By Team ICG® Master Trainer Joan Kent
I can’t find even the slightest bit of humor in the irony. This weekend, I finished editing Jim’s post on Jeff Wimmer’s passing. Jim’s tribute was moving, as I would have expected.
A few minutes later, I got a call that Jim, who was at a show in Brazil presenting Myride+ demo rides as only he could, had died of a heart attack.
I had to deliver the news to a number of people close to Jim, first and foremost his wife Angela. The calls couldn’t have been comforting because I couldn’t stop crying.
I’ve known Jim since my early college days. He was a diamond in the rough back then, but turned himself into the most impressive figure in the fitness industry. Many who read this will know I’m not exaggerating, that everything that’s been said about Jim is 100% accurate. Many fitness pros are more famous, but none is better than he was. When Jim talked about training, everyone listened.
Jim was my mentor. Among numerous other things, I learned from him how to teach Performance Max, one of the outstanding and unique programs Jim created, in the way he originally envisioned it. It meant so much when he said I was the best student he’d ever had.
Jim recently left PMax because his schedule got too full. The program is still in existence, but its soul has been replaced by statistics. Jim had that mind/body thing down and brought it to training as no one else ever could. I worked hard to stay true to it, but Jim was an impossible act to follow. The owner of PMax said about my attempts, “Jim does it better.” Of course, I knew that, but I never stopped using Jim’s classes as my blueprint. Why not emulate the very best?
Jim was my best friend, as well as my ex-husband. We remained so close over the years that it actually popped into my mind for a moment to call him when I needed to share this terrible news. Yikes.
The reactions of the people I’ve told have been as grief-stricken as my own. Jim touched many, many lives and in a profound way.
My entire family died within the space of a couple of years, and without Jim’s support I’d never have gotten through it. His departure leaves an alone-ness that might be difficult for most to comprehend.
I’ll dare to say that Jim was in many ways the best thing that ever happened to the fitness industry. In some ways, he was the best thing that ever happened to me.
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