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Maryana Burtnyak

Here’s how one woman found her motivation and lost 21 pounds in 8 short weeks.

Maryana Burtnyak

They say close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. Bulls--t

Maryana Burtnyak was oh-so-close to winning the female grand prize in the 2023 Summer Shred Challenge on JimStoppani.com. She ended up finishing runner-up to Selena Barbieri. But that near miss not only won her a $1,000 shopping spree; the work she put into the Super Shredded 8 program (SS8) changed her body and her life.

In just eight weeks, she lost 21 pounds, got stronger than she ever thought was possible, boosted her energy levels and overall health, and even strengthened her relationship with her husband.

The Right Time for a Change

Before the 2023 Summer Shred Challenge, Maryana and her husband were no strangers to my programs and diets here on JimStoppani.com. They started with Shortcut to Shred several years ago, where Maryana learned the basics of strength training (including new exercises and techniques like supersets) and got her first taste of success.

“We followed the workout, dietary plan, and supplement plan and got amazing results,” she says. “I felt like I could fly!”

 Unfortunately, she couldn’t sustain that momentum. The pandemic in 2020 (and thereafter) set her back. “I gained a lot of weight and felt that I was missing my previous lifestyle and body, but there was no push to start all over again.”

That push eventually came in mid-2023 when her husband told her he was going to start a new challenge. Not wanting to miss out on a chance to get back in shape and reclaim her body, Maryana joined him in the Summer Shred Challenge. 

Seeing Results Within Weeks

JimStoppani.com challenges are divided between male and female categories for prizes, but that doesn’t mean there can’t be some personal (yet healthy) rivalries at home.  

“We were supporting each other, following the same workouts and dietary plan, but at the same time it was a competition in our family,” Maryana says. “Our biggest goals were to start working on ourselves, get benefits for our health, and see quick results. We decided to do everything we could to reach our goals.”

The first few weeks of Super Shredded 8 were the most difficult for Maryana; on hanging leg raises, for example, she could only do one rep of one set. By the end of the challenge, however, she could do 10 sets of 10 reps — a remarkable feat! 

“I was really impressed by the results,” she says, noting that the physical benefits of the program were only part of her transformation. “My mood was much better, too, and I was feeling myself really well.”

Maryana started the Summer Shred Challenge at a body weight of 230 pounds and finished at 209 pounds — in impressive 21-pound weight loss in addition to the gains in strength and confidence. 

Motivated to Keep Going

Nobody makes a transformation like this alone. Maryana found the tools she needed with workouts and meal plans on JimStoppani.com, but the support she had at home was just as important. 

“I’m really thankful to my husband,” she says. “He motivates me and goes with me step-by-step in the same direction. My mother also supported me every day by taking care of our daughter after work so that we could go to the gym together and follow the program. It wasn’t easy, but I knew that I was not alone in my journey.”

Her journey is just getting started. Maryana plans to build off her SS8 success in the coming year. 

“Now, after winning runner-up in the Summer Shred Challenge, I have even more motivation to continue this lifestyle,” she says. “I’m very grateful to Jim Stoppani and his team for the opportunity to participate in the best challenge I’ve ever had. It’s only the beginning of my new transformation. I’ll continue working on myself so that I can join more JimStoppani.com challenges and have even better results. Everything is possible now!”

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