EVE Online avatar inspires self-described "pathetic loser" to get fit, reports CNN

When it comes to EVE Online news, CNN may not be your top destination for stories of deep-space intrigue or battle-scarred economic upheavals. But when it comes to quirky human interest stories involving extreme weight loss and spousal embarrassment , the mainstream media outlets have got your back. Enter Marcus Dickinson, an EVE Online player who was so inspired by the taut, testosterone-fueled manliness of his avatar Roc Wieler that he hit the gym and shed 45 pounds to look more like him...err, it.

The 40-year-old advertising director began his transformation from chunky to hunky following a 2009 trip to an EVE Online Fanfest held in Iceland, where he noticed something disturbing about himself and his fellow players. "We were all just a bunch of pathetic losers," Dickinson says. "We paid good money to fly all the way to Iceland and instead of enjoying Iceland, most of us spent all our time sitting around playing the videogame we already played back home."

At this point, you may wonder if Dickinson knows what a videogame fanfest is . Spoiler Alert: People play Quake at QuakeCon.

"Something snapped inside me, and I realized I wasn't being true to my brand," continues Dickinson. "Why can't I be this character? Why can't I look like this? He acts and talks like me because he is me. I'm the one who gave him life."

Since then, Dickinson has chronicled his weightlifting and cardio routine on his blog Roc's Ramblings to show his progress towards becoming the man in his monitor. He now lives a dessert-free lifestyle of 3,000 calorie days consisting of lean protein, vegetables, and trips to the gym. It isn't mentioned how much time he still commits to playing EVE Online, though.

The article wraps up by bringing the creep, implying that Dickinson's obsession with his online persona isn't all about health and rock-hard abs. Says CNN quoting Dickinson's wife: When Dickinson slips into Roc's deep voice with a "Hello, darling...' greeting after work, "I'm like 'Oh, shut the hell up.'"

For his wife's sake, it's a good thing Dickinson isn't playing as a Goblin in World of Warcraft instead.