Bill Barnwell, the superb NFL writer from the late & lamented Grantland, lost 125 pounds last year. He wrote on Medium about how he did it.
Here’s a quick-and-dirty summary of his steps:
1) Recognizing that he wasn’t eating for nourishment or even pleasure, but trying to fill himself for other, emotional reasons.
2) Exercising every day.
3) Paying attention to and tracking the calories he ate, and keeping them in a healthy range of 2000-ish per day.
And maybe most importantly:
4) Forgiving himself if he screwed up. After years of starting, missing a day or eating a bad meal or whatever, then giving up, he decided to get in the habit of not only eating and exercising consistently, but consistently going back immediately when he strayed.
Men write to us all the time asking how to hide their weight – the truth is that the style rules are pretty much the same for big guys and small ones. You will look better in good, well-fitting clothes, but you will not fool anyone. But as Bill demonstrates, it is entirely possible to improve your life and health.
Over the past year, I’ve been focusing on improving my health, in large part due to the debilitating effects of chronic migraine (and for the sake of my wife and two young children). What I’ve found is that all diets, exercise plans and other such nonsense aside, the best bet is simply eating consciously when I’m hungry, doing some exercise every day, and not letting a day off exercising or a silly meal make me feel bad, or keep me from doing it right the next day.