International Transformation Of The Month: Jana Kovacovic

Jana's busy lifestyle used to get in the way of her health. Learn how she made fitness a priority and built a body worthy of the WBFF stage!

When Fitness Takes A Back Seat

I've worked in the fitness industry since I was 16 years old. I've always been athletic, and I taught 20 hours of group fitness classes each week for over 12 years. Fitness was my life.

I began working out less because I had just started a business and had less time. A few years later, I was hired by a big franchise fitness chain to help them open new gyms. I travelled 6-7 days per week and often spent 12 hours on the road on any given day. While working for that company, I was so busy I struggled to eat clean and stopped training completely. I was just so tired when I got home at night.

Within 2-3 years, I'd gained over 20 pounds (10 kg). None of my favorite pants or dresses fit anymore. Some of my coworkers began to ask me if I was pregnant. That shocked me, but it was a turnaround point. I told myself I had to change my life immediately! I didn't want to feel uncomfortable anymore.

Before /// 144 lbs
After /// 117 lbs
AGE 34 / HEIGHT 5'4" / BODY FAT 30+%
AGE 37 / HEIGHT 5'4" / BODY FAT 10%

The Road to Results

I remember the date: February 1, 2011. It was just before my 34th birthday. On that day, I began my journey back to a healthy lifestyle. I looked for fitness role models and inspirational people on the web. I printed their photos and stuck them on my wall. I hung my favorite pants where I could see them every day to motivate myself to fit into them again.

I started by organizing myself much better. I made time to go to the gym 5-6 times per week, prepared my meals for the whole day and brought food with me when I traveled. When everything was already planned, there was no excuse for me to eat poorly or skip the gym. After the first few months, I'd already lost some weight.

"When everything was already planned, there was no excuse for me to eat poorly or skip the gym."

I visited a fitness competition camp in April 2011. Some of my friends were there preparing for a competition. They asked me if I would compete with them at the end of the year. My first thought was: "What? Me and competition? Never!" But after thinking about it, I decided to try it. I wanted an adventure and a new experience.

Competition Preparation

I'd spent my whole life teaching clients how to lose fat and build muscle, but competition preparation was an entirely new direction for me. I was motivated to achieve more than just losing the 20 pounds I had gained.

My first fitness competition was Ms. Bikini in November 2011. I was in the best shape I had ever been. I was more than happy. After some photo shoots I put my before-after pictures together and showed them to my clients. I told them that if I could do it, they can do it as well. Since that show in 2011, I've set a new fitness goal for myself every year. It's fun to live a healthy lifestyle and to inspire other people.

I've continued to compete in fitness competitions. In 2013, I placed in the top ten for Diva Fitness Masters and Diva Fitness Classic at the WBFF show in London.




Supplement Program

Afternoon

Nutrition Program

Meal 1: Pre-workout
  • eggs Egg Whites

    4

  • eggs Whole Egg

    1

  • oats Oatmeal

    1/2 cup

Meal 2: Post-workout Shake
Meal 3: Post-workout Meal
  • chicken Chicken

    5 oz

  • sweet potatoes Sweet Potatoes

    4 oz

Meal 4
  • salmon Salmon

    5 oz

  • broccoli Broccoli

    2 cups

  • avocado Avocado

    1 oz

Meal 5
  • ground beef Lean Ground Beef

    5 oz

  • veggies Mixed Veggies

    2 cups

Meal 6
  • chicken Chicken

    5 oz

  • veggies Green Veggies

    2 cups

  • brown rice Brown Rice

    1/4 cup

Training Program

I work out six days per week. During the offseason, I mostly lift weights without cardio. About six months before a competition, I start to include some cardio sessions. I do functional workouts or the spin bike, stairs, treadmill, or outdoor sprints.

I train between noon and late afternoon, since that's the time when I feel I have the most power. As I get closer to competition day, I do 2-3 workouts per day. The number of workouts per day depends on what kind of shape I'm in.

Day 1: Legs/Abs
Superset
    • Step-up with Knee Raise Step-up with Knee Raise Step-up with Knee Raise (Performed on High Box)
      4 sets of 15 reps
    • Kneeling Jump Squat Kneeling Jump Squat Kneeling Jump Squat
      4 sets of 15 reps
Superset
    • Kettlebell One-Legged Deadlift Kettlebell One-Legged Deadlift One-Legged Deadlift
      4 sets of 15 reps
    • One-Legged Cable Kickback One-Legged Cable Kickback One-Legged Cable Kickback
      4 sets of 20 reps
Triset
    • Wide Stance Barbell Squat Wide Stance Barbell Squat Wide Stance Barbell Squat
      4 sets of 8 reps
    • Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift
      4 sets of 8 reps
    • Barbell Lunge Barbell Lunge Barbell Lunge
      4 sets of 8 reps
 
  • Reverse Hyperextension Reverse Hyperextension Reverse Hyperextension
    4 sets of 30 reps
  • Barbell Hip Thrust Barbell Hip Thrust Barbell Hip Thrust
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Leg Extensions Leg Extensions Leg Extensions
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise
    3 sets of 20 reps
  • Dumbbell Lunges Dumbbell Lunges Dumbbell Walking Lunges
    4 sets of 20 reps
  • Good Morning Good Morning Good Morning
    4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Toes To Bar Toes To Bar Toes To Bar
    4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Decline Crunch Decline Crunch Decline Crunch
    4 sets of 20 reps
  • Russian Twist Russian Twist Weighted Russian Twist
    4 sets of 20 reps
Day 2: Shoulders/Triceps/Chest/Cardio
    • Front Cable Raise Front Cable Raise Front Cable Raise
      4 sets of 12 reps
    • Reverse Machine Flyes Reverse Machine Flyes Reverse Machine Flyes
      4 sets of 12 reps
    • Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 10 reps
    • Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press
      4 sets of 30 reps
Superset
    • Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise Bent-Elbow Side Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 8 reps
    • Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise Straight-Arm Side Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 8 reps
 
  • Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position
    4 sets of 10-15 reps
  • Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version
    5 sets of 5-8 reps
  • Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version Dips (Machine Assisted)
    4 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Jogging-Treadmill Jogging-Treadmill HIIT Cardio
    30 minutes
Day 3: Back/Biceps/Cardio
  • Suspended Row Suspended Row Suspended Pullup
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Reverse Grip Bent-Over Rows Reverse Grip Bent-Over Rows Reverse Grip Bent-Over Rows
    5 sets of 10 reps
  • Seated One-arm Cable Pulley Rows Seated One-arm Cable Pulley Rows Seated One-arm Cable Pulley Rows
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown
    5 sets of 15, 12, 10, 8, 6 reps
  • Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row Lying T-Bar Row
    4 sets of 10 reps
  • Hyperextensions (Back Extensions) Hyperextensions (Back Extensions) Hyperextensions (Back Extensions)
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Preacher Curl Preacher Curl Preacher 'Scott' Curl
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Dumbbell Alternate Bicep Curl Dumbbell Alternate Bicep Curl Dumbbell Alternate Bicep Curl
    5 sets of 20 reps
  • High Cable Curls High Cable Curls High Cable Curls
    5 sets of 10 reps
  • Jogging-Treadmill Jogging-Treadmill HIIT Cardio
    30 minutes
Day 4: Legs/Abs
Superset
    • Step-up with Knee Raise Step-up with Knee Raise Single-leg Step-up with Knee Raise (Performed on High Box)
      4 sets of 15 reps
    • Freehand Jump Squat Freehand Jump Squat Freehand Jump Squat
      4 sets of 15 reps
Superset
    • Kettlebell One-Legged Deadlift Kettlebell One-Legged Deadlift One-Legged Deadlift
      4 sets of 15 reps
    • One-Legged Cable Kickback One-Legged Cable Kickback One-Legged Cable Kickback
      4 sets of 20 reps
Superset
    • Wide Stance Barbell Squat Wide Stance Barbell Squat Wide Stance Barbell Squat
      4 sets of 8 reps
    • Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift
      4 sets of 8 reps
 
  • Barbell Lunge Barbell Lunge Barbell Lunge
    4 sets of 8 reps
  • Reverse Hyperextension Reverse Hyperextension Reverse Hyperextension
    4 sets of 30 reps
  • Barbell Hip Thrust Barbell Hip Thrust Barbell Hip Thrust
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Leg Extensions Leg Extensions Leg Extensions
    4 sets of 15 reps
  • Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise Seated Calf Raise
    3 sets of 20 reps
  • Dumbbell Lunges Dumbbell Lunges Dumbbell Walking Lunges
    4 sets of 20 reps
  • Good Morning Good Morning Good Morning
    4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Toes To Bar Toes To Bar Toes To Bar
    4 sets of 10-12 reps
  • Decline Crunch Decline Crunch Decline Crunch
    4 sets of 20 reps
  • Russian Twist Russian Twist Weighted Russian Twist
    4 sets of 20 reps
Day 5: Shoulders/Triceps/Chest/Cardio
    • Front Cable Raise Front Cable Raise Front Cable Raise
      4 sets of 12 reps
    • Reverse Machine Flyes Reverse Machine Flyes Reverse Machine Flyes
      4 sets of 12 reps
    • Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise Dumbbell Lying One-Arm Rear Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 10 reps
    • Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press Seated Barbell Military Press
      4 sets of 30 reps
Superset
    • Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise Bent-Elbow Side Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 8 reps
    • Side Lateral Raise Side Lateral Raise Straight-Arm Side Lateral Raise
      5 sets of 8 reps
 
  • Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position
    4 sets of 10-15 reps
  • Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version
    5 sets of 5-8 reps
  • Dips - Triceps Version Dips - Triceps Version Dips (Machine Assisted)
    4 sets of 8-10 reps
  • Jogging-Treadmill Jogging-Treadmill HIIT Cardio
    30 minutes
Day 7: Rest

Suggestions for others

"Never stop believing in yourself, and never give up!"
  1. Dream it. Believe it. Achieve it. Never stop believing in yourself, and never give up! Surround yourself with positive people who support you.

  2. Be patient. Nothing happens overnight. If you struggle with training or nutrition, remember why you started. It's better to suffer from discipline than suffer from regret.

  3. Put photos of role models in your wardrobe, kitchen, or wherever. Use them to stay motivated to achieve your fitness goal.

  4. Stop comparing yourself with others! Everybody is different. Everybody has different genetics. Fitness is a challenge against yourself.

  5. The number on your scale doesn't tell you everything. Measure progress by testing your body fat, looking in the mirror, and paying attention to how you feel. Take progress photos every 1-2 months.

  6. Don't be afraid of carbs! Good carbs are important in life. Just eat them in the right amount and the right times. Everybody reacts to carbs differently.

Country-specific Details

Swiss food and supplements are very expensive. And the variety of veggies, salads, and fruits is limited in some seasons. I get some of my food from a wholesaler and order products from the USA if they aren't available here.