SPRINGFIELD, Minn. (KEYC) — Losing weight can be a difficult task, but one Springfield High School student-athlete hopes his story inspires others wanting to make a change.
“I was about 335 pounds at the start of my diet, and that’s the highest I was ever,” Connor Scholten said.
As a freshman football player, Scholten struggled to finish all the drills in practice, but the determined lineman put in an enormous amount of work during the offseason, beginning with calorie counting.
“I wanted to make a change, so I started off with dieting because I couldn’t really go to the gym because I broke my foot in gym class. I decided to eat healthier foods, like chicken and rice, just limit my calories so I wasn’t going over it. I was on a calorie deficit of about 20 percent, which allowed me to lose two to three pounds every two weeks,” Scholten explained.
Once the broken foot healed, he could start doing more exercises, in addition to the dieting.
“I made sure that I did some of the drills we did at football at home. I also rode my bike all the time in the summer, and I knew that was a good way to burn all the calories I needed to,” Scholten continued.
The diet and workout plan worked.
Fast-forward to sophomore year and the lineman lost over 100 pounds. All of a sudden, those drills he struggled to complete were finished with ease.
“In ninth grade, I couldn’t really do more than four plays without getting super tired," Scholten recalled. “And then come football season this year, I was part of the team, doing everything great and improved my ability because I wasn’t tired.”
”Connor is such a special person, to lose 104 pounds and to, as a football coach, see him not get through a drill his ninth-grade year to not missing one the following year," Springfield Head Coach Bob Fink said. “This is the type of person he is, and he wants to be an inspiration to others. Without question, he is. His story should be watched by kids out there. You can do something to improve yourself and Connor has done that.”
“The toughest part was not being able to eat all the foods I wanted to," Scholten said. I allowed myself to have a cheat day or two, but I stayed to my diet and had the calorie deficit I needed to lose the weight.”
Scholten plans to maintain his healthy lifestyle and wants to make it to some more state tournaments in football and baseball during the final two years of his high school career.