Jillian Michaels shares rare photo taken before her fitness journey began

Jillian Michaels shares rare photo taken before her fitness journey began

Jillian Michaels has shared a rare photo taken before her fitness journey began.

The personal trainer's year definitely got off on the wrong foot after she was slammed for criticizing Lizzo's weight, claiming that she was encouraging people to "glorify obesity".

Lizzo shared this body confidence video on Instagram: 

Michaels subsequently responded to the backlash on Instagram, writing: "As I've stated repeatedly before, we are all beautiful, worthy, and equally deserving. I also feel strongly that we love ourselves enough to acknowledge there are serious health consequences that come with obesity - heart disease, diabetes, cancer to name a few. I would never wish these on ANYONE and I would hope we prioritize our health because we LOVE ourselves and our bodies."

Michaels built upon this point yesterday by sharing a picture of herself at the age of 14, which she captioned: "Here's me at 5'0 tall and 175 lbs. If I can do it - anyone can. Share your story..."

In response, people shared their stories and thanked Michaels for her help and inspiration.

One wrote: "I was close to 180lbs at 5'3" at one point. Now I'm at 145 and working on losing more with your help. I honestly have never felt more inspired than when you're yelling at me from my tv screen. 😂"

An Instagram comment. Credit: Instagram / Jillian Michaels

Another wrote: "5'1 and got to 165 after having two babies. Have managed to get to 130, but still struggling. Thank you for your inspiration!"

An Instagram comment. Credit: Instagram / Jillian Michaels

The fitness exert previously explained what it was like to be an overweight child to Women's Health, telling the magazine that she and her father bonded over food and she would "eat without regard" to her health.

However, everything change for Michaels when her mom signed her up for a martial arts class as a teenager.

"That's when I began to appreciate fitness," she said of martial arts to USA Today. "It translated into every other aspect of my life - my confidence, self-worth, self-esteem. Nobody bullied me or picked on me anymore because I respected myself."

"Being (or getting) healthy doesn't have to be complicated - and it shouldn't require extremes," she told Women's Health. "Healthy living is all about moderation. If you put the word "too" in front of anything - too much food, too little food, too much sleep, too little sleep - you've got chaos, whereas if everything is balanced just right, everything falls into place."

However, while Michaels is a proponent of a healthy lifestyle, she understands the importance of balance too. When asked about her 2020 goals by Prevention.com, she said that she'd "like to get my American Express bill down."