I'm the


Before the fitness trainer awards and accolades, before the T.V. appearances, I was a guy in the wrong job, trying to be somebody I wasn’t, miserable and trying to piece my life back together. And a dog turned my life around.

It was 2011; I was 28. And for the first time, I’d lost the faith I’d always had about my childhood dream, which was very clear after seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger for the first time.

I grew up in Portville, New York, pop. 959. Not a great place. My family was poor, and my mom gave birth to me when she was 16. She was a young mother, with no college education, overwhelmed by five kids. My biological dad had very little interest in me. Let’s just say I didn’t get a lot of what I needed as a kid. (Fortunately, my step-dad was great, a hard-working man who would give me the shirt off his back if necessary).

Bottom line, my childhood didn't feel great. It felt tough.

I had one thing going for me: Ambition.

I've always been a dreamer.

And my mom did me a huge favor. When I was 14, she took me to YMCA and told me to start lifting weights. I fell in love with it.

By college, I was in great shape. And by the end of college, I was in love with a girl named Amanda. Big love. The kind of love I’d never experienced before.

At graduation, I desired to be a personal trainer, but I was deathly afraid of being poor so I took a job in finance just to make money and gain what I thought was prestige.

I had a very wrong idea that
I could fix any problems I had in my life by becoming wealthy.

Life would soon crush me for my mistaken belief and inauthenticity.

After three years together, Amanda left me because I didn’t know how to be myself and be vulnerable.

A short while later, I got fired from my position as a derivatives analyst because I had no passion for the job.

So, I'm 28, and at rock bottom. And my dream life seems very far away, if not impossible.

For the next three years, I don’t do anything. I’m depressed, I don’t have my shit together, and I’m alone. My family has written me off.

Then one day, I go to an animal shelter and adopt a puppy.

Suddenly it isn’t just me anymore. This dog becomes my lifeline. 
At the time, I don’t care about myself. But I love this dog so much.

And I have a horrendous thought.

If I don’t get my act together, this little dog will end up back in the shelter.

I’d already lost the woman I love.

I couldn’t lose my best friend.

And so

I changed.

I started getting my life together.

The first choice was to do what I love, personal training.
I got a job at Equinox for only $32,000 a year.

The second change was to be authentic and vulnerable. I began being myself. I let people know where I’ve come from and who I really am.

Within six months, I became the number one trainer where I worked.

Within a year, I earned a distinction as one of the Top 25 Equinox trainers in the country.

After a couple of years, I moved over to training at a boutique studio where I was compensated for my value.

Today, through Jake Zemer LLC, I professionally train, provide coaching and accountability to select clients, and additionally, I do speaking engagements and media appearances.

I’m living my dream life. I am on track to exceed my financial goals this year. I drive a car I love, and I’m in great shape. To be honest, these things make me very happy. I’m superficial, but not shallow. It’s a great pleasure every day to wake up and help other people live their dreams through better health and a greater physique.

One last thing to my story…

After 10 years apart, I fulfilled my destiny and the woman of my dreams, Amanda, returned to me. We were meant to be together.

P.S. I still have my dog. He’s a Shar Pei that I named Puddin. People ask me “Why Puddin?” Easy, he’s the color of butterscotch and he’s an adorable pile of mush. People also look at me (6′ 3 and 240, less than 10% body fat year-round) and say, “You should have a Pitbull.” My reply?

I'm the Pitbull!

Jacob's Bio

Jacob Zemer is a performance coach and speaker based in NYC. He holds 12+ nationally recognized certifications in the field, including NASM, CPT, FNS, Precision Nutrition level 1, Exos Performance Specialist, Equinox KB 1 and 2, Equinox Prenatal/Postnatal, TRX, ViPR, and Animal Flow.

Jacob has 10+ years in the fitness industry, for 3,200+ hours each year working with a wide range of clients– from CEOs to ex professional athletes.

Jacob uses science-based coaching methods and accountability to help people exceed their health and fitness goals and unleash their best self. He takes years of experience and a results-driven methodology to make it as EASY as possible for clients to perform to their true potential.

Tatum Sharp

Director of Social Media

"For there is always light, if only we're brave enough to see it, if only we're brave enough to be it."
- Amanda Gorman

Tatum is the mastermind behind Jacob Zemer’s social media. Every post you come across has its journey through her creative touch. From crafting compelling content and refining videos and reels to composing captivating captions, overseeing videographers, and meticulously planning release schedules – she’s constantly immersed in curating the Jacob Zemer content that captivates our audience!

Away from the digital buzz of social media, Tatum enjoys taking the stage, wielding her bass in her hardcore band, Volition, and indulges her passion for all things horror by frequently cozying up with scary movies.


  • BS Exercise Science minor in Communications
  • EXOS Performance Specialist
  • ACE Group Fitness
  • Creative writing
  • Visual communication

Elise Ladaw

Director of Coaching

“Science is Stronger”

Elise’s primary role as Director of Coaching is to ensure that the coaching business runs smoothly and is driven by science based principles concerning nutrition and exercise science. Her goal is to continually work to enhance the overall client experience, educate the clientele, monitor key performance indicators related to the coaching services, and foster a company culture of continuous learning among coaching staff.

When Elise is not helping the company with all things coaching she is either in the gym lifting weights or taking long walks through the grocery store finding new tasty and macro friendly nutrition products.


  • BAS Food Science 
  • NQ NPC Figure Competitor 
  • ACE CPT 
  • J3 University

Michelle Freedman

Chief of Operations

“Practice not perfection”

Michelle holds a crucial position in supervising the daily operations, aiming for operational efficiency, fostering growth, and contributing to the achievement of the organization’s strategic objectives. Beyond providing structure, Michelle is actively involved in coaching and managing social media activities.

Away from refining policies and operations at Jake Zemer, LLC, you’ll discover Michelle outdoors, often barefoot with her kettlebells, engaging in adventures alongside her husband, two children, and two bulldogs.


  • BFA Graphic Design 
  • 10 years Corporate Fitness Management 
  • ACE CPT & GFI 
  • ACE Nutrition Specialist 
  • Kettlebell Master Instructor 
  • FMS I & II
  • USA Weightlifting 
  • Pre/Post Natal Certified  
  • TRX 
  • Schwinn & Maddog Cycling