As the Duluze weight-loss competition reaches the finish line Thursday evening, the telltale signs of 90 days spent dieting and exercising are not only evident on my scale but also in my closet.

Belts are now using unfamiliar belt holes. Shirts and pants once too tight to wear in public have now been added to the daily clothes rotation. I even enjoy the way my clothes feel as I wear them. Now I'm debating how many new items to add to my closet.

Life is good in the clothing department.

Now what?

Now comes the most difficult part, right? Keeping the weight off.

Despite losing the comforting framework of teamwork and friendly office competition that Duluze provides, I've personally extended my weight goal another couple of months and another dozen pounds. Warmer weather will eventually get here and help push my daily exercise outdoors, and I hope that leads me to even lighter scale readings. Daily dieting (which I prefer to call calorie computing) also will continue, as always with the option to enjoy a "cheat day" now and then.

I'll see where it goes.

Why stop now? It's been fun rearranging my closet, trying on pants with smaller waistline numbers and being able to wear a shirt and tie without the collar choking off the blood supply to my head.

I'm extremely thankful for losing every pound that I have so far and hope to lose a few more by summer. I hope that your Duluze experiences have been positive as well.

Thanks go out to all of you for participating and for making this Duluze competition so fun and personally rewarding.

No matter which number the scale displays for you on Thursday night, congratulations on the weight you have shed. And here's hoping you either press on toward future goals or work at maintaining where you're at right now.

Contact News Tribune editor Rick Lubbers at or (218) 723-5301. Follow him @ricklubbersdnt on Twitter.