Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

While working full-time at Microsoft and attending full-time business school at U of T, Jacob Istephen lost 58 lbs and transformed into a high-endurance athlete!

What was life like before fitness?

Before starting my fitness program, I was unenergetic, not very motivated and wasn’t where I wanted to be in life. I was unhappy that I was gaining weight, eating unhealthy and feeling knee pain in my early 20’s.

I knew that I needed to change but was not sure what to do. I enjoyed sports growing up especially soccer and karate, so I looked into joining a mixed martial arts program, and that was an effective method to start my weight loss journey.

But mixed martial arts only took me so far, and that’s when I found Bodies by Design, the fantastic team helped me set achievable goals, and they taught me the correct form for various exercises, and helped me set up a nutrition plan.

Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

What was your wake-up call?

I weighed myself on a scale, and I was 222 pounds, and I said: “This is enough, I’ve got to change.”  From that day I signed up for a Mixed Martial Arts program. I was able to lose 36 over 2 years, but I started to plateau and wanted to incorporate more upper and lower body muscle exercises into my weight loss program.

Bodies by Design helped me lose more than 22 pounds in less than 5 months, which was unusual because even with consistent exercise in my mixed martial arts program, I was not able to achieve those results.

jacob mixed martial arts bodies by design

Why BBD?

I chose BBD because I read many great reviews about them, and I saw how knowledgeable they were and how organized and flexible they are with regards to scheduling convenient one-on-one classes that work with my hectic schedule.

The staff at BBD are very welcoming, caring, and genuinely concerned with my fitness objectives. Kris and Luca have been wonderful to work with and have been there for me with my ups and downs in my weight loss journey. They have motivated me to challenge myself to achieve what even I thought was impossible, and for that, I am sincerely grateful for this beautiful journey of self-discovery.

Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

What was your goal starting and what have you accomplished?

My goal was to lose 36 pounds by the end of the year, and I am on track to reach that target. In less than 5 months at BBD, I have lost 22 pounds with the help of Kris and Luca.

I have also gained a lot of knowledge about the correct forms for core, upper, and lower body exercises. I have also employed a healthy meal plan after consulting the BBD nutritionist.

What’s next?

I want to lose my last 15 pounds before the end of the year, so I can reach my overall weight loss goal and reach a weight of 150 pounds. Also, I want to start competing professionally as a Mixed Martial Artist this year.

Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

I work full-time in operations coordination at Microsoft and attend full-time business school at the University of Toronto, so my goal is to make more time in my schedule to develop my skills as an high-endurance athlete.

I have gained muscle strength, endurance, and stamina to improve my performance as an athlete.  I am confident that I will be able to achieve that as the team at BBD are very supportive, and amazing at being available for following up with me to help me reach my target milestones and long-term goals.

What would you tell anyone who wants to get started?

Keep showing up!

Just start with baby steps and slowly but gradually increase the number of workouts you do. If you increase your workouts by one minute every day, it will be substantial if you keep consistent with your goals.

Eat clean, healthy foods because you can’t out-train a lousy diet.

Distractions help!  Listen to your favorite playlist, or motivational speeches, or watch a show on the TV’s at BBD while you work out, it helps you to workout without getting bored.

Never forget why you started, and remember that your body is a representation of who you are, become one that is mentally and physically strong, and an inspiration for others.

Words of wisdom

Always put yourself first, if you don’t take care of your body, you can’t be the best version of yourself, and you won’t have the energy, endurance or confidence to be at your best.

Consistency is key to everything, Keep showing up, the more you show up, the better you become.

Results don’t happen overnight, they take months to notice, so don’t put unnecessary pressure on yourself.

Make a definite game plan and stick to it, adjust it as you encounter challenges, but never give up on yourself, because you can have a body of an athlete at any age and stage of your life.

Greatness is on the other side of hard work!

Jacob Istephen- Star Profile Challenge Winner

Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

"Always put yourself first, if you don't take care of your body, you can't be the best version of yourself, and you won't have the energy, endurance or confidence to be at your best"


Jacob Istephen bodies by design mixed martial arts

To learn more about Kris Click Here

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