Achieving a greater level of fitness is simple. But it’s not easy. It can be so easy to get caught up in complicated plans and detailed workout schedules… After a decade of struggling with my weight, I found out the truth – that there is a simple way to lose weight… You just have to work your butt off.
How would I know? Well, about 7 years ago I looked in the mirror and saw a version of myself that I didn’t respect. And for some reason, at that moment I decided to make a change in my life.
I started eating better, exercising more intentionally, and getting better sleep. And although I knew that this transformation and weight loss wouldn’t happen overnight, I started making gradual progress. Each and every day… One day after the next.
Then I looked up a year later and saw a version of myself that was 65 pounds lighter, happier, and full of energy. It’s not a quick fix by any means, but do you want to know how I did it?
Spoiler: You can do it too. It’s simple!
But it ain’t easy.
There is a simple way to lose weight… You just have to do the work.
(Photo courtesy of Justin Montemarano)
Here’s how I lost 65 pounds and kept them off
Mindset – Diet – Exercise
I’ll go over more of these in detail below, but in essence – we’ll keep it simple, straightforward, and achievable. All you need to do… Is commit.
Commit to yourself, to your health, and to the plan, we’ll develop together. The rest will just take time. Achieving a better fitness level (as you know) is simple – just not easy. But don’t worry, we’ll put systems in place to show you the progress you’ll make. That positive reinforcement will feed back upon itself and fuel your future success.
And so on…
Let’s get started
Just so we’re on the same page – I’m not a doctor, personal trainer, or licensed ‘professional’ in this industry. What’s below is based on past experiences of mine and other family/friends. These are suggestions and you should consult doctors or other licensed professionals before making drastic health changes.
Still with me? Good.
Step 1 – Mindset
You need to define your goals. Exactly what do you want to achieve – with real, measurable numbers or achievements?
Once your goals are set and the plan is in place, now it’s commitment time.
Sure, you’ll need to stay flexible and adjust as you progress through this new fitness journey, but a commitment to the goal is what I’m talking about. That means self-restraint, self-discipline, and saying “no” before you ask yourself the question.
What am I talking about? If you determine that negative food choices aren’t even an option for you for (an evening / a weekend / until you achieve your goal), you thus remove the willpower requirement to make thousands of little decisions throughout the day.
“I don’t eat doughnuts anymore. Period.”
“No food after 8:00.”
“I have to earn the calories required for a beer.”
Whatever rules you decide to set for yourself. Set them and commit to them.
These may sound ridiculous, but ridiculous = results. If this sounds like it’ll be “too much of a pain in the @$$,” then no worries – there are other plans out there. But this plan has helped 5 people I’ve worked with to lose a collective 320 pounds. This works. It just takes your commitment and unwavering willpower.
Step 2 – Diet
Eat fewer calories than are required to maintain your current weight (you’ll track this using the My Fitness Pal app)
Broaden your knowledge of the food you put into your body – not all calories are created equal
This is perhaps this simplest part of achieving higher fitness. Eat fewer calories than you need today. Do it again tomorrow. And again. And again… In months you will have lost more pounds than you thought possible, you’ll wonder how you did it, and you will have effectively changed you behavior. – the way you look at food, how you make caloric decisions, and ultimately what you decide to put in your body.
Please download the app (My Fitness Pal) and do some exploring. Enter your vitals, input the meal you had recently, and try to familiarize yourself with how the app works. Down the road, you’ll be relying on this app to get you from Month 2 to your finish line.
Step 3 – Exercise
Depending on your goals, exercise is probably less important than you may think (why it’s #3). Although it is way down at #3 – it’s still on the list.
Exercise can take on many forms, but the important thing is to just get started! You’ll have to work to decide which exercises and programs will work best in your current situation – with your current goals.
If you’ve ever been thinking about at home programs, here is a review of P90x3 and Hammer and Chisel for you to check out! Alternatively, if you’re a guy that’s a little intimidated by the “lady dominated” fitness classes at the gym (yoga, pilates, and dance fusion ????) – I tried them all out for you and reported back here. See which ones are worth the price of admission!
But past that, I want to know what has worked for you in the past, what you have tried recently, and what you haven’t tried that you may like to. It’s a crazy big world out there and it’s important to find out what little slice is best for YOU. Then you use it to your advantage!
One last point on exercise
Don’t get the misconception that you need to be in a gym sweating your butt off to call it a “workout”… First off, you don’t need a gym. Secondly, you can take a walk, do a few pushups, or wall sits. Depending on your fitness level, any little progress can make a significant impact.
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: Just Get Started!
That’s it. Seems too easy, doesn’t it?
I once had a strength and conditioning coach that gave our football team a choice one day at the end of a summer conditioning practice. “Do you want a 5-minute workout to finish this practice or do you want the 20-minute option?” And then he put it to a vote.
If you’ve never met a strength and conditioning coach for a D-1 football team, just know 2 things –
1) Everything is a trick question and 2) The phrase, “You can do anything for a minute!” is a lie.
We unanimously chose the 5-minute option. The caveat was that each teammate needed to complete the 5-minute exercise before the entire group would be released. If 1 person failed, we would all do the workout again… Until we all made the time.
We did burpees for a collective hour that day – And we learned that simple is not necessarily easy.
If you stick with this plan, there will come a time that you’ll learn this same lesson. But know that others have gone before you and that through hard and incredibly difficult work comes the greatest rewards.
Are you ready to prioritize your health…? GOOD.
Here’s what I’d like you to do to get started
Download the My Fitness Pal app
Starting tomorrow, begin tracking all calories that enter your mouth. I don’t care what they are or how many… Just don’t lie to yourself or your app!
(I don’t want to see these) – Take your shirt off and take your before pictures. 1 From the front, 1 from each side, 1 from the back, and 1 of you flexing. This is non-negotiable because it’s incredibly important. These pictures will provide the needed motivation when you’re 1.5 months in and feel like you’re not making progress. These will show you that you are.
Record your weight, measure your waistline, and do as many burpees as you can in 5-minutes. You can take breaks if needed, but just get as many as possible in a 5-minute time period. Record the results.
Read through the above, think about your goals, and then write them down. You’ll put that paper in a place where you’ll see it every day when you wake up and again before you go to bed.
Simple way to lose weight. Not easy.
Who’s with me? Have you lost weight before – if so, what did you do to make it happen? If you’ve been looking for a path – I’d love to see your thoughts on how I’ve done it. Let us know in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!
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I’m glad you’re here. Thanks again and talk soon!