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Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Six pack? I have a keg: Vince Wilfork, diet and diabetes

Vince Wilfork plays nose tackle for the New England Patriots. He's listed at 325 pounds. That girth is needed to hold his ground – a key responsibility for the nose tackle.

"Six pack? I have a keg and I’m proud of it," he says.

But in the off-season he read "The Abs Diet." His wife grabbed it before he could read it, and she began conducting weigh-ins and demanding three workouts a day, starting at 5 am. He lost weight, but kept his strength. Indeed, without his normal girth he has been just as strong, he realizes, if not stronger, and quicker too.

As of mid-December, he had made 64 tackles while anchoring the New England Patriots' fourth-rated defense. He earned his first Pro Bowl (all-star) berth on Dec. 18. He says he owes the honor to his wife's nudging.

He'll keep working at controlling his weight after this season ends. "I know that overnight it's not going to happen. It's going to take time, and every year we're going to attack that."

Vince's father had diabetes and died at 48. His mother died at 46 from complications of a stroke. Now, Vince and his wife host an annual NFL draft party to raise funds for the Diabetes Research Institute.

Advice: Be as unyielding as Vince Wilfork in defending against the strong pushes you feel toward binging. Good luck with the New Year's Resolution!

Browse for related stories in the index at the very bottom of this page, or read an athlete story.

Thanks to Christopher Gasper for the source article in the Dec. 20 issue of the Boston Globe.

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