JYM Army Profile: Doug Budziak

JYM Army Profile: Doug Budziak
One word sums up this father of four's recent success in reaching his fitness goals: dedication.

Written by Doug Budziak

My name is Doug Budziak (pronounced "boo-jack"). I'm 29 years old and live in Pennsylvania. I have a fiancé and four wonderful children, and this is my story.

My goals outside of my fitness journey are fairly simple, but can be hard to achieve: I want to play a more active and energetic role in the lives of my four kids, and promote a healthy, smart, and fun way to enjoy life while sticking to a nutritious food plan.

My transformation has felt like an eternity. After seven years, I am finally at my healthiest state since 10th grade. I started out at the age of 22, size 40, weighing over 300 pounds. I remember working overnights, getting off work to stop at a fast-food place to grab three or four sandwiches, then heading home to sit and play video games. I was in a deep, dark place in my life, with no real care as to what I was doing to my body.

There was a life-changing moment when my dad sat me down and told me if I didn't change my life for the better, I would end up with a ton of health issues and maybe even end up dead. It took a while for that sink in.

I chose to start going to the gym. I went hard and probably did it in the unhealthiest way possible. I ate only one meal a day and I was hopped up on caffeine pills, thinking I couldn't get through the day without them.

I lost a lot of weight. In four years, I reached a weight of 220 pounds, but we all know how plans go — you find excuses and give up and find every reason not to go to the gym.

So there I was: 25 years old, weighing 220 pounds. Granted, that's a great weight-loss result at the end of four years, but I was going in blind with no research and no actual goal other than to lose weight. But my body got used to it and I hit a plateau for years and just couldn't get away from 220 pounds. I gave up on my diet all over again.

Then I found Jim Stoppani. I messaged him a few times, and we talked back and forth. He's given me some great advice, short and to the point, and is always encouraging and informative for whatever question I had.

I started the Summer Shred Challenge as my very first program. I...

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