“My name is Jason Hatcher, I am a 35 year old single father of two and I am going to let you know how my last few months have been. Before I do I need to give you a little background of myself. Growing up I was always considered athletic and an “in-shape” person. I played multiple sports in high school and even in college. Working out was not my most favorite thing to do so when college was over my workouts stopped. I was still active at sports but was not eating right and running was almost nonexistent. Fast forward almost fifteen years and I am a 325 lb. mess. I had gained an entire other person, 140lbs of unnecessary weight. The last couple years had been really tough for me. I went through a divorce, depression, and a lot of bad habits had gotten worse. I was coping with depression with alcohol and smoking cigarettes. It made everything all better, but what it really did was make things worse. It was the middle of January of 2012 when I was sitting at home alone and really started reflecting on my life over the past few years. I was very emotional and needed an outlet. I remember calling my mom upset because I didn’t have my kids and I told her then I needed a change, a drastic change. So I called a friend who I knew just opened his own Anytime Fitness and he basically said, “Hatch you will be amazed at what you can accomplish if you just put your mind to it.” So the journey begins.

I came to Kempsville Anytime Fitness to sign up the following day. I was determined to get my old self back and be happy. I wanted to be a better role model for my kids. I decided that day I was going to be committed to something good. While I was signing up for gym membership I was asked about doing the body challenge. I thought it was a great idea, but wasn’t sure about the money. After a couple days of thinking and a little push from CJ, I decided to make a whole new commitment. Three hundred dollars is a cheap price to pay for a healthy new start and happiness. I signed up for the body challenge and immediately people were excited for me, people whom I had never met. It was a new felling for me. So during my first two workout sessions with CJ we talked about proper eating and workout habits and I told him them I am very competitive and that I was going to win the whole thing. Well know I have a whole new attitude. I have already won and will continue to win every day.

On Feb. 4th of 2012, was our first official day of the competition. I had set a few goals that first day and have reached every single one of them. Some of the small things, which were huge to me, sitting in a booth, roller coasters, getting haircut and apron fitting, hair wash and back not getting wet. You forget how too much weight is a burden. I went from a 46 pants to a 38 and a 3xl shirt to XL. My goal was to lose 75 lbs. for the challenge and 100 pounds by June 15, 2012. I am extremely happy to say that I hit my 75 lb. mark on the final weigh in day. I am currently 250 lbs. and feeling better than ever. I cannot wait to lose the next 25 and see how I feel. Throughout the competition I noticed several little changes but on final measurement day I was amazed at the number differences not only in weight, but percentages, inches, and caliper measurements. It was a big accomplishment, and I did it.

I have learned so much from the trainers and research I have done on proper eating and exercise. I have learned the “secret” to good health is no secret. Proper diet and exercise is the only way to go. With that comes great commitment. You have to want to make a change and I DID. I ran my first 5K ever and them the following week ran in the Shamrock 8K. I was amazed I could even do it. I am currently training to run the Rock and Roll half marathon in September. I feel better than I have in years and look and feel 10 years younger. I had a huge support system with USA elite trainers, Anytime Fitness, my K-ville Bone Crushers, and friends/family. I have a whole new addiction and it’s a healthy lifestyle. I am no longer taking medications, drinking alcohol, and smoking cigs. When I need to get away, I use the gym and love every bit of it. I was amazed at how open and friendly people are at Anytime and I have continued to show support to other people at the gym. Perfect strangers can be good motivators. I have a whole other family when I go to the gym. I am the happiest I have ever been and more importantly my kids have noticed a huge change in me and that brings complete joy to my world. My daughter loves the fact she can put her arms completely around me and lock her hands. This challenge has given me my life back and I owe a lot of people. I will always be there for whomever to get them through.

I want to give special thanks to Taz and Stacey for doing this every year. You are saving lives. To all the trainers who worked so hard to keep us motivated, especially my Kempsville trainers. I love you guys even though I didn’t on Saturdays. I want to hug all of my teammates for being so supportive in the gym and at challenges. I could not have done it all without your support. My friends and family have been so supportive and I love everyone who was there for me. I will support the challenge and the participants every year. This is my NEW life and I am sticking to it.”