We are so excited to welcome Jessica Cerra to our Paradis Pro ambassador team! Jess grew up in Whitefish, Montana, where her spirit for adventure and easy access to the outdoors led her to pursuing sports physiology in college at University of Montana and later grad school at SDSU. It was during her research on cyclists that she discovered she had an elite level VO2 rate which is integral to excelling in endurance sports. Her professor encouraged her to start mountain biking; Jess had found her sport. In her own words, “Everything about it was natural. It was like I found what I was supposed to be doing and why I was drawn to the outdoors”. 

Entering the XTERRA Off-Road Triathlon World Championship was an immediate bucket list item for Jess. She found a coach, three time XTERRA world champion and her professor's wife, Lesley Patterson, to help coach her for the swimming aspect of the race. Even though she doubted her abilities in the water, Jess ended up on the podium in the Championship, which was a gateway to qualifying for Worlds.

Jess recognized that she had potential in cycling as her strongest sport and eventually joined a women’s professional road cycling team. She showed immense potential from the start, but battled some physical setbacks which limited showcasing her full potential.  Jess was eventually invited to compete in Europe, getting to race the top cycling races like the Spring Classics and Flanders. Following her successes, she was in a horrific crash at the Tour of the Gila and endured many subsequent surgeries. She eventually returned to racing, winning the criterium race at Redlands and completed five Tours of California, but the setbacks took their toll on her success trajectory.

Towards the end of her road racing career, Jess dabbled in the gravel cycling world and attended Rooted Vermont. This experience opened her eyes to a new genre of racing and would eventually provide a better balance as she was investing more and more time growing her sports nutrition business.

Jess’ sports nutrition business was born from her private chef experience combined with her exercise physiology background. She started out as an assistant catering at private parties. Inheriting clients and growing a business led to Jess carving her own path in the private chef business, cooking meals Monday through Wednesday and competing in cycling events the rest of the week. She started her own nutrition bar, JoJé Bar, which provides the on the go energy needed for athletes with busy schedules and eventually sold the business to Alete Active Nutrition, for which she is now the VP of Product and Community development.

A newfound love of gravel racing sparked the opportunity to showcase her love of cycling and her hometown of Whitefish, Montana and co-found The Last Best Ride with her partner Sam Boardman. Giving back to the community and helping other females find their place in the cycling world is something close to Jess’ heart. The Last Best Ride is now in year four and has provided over $102,000 in scholarships to women graduating from high school in Whitefish. 

We are so excited to welcome Jess to the Paradis Pros family!