Joyfully FiT Leader

Meet Jay Hancock this Testimony Tuesday!

Jay is a joy to have in class and a true example of how to exude joy in all you do. He comes in with a smile and leaves with a smile every time! He’s a hard worker on the gym floor and the church campus. It’s a pleasure to introduce you to this powerful pastor!


A Joyfully FiT Leader - Jay Hancock, Jay smiling with his dog


“God wants our bodies to be fit enough to do His will.”




My name is Jay and I’ve been serving Carmel Baptist Church as the executive pastor for roughly 20 years now. I have been married to my wife Jody for 30 years and we have two adult daughters (21 and 23).  Our daughters have left the nest. Our older daughter is getting married this summer and the younger one will be graduating from college next year.  Of course, Jody and I are always very proud of our girls, but especially now in how they are maturing in their faith.


A Joyfully FiT Leader - Jay Hancock, Jay with his family smiling


My fitness journey began in earnest at the age of 30, when I decided to train for a half marathon (13 miles and change).  After logging about ten years of running on hard surfaces, my knees started to show some wear and tear, so much so that I was no longer able to continue my regimen of running.  Also, at my age 40 milestone, I discovered that my cholesterol levels were high even though my weight and overall fitness were fine. I then realized that some changes were needed in both my conditioning program as well as my diet habits.  Workout changes mostly focused on low impact exercises to reduce stress on my joints, while dietary changes kept my cholesterol and triglycerides down.


A Joyfully FiT Leader - Jay Hancock, Jay hiking around Jerusalem


MissionFiT has challenged me to make better choices regarding what I eat (and drink).  A healthy lifestyle requires a personal commitment to both a healthier diet (including hydration) and a regular fitness program.  Surprisingly, I learned that by drinking more water and cutting back on how much milk I’ve been drinking results in a pretty big improvement in my overall well-being!  While I really appreciate the health benefits I’ve gotten from the exercise component of MissionFiT’s program, the nutrition education aspects have had the greatest impact for me.


Motivation for my pursuit of wellness and fitness comes from within because I’m pretty much self-motivated.  However, I really enjoy walking with my wife and hiking in the mountains, so it is very important to me that I maintain my fitness level to allow me to continue these activities.


A Joyfully FiT Leader - Jay Hancock, Jay with his wife traveling


I certainly believe that there is a connection between faith and health.  God wants our bodies to be fit enough to do His will–live a long life of ministry, manage stress and strain for that reason, and to be an example to others regarding self-discipline.  A pastor’s health is critical because of our responsibility to be a role model and to provide spiritual growth to all that depend on us.


A Joyfully FiT Leader - Jay Hancock, Jay sitting on the edge of a mountain overlooking the trees


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