Shortly before my wedding, I decided that I would make a fourth attempt at losing my excess weight and getting in shape. I was over 230 pounds, almost none of which was lean muscle mass, and obese for my height. After my most recent attempt where I failed to outrun a bad fork, I decided to bite the bullet and keep a food log. So here’s what I looked like when I started.

Before Photo

And here’s what I look like at the time of writing.

Current Photo

So how’d I do it?

Well, let’s begin with how long. These photos are taken just five days shy of one year apart. If that sounds alarm bells in your head, then maybe this isn’t the blog for you. If you’re looking to shed some pounds quick, I can’t help you. Okay, I can, but I don’t believe in dispensing advice that would ultimately harm your health, not help it. If you want some too good to be true weight loss plan that drops double digit pounds in just weeks or days, check with Dr. Oz. I don’t get paid enough to sell out.

Small side note here: Every man has a price, and mine is $50 million dollars. If some eccentric billionaire wants to write me a check, I’ll drop this post right now and swear all the way to my grave it was gluten free whole food veganism that did it. Now… where was I?

So there’s the easy part to understand, which are the rules of weight loss and weight gain, then there’s the more difficult part of gradually changing your lifestyle.

The easy part

In order to gain weight, you must consume calories at a rate FASTER than your body burns them.

To lose weight, you must consume calories at a rate SLOWER than your body burns them.

Still confused? Eat Less. Move more.

The more difficult part.

See, when I started, I thought all I needed to do was drop the weight. My diet was mostly okay, and I was fairly active. I just had a few extra pounds. I was wrong. What you need to do is become the kind of person for whom weight is not an issue. Whether that means adopting a hyper active lifestyle where you can’t wait to start your day with a 10 mile run, or overhauling you entire diet to consist of lean meats, and high fiber vegetables. For me, it was simply mindfulness. Knowing what, and how much I ate, and how active I was. With that data, I could know that I was keeping the right balance to achieve my particular fitness goals.

The gritty details.

So through this process I learned a lot. So much that I started writing a book. To keep me on top of it, I will be publishing it’s chapters as blog posts, until the entire ebook is completed. But I will give you this bit right now. Find a support group. Some people with the same goals. They need not be friends, and can even be strangers. I actually think the latter works better. If you aren’t sure where to find people to help and encourage you along your path, I cannot recommend any group more highly than the community at /r/loseit. I whole heartedly encourage you to pop over, read some posts, and most importantly, ask questions if you aren’t sure about something.