Wednesday, December 1, 2010

How to Lose 30 Pounds of Fat Today

So my post on losing 30 pounds of fat was one of the most popular post I have ever had. Therefore, I wanted to do a follow up. What would I do if I wanted to lose 30 pounds today? Note that this is the biggest permanent lifestyle change I have ever made and therefore I feel that having gone through it I know what it takes. Note that this method would apply to any dramatic change.

Mentally Commit

This is often the most overlooked item and yet it is the most important. I would know that the journey is not easy by any means. In fact, I’ve gone 28 years with the same eating habits. That doesn’t change overnight. First I would make a list of why I want to lose 30 pounds:

• I want to look better
• I want to feel better
• I don’t want to die from heart disease the number 1 killer of Americans
• I want to be able to run around with my kids one day
• I want to feel confident in knowing that my body is at or near its best

This is important because my initial energy in losing weight will wane after about two weeks. So I have to have thought this through. Your want for something has to be defined and the core of why has to have been explored. I will also write out affirmations and post them on my bathroom mirror/computer/car to read every day because I know for such a dramatic change I will need the help. Examples include:

• I will lose 10 pounds in the next 6 months.
• I will not for the next thirty days (count this down). It’s not a big loss because I know at the end of thirty (count this down) I can have as many as I want.
• A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

Identify a Big Win

Next what I would do is identify for me what is the easiest thing to cut out that I know I want to change and will have a meaningful impact. For me this was soft drinks. Let’s assume I have three soft drinks a day. That adds up to 3,255 calories a week. A pound is 3,500 calories. So I decide I will remove cokes from my diet and instead drink diet sodas with zero calories. This is my big win. Just in doing this I will lose almost a pound a week and lose little. I will now focus on this big win for a month. Whatever else happens I will commit to this for thirty days. Other possible big wins:

• Two healthy food days a week
• No alcohol during the week
• Walking two miles a week

None of these changes are dramatic. For me eliminations in diet always worked best, but for some slowly adding in exercise has worked. In my opinion diet is easier because you just don’t buy it so you just have to not do something rather than exercise which requires you to do something.


After two weeks I will assess how I am feeling. Am I missing the cokes I have given up? This is my weakest point because the motivation and excitement has diminished, and I haven’t quite developed a habit. I consult with friends for encouragement and feedback on my progress. If this big win is just too painful then I may need to consider something else. Before I decide to quit I will read my goals and my affirmations and then realize that I only have to do this for 15 more days.
If I don’t remember what it is even like to have soft drinks and I don’t miss them at all then I add in another small change and reset my thirty day counter. Be very careful not to do too much too soon. We only have so much willpower and we don’t want to knock our path completely off course.

There are a few things I don’t recommend as well:

Just starting. The mental aspect is the most important thing you can focus on. In fact if you spent a week thinking about this and making notes I am not sure how possible it is to fail. You have to commit to it because this goes against the way you have lived your life up to this point. That is A LOT of time to reverse and it’s not something that will happen on a whim.
Doing too much too fast. This would be a fad diet or acquiring a trainer. This is the number 1 reason people don’t lose weight and keep it off. Lifestyle changes are what lose weight not fad diets. Diets are useful if you are at or near your ideal weight and want to hit a new maintenance calorie level. I tried diets when I was obese and I couldn’t make a complete 180 lifestyle change and stick with it. I was out of my comfort zone and the change was too much to maintain.

Keeping this a secret. The more people that know about your goal the better. This puts pressure on yourself to accomplish your goal. I highly recommend telling people that you know care about you because they will offer you words of encouragement.

Giving up before 30 days. You have to give something a thirty day period. The great thing about thirty day periods is that the end is near and it’s not really that far away. Once you identify your big win you really need to give an all out effort for thirty days.


I hope this has encouraged at least one person to give it a try. Most of the time after thirty days I no longer want what I had given up. I know after giving up soft drinks I felt better than I had ever felt. As for the journey overall, I will tell you first hand that it is extremely hard to do, but if you decide that you want it you can do it. Slow and steady will win the race.

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