Extracted from LDS Samoa Service Center July 2016 Newsletter, “The ERRANDS!”
We came across this article about our dad in his Office’s Monthly Newsletter last month, and we thought to pay tribute to him on this father’s day and to let the whole world know that this humble man is our dad.
You may have seen him on TV or heard him on Talofa FM speaking on Sunday devotionals or many may remember him in his music label KING J, who became really popular in early 90s to the early 2000. In fact he is the first ever Samoan to incorporate Samoan rap in his music which made him so popular in his music generation and still is (we think hehe).
He is such a multi-talented guy, a singer, dancer, performer, entertainer, comedian, baker, cook, motivator, translator, a preacher you name them, and he’s our Bob the Builder who can fix almost anything in the home. He is a former bishop of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and currently a Stake President. So apart from his busy life of service and dedication to the Lord’s work, he still have time to pursue one other major goal in his life, his Health.
We know our dad is a great example in what he does especially with his new lifestyle. And he shares his story to his co-workers with the hopes of inspiring more people to take care of their health.
Below is an interview with the Office Monthly Newsletter---The ERRANDS.
ERRANDS: You look great, Jason. Can you share us your story about your new transformation?
Jason: Well, I’m grateful for the opportunity to share my story with you about my new journey 2016. And I pray that this piece will help motivate others who are struggling to make this change. I know I have wonderful friends who are seeking after this change so I can honestly say that my main focus on this is to help motivate anyone who wishes to commit to a new YOU. I’ve been struggling with my weight too for a long time until I hit my 40th birthday last year in March. I decided that I should actually start my new life at 40. However, that didn’t quite work for me, as there were still many responsibilities, obligations and commitments with work, family and church and other distractions that robbed my time from one of the first priorities of my life – My Health. And so my goal to start my new life at 40 was traumatized by so many disruptions in the speed of time. Until January this year, something hit me after the trip with Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints). I sat down and relished the photos with the Apostle and a weird uncanny feeling overwhelmed me. I actually saw in those photos that I needed to do something about myself. So I started to gather myself and rethink things decorously and started to see myself from a diverse perspective. So with some welfare and self-reliance principles being tied to it I brought this matter up with our stake presidency and we agreed that we as a stake presidency should initiate it and take the lead to help us first, so we can help our members. And so this gave birth to a new life, new energy, new ME. We were able to convince 17 people to participate in the First Round which started in February. We have 6 weeks per round and a one week break in between rounds. (We had just completed Round 4 with 50 committed participants of all sizes. This year’s long run challenge will be completed on Christmas Eve at the conclusion of Round 7.
ERRANDS: So what do you do?
Jason: We decided that the only way to maintain a healthy life is to go all the way to Christmas, make it a healthy habit, and before you know it, it became an addiction for me to train, to play, to walk, to run, to zumba, to dance and to hike, almost everything not to mention all the fun we have with our Ultimate Affection group everytime we work out. And I’ve come to realise that you can never do it on your own which is why we have this group. I don’t have any special diet but a discipline with food is very important. I am now very mindful of how much I eat, and what I eat. I am very conscious of what I drink which is why soda is not allowed in my system until the one week break in between rounds. However, I still get to eat my favourite foods like povi masima, rice and curry from Pinatis, cake and ice cream, McDonalds and Burger Bills, Pizza etc etc, and occasionally, my Coke! But all in controllable portions. Water is very important and the most important of all, is exercise. I play basketball in the morning, and walk or hike or Zumba in the evening. And ever since I was diagnosed with this addiction I managed to smash off 20kilos, from 128.8kgs (283.4lbs) to 108kgs now. My goal is to reach 105kg and maintain my weight there as per medical advice and let my 6-ABs shine like a diamond in the sky hehehe. Right now I don’t have a problem trying to get up and sweat because my laziness has been burnt too and melted away. I used to wear 44/46 and now I’m back to size 36/38, so cool.
ERRANDS: So with 17 you started with, now you have 50 people participating that’s really great, you definitely motivated many others.
Jason: Well, not only some of our colleagues like Oliver Iosefa, Denny Faalogo, Makerita Key and Nafanua Tonumaipea were motivated, but this fever has spread across the neighbouring islands too through facebook. A group from Tonga messaged me if I could help them get this going for them because they’ve seen my photos and the transformation I’m going through with our local team “Ultimate Affection” on Facebook. So I sent them everything that I’ve been doing with our team and now they’re really rolling in the deep hehe. And thus is my hope. I do hope that this will motivate and inspire others to do the same and get that new look they have been longing for.
ERRANDS: Any advice for all of us to start at some point?
Jason: Yes I do have one advice, “Desire and Commitment”. You need to have the desire and the commitment to compel and devote yourself to make the change. Think about a longer enjoyable life with your family, your beautiful wife or handsome husband and your beautiful children. Think about what you can all achieve in life if you are healthy and strong. We all want to be there to see our children graduate from school, celebrate their achievements in life, be there on their weddings etc. So if you keep seeing me on facebook with my photos, and your eyes start rolling lol, please remember it’s not about my selfies, it’s all about my motivation. That’s my kind of life right now and I’m feeling good and especially looking GOOOD, LOL. Please allow yourself to allow me to help you if you want. You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great. Remember the Lord has commanded us to take care of His Temple–our Bodies. Most of the time we condemn people who violate the Word of Wisdom by smoking and drinking and yet we are violating the Word of Wisdom by overeating and no exercise. So keep enjoying what you eat in small portions, drink lots of water and do a lot of exercises. In the course of time you will see the results blooming and will make you hungry for more. If I can do it you can do it too! And yes a new life does start at 40!
So there you go, we want to wish all the fathers of Samoa a happy Fathers’ Day this year especially our father. We love you dad, you’re the greatest dad in the world. Thank you for your contribution to the community in all you do and we hope that other people will be inspired by your story and believe in themselves that they can do it too. Thank you for all that you have done for us and for being a great example to us as a father, a leader, a friend and a wonderful husband to our mother. Love you Dad.