Getting better as a family: Candice Carter to appear on Amazon show, ‘Radical Body Transformation’

Published 12:10 am Wednesday, October 23, 2019

SALISBURY — In March 2018, Bobby Carter weighed 388 pounds. He could barely walk down the driveway and had focus and balance issues, along with a building pressure behind the eyes.

While performing an eye exam, Dr. David King of China Grove discovered an abnormality of severely swollen optic nerves. Meanwhile, Bobby’s wife, Candice, and brother, Barry, knew that something was not right.

“There had been a total change in Bobby,” Candice said. “He had no motivation and was experiencing memory loss.”

Further tests found a massive brain tumor that had been affecting hormone levels and Bobby’s personality. Surgery was performed, removing the tennis ball-sized tumor. Luckily, the tumor proved to be benign and no further treatment was required. The tumor had likely been growing for a long time.

And while Bobby experienced post-operative issues with blood clots, subdural hematoma and cerebral spinal fluid, just a year later, he had made a significant recovery and pushed himself to get in shape.

Instead of struggling to walk down the driveway, Bobby had taken up running. With such good results, Bobby, Candice, and sons Brayden and Grayson took a sightseeing trip to New York City. And it was that trip that marked a turning point for Candice, too.

“Bobby was able to run circles around me. I couldn’t even walk through the city,” Candice said. “The rest of us were tired and out of shape. Watching Bobby made us all want to change.”

As a youth pastor in the South Rowan area, Candice serves Trinity, St. Enoch, Mt. Moriah and Ebenezer Lutheran churches. She leads CHAOS, an acronym for Christians Hyped About Our Savior. She says that life became hectic with her own family. And she had developed some poor health habits.

“I drank at least five Cokes a day, all empty calories. All my fluid intake was soft drinks,” Candice said. “I wanted a change and I wanted to be challenged.”

One day, Candice saw an online ad for the Amazon show, “Radical Body Transformation.”

To get on the show, Candice said, she needed to send in a 500-word document with reasons about why the show should choose her.

The very next day, Candice heard back from the show’s founder, James Hergott. A body builder himself, Hergott told Candice that the show had evolved from watching regular people become body builders to getting to know more about the person during the fitness transformation. Candice was accepted into the program and she was given an online workout plan — tough with specific expectations.

Now, she communicates with show trainer Josh Wilkinson weekly while reporting exercise and caloric intake. Body measurements are collected every four weeks.

“We try to pick people from various walks of life. Candice is very interesting and unique, plus colorful in a positive way,” Hergott said. “With the show, she has learned many things about diet and eating correctly that she has shared with her family and youth ministry kids. I think others can relate well to Candice.”

While Candice, 38, was watching her husband continue to improve his overall wellness, she asked for more help.

“Exercise had never been a part of my life, and it wasn’t something I was into,” she said. “I called Jamie Morgan, Rowan County YMCA CEO, and told him what I wanted to do and asked for help.”

Morgan then contacted Saleeby-Fisher YMCA Executive Director Amanda Hesse and asked her to get involved.

“The Y wanted to help Candice on this journey because she was seeking a healthier lifestyle, which is one of our focus areas, and this program allows us to give back to our community,” Hesse said.”We wanted to provide a supportive environment and resources to help her reach specific wellness goals.”

With the Y’s support, Candice went to work. Personal trainer Lyndy Buffett said she tried to go easy on Candice, but she was ready to get to work.

“Once she got started, I have seen her in here on a regular basis doing her own thing,” Buffett said.

And in addition to supporting Candice in her wellness quest, the YMCA also gave six-month memberships to her family. Brayden, now 12, says it his first exercise program. Grayson, 8, said he likes the leg press the best.

Meanwhile, Bobby, who inspired his family’s fitness journey and is at 188 pounds. After losing 200 pounds himself, he can now run seven miles.

With just several weeks remaining, the Carter family has committed to running the Battleship Memorial 5K in Wilmington on Nov. 3. Following that, a “Radical Body Transformation” film crew will video Candice and develop footage for the popularity portion of the program. Each of the 10-12 participants will have a published video available online for voting purposes. The top three winners will get $100,000, $50,000 and $10,000.

“It’s amazing how this story came together. We were in such darkness when Bobby was sick, and our world was upside down. People kept telling us that something good would come out of it,” Candice said. “Bobby inspired our whole family to become more concerned with our health and has even inspired others to do the same. His sickness actually pushed me to complete my masters of theology degree and to take part in ‘Radical Body Transformation.’”

To watch Candice’s journey, follow her on Instagram @Candice.w.carter.