Weight loss journey for "The Beast" brings him to his second Ironman
Mark D. Rucker in "Beast Mode" as he begins running pounds off
Mark D. Rucker before he began his weight loss journey
Mark "The Beast" Rucker after running one of his first races
Mark "The Beast" Rucker lost over a hundred pounds and decided to train for the 2013 Ironman. The 44 year old Lexington attorney didn't finish the race last year, but he is back for 2013 determined to make it through.
Rucker says he was overweight most of his life and gradually kept gaining. He maxed out in February of 2011 at 380 pounds. He says he was in active and ate fast food, pizza, wings, cheeseburgers and beer.
But the weight caught up with his health. He had high blood pressure, sleep apnea and was borderline diabetic. Rucker says he woke up the day after the Super Bowl in February 2011 and realized that he needed to change my life. Rucker says the first thing he did was switch to diet soda and limit himself to one a day.
He also decided to cut out all processed sugars and carbs. He started dropping pounds eating whole fruits and vegetables. After a week he made some more changes by cutting out salad dressings and snacked on raw almonds instead of roasted and salted.
A month later he was ready to start exercising, so he started walking. It was just a mile at first. But he says he gradually started to feel better. So by April, he was ready to push his body to become a runner. Rucker started using the Couch to 5K app from Bluefin Software on his iPhone. By July, he ran his first 5K.
After adding biking to his workout routine, Rucker ran his first half-marathon by October.