Durham deputy sheds pounds to serve

Mar. 17, 2014 @ 10:07 PM

Deputy David Earp hungered for carbs, snacks, sweets and sodas.

But the 25-year-old Durham native felt pangs of another hunger: a call to serve his state and country in the National Guard.
He’d thought about joining the military straight out of Northern High School, he said. Instead, he pursued a career in law enforcement with the Durham County Sheriff’s Office.
“I figured now was the time to go into the military,” Earp said. “I want to get the training, the experience. I want to serve my country and be a part of defending freedom.”
It might also give him a chance to see more of the world, he said. He’s never been beyond the borders of the United States.
“When I went to talk to them, they said my BMI (body mass index) was a little high,” he said. “I had to work to get that down.”
During sweltering days last summer, he felt too heavy and sluggish all the time. He wanted to set an example for the students who look up to him as a school resource officer at Jordan High School.
“I always worked out and lifted weights, but I never focused on diet too much,” he said.
So he paired exercise with a shift in diet, abandoning the sodas and snacks in favor of moderate amounts of protein from almonds and natural peanut butter. He ate lots of green vegetables, such as lettuce, kale and spinach.
“That helped me, right there,” Earp said.
It took hard work. It also took discipline.
“It was more of a mental thing,” he said. “I couldn’t eat the things I really wanted to. Sometimes, I liked to snack at night or eat something sweet. Now I couldn’t do it.”
He also credits the support he got from pals at the Hall of Fitness gym on Guess Road, where he’s worked out for more than a decade.
“I kept getting compliments, so that inspired me to keep it up,” Earp said.
Since the end of August 2013, he shed 70 pounds. In two weeks, he departs for National Guard basic training.
“I made it,” he said. “Everything’s good to go.”
Earp wants to put his training to use helping those in need should disaster strike, but he’s also willing to put his life on the line overseas. Beyond that, he counts on the experience to bolster his work as a deputy back home in Durham.
“I just want to help out as much as I can,” he said.

Wes Platt can be reached at wplatt@heraldsun.com or 919-419-6684. Follow on Twitter at @HS_WesPlatt. Connect on Facebook at facebook.com/wesplattheraldsun.