WLOX reporter loses weight and keeps it off

By Karen Abernathy – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - If you're trying to get on track for the new year and lose some weight, you're not alone.  Getting in shape is the number one resolution, but getting started is just the beginning. How do you stick with it for the long haul? A familiar face on the coast may help inspire you to stick with your program.

Doug Walker, WLOX reporter and co-host of WLOX News this Week, has worked at the station for 20 years. But what you may not know is that Doug spent many of those years battling a weight problem.

"I didn't like the path I was on, didn't like the direction I was taking in my life," Walker said. "I wanted to make a change and decided to just do it."

Five years ago, Doug weighed 275 pounds. That's 123 pounds more than he does today. Once he made a decision to lose the weight, he lost it quickly.

"I probably went overboard. I lost 60 pounds in two months."

And he did it on his own, with help from the South Beach Diet.

"I read the book and found out what I could do. I started on the low carb diet and stuck with it five years, and now it has become a lifestyle for me."

Unlike a lot of people who lose weight, Doug hasn't gained any weight back. He has continued to stay on the strict diet for four years.

"I think the key for everyone with diets is to not be hungry. And that's why I like this diet. I'm able to eat until I'm full," Walker said. "Now I haven't had any bread in five years, no pasta in five years, haven't had any rice, desserts or potatoes in five years."

He said the other key to any good diet plan is exercise.

"I exercise five to six times a week. I go about a mile and a half on the treadmill, do some weightlifting, not for power, but for muscle tone."

And while many experts say you can eat the foods you love in moderation, Doug said he never waivers from his diet.

"It's tough at first to give up the foods you love, but after about two or three months you start to get away from those habits and become less addicted to those things you love."

He knows himself well enough to realize that eating carbs and sugars again might lead him to fall into bad habits again, and he doesn't want to take that chance.

Doug said he has also added vitamins and supplements to his plan, to make sure he gets the nutrients he needs on his limited diet. He also weighs every day to make sure he stays on track.

He knows his plan certainly isn't for everyone, but he hopes sharing his story will inspire others who want to lose weight and live healthier lives, to find a plan that works for them, and stick with it!

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