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Mikel De Crus

One man's journey to avoid the fate of poor health that plagued so many others in his family.

Mikel De Crus

Written by Mikel De Crus

Every journey starts somewhere. I guess my weight-loss journey started in a most unexpected way. I was at work one day about 10 years ago, when I got the call from my brother that my dad had just suffered a massive heart attack. I was told to be prepared for anything.

He survived it. But a few months later, I received another call. This time it was about my father’s youngest brother. He, too, had suffered a heart attack, and sadly, did not make it. My favorite uncle was gone at 50 and his death broke my heart into a million pieces.

Over the following years, many more family members would succumb to the same disease. Others would develop cancer, diabetes, or high blood pressure. Many, again, before their time.

Upon reflection, I knew that it wasn’t our genes, but our poor nutrition choices and lifestyle that were killing us. When I saw the same way of life in the younger generation of my family, I knew something had to change. I knew I had to change.

So I began on a weight-loss journey to effect that change. However, I staggered on this journey for many years, with ups and downs. At 34, I was still 182 pounds with a BMI of 30!  

That's when I encountered Dr. Jim Stoppani’s "Nutrition Overview" of Shortcut to Shred on the Internet. When I first watched the video, I thought to myself, here was a man who seem to follow what he preached.

Curious, I began to follow him more and more and was shocked to discover just how bad my nutritional and lifestyle choices were. And that was because I didn't know any better. Like the difference between good and bad fat. Or simple carbs versus complex carbs.

Before Dr. Stoppani, I avoided all types of fats. Before him, my idea of fitness was jumping on a treadmill and running for hours on end. But all that changed. 

What made it even more amazing was that Jim and his team always made themselves available. They readily answered any questions about his supplements (Pro JYM Tahitian Vanilla Bean is my favorite!) or his strength-training programs, or just about fitness and nutrition in general. It made me feel like I wasn't on this fitness journey alone. That mattered a lot to me. I love Jim's passion to educate and his zeal for fitness and his take on life!

Then there’s a whole JYM family out there. There are days when keeping to your workout regimen and nutrition protocols can be tough, but the JYM Army is always there to lend their support and to motivate and challenge you! These are people who are truly, truly passionate about fitness and nutrition. And their personal stories of triumphs, failures, and successes are always inspirational and filled with such positivity that it gets me going even on my toughest days.

I follow a lot of Dr. Stoppani's advice, but one piece for me stands out above the rest: Don't just be average, be amazing!

It's true — to inspire others, you can't just be mediocre. You need to aspire to greater heights and be an example to others. After all, we only have one life to live, and I want to make sure that I live it to the fullest with my loved ones and inspire them to do the same.

Today, at 36, with the continuous support of my wonderful wife and in-laws, Dr. Jim Stoppani and his amazing team, and the JYM Army, I’m proud to say that I have lost 28 pounds (and gained muscle in the process) and am in the best shape of my life.

I hope to inspire others the same way they have inspired me: by example. This journey has only just begun for me. Thank you for this amazing opportunity to share my story.


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