My fitness journey began in high school. I battled some weight issues as a kid and realized early I had a sweet tooth. Not just a regular Sweet Tooth but one that could polish off a dozen donuts instead of one or two. On top of this, I was a picky eater who didn't like vegetables and only wanted pizza and burgers. As I entered High School, I found weightlifting and began my journey.
Learning bad eating habits and horrible weightlifting form would be a huge limiting factor in my journey. After working out with minimal results through High School. I ended up meeting my kids' mom out of high school and having our first born, my daughter. And although this was pivotal and one of the happiest moments of my life, it was also a point in time where I started to be more sedentary. A couple of years later we have another blessing in my second child my son. Now it was a busy life.
Having a family with two kids would prove to take time and energy. As the years unfolded and I had some of the best times of my life with my family, my unhealthy weight started to rise. Over the next several years I would peek at my highest weight at over 205 lb. I am only 5ft 6in tall so you can do the math. I was pretty thick in the midsection, to say the least. With this extra weight came extra pain. Not only from my knees and other joints that couldn't handle the inflammation in my body. But from the stomach pain that I would have from eating horrible Foods all the time.
I knew I needed to make a change not only for myself but for my family. I did not want to show my children that this was the way to live. So I got off my butt drove down to my local gym and purchased a monthly gym membership. In the beginning, it was the same old song and dance. Eat like crap, work out with medium intensity, and get minimal results. One day I came across an article titled Shortcut to Size by Dr. Jim Stoppani. This was a turning point in my life. I read and studied the program and diet plan.
Over the next couple of months, I followed the plan to the T and got excellent results. I had never seen my body shred so much fat so quickly while building muscle. And although this is a mass-building program I would learn quickly that you could shred fat and build muscle at the same time.
Through this program, I started to learn more about my body. I learned that over 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight and close to 2 grams of carbs per pound of body weight was too much for what my body needed, and I started to have digestion issues. After the program ended I went back to my same program of weekly donuts and cookies and went right back into my old form.
Fast forward a couple of years later, I'm still following Dr. Stoppani, just not putting it all together. Finally decided to try Dr. Stoppani's app. Only $1 got me started for 30 days. This would prove to be one of the best decisions I could make for my health.
I then made another life-changing decision and purged my refrigerator and cabinet of all the junk food. I began to fill my refrigerator and cabinets with nothing but foods on Jim Stoppani's Dieting 101 list. I started following Intermittent Fasting, following Jim's Muscle Building Nutrition Rules.
Through trial and error, I finally figured out my body does great with between 1 and 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight and only about a half gram of carbs per pound of body weight. While figuring out the right amount of macros to eat I also began taking Vita JYM, Pre JYM, Post JYM, and Pro JYM. This was a huge factor, in that I wasn't craving as much junk food anymore now that I was eating the proper foods and taking the proper supplements. This is when the results really started to shine through!
Over the next few months, under the guidance of Dr. Stoppani, I began to shred the midsection. I got so addicted to seeing and feeling the results. Over the next year, I would do several programs back to back, starting with Power Pyramid, then Strong in 8. Then I did the Old School Bodybuilding program and followed that up with Down and Up Mass.
Through this year I lost 60 lbs! I am down from 205 lb to 145 lbs shredded! Now the big key for me in continuing to stay shredded and my muscle bellies full was learning that you can eat the foods that you enjoy and still be shredded. Dr. Jim Stoppani teaches you that you can eat the foods you love like pizza and donuts as long as you have earned those meals throughout the week through clean eating and hard exercise.
One piece of the puzzle that I really enjoy is understanding the Doc's Holiday Survival Guide. I practice some of these tips weekly. I try to time my weekly cheat meal immediately following a hard resistance training so that all those carbs go straight to replenishing my glycogen stores and not to storing fat. This proved to be huge because one of the biggest obstacles I face in my fitness journey is food.
Aside from leaving every bit of myself on the gym floor and eating clean 6 days a week, some of the biggest factors to my success have been, hydration, sleep, and managing stress. It sounds cliche but water is huge. Also, sleep has been a huge factor. I notice a huge drop in strength, energy, and overall quality of life when sleep gets cut short. And learning to manage stress: We all go through trials and tribulations and sometimes it seems like we're not going to make it through. But learning to deal with these thoughts in my mind and be okay with living my best life right now has proven to be life-changing.
Friends and family have now started to notice the changes I have made. I have had several conversations with friends and family about getting them on track for their fitness goals, and it is very satisfying to know that I'm doing this not only for myself but motivating others to do the same.
There are times when the going gets tough and you don't want to eat clean or go to the gym. Things like sickness, injury, and stress can all hinder your gains and success. But understanding that this is all part of life. And you must pick yourself up and dust yourself off when you fall down. Times are going to get tough. Not every day is a breeze. But you have to be willing to put your best foot forward and give life everything you've got!
The best advice I could give someone to help them meet their fitness goals is number one get Jim Stoppani's app to help keep you on track every day with your reps and sets. Not to mention all the educational information on the app to help you with your diet. Number two pick up some supplements. Preferably Jim's high-quality, affordable supps.
Start with the basics and move your way up. Stay with Pre JYM, Post JYM, and Pro JYM. And finally, put the plan in motion. Pick a program. Follow the workout regimen and diet, include your cheat meal, take your supplements, hydrate, get adequate sleep, and manage stress. Sometimes it takes a while to find your lane. But Dr. Jim Stoppani definitely gives you all the tools needed to do just that!
Please follow me Dominic Flores @shredderdee on Instagram to see these Abs and watch my continued fitness journey.