Jump Off, The

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9780060588182: Jump Off, The

Mark Jenkins, premier fitness instructor to the elite of the hip–hop world, presents a fast, effective two–month workout that uses hip–hop drive to attain an unsurpassed level of fitness in record time.

Mark Jenkins, celebrity fitness drillmaster, says 'if you want it, you gotta work it!' He's reshaping the world of hip–hop and film and now wants to give you a body like today's hottest movie and recording stars. With clients such as P. Diddy, Mary J. Blige, Missy Elliot, D'Angelo, LL Cool J, Beyonce, and Brandy, Mark has developed an effective, motivating program, that gets results and keeps people coming back for more.

His program consists of intensive sport–specific training, flexibility, high–performance nutrition and supplementation. Exercises that can be performed without gym access keeps training practical and exhilarating. Training sessions are just an hour long, 3 or 4 times a week. Clients who train using this system can achieve an unsurpassed level of physical fitness, visual appeal and energy. This directly translates to improved posture, body awareness, voice quality, physical control, endurance and, ultimately, stage performance. Even if you're not a multi–platinum megastar, you're sure to benefit from looking and feeling like you are.

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About the Author:

Mark Jenkins is the founder/co-owner of International Fitness, a fitness and wellness company that specializes in training performing artists. He has started a nonprofit organization, Muscle and Music for Youth, to help kids learn about fitness, and has developed his own supplement line, the Pinnacle Work It kit, sold at GNC stores nationwide. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Chapter One

As I cruise through the Mediterranean Sea on board P. Diddy's yacht, water as far as the eye can see, I can't help but smile. The boat is unbelievably tricked out, with rooms fit for kings. The crew treats us like royalty too, anticipating and attending to our every need. Best of all for fitness fanatics like me, a cook prepares food for us that tastes like it was reeled in 10 minutes ago. On top of that, the gym is off the hook! I can't get over my good fortune. I have the best gig in the world. Can you believe I'm here working? That's right. My name is Mark Jenkins, and I'm traveling in style with one of my clients, P. Diddy. He needs to keep training during R&R because in less than a month, he and I will have taken on the New York City Marathon to benefit kids in the New York public school system. The marathon is no joke, believe me. By the time he's finished, P. Diddy, a modern-day icon of style, will have lost five toenails in pursuit of this goal.

If you're thinking, "If I had Diddy's bank account, I'd be in shape, too," then think again. No one has handed that guy anything; he's earned every dime of it by rolling his sleeves up and working incredibly hard for a very long time. In fact, free time, the one resource you need the most to get in shape, is the one thing that he has virtually none of, since he runs several multimillion-dollar empires simultaneously. The guy sleeps only four hours a night. Sometimes he's ready to train at three o'clock in the morning. I've even had to send him home because if he's too tired, it's a waste. Puffy really trains his butt off, and as you'll soon find out, I expect no less from you. That's the kind of attitude that you'll need to get in shape.

When I'm training Diddy or Mary J. Blige, I admit, I can't always believe it's for real. If a psychic had told me when I was a kid that I'd end up training those two superstars, I'd never have believed her. And they're just the latest in a long list of elite clients I've whipped into the best shape of their lives -- Diddy, Mary, D'Angelo, Beyonce, LL Cool J, and Missy Elliot among them.

My current situation is a far cry from where I started out. I grew up in the Crown Heights Brooklyn, which was a tough place back in the early 1980s. My street was a refuge in a bad neighborhood, where gunshots rang out nightly. Our block was safer than the ones around it because the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, the Brooklyn Museum, and the main branch of the Brooklyn Public Library were across the street and there were always police stationed nearby.

I remember days when my friends and I walked with screwdrivers in our pockets just to get to the YMCA to play ball. You had to pass through some dangerous neighborhoods on your way, and we wanted to be able to protect ourselves in case we got jumped. In high school I saw kids walking home barefoot through the snow after getting their sneakers stolen off their feet. When I'd reach my block, I'd stop for a second and let out a sigh of relief. It was so ill growing up back then, but that's just how it was. A lot of the guys I went to high school with are either in jail or dead.

My father died when I was 2, which didn't start things off in my favor. My mom remarried a man who was a former bodybuilder, so I guess you can say he made me body-conscious at an early age. Still, I didn't have a great relationship with him. He was a stepfather, which creates its own set of problems, but he was also an alcoholic and a strict disciplinarian, so we never did the typical father-son bonding things.

My mom didn't know what to do with me, so she started hauling me off to dancing school along with my older sister. For over six years I danced my butt off: tap, jazz, ballet, modern, along with some gymnastics. I even attended a junior high school for gifted kids with dancing as my talent. But when I hit puberty and started getting teased about dancing -- being called a faggot and a sissy by my stepfather didn't help -- I conformed by quitting. I transferred to a public junior high school and got introduced to other fine arts, like drinking and profanity.

That's when I started to put on weight. My mom is from Antigua and my stepfather is from Barbados, so the West Indian diet was the norm in our family. If you're not familiar with this diet, let me tell you, the starches will kill you. On top of that I would eat tons of candy, drink a gallon of milk a day, or down over half a pound of pasta in one sitting. It seemed like I was always hungry. The combination of lots of carbohydrate and very little activity was a recipe for disaster. My energy level went up and down like a roller coaster. I was running on sugar, which seriously impaired my ability to learn and stay focused.

I think I was overcompensating with food to make myself feel better about my home life and general insecurities. Dancing helped keep the weight off, but once I stopped, I didn't have another activity to replace it. By the time I hit high school, I had a 40-inch waist and my friends started calling me "Suck in the Gut" because I was always trying to disguise it. My self-esteem was a mess, and the challenges I faced at home weren't making it any easier ...

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