Jeremy Woodward proves you can have a positive impactBy MIKE CULLITY
New Hampshire Union Leader
January 31. 2012 3:17PM
Jeremy Woodward, 33Home: Concord
Family: I am married to my wife, Brook, and we have two beautiful daughters named Elliana, who is 3 years old, and Bryn, who is 2 months old.
High school: Bishop Brady High School Class of 1997
College/post grad degrees: Some college
Current job: Owner/Founder of Highpoint Fitness and Jeremy's Bootcamp
Key past positions held: New England Regional Director of Ironheart Group.
Volunteer activities: Ironman fundraising campaign in 2010 for the N.H. Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. We raised over $200,000 for the N.H. Chapter of the Conservancy and finished as a top fundraiser at Ironman Lake Placid, N.Y. Most recently I have been doing a lot of work with the Ironheart Group and raising awareness for congenital heart defects.
Most admired person (outside your family): My martial arts instructor, Jeff Hardy of Bodyworks Karate School
Key current professional challenge: The key professional challenge is balancing everything while succesfully running a business, training for two Ironman races and the highest priority of being a great husband and father.
Last major achievement: Overcoming my second open-heart surgery and being selected as 1 of 25 individuals from around the world for the Medtronic Global Hero Award. Most recently being chosen to represent the Ironheart Inspire Team as we are filmed throughout the year for the 2012 Ironman Arizona.
Biggest problem facing New Hampshire: The biggest problem facing New Hampshire is keeping young and talented professionals in this state. We are so fortunate to have incredibly talented individuals in this state doing great things. Our young professional leaders of today are going to lead us into the next 25 years and preserve what the New Hampshire experience is all about.
Favorite place in New Hampshire: My wife and I love the New Hampshire Seacoast! The beauty of the N.H. Seacoast represents everything that this great state has to offer.
What book are you reading now? “Living Life to the Full” by Ellen Charnley
How do you relax? Spending time with my wife and two beautiful girls! My girls are everything in the world to me!
What websites do you visit most often? www.ironheartjeremy.com, www.ironman.com
Favorite TV show, radio station or musical artist: My radio is always tuned into Nazzy and the 105.5 JYY Wake-up Crew
In 2007, Jeremy Woodward was in a Boston hospital awaiting heart valve replacement surgery when he made a bet with a friend who does triathlons, including Ironman races, known as the ultimate endurance test.
'I said, 'If I get out of here, I'm going to do Ironman,' ' Woodward recalled.
Three years later, the lifelong Concord resident crossed the finish line of an Ironman triathlon in Lake Placid, N.Y., having completed a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile run. Moreover, through his participation, Woodward spearheaded a $200,000 fund-raising campaign for the Nature Conservancy's New Hampshire chapter.
'Basically, we proved that even if you're down and out, you can still achieve good things and have a positive impact on the community,' he said.
This year, the 33-year-old personal trainer plans to enter Ironman Lake Placid in July and Ironman Arizona in November. He and six other triathletes, all of whom have surmounted heart ailments, will be the subjects of a documentary that chronicles their preparations for and participation in the Arizona race.
Endurance has been a prevalent theme in Woodward's life since 2000, when doctors diagnosed him with bacterial endocarditis, an infection afflicting his heart's aortic valve. Surgeons replaced the valve with another human-tissue valve, but in 2007 the replacement valve failed, sending Woodward into congestive heart failure twice and prompting the insertion of a mechanical valve.
As the New England regional director for the Ironheart Group - an organization of more than 200 individuals from around the world that seeks to raise awareness of heart disease and support cardiac charities - Woodward delivers motivational speeches and organizes events such as the Ironheart Classic, a Concord fun run scheduled for May 5 that will benefit the Nick of Time Foundation, which educates schools, athletes and communities about sudden cardiac arrest and death in young people.
And as the founder/owner of Highpoint Fitness and Jeremy's Bootcamp, Woodward helps others improve their lives through individual and group fitness training.
'You see the progression and how people's lives change because they're healthier, they've lost 10 pounds, their cholesterol's improved or they're going out and doing their first 5K (race),' he said. 'It's pretty awesome.'