First of all, thanks so much for your comments and thoughts on the last post. I, too, am an infrequent blog commenter, but I think I am going to make a better effort to comment on all of your blogs out there, even if just to say an occasional “hello” or “that’s funny.” It goes a long way, I think. So thanks.
Anyway, let’s move on to the real topic here: How to Lose 100 Pounds! Now, if you were foolish enough to take my advice below and you have managed to put on 100 pounds through an ingenious combination of sloth, gluttony, depression, and boozing, never fear! I have your remedy here! I’ll also note that this process will be just as successful for losing smaller amount of weight, should you only have, say forty pounds or fifteen pounds to lose. Just stop when you get there, see? Do not continue on to lose the full century unless you need to.
DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, an RD, or a fitness expert of any kind. I have absolutely zero qualifications to be advising anyone on fitness or nutrition. Consult your doctor. I am Not That Kind of Doctor.
All right. I don’t have any weight loss secrets or any information you haven’t heard before, but I am going to tell you a bit about my philosophy and what worked for me.
My basic plan boils down to this: FUCK THE BULLSHIT.
How does one go about fucking said bullshit? Like this:
First of all, take every bullshit diet or weight loss plan you have ever heard of and promptly forget it. Just fuck that bullshit.
- Slim Fast
- Low Carb
- Low Fat
- Jenny Craig
- Grapefruit and Bacon
- All-Liquid Cleanse
- Any Type of Pill
- Açai Berry
- Only Eat While Hanging Upside-Down
These are not weight-loss plans. These are bullshit. Fuck the bullshit.
That kind of thing is unsustainable, often costly, and often reliant on processed crap masquerading as food. Speaking of processed crap masquerading as food, I am also going to suggest that you say fuck it to the following bullshit:
- Fast food. Poison in a paper bag. Just say no.
- Most ridiculous restaurant food. Thousand-calorie “salads”? Hell to the no, thank you.
- Processed frozen dinners.
- Anything dehydrated or processed or preserved and sold in a colorful box.
- Animal products. Unsustainable, inhumane, unhealthy, unnecessary.
These items are not food; they are bullshit. Fuck that bullshit.
“But they are delicious,” you say? Isn’t deliciousness how you got here in the first place? Too much deliciousness? Well, eat them if you must, but know that a very stern and disapproving glance is coming your way. I will cut you. With my eyes.
One final category of bullshit I am going to suggest that you also fuck: bullshit “small steps” advice.
- Just park farther away from the store.
- Just take the stairs.
- Just walk for 15 minutes, three times a week.
- Just switch to diet sodas.
- Just eat more greens.
This is the worst kind of bullshit out there. Of course you can and should do any and all of the things on this list — but not “just.” This kind of thinking (and we are told these kinds of things all the time) caters to and reinscribes the idea that overweight people are incompetent, lazy, or unwilling to take real steps and to make real changes and to really work. Running is probably too hard for you, fatty, so just park farther away from the store when you go in to buy your ice cream. Oh, and pick up some spinach while you’re in there. Now you’re all set.
Also, these things are lies. Walking an extra 50 yards to the Target entrance is not going to help you. You might burn 10-20 extra calories — certainly not enough to counterbalance the giant scone you are going to buy yourself at the Target/Starbucks pastry counter to reward yourself for that extra-long parking-lot hike. These things are bullshit. Fuck the bullshit.
Here’s how to lose weight, in one easy step: burn more calories than you eat.
That is the one and only way to lose weight. It works 100% of the time. Just do that.
Here’s the thing, though: Yes, you will have to count calories. You will have to figure out how many calories you burn and how many you eat. You will have to do math. You will have to track your food and exercise.
“But that’s so tedious,” you say? Well, then don’t bother. Just don’t use the single best weight loss strategy out there. I would hate for tedium to get in the way of your pizza party.
(Side note: I keep using the pronoun “you” here, in keeping with the snarky advice thing I am going for, but it’s starting to sound insulting. I hope you know I mean “me” here. I am the asshole who thought calorie counting was too tedious.)
My favorite way for tracking calories in and calories out is the “Lose It!” app for iPhone (or iPod touch or probably also iPad by now) — it’s simple, easy, well designed, and it runs all the numbers for you. If you know me in person you have no doubt seen me entering in my food or exercise on this thing. I have been using it daily for the past year — every bite of food, every mile run, everything, every day, for a year. It works.
There’s also sparkpeople.com, a website that does the same thing, and many other websites and apps out there, I’m sure. If you have a favorite, enter it in the comments!
Anyway, I recommend using one of these. It helps me see how I’m doing over a day or a week and helps me plan my meals. For example, if I know I’m going to have cocktails at the pool with my friend B., like I did last night, I can add those into my calories ahead of time and see how many calories I have left for dinner and snacks, then plan an appropriate dinner. I get to have those cocktails but not mess up my balance for the day. I love it.
I can’t and won’t tell anyone how many calories they should eat because that’s just not my field and I’m not qualified to advise you there. But look online for one of these types of services (most are free) and they will do the math for you, based on your age, height, weight, sex, and pounds to lose. Then all you have to do is stick to the plan!
So what do I do and what do I eat?
My favorite things to eat are:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains (no white flour or rice)
- Plant-based proteins (nuts, beans, grains, etc.)
- Fats from sources like olive oil, avocado, nuts
My indulgences, which I do have occasionally:
- Sweet potato Terra brand chips
- Dark chocolate
- Purely Decadent brand dairy-free ice cream
- French fries or tater tots
If I want to indulge, I just run the numbers and work it into my calories for the day, no biggie.
You already know what I do for exercise, and you already know what you yourself do or don’t like to do for exercise, so I don’t have much specific advice there. I will say I am lucky to have found one sport I really really love to do (running) and several more that I love almost as much (swimming, biking, yoga). If you find a sport you love, just fucking do it all the time. You’ll burn even more calories, have happy chemicals coursing through your brain, and feel like a badass. Many benefits to sport, I tell you.
So for the past year I have basically just followed the calorie recommendations of the Lose It! app and exercised my butt off. It took about a year to lose 100 pounds. In that year, the only times I ever went over my allotted calories for the day were on my birthday, Christmas, or a big race day. Accordingly, I never had a week where I gained weight. I had a week or two in there where I either did not lose or only lost a half pound, or something, but I never gained. If you follow the guidelines of the calorie math, it really does work. Really.
You could probably follow the calorie guidelines while still eating bullshit processed crap masquerading as food, and still lose weight, in fact. But that’s not how I roll. I like to eat clean, plant-based food. It feels great, keeps my energy level steady throughout the day (no crazy hills and valleys and sugar crashes), and gives me the fuel to get out there and do shit. Recommended.
And, well, that’s it. That’s the plan. Take all the bullshit — the bullshit miracle cures and lame advice and phony diets — and say fuck it. Fuck the bullshit. Eat real food. Eat plants. Eat fewer calories than you burn. Go out there and do things. This works.
And I guess the humiliating before and after pictures will have to come later because I haven’t gotten them all together yet.
I know I’m not the only one trying to get fit here, so I’m sure many people reading this would appreciate any tips, advice, websites, or whatever that you could share. Also, I am happy to answer any questions I can, so ask away.