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The Most Important Ingredient in Weight Loss

February 2014

I have five two pounds to lose before May 1st, to get my man-panties body back. My new goal, in part to satisfy my wife who doesn’t appreciate “cycling skinny”, is 170 pounds.  At 6′ tall and maybe 13-14% body fat, that’s pretty good I figure. I’ve come a long way from 195 and 20%+ I can tell you that.

I’ve been at the weight loss/correction game for a lot of years now and other than the low-hanging fruit; cut out soda, eat smaller portions, spread the meals out and include healthy snacks, there is one key ingredient to how I do well that has been consistent…

I am not uncomfortable with being hungry.  When I was heavier, I was no muscle and all flab and I was used to eating as much of whatever I wanted.  Once I saw the error of my ways, I first picked up running and then came to the understanding that because I was used to eating so much I had to be hungry to reverse the process.

The thinking here, right or wrong (don’t know, don’t care) is that my body had become accustomed to “full” being “too full”.  I thought of my stomach was an expandable gas tank if you will.  The more I stuffed in it, the more I got used to that being what full felt like.  This is why gluttonous cheat days are tough on overeaters (and why I abstain from them entirely, save Thanksgiving).  In other words, cheat days should be the “what”, not the “volume”.  It took a couple of weeks to get used to not eating like eating was going out of style – for my body to become used to a lesser “full”.  I get the feeling that if I’d taken a cheat day once a week where I gorged, my body wouldn’t have adjusted, as it clearly did, to eating less.

Now, in my case, this doesn’t mean I don’t cheat with certain diet-banned foods, such as Chewy Sprees or cookies every now and again, I do.  The trick I use is to keep it to a serving size.  Say, for Chewy Sprees, a serving size is twelve pieces of candy.  That’s all I eat in a given day.  If you know anything about Chewy Sprees, that’s not a lot of candy.  There are other tricks I use as well:  For meals where I still feel hungry after my first helping I always wait five minutes before I put more on my plate – this allows my stomach the necessary time to catch my brain up to what’s going on.  To take this a little deeper, I also adjust based on how much cycling and/or weight lifting I’m doing.  Take Wednesday night for instance, it’s pizza night.  I rode hard on Tuesday so I took it pretty easy Wednesday.  I also did my 100 push-ups but ate a fairly light breakfast and lunch which will mess the equation up a bit.  I ate three pieces of pizza for dinner and was just a touch hungry after the third.  I waited the five minutes and sure enough, I was good to go and pushed myself away from the table.  This way of managing my diet ensures that I’ll be right where I want to be for my daily caloric intake.  The only way I get to eat more is if I work more.

Now, there are a few caveats that should be included in this post:
1)  Living like this takes discipline – I know, but it’s not all that bad.
2)  Cheating the way I do is only for certain personality types.
3)  If you are not the type that can have a few pieces of candy without downing the box/bag/container, you are not one of those types.
4)  If you sit in the barber’s chair long enough, eventually you’ll get your hair cut – I don’t bother sitting in the chair unless I want a trim.  Come to think about it, I won’t even bother walking into the barber shop unless I want a chop.  I know what they do in there, it’s not rocket science.


  1. It’s interesting how everybody has their own way of cheating on the diet. I have my pig-out-and-stay-in-Fridays. I don’t work out on Fridays, they are my rest days but I get to eat chocolate and ice cream and cake, something that will not allow myself (all that often) on my regular workout days. Feed the muscles with good fuel on power days, reserve the junk for the one lazy day. 🙂

  2. Sandra says:

    Just what I needed today. The only time I successfully lost weight and kept it off was when I did the Weigh Down Workshop–fasting one day a week. The principle was the same–shrink that stomach and the next day you feel full much sooner. I just cannot fast while working out any more.

    It was 45 yesterday and will be in the (barely) 50s next week. I cannot wait to hit the road on my bike to burn some calories and feel the wind in my face. It sucks not being able to run, but at least I can swim and bike!!!

  3. tischcaylor says:

    Good advice, as usual. Don’t think I could’ve lost weight without figuring out ways to cheat, but REALLY wish I hadn’t wasted all those opt. to make do with a shrunken stomach before stuffing it overly full again. Live and learn…

  4. Carolyn says:

    I believe that the basic rules of keeping shape are the same for everyone. Though, everyone should adapt them for himself. For me fitness is the best way. When I stop going to the gym I immediately gain weight (unless I starve myself). For me all the diets are very depressive, I can not live without sweets and cookies, that’s why I choose fitness. Regular training is very rewarding: I’ve noticed my first results within 1 month, and it was an awesome stimulation for future trainings. When I feel tired I take Navy Seal Formula by Military Grade and it quickly restores my strength and enthusiasm. It also provides the necessary nutritional supply, which is vital when you are training intensively. Thus, nothing prevents me from eating occasional cookie or a bar of chocolate when I want it so much.

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