Neal Bendesky is not your normal 64-year-old sports marketing professional when it comes to overcoming the odds for his wellness journey. As a motivational speaker for corporate wellness groups and events, he is known as the 199GUY because he lost over 199 pounds starting at 450 pounds and going 199 straight days in the gym after surviving a life-threatening event from a pre-existing condition. His story has been featured in People Magazine, Men’s Health, FitBit and the Sports Business Journal. In fact, Bendesky, a media ambassador for Orangetheory Fitness/Austin Fitness Group and the Rock ‘n’ Roll Running Series, is a ChiRunner and has completed 16 half marathons in 13 states since his heart attack. His mantra is to continue to create a chain reaction of inspiration for others through lifestyle transformation and also #FINISHLINESvsFinishTimes.
Bendesky has previously held senior sports management positions with the Arizona Rattlers, Miami HEAT, Florida Marlins and the University of Miami Hurricanes along with managing major celebrity fund-raising events since 1997 directing his current company Game Plan, Inc. These events benefited Children’s Home Society, Dade Schools Athletic Foundation in Florida, United Way, Lauren’s Kids and the Boys & Girls Clubs. In 2017, he celebrated his anniversary for surviving a heart attack by running a marathon distance as a fundraiser for the Children’s Museum at the American Heart Association in Phoenix, Arizona. He currently is also a consultant for ImagineAR which is the industry leader for an augmented reality (AR) platform (no developers required) and recently signed the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens.