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Police chief loses 30 pounds in eight weeks

Here, Lake Orion Police Chief holds an old uniform shirt from before he began his weight loss. The chief now has to wear his sonís clothes while not on duty. Photo by G. Ouzounian (click for larger version)
June 20, 2012 - Lake Orion's Police Chief is less than the man he used to be, but it's a good thing.

Thanks to an exercise regimen he started 10 weeks ago, Chief Jerry Narsh lost 30 pounds - a feat which he said becomes harder as you get older.

Narsh, 53, said it all started with a mirror.

"The thing that got me going on this was a reflection in the mirror at a changing room," he said. "I asked why that guy was in the dressing room with me and it was then I had a kind of a realization that I gained a lot of weight and was feeling unhealthy."

Narsh's wife Amanda was in the process of her own weight loss and served as Narsh's motivation. She also coached him in her weight loss method and Narsh said his success is due to her.

"I thought 'I can do this' while watching her in her exercises," he said. "After about three months of watching her work and succeed I asked if she would help me.

"It took about two weeks before anything happened - it felt like I was stomping on the treadmill every morning. When you get into the run mode (one minute running, three minutes walking) you get exhausted so you add in the walking to cool down. In just about two weeks I noticed I was losing weight."

Narsh also does roughly three days of weight training a week to keep his "muscle mass" up. This is in addition to the morning treadmill runs and calorie counting.

All in all, Narsh went from 212 to 182 in about eight weeks. The method relies on weighing and balancing how many calories are taken, and how many are burned off - or "taken out." Eating healthy low calorie foods in combination with regular, daily exercise was a small tradeoff according to Narsh, who said his clothes are now so big he's forced to wear his 19-year-old son's threads.

Beside personal reasons, Narsh mentioned the importance of being in shape as a law enforcement officer and why being overweight can be easy to fall into.

"Most line officers are in pretty good shape and most of the men and women on the road are in pretty good shape because they need to be - it's busy enough," he said. "They're getting in and out of that car and going up and down stairs but it's when you get to the command staff where you start needing help. For the last 11 years you live a pretty sedentary lifestyle and you just review operations and cases until you balloon up to 212 pounds like I did."

Despite the success, Narsh insisted he was no different than anyone else trying to lose weight, in that is was still a struggle. The loss began as a pound or two a week but soon became three or more. Narsh did note that plateaus existed around certain goal weights. However, once there, he said keeping the weight off became a much easier task.

"I'm a diver and I like to describe it like this - when you dive it can be hard to get to the bottom, but once you're there you get buoyant and you can just check everything out down there," said Narsh. "It's the getting down there that is the struggle. I watched my wife struggle at first but once she got there she just developed a maintenance program which she modified based on her daily activities and now she looks even better than she did before. It almost became kind of fun for me to modify and change the program and now I have just eight or seven pounds to go to be at my target weight.

"I'll say that I'm looking forward to getting down to the bottom."

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