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Gem of the Week: Man loses 160 pounds in one year

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GRAND FORKS (WDAZ)--Shedding some extra pounds...one of the most common New Year’s Resolutions.

Many ring in the new year with a bang, but one man is catching the attention of everyone else at the gym.

“I was like, ‘That’s bizarre.’ I’ve never heard of anyone losing that amount of weight,” said Brian Sowatzski.

Brain Sowatzski is hoping to shed a few more pounds.

“More pounds, and I want to keep them off,” said Brian.

Losing that 20 pounds shouldn't be too difficult.

You see Brian has already lost 160 pounds.

“I was at 395 pounds and I wasn't going to hit 400,” said Brian.   

The 47-year-old has battled obesity since a young age.

He's tried losing weight in the past.

“I lost 80 pounds once before, but I put it all back plus another 40. I got addicted to the gym. There’s no way you can maintain that and have a life,” said Brain.

A sore knee and hip were the key motivations for the state plow driver this time around, and he's made some major changes to his regiment, just 20-30 minutes of light exercise every day.

“There were some plow trucks my stomach would barely fit behind the steering wheel, now there is all sorts of room,” said Brian.

“We see a lot of people lose 10 pounds, 20 pounds, 30 pounds, 40-60, but 150 pounds, up to 160--now that's crazy,” said Ben Gleason of Lake Region Fitness.

“I still see the same person, but when I see the pictures, I'm like I'm looking pretty good right now,” said Brain.

This soon-to-be-groom admits though it's not about the strength in the biceps, but in the head.

“That’s what scares me is once I get there is keeping it off, I've never been able to do that before in my life,” said Brian.

Brian hopes he can pass on that strength to others.

“There's been days where I've came here to the gym, hit the doors, said no, turned around and went home,” said Brian.

He says you quickly build up not only the physical strength - but mental strength too.

“Now it's a habit. If I miss out and feel like I’m neglected for the day. Your body wants the exercise once you start,” said Brian.

A man now nearly half his size - trading in those pounds for extra years in life.

“As long as you keep coming and make it a habit you eventually get to where your body wants to do it, tells you to come here, it's hard work but anybody can do it,” said Brian.

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