Duluze 2019 couldn't have come along at a better time in my life. I was overweight, stressed out, was allergic to exercise, low on energy and my ankles and knees woke me up nearly every morning before my alarm clock went off.

When a few News Tribune co-workers formed teams and developed some friendly competition and accountability to lose weight, I figured I'd give it a shot and hopefully shed a few pounds.

Some 47 pounds lost later, I couldn't have imagined the changes that weight loss would have on my life. Other than requiring a new wardrobe, I gained so much energy that I found myself maintaining a higher level of intensity and focus throughout the workday and workweek. I developed a walking regime; my aching 50-year-old knees and ankles fell silent; and stress no longer affected me in the negative ways that it had in the past.

I suspect countless others who participated faithfully in Duluze experienced similar life-changing results.

Now, Duluze 2020 is nearly here and I could use a little maintenance. Losing weight is tough enough, but keeping it off might be tougher still.

Sometimes, the alluring glow of the Golden Arches is too strong to deny. Plus, it's amazing how quickly your feet can steer you to a second or third trip through the buffet line.

And, popcorn without butter at the movies? Sacrilege!

REGISTER FOR 2020 DULUZE HERE

The battle of the bulge is always raging and the enemy forces are creeping closer to view and threatening to expand my waistline. Time for a counter-attack to drive them back again.

There are probably a million different tactics folks have attempted to lose weight. I found my success formula to be simple: Take in fewer calories and burn more calories through exercise. Pretty simple.

If you haven't tried Duluze and you are feeling symptoms similar to mine a year ago, I urge you to band together with some family members, friends and/or co-workers, put in some good old-fashioned work and discipline and watch the pounds drop. The weigh-in event for Duluze is Thursday, Jan. 16, at Clyde Iron Works, 231 S. 29th Ave. W., from 4-7 p.m.

Competing teams will have the opportunity to win part of $5,850 in prizes. How's that for extra incentive?

Contact News Tribune Editor Rick Lubbers at rlubbers@duluthnews.com or 218-723-5301. Follow him @ricklubbersdnt on Twitter.