My Guide to Weight Loss

Over the past 6 months I’ve lost about 20 pounds.  I was motivated to do it because at my annual check-up the doctor said I was overweight and had high cholesterol.  So, I made some lifestyle changes.  It occurred to me, given how many articles there are about weight loss on the web, I might as well share mine.

First, the background: I am 5’11” and as of last March weighed in at 186 lbs.  I now weigh 166.  I never thought 186 was that bad, but according to the BMI measure it’s at the low end of “overweight”.  (I am a bit skeptical of this measure, since it’s not accounting for whether the weight is fat or muscle. But in my case, it was definitely fat.)

So, what did I do?

  1. Cut out the sweets and desserts. (except on weekends.) I used to eat rich foods, like cookies etc. almost daily.  I stopped that except as a treat on weekend nights.
  2. Limit myself to one diet soda per day.  I love the stuff, but cutting down makes a difference.  I don’t know how much it contributed, but i definitely feel better.
  3. Switched to 1% instead of 2% milk. I eat lots of cereal for breakfast (Cheerios), but switched to eating them with 1% milk instead.
  4. Go for a walk every weekday at lunch.  It ranges from a 45 minutes to 1 hour.  I’m fortunate to have a job where I can do that–if you don’t, I’d recommend seeing if you can walk for a half-hour before or after work.  It makes a difference.
  5. Started jogging a few days a week for 25-30 minutes. This is the hardest part for me, because I can’t jog in the evening, or else I have trouble sleeping.  So this means I have to get up early to have time before work.  Forcing myself to get up is incredibly hard, but I feel great afterward.

So, there’s my advice.  Bear in mind that I’m not a doctor, or any kind of medical expert, so don’t take this advice as anything other than anecdotal evidence.  Your mileage may vary.

What's your stake in this, cowboy?