Thursday, January 28, 2010

John's Amazing Diet Secrets Revealed!

Now, at last, I can reveal the top diet secrets that doctors have been keeping from you! Yes, this is how I lost an AMAZING 9.9kg (21.8 pounds) in just 6 months doing absolutely no exercise at all.

Put down those weights, step off the StairMaster and follows these amazing simple steps to a better figure:

EAT LESS, EAT WELL

In April 2008 I decided that my 82.5kg (181.9 pounds) was too much for my height. Ideally I should have been 72kg (158.7 pounds), so I needed to lose 10.5kg (23.1 pounds) to be my ideal weight.

It's this image of me that really decided me to lose weight. Nothing like the shape of that stomach in public.

So, I read up on dieting and digested The Hacker's Diet. I ignored almost all the advice except for one thing: you can stuff your face with calories far faster than you can burn it off. That revelation lead me to the Colarie.

A single can of Coke is about 147 calories. How much exercise does it take to burn that off? Well just running it would take something like 15 minutes. And I thought why run? Just don't stick the stuff in your face in the first place.

So, I eliminated all soda and drank cold water instead. I also stopped ever eating sweets (candies). But that wasn't enough, I decided that I needed to eat less.

So, I simply looked at whatever food I was eating and ate about 50% of it and left the rest. I didn't order desserts, I stopped having sugar in coffee.

And, boy, was I hungry at first. After a while I wasn't hungry any more and I think I enjoyed the taste of food more. After a while the amount of food I was eating was simply less than before and I was no longer forcing myself to stop.

That was helped by eating slowly. By doing that I discovered when I was full and stopped eating. I didn't stop eating particular foods (other than the particular nasties like Coke, desserts and sugary snacks), I ate a wide variety of things (including foie gras and other delicacies). I just ate less of it.

The weight fell off me. Here's the magic chart:


I never quite made it to my goal, my weight stabilized at around 72.5kg (158.7 pounds) and remained there. Now whenever it goes up a bit I know what to do.

(BTW I'm not saying don't exercise, there are lots of good reasons to do exercise, but I don't think weight loss is one of them. Do it because you enjoy it, do it because it clears your head, etc.)

WEIGH YOURSELF

Weighing yourself is vital. I made it a ritual so that I got consistent results. Your weight will vary throughout the day so I had a simple technique:

1. Same time, same day each week: I weighed myself on Saturday mornings, immediately after getting up (after visiting the bathroom) and before eating.

2. Same situation: I always weighed myself naked so that there were no inconsistencies.

3. Once: I weighed myself once on that Saturday morning and recorded the result. I didn't fret about the result. I didn't reweigh myself.

KEEP TRACK

I kept all the weight data in a spreadsheet. From that I could draw an encouraging chart, and calculate how many more weeks were needed for me to reach my goal. And I could calculate my BMI (which seems like a bogus figure to me).

That's it: eat less, eat well, keep track.

PS I did do some exercise. During this period I didn't own a car and walked everywhere or took public transport. I was working at home and frequently would walk outside to get some sun and clear my mind.

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If you enjoyed this blog post, you might enjoy my travel book for people interested in science and technology: The Geek Atlas. Signed copies of The Geek Atlas are available.

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