LSU wide receiver Travin Dural, who will be a senior this season, underwent surgery on his hamstring last November, which forced him to sit on the sidelines and take a break from playing football. Combine that lack of movement with a diet that was heavy (emphasis on heavy) on Popeyes chicken, and it's not hard to see why he eventually ballooned from about 200 pounds to 230 pounds within just a few months. And somewhat amazingly, Dural didn't even realize he was packing on the pounds until he visited his mom one day and she said, "Man, you look stuffed."
"I knew it was time for a change," he explained during an interview with WWL on Wednesday. "I was almost 230 pounds in the spring, and I played at 203 last year."
His mom wasn't the only one who noticed. LSU's running backs coach Jabbar Juluke and offensive coordinator Cam Cameron did, too. They both joked about turning him into a fullback or tight end, which didn't sit well with Dural. "I didn’t like the fullback and tight end jokes," he said, "so I knew I had to slim down. I had to stay away from Popeyes."
Initially, Dural tried to lose weight by going on a "no meat diet," but he "failed miserably in like two days." So instead of doing a complete 180 with his diet, he made some small changes, like substituting grilled chicken in place of the Popeyes he had grown accustomed to. He also started working out again and is now back down around 200 pounds in preparation for the upcoming season.
"I stayed away from the Popeyes and the home cooking and started eating salads and started eating a lot less and drinking a lot more water," he said. "When we started back working out and running after spring practice in April, the weight just disappeared."
Now if he can just stay away from Popeyes for at least the next few months, he should be good to go this season.