About Jen Miramontes
I have been involved in sports and fitness my entire life and for the past twelve years I have been blessed enough to work as coach, personal trainer, teacher and Medical Exercise Specialist. There is no health issue more personal to me than that of cancer, and because of my personal experiences of losing loved ones, I am fully committed to making a difference for those fighting this awful illness. That’s why I launched the Cancer Champions program. Cancer Champions is an online program for cancer fighters and survivors, as well as their caretaking team. We offer a library of hundreds of recipes formulated with cancer-fighting ingredients, fitness videos tailored to the unique needs of cancer fighters, and mindset guidance to address the mental battle against cancer. Along with this participants will receive weekly live calls with me and the Cancer Champions nutritionist Damian Bramer.
My mother, my father, Ann and so many others I have had the honor to work with are truly the reason that Cancer Champions came to be.
Where it all started: sports and fitness have always been an important part of my life. I was a four-sport high school athlete, participated in team sports in college, and have run hundreds of marathons and half-marathons. After graduating from Pepperdine University, I spent decades on parallel paths, working in both the corporate and fitness worlds. Over 10 years ago, I made the decision to shift my career focus to fitness, working as a personal trainer and launching a successful boutique fitness studio.
Then, about five years ago, I realized my true calling was to help cancer patients, survivors, and those who want to live healthy and active lives. In researching ways to support cancer patients through fitness and nutrition, I found there was really nowhere cancer patients could find credible fitness and nutrition information combined with a caring community, all in one place – that’s why I started Cancer Champions.
Here’s the story of how this total wellness-focused resource for cancer patients came to be:
“I want to hike in and out of the Grand Canyon.”
Those were the words my mom said to me after receiving her diagnosis of terminal cancer. We knew the average person with my mother’s diagnosis did not have long to live, so I immediately began training my mom for her hike.
After plenty of hard work and following her first round of radiation and chemo, Joanna Dunlap Cowden did indeed hike in and out of the Grand Canyon.
After the successful, challenging, and emotional trip, I committed to deepening my understanding of the special challenges faced by cancer patients. I earned a Medical Exercise Certification, with an emphasis on cancer.
While I ran a successful fitness studio, led a variety of classes, and provided personal training for many clients, I continued to search for ways to specifically support cancer patients, including volunteering for cancer-focused non-profit organizations.
Then, at a friend’s barbecue, I met Ann Murray Paige.
Ann had been diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 at age 38. Within minutes, we realized there was a reason we were both at this gathering. Both of us grew up diehard Boston sports fans in New England, and we were both on a mission to support people on their cancer journeys. Ann had been reaching cancer patients and survivors through her books, short films and speaking engagements; I had been using my expertise in health, fitness, and nutrition to support cancer patients with specialized training and workouts.
Ann and I became a team. I learned about the many challenges that cancer patients face, and she learned about the valuable role of fitness and nutrition in overall health. As an added bonus, we also became great friends. Our families hung out and took trips together, and we even went to the final game of the Boston Red Sox 2013 World Series championship in Boston together.
Before Ann lost her long and courageous battle with breast cancer in 2014, she said I gave her “five extra years” of being with her children, having fun, working out, living life, and finding joy. She also told me that helping cancer patients one-by-one was not enough. She tasked me with figuring out a way to reach more cancer survivors with the fitness and nutrition program I had developed, and to continue to grow the supportive community that we had begun to build.
Ann’s words gave me the determination to do what I had been thinking of, which was to focus more of my time and energy into a program designed specifically for, and responsive to, cancer patients and survivors.
I went on to earn a Cancer Exercise Specialist certification, one of just 500 certificates that have – to date – been awarded worldwide. As a result, I launched Cancer Champions.
Being able to be so deeply involved in both my mother’s and Ann’s battles against cancer was a privilege I will never take for granted. Helping them fulfill their dreams and live life on their terms has forever changed the way I approach fitness and nutrition, and I am fully committed to making a difference for those fighting all forms of this horrible disease.
The Cancer Champions program offers a variety of workouts for all fitness levels, trauma-informed yoga practices, and wellness-focused meal planning and recipes. We also create community by hosting weekly live video calls and a private Facebook Group.
So much of what informs the work we do at Cancer Champions comes from what I have learned from my mother and Ann, and from what I have learned working with so many other incredible humans along the way.
We hope you join our community. We will do everything in our power to support you as you continue your cancer journey. And as always, we will continue learning from you so we can continue to grow our services in ways that best support cancer fighters, survivors, and Cancer Champions.