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Gossip Column: Down to the Wire Doug Polk Narrowly Loses $200K Fat Loss Prop Bet to Bill Perkins

Doug Polk
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis February 17, 2023
  • 4 Minutes Read

The three-time WSOP bracelet winner, Doug Polk, put his money where his mouth is in an epic battle of fitness and grit against billionaire Bill Perkins – but fell agonizingly short in the end.

Dough Polk
Dough Polk


The high-stakes bet was made a year ago, and Polk had to lose 50% of his body fat in precisely 365 days, starting from February 11, 2022. The target was to go from approximately 28% body fat to 13.85%, and Polk could use any diet and exercise method to achieve this feat.

Bill Perkins
Bill Perkins


As the clock ticked down to the deadline, Polk put up a valiant effort, shedding a significant amount of fat and ultimately getting down to an impressive 15.1% body fat. However, it was not enough to secure a win. He fell about 1.3% short of his goal, leaving him out of pocket by $200,000 to prop-betting expert Perkins.

Polk announced his defeat through a YouTube video.


In the video, Polk shares how the bet was less about the money and more about the incentive to get in shape. The owner of The Lodge Card Club in Austin, Texas, further explains why the bet was so important to him, how he trained, and why hiring a personal chef may have been a mistake.

In an interview with PokerNews, Poll opened up about his past year’s fitness routine in pursuit of winning the six-figure prop bet. Initially, he struggled with ineffective trainers and nutritionists but ultimately took matters into his own hands and steadily began dropping pounds from August.

Around the same time, Perkins recommended a new trainer who helped Polk lift weights 5-6 times/week, do cardio, and eat six small meals/day, totaling just 1,800 calories. The challenge took a toll on Polk’s sleep. Polk further clarified that it wasn’t a weight loss bet; he could have gained weight by replacing body fat with muscle mass and still won. Nonetheless, he’s lost around 30 pounds in one year.

Three weeks ago, Polk got a DEXA scan which showed he had reduced his body fat to 17.2%, down about 39% from the start. However, he still had work to do to meet the bet’s goal of 13.85%. Polk faced obstacles towards the end, including becoming a first-time father, a back injury, and an ice storm.


If he could do it all over again, Polk said he would “change my initial strategy.” But he doesn’t think it’s likely he’ll go back to his old diet and fitness habits “because I have the fundamentals in place now.”

Although he learned that gambling against a University of Iowa graduate such as Perkins isn’t typically a winning proposition, he doesn’t consider it a complete failure.

“I’m in the best shape of my life,” Polk claimed.

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