 20 pounds in two months. I was at my goal weight and was proud of it, so proud that I bought a skimpy Halloween costume to show off my new figure!

Jen After

Jen After Losing 20 Pounds

The Skimpy Halloween Costume

The Skimpy Halloween Costume

Then I saw the pictures from the Halloween party! How could I be at my goal weight and still look flabby? I decided to ditch my Nutrisystem diet and start the Carb Rotation Plan. It took a couple of weeks for me to figure out how to build my meals, but it was easy to stick to the plan and I was able to maintain my weight loss for the first time in many years.

I didn’t lose much more weight over the next few months, but my body completely changed. The flab was replaced with muscle, I lost 4 pant sizes, and I started liking pictures of myself again.  Best of all, the weight stayed off.

Fast forward five years and it was time for a new challenge. A client approached me and asked me to train with her for an NPC bikini competition. I had never even considered the idea before. I knew I would have to buckle down my nutrition and beef up my training a bit to get my body to the next level, but I am the kind of person who needs a goal to train for to stay on track, and this sounded like fun.

4th Place Bikini Competition Finish NPC San Diego

4th Place Finish NPC San Diego

I trained for 11 weeks using nothing but kettlebells and our Carb Rotation Nutrition Plan. Six days per week I worked out 45 minutes per day completing both a heavy grind style workout and a shorter 12 to 15 minute cardio intensive workout. I followed my Carb Rotation numbers to a T and did not stray from my nutrition plan once. I was not going to step on that stage and wish that I had not eaten that one cookie or drank that one glass of wine. I was going to step on the stage knowing I had done everything possible to be in the best shape of my life. Those bikinis aren’t very forgiving!

I felt amazing at my first NPC bikini competition! I was so proud of myself for sticking to my plan and completing every workout, especially on the days I did not want to. I had zero regrets and was honored to place 4th out of 16 gorgeous women at my very first show. I wanted to share that feeling with everyone I knew. Win or lose, I accomplished my goal and kept the promise I made to myself.

Jen 3 Days Before NPC Bikini Competition in March and 3 Days Before Muscle Beach in May

Jen 3 Days Before NPC Show in March and 3 Days Before Muscle Beach in May

After my first show, I took a month to recover physically and mentally. I stuck to the standard CEKB programming and took 1 or 2 cheat days from the Carb Rotation on the weekends. Four weeks out from my next show, I began my bikini training regimen again, but this time I had no weight to lose, only inches. It was truly shocking how much farther my body came in 4 more weeks. I thought I was as lean as I could get at my first show, but I was dead wrong. The Wednesday before I did the Muscle Beach Venice show I had lost another 1/2 inch off my waist and hips and was floored by the difference in my photos from the first show to the second. I finished 4th again, added another trophy to my collection, and had the time of my life!

4th Place Finish at Muscle Beach Venice Bikini Competition

4th Place Finish at Muscle Beach Venice

I am looking forward to my next show, August 17. I can’t wait to see the improvements that another 4 to 6 weeks of training and eating clean will provide. Louie always says “Kettlebells and Carb Rotation are all you need”. I am excited to be able to say and prove that he is right. All the tools are here at Cutting Edge Kettlebells and available to all members of CEKB. I am so lucky to have a job that allows me to help others set and achieve their goals. Want to join me? You know where I'll be!


Member of the Month January 2013

Christmas 2012


Retiring from the Marine Corps after 25 years, after having my C5 and C6 fused, bad kness, being a staff puke and sitting behind a desk eight hours day, I ended up gaining a bit of weight. I met Steve Kudalis when both our sons were wrestling at TVHS six years ago. Steve kept going on and on about how great kettlebells were and I finally got tired of his nagging like an old bitter woman so I made time to get in and see what it was all about.

I came in for the two-week introduction and got my butt kicked. I didn’t think kettlebell training going to be too much different than the standard weight lifting and elliptical machine training I had been doing, but I was wrong. My body was in a bit of shock. The good news: I was hooked.

Jim Before Kettlebell Training at CEKB

Louie and Jen are great instructors.  The way they interact with all the members has really impressed me. I also ended up meeting a great bunch of people. It’s been a blast meeting everyone and with all the joking and ribbing folks at the gym engage in, the atmosphere is relaxed yet competitive.

After a year training with kettlebells at Cutting Edge Kettlebells, I am most proud of the weight I have lost. I started out over 235 pounds and dropped to 210 pounds during the eight week challenge I started in January 2102. When I started out I was stretching the old belt out and on the last hole before I would have to buy a bigger belt.  Now I will have to buy a smaller belt and I’ll have to buy some new trousers since I’m able to pull my pants off without having to unbutton them.

Fit at 40 – Member of the Month December 2012

Mona Godfrey

It all began a little over a year ago when I was 41 years old and I looked over at my best friend Connie and told her that I would “soon be wearing bed sheets to work” because none of my work clothes fit me. I had bought one of those Screamin’Daily Deals to CEKB and realized I had better use it before it expired or I showed up naked to work. I remember that first day at CEKB as I’m sure many of my fellow CEKB’s will attest… you NEVER forget those first workouts. It’s like Louie is the “muscle whisperer” and he’s telling ALL of the muscles in your body to come to a party! I had always liked strength training more than cardio but sweet Jesus was I in for a treat! I knew I was hooked on doing bells when the

Mona Before Kettlebells

third night of that first workout week, I seriously contemplated peeing standing up in the shower in the middle of the night because I couldn’t bend my legs. The next day Louie tried to show me how to use the pull up bands and how to put my leg in…only it wouldn’t bend…I don’t know if Louie remembers or not, but we laughed our asses off at the spectacle of me. I thought this place is FUN! Where else could I challenge myself to mental games such as “piranhas swimming underneath me” while mastering each stage of push-ups, or pretending I was in the circus when Louie showed me how to do a box jump, and of course flashing Louie my “crazy eyes” look which I think everyone does once in awhile. Over this past year, I have shown Louie my beautiful “bell beauty marks” that I have earned. I think of them as a “map of my day”…lol. The most important thing I have learned from my fellow CEKB peeps is that this is about time, not quick results. My body has decided to show me muscles I don’t think I’ve seen since I was 9 months old. I’ve watched myself gradually get up to a 36 lb. bell on my Turkish Get Up’s when a year ago, I could barely get up holding NOTHING!

Mona & Family

I’m proud to say all of my shorts that I wore this summer that were tight on me are now super loose, and I can wear most of my work clothes again! My goals this year are to increase my leg and butt muscle strength so I can enter a Solid Gold competition. Thanks CEKB!

Member of the Month November 2012

John (AKA Mr. 200)

Pressing the 44 lb. bell "bottoms up" style

When I was younger I suffered from two  severely  injured disks in my back and doctors told me I would never be able to kickbox, workout, or lift weights or heavy items ever again. I tried many different exercises in hopes of building back my strength, but they all injured me further. About two years ago I joined CrossFit and in one month I injured my back, once again. Approximately three months later I stopped in to see Louie and he promised me he could fix my back. So hesitantly, in June, 2011 I joined Cutting Edge Kettlebells. My goals were simply to rehab my injured back and regain the mobility in my lower body that my injury had taken away.

John Before Joining CEKB

When I joined CEKB I could not do a burpee. Now I can do as many as sixty burpees in a workout. I was able to pass the USSS snatch test by doing over 200 snatches on my first try and I've succeeded in snatching the beast. My doctor and chiropractor both are astounded at the improvement in my back and I no longer have to spend days in bed. Louie and Jen have definitely helped me regain my strength and mobility and I could not be more thankful. My favorite exercises are the farmers walk, snatch/presses, and burpees (simply because I can do them with confidence!) I am proud that I am 45 years old, have suffered the many injuries I have, and I still am able to post the numbers that I do. I have lost approximately twenty pounds since I have started and have yet to actually start my diet. Now that my injuries are in the past I can set new goals. This year will be about getting myself healthier while continuing to build strength in my body. I know that I can acheive these new goals and any others I set as long as I continue to train at CEKB.

Member of the Month October 2012

Luci M. - Fitness at 40

Luci fit at 40I've never been someone who has been terribly out of shape and had always considered myself capable of losing weight and getting in shape.  At varying stages of my life I gained and lost weight in a regular cycle.  When the scale numbers went up, I did what most people did and went on a diet and began some sort of workout routine.  The diet always included a low fat/low calorie plan, visits to the gym or a video, and usually some running.  I had relative success; I would usually reach my goal weight or at least get close to it, but never my fitness goal.  The problem: it never lasted.

It was October 2009 and I was as fit as I was going to get on my own and definitely not where I wanted to be.  I was fast approaching my 40s and felt I was running out

Luci before she began training with kettlebells at CEKB

of time to make the most out of what was left of my youth.  I needed help.  My husband recommended a new gym which recently opened up close to where we live.  I'll admit, I was hesitant and a bit of a skeptic, but I joined anyways.  The first few months I was not consistent.  I had a lot of excuses; work, kids, life.  I might as well have been speaking French because I was speaking a language Louie did not understand.  His philosophy was, and still is, pretty simple; it's a choice, you either want it or you don't.

Working out at Cutting Edge Kettlebells has not only transformed my body, but has altered my mindset.  I look at food, working out, and life in general in a completely new way.  For me, working out with kettlebells is like brushing my teeth or going to work; I just do it.  No more are the days of spending 1 to 2 hours in the gym doing "cardio" and then working on a particular body part or muscle group.  It is walking into CEKB, looking up at the board, and getting it done.  If I'm running late, that's not an excuse anymore.  20 minutes or less is what I'm looking at.  If I can't make it to the gym,that's not an excuse either.  Jen will just text you a workout with or without bells.  They will not let you cheat yourself and I am so grateful for that.

Luci finds fitness at 40

Luci at 41 years old

I'm 41 now and I am in the best shape of my life.  I feel strong physically and mentally and I've become a role model for my 2 sons Ed (15) and Vince (12) who both work out with me at CEKB.  A sincere THANK YOU to Louie and Jen for showing me what I was missing.  Your guidance and "no excuses" philosophy has truly changed my life.