The Anti-SPAM thread: How I Lost Over 60 Pounds and Kept it off

Me and many others have been advocating the idea that weight loss is incredibly straightforward for a long time as long as you stay close to basic ideas and away from the denial. I am living proof of the concept.

I am a 39 year old 6’1" male and I weighed about 250 pounds at my max when I thought I didn’t have much to live for and simply didn’t care what I ate. All that changed after a major health scare. I changed my diet radically and it has worked just great.

Here is what my daily diet is:

Breakfast: 1 banana and 1 fat free Greek yogurt cup

Lunch: I 6" Subway sandwich with all the vegetables on flatbread with one of their fat-free dressings.

Dinner: A medley of sauteed vegetables cooked in three tablespoons of olive oil with spices. The cornerstone to this is a whole bag of kale usually mixed with apple slices and lots of hot peppers. It isn’t a boring dish at all if you cook it right. Top it off with one cooked chicken breast (heavily spiced) you can buy in ten pound bags at wholesale clubs.

You notice there is no mention of dessert, snacks, or soda because there isn’t any on a typical day. Drinks are water or iced tea only. However, this isn’t a crash diet to shed a few pounds and then jump right into whatever you were doing before. It should be viewed as permanent change and there is an allowance for eating special things once every couple of weeks if you want. I eat deserts or anything else I want if it is true special occasion.

I weigh 187 pounds now and have for three years. That is the top of my ideal weight based on BMI and some people say I am too skinny but their perceptions are skewed by perception shifts over time.

You don’t have to follow my diet exactly if you don’t like some of the foods but you have to make equivalent swaps as long as they really are. Mine is cheap and easy to prepare. I never get hungry either because the vegetables are a huge plate of food with few calories but lots of vitamins.

The purpose of this thread is to give you an exact recipe for losing weight if you want to because I get tired of hearing the mass delusion and myths associated with the subject.

Good luck with this.

I’m pretty disciplined myself when it comes to diet and I’m skinny. But I couldn’t follow your diet, I don’t think. I like skin on my chicken–which I like fried. And I like dessert. If I can’t end the day with something sweet, I feel deprived.

I’m a 5’7", 120-lb, 35-year-old woman.

A typical diet for me:

For breakfast:

-2-3 ounces of baked salmon filet
-half cup of brown rice, lightly buttered and seasoned

For lunch:

-a low-carb wrap filled with hummus, a slice of muenster cheese, and three slices of deli-sliced turkey

  • four prunes or dates

-a small cookie or a miniature candy bar

For dinner:

-a large slice of pizza (I eat pizza way too much, admittedly)
-a plateful of spinach, grape tomatoes, and sunflower seeds

For dessert:

-a decadent cookie

I also exercise a fair amount. If I didn’t exercise, I probably would replace the decadent cookie with a pudding cup.

Excellent monstro! I didn’t mean to imply that my diet has any secret ingredients in it (except maybe the kale). Yours would work great too. I eat lots of salmon as well.

I would love it if people like you gave good, true examples of what they eat for comparison. People tend to make this into a voodoo science when it isn’t I picked my main diet based off of nutritional information but also because I am lazy and only wanted what I could make from bulk bags that I just throw in my shopping cart from the wholesale club or grocery store. It ends up being pretty cheap and tasty too.

There are lots of other ways to do it so everyone can share those too.

out of interest shaggy, what is your best guess at your total daily calorie consumption? Do you think that perhaps the guidelines should be revised down?

I don’t know. I never tracked them. I could always just tell if I was on a general upward or downward trend based on how I felt and the way my clothes fit. I can try to figure it out over the next few days if you really are interested.

It is probably about 2000 a day now but much lower when I started.

I’ll play. Might be interesting to compare/contrast my diet with the OPs since we are of similar height and were once (actually, twice) of similar weight.

Breakfast: sometimes eggs (4 scrambled with sausage), sometimes just a clif bar. About once a month I’ll have the eggs and a donut.

Brunch: Protein shake (sometimes just milk and powder, sometimes I add a half banana and peanut butter, and sometimes I have this for breakfast).

Lunch: On lifting days, a Subway footlong big philly cheesesteak with no cheese, lots of veggies and sweet onion sauce. On other days, lots of meat and vegetables (just basic common sense good stuff, nothing fried or soaked in butter or too refined-carby, etc.).

Afternoon/post-workout: protein shake

Dinner: Lots of meat and vegetables.

After dinner: Protein shake (sometimes. This one goes by feel–if I’m hurting on a recovery day or if I failed a lift on a lifting day I may want to eat more, so I’ll have this one). Sometimes I go nuts and throw a little ice cream in the blender (like a couple of spoonfuls).

I typically sprinkle some nuts and raisins in throughout the day. I drink coffee in the morning, green tea at lunch, and water throughout the day.

The above is 100% of my daily consumption (i.e., there’s not any candy or snacks or liquids not mentioned (except the occasional “adult beverage” (god I hate that phrase, sounds pornographic)))).

I’m 6’2". I weighed 260 a few years ago, dropped to 190 doing BS lifting and cardio, now back to 210 doing awesome lifting and no cardio. I squat 270, deadlift 320, bench 175 and press 120 (and these numbers aren’t that impressive for a lifter–I hope to eventually increase all of them by at least 75%).

I’d encourage anyone who wants to join me in sexy beasthood to read Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe and do his program.

Why is this thread anti-spam? Spam the food? Spam the unwanted email? Spam an acronym I’m not familiar with?

Weight loss secrets are among the oldest SPAM in general (not the potted pork product; the advertisements and false tips). This thread is about concrete ways to do it from real Dopers through a large,long-term diet change. Exercise helps too and I do that as much a possible but it takes and insane amount of effort to burn off the energy contained in just one candy bar.

That is why I didn’t include much about exercise. It helps keep you healthy and toned but any reasonable amount doesn’t do that much for weight loss. You have to focus on the ‘calories in’ part of the equation for any hope at long-term success. It took me a long-time to believe that because it didn’t seem to work that way when I was a tenneager that out but it is true for adults.

Although a big advocate of eating less means losing weight, ** Shagnasty**, your meals sound fairly spartan even with the spices. If I were heavy and trying to lose weight, your examples would discourage me.

As an alternative, I eat 2000 to 2500 calories a day of which a portion usually involves a drive through, but stay about 130-135 at 5’10". It is a fairly protein heavy, low carb diet though. But, the trade-off is 5 days a week of serious exercise. So, I disagree with your point about focusing on calories is a better way to lose weight since this also worked to drop my baby weight twice.

And that’s also why I did want to include something about exercise. You can (and really, should) eat like a horse if you also put more than your bodyweight on your back and squat down to parallel a few dozen times per week.

Honestly, I think that exercise has a bad rap mostly because if you follow the basic guidelines to “do moderate exercise for 30 minutes 3 times per week,” yeah, you’re not burning off much more than a couple of Snickers bars. I say this not to discourage anyone from exercising, because the health benefits of exercise go far beyond weight loss, of course. You really should be moving your body around as much as possible. But that sort of moderate “get out and walk” exercise doesn’t have a huge caloric burn.

If you’re doing serious weight training like Rand Rover mentioned, or training for 10K or half-marathon races (or longer) or doing regular laps in the pool or whatever, that’s different. When I was training for my half-marathon, I felt like I was eating constantly and yet I kept losing weight.

Edit: MrWhatsit is another good example. When he got his job as a mail carrier and started doing brisk walking for several miles per day, he dropped about 30 pounds and has kept it off. I assume it will come back as soon as he retires, though. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yeah. There’s exercise and then there’s exercise.

Which isn’t to say walking is baby stuff. But you just have to do it more than 30 minutes three times a day.

No offense to Shagnasty, but I think seeing a diet like the one in the OP is daunting. It doesn’t surprise me that anyone could lose weight on it, and I doubt anyone else is surprised either. There’s little bread, sugar, or fat in it. For many people, those are the basic ingredients for happy living, and I am completely in agreement. Plus, snacks do not have to be verboten. A handful of sunflower seeds, some popcorn, or a fun-sized candy bar can be a perfectly fine “refresh” foods, depending on what else is being consumed throughout the day.

Breastfeeding can help burn up to 500 calories a day.


I lost much of the baby weight that way.

So how much weight did the baby lose?

That sounds remarkably similar to what I eat on a daily basis. Breakfast is greek yogurt and a piece of fruit, lunch is the Subway sandwich of the day with all the veggies and mustard, and dinner is something at home- which i usually pretty heavy on the veggies since i belong to a CSA. I do usually have an afternoon snack of a slice of homemade bread or a piece of fruit, and I might have a glass of wine at the end of the night.

The Subway thing is gold. I got a desk job and found i put on 10 lbs. and was spending up to $10.00 a day on lunch. So I go for the Subway sub of the day, filled with veggies and spiced up with hot peppers and mustard. It’s saving me fortunes, and I’ve lost a couple pounds in the weeks since I started it. I think the trick is to stick slavishly to the sub of the day- it mixes up enough not to get too boring, but it’s repetitive enough that it becomes a routine and you stop fantasizing about tempting lunches.

Sorry but eww! Salmon and rice for breakfast?! :confused: What’s your second choice? Beef tips and yams?

I spent my whole life eating stuff like sugary cereals and Eggos for breakfast. I still like those things, but now when I think of eating them first thing in the morning, I go ewww.

Sounds tasty to me. Ever have cold pizza? Hear of steak and eggs? Lox?

(And it’s really bad manners to shout 'yuck" at someone else’s food choices. This is a total pet peeve of mine).

Personally, I know I could stand to lose a few pounds, but I’m satisfied with where I am. But if I were going to diet, I like the one my mom uses. Her only rule is that she eats at least ten servings a day of fruits and vegetables, and whatever else she wants. It’s flexible enough that she can accommodate cravings, dinners with friends, holidays, etc., and she never has to feel like she’s depriving herself, but realistically, the ten servings of vegetables doesn’t leave much room for empty Calories, and so it works.

Of course, the OP’s diet would be consistent with this, but you don’t have to go to quite that extreme to be successful at it.

This works well for people who don’t emotionally eat and can listen to their own bodies’ signals. People with emotional relationships with food struggle with not eating when not hungry.

Sounds like a sensible plan for those who can, though.