Fuel The Movement: Improving Global Wellbeing

By: Jason Martuscello

Standing JM

Growing up in a small town embroidered with a passion for football inspired my entire city to be apart of the Amsterdam Rugged Rams football team. Blessed with height and quickness, I was able to secure a spot on the team I have always aspired to be apart of. Although, the sidelines was never the position I envisioned. It was obvious I needed to get bigger to become more competitive and get a starting position. While most chose to exercise, I discovered size gains were far easier in the McDonalds drive thru. My bi-daily double cheeseburgers, supersize fries, and a root beer quickly propelled my weight in excess of 300lbs to become apart of the obese classification and in my defense – apart of the starting line-up of the defensive line. My size gains translated to being a dominant force on the field to which I rationalized my super-sized eating regiment.

Girls – The Desire to Change
As football season came to a closure I realized my weight contributed to more than being a force on the football field but detrimental to my social development.  The traumatizing experiences being the fat kid who could not get a girlfriend fueled my motivation to change my life.  Faced with many challenges that plague people from bettering their health – time, money, and education but was not going to accept, settle, and continue life unhappy, unsatisfied, and be another statistic in the obesity epidemic.

The Social Influence
Determined to lose weight, I started college making exercise a routine part of my life. Surrounding myself with fit, active gym-goers helped reinforce my habit. It was a matter of time until my persistence paid off and weight was melting off.  Sixty pounds lighter acquired me attention from my newfound fitness passion. Exercise quickly became an addiction, as my weight was disappearing, and fueling my interest to learn how I was able to accomplish my transformation.

Already in pursuit of my BA in criminal justice at SUNY Plattsburgh presented an issue, I took the most logical steps to make my passion a reality by registering my remaining electives coursework in health sciences.  Not satisfied, I continued my studies at the University of South Florida to heighten my depth of knowledge earning my MS in Exercise Science.  Expanding knowledge and immersing myself in research, I graduated prepared to dominate the escalating health challenges – so I thought. I quickly realized investing in myself educationally was missing something to transcend the gap in communicating my health message.

100 lbs

In Pursuit of Answers
However, there was another turning point when preparing for a guest lecture to a Physical Activity and Health graduate class on the Effects of physical activity and fitness on obesity.  The presentation was designed to answer one major question – is exercise and physical activity the solution to the escalating obesity problem?

I spent weeks preparing – reading dozens of research articles, weighing results and trends to present an unbiased opinion of the research. This lecture led to some shocking realizations making me question exercise being the “solution” to losing weight.   Reflecting back, I realized my nutrition drastically shifted throughout my weight loss journey but being very subtle and progressive changes – they went largely unnoticed.  This opportunity helped me reexamine my approach and consider the power of nutrition. My new focus shifted toward deepening my understanding of nutrition.

I came to the stark conclusion that it was much more worth your time to control your food then to out exercise a poor diet. The problem was, I needed to figure out what I did nutritionally that lead to my incredible weight loss. My nutrition was successful to my weight loss but I could not recall any big changes.  This happened to be my key discovery that transformed my strategic approach to eating, fitness, and any lifestyle change. The trick to my transition was not any particular food or diet, but rather a systematic process of switching, reducing, and eliminating foods to healthier options. Time was the key differentiator between my process and all other diets you see popularized on television and in magazines. The gradual process was so smooth it went unnoticed that I even changed my diet.

I was so sure that nutrition was the key to solving this global health problem that I even got a job at a health food store in the nutrition/vitamin department and applied to school to get Registered Dietician credential. I was condensing my strategy into formal presentations that led to the discovery that nutrition was not the solution to my weight issue.  I never had a dietician, never focused on nutrition and to be honest – I barely knew very little about nutrition when losing weight but managed to be successful.  This led to new shift in thinking and focus on changing one’s mindset.

“Every prudent human being is equipped with the knowledge to make healthy food decisions but the problem is they don’t.  My new question in life was why people choose foods despite knowing what is best for them?

I brought myself to the beautiful South Beach Miami, the city that thrives on health, fitness, and looking good. It is amazing how everyone around me was pushing harder to eat well, train harder, and look his or her best.  The energy, the competitiveness influenced my habits getting me in the best shape of my life. Leveraging my research background and craving for knowledge, I landed an opportunity that put understanding behind solving the global health problem. Working as a behavioral research consultant, under the direction of Dr. David Neal, I expanded my aperture by discovering behavioral influences that create sustainable change.

FTM 2

The Lifestyle Architect Rises
My new health strategy was focused not only on the science behind the weight transformation but more importantly the social influences that explain “why” peoples actions don’t reflect their intentions. Turning failures and achievements into a business, I launched my lifestyle consulting company Fuel the Movement (www.fuelthemovement.com), focused on providing simple sustainable solutions to architecting peoples’ lifestyles. Lifestyle Architecture is the process of designing and planning peoples’ lives and create a process to make healthier choices and habits for long-term sustainability of health, fitness, and wellbeing.

Embarking on my life mission it dawned on me my current path was not reaching health on a global scale.  Having all the knowledge, experience, and training in the world is useless without the platform to serve a broader population.  It’s like having the best boat, fishing pole, and technique but fishing in a pond with no fish – not so intelligent. Having seen tremendous success with my clientele, I started to take Lifestyle Architecture programming nationwide, presenting at numerous health conferences.

Fit for Business
Starving for challenge and experiencing escalating health and business problems led to my newest value opportunity toward solving the global health problems.  In conjunction with the brightest minds in behavioral psychology, business, technology and health, we launched the MVMT Group. Our vision was simple; make the work a healthier place.  Our strategic process was designed to create value for all vested parties-business, people and society.  I continue to hone my skills and stretch my personal aptitude finishing up my MBA at the University of Florida, while scaling the MVMT Group vision.

Finding Value
Every decision, achievement, mistake, opportunity, person, place, and experience has fueled my curiosity to discover my value in life.  Overcoming obesity, losing two brothers, undecided educational pursuits, struggling to find employment, and aborting a business has prepared me to harness adversity in discovering my passion. I have realized that throughout early stages of life, finding a passion, discovering and embracing talents can be one of the most challenging things.

While mistakes are bound to occur, resiliency, grit and determination were critical to growth mindset, finding my path, future, and living my vision. In today’s fast paced society, solitude, has been the driving force in helping me think, discover, and appreciate the process of creating a valuable life. My past has paved my future but my future is what the world has to look forward to.

Global Sustainable Wellbeing,
Jason Martuscello

Brother

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