Who: Frank DeSane, 32
Community: East Islip
Occupation: Project manager
Weight before: 210 (Dec. 2003)
Weight after: 135 (Feb. 2009)
His Story: Five years ago, Frank DeSane didn't care about how he looked, he said. He ate high-fat, sugar-loaded food, and a lot of it. His typical "meal" was equivalent to five serving sizes. "My 2003 wedding pictures are quite embarrassing," he said.
Later that year, DeSane started feeling intense back pain. Some of his pain episodes were so severe he could not move and had to lie on the floor. He was constantly out of breath and void of energy.
"When the struggle became daily, I weighed myself, and nearly fell off my friend's scale in shock," DeSane said.
His weight was 210 pounds.
What he eats: DeSane combed through nutrition books and educated himself about which foods benefited his body. To control portion sizes, he began measuring everything he ate, a practice he continues to do.
For breakfast, he eats oatmeal or cereal to provide energy, along with a piece of fruit. On days he goes to the gym, he eats egg whites or another protein to support lean muscle growth. Lunch is often a salad with cut-up apples, or a turkey sandwich. For dinner he eats whole-wheat pasta or brown rice, chicken and steamed vegetables.
Workouts: DeSane's first step toward getting fit was just that - he put his car keys away and started walking. Later, he joined a gym, which he now goes to at least five days a week. He runs 31/2 miles on the treadmill, which takes 40 minutes, then does some light weightlifting.
"Weight loss has impacted my life far more than anything I've ever done," DeSane said.
His Advice: Find a workout you enjoy doing, measure what you eat to control portion sizes and move as much as you can during the day.