Last chance for a summer six pack on a one meal a day diet… or I’ll quit, I mean it!

by David

in Health & Fitness

Last month I embarked on a fantastic challenge:

  • Lose the last of my excess weight and get a flat stomach eating one meal a day
  • Do 10,000 push ups
  • Run a marathon distance (1.5 miles at a time)

Two out of three ain’t bad – See this post: How to feel amazing.

I did the push ups and I put in the miles, but I didn’t get the flat stomach.

That’s what July is about.

I’ve got just one goal – to get a flat stomach eating only one meal a day

It’s been almost a year since I started experimenting with this diet and whilst I’ve done very well, shedding more than 30 lbs, I’ve really struggled to lose the last few pounds.

It’s been my contention right from the start that most diets are won or lost in the mind, and that’s where I feel I’m struggling at the moment.

Life changes, and the issues I was facing back then are not the same as the issues I’m facing now but I’m learning to adapt (as will always be the case).

I still did well in June and lost 4 lbs, but the additional physical exercise and the resultant fatigue played a part in me over-eating and failing at the eating plan more than I would have liked to.

Knowing when to quit

So I want to put this to bed now. If I can’t achieve my goal by the end of July, I’m going to move on from one meal a day and try something else.

There’s no shame in that and it’s not a failure – it was always an imperfect diet, for an imperfect man, living an imperfect life – but even so, it has still given me some amazing results… and not just physically!

I’m going back to basics, I’m dropping the epic physical activity and I’m going to concentrate on sticking to my eating plan. I’ll still walk twice a day just as I’ve done from the start and I’ll continue to eat a ‘normal’ diet.

I can still “get abs by summer”, I really believe that (although it will be late summer) and I’m going to try my best to make it happen.

I’ll continue to post pictures here to monitor my progress.



{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Linda July 3, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Hi David
I think you are doing great! I don’t know why you would want to change any of your method as it totally works! I agree that you might want to relax the exercise a tad, given that in my (limited) experience, the more you do, the more your body gets used to doing, and the more you have to do in order to lose weight/build muscle. With regard to the eating plan, I’ve taken this on board myself. Have lost 65lb (initially) on 3 meals a day and two small snacks (apples mostly) and upping walking/aerobic class exercise. I have now gained approx 10-12lb and have dropped lunch to a couple of pieces of fruit and no snacks, just breakfast and dinner. Though I am still following my low-cal/low-fat basics, I do think that I can drop that lunch for most of the valid reasons you state, not least because most of the time I sit at my desk and scoff it as fast as I can – not great nor healthy I suspect. So do continue your quest with minimal tweaking – you will get there – good luck!

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David July 3, 2012 at 7:39 pm

Hi Linda! Thank you very much. πŸ™‚

I just wanted to comment about this:

Have lost 65lb

That’s fantastic!! Well done. That is an impressive achievement. I bet you feel amazing!

The two meal option you’re looking at sounds great to me. I believe it’s a better option for most people and right from the start I said i’d move to this approach once I’m done with the weight loss.

I’m so glad I saw this comment because it’s made me see that I really need to write a concise piece to explain the madness behind what I’m doing. πŸ™‚

In short: I’ve used this whole thing as a giant experiment. For a long time I’ve believed that a lot of the conventional wisdom about dieting, weight loss, muscle development etc, is flawed and that some of it is just plain wrong. I needed to learn for myself what works and what doesn’t which is sometimes why I do strange things and seemingly sabotage my own efforts. And sometimes I just get it wrong! LOL

So many people have told me that you can’t lose weight eating one meal a day… and I lost 30lbs. So many people tell me that you can’t get a six pack eating bread and potatoes (especially on one meal), and I’m currently trying to prove that one wrong.

Basically I’m trying to show that it’s possible to lose weight in a sub-optiomal way and that you don’t have to buy into the superfoods, the pills, potions and supplements. I’m trying to show that you can build muscle without paying for a gym membership. I’m trying to prove that imperfect people who lead imperfect lives can still get good results.

Don’t worry, the 10,000 push-ups was just a small detour. This month I’m back doing nothing but walking and sticking to the eating plan.

I definitely won’t give up! πŸ™‚ There’s nothing wrong with the diet – it’s my mindset I need to sort out.

Thanks again, and let me know how you get on with your own goals πŸ™‚

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Kim July 9, 2012 at 6:29 pm

Have you ever thought about the issue being not how you’re eating but what you’re eating? I can’t critique your meal options because I don’t know what you eat but I know many people that struggle with the last few pounds often get it off not by eating less but by subbing in more veggies, whole grains, and healthy fats. The principal being two athletes training for the same event won’t get the same results if one is on a wholesome diet and one is eating tons of junk. Not at all saying you eat junk but maybe there are a few slight changes you could make to your meals? My two cents πŸ™‚

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David July 9, 2012 at 7:32 pm

Hi Kim, I totally get where you’re coming from, and it is definitely something I’ve considered right from the off.
I should perhaps explain that I’m not totally hooked into the one meal a day diet. It was a means to an end and it worked brilliantly for the first phase of my weightloss. It was always an experiment and I continued it long after the results started to slow because I needed to find out for myself whether it was possible to go the whole way.
One of my contentions is that any diet will work as long as you follow through on the plan, i.e. you have the mental strength and determination to stick to it. Again, that was fine at the start, but recently I’ve lost some of that mental toughness. Events in my life have impacted my ability to stick to my plan, so naturally the weight loss has slowed, and I’m having to learn develop the right kind of attitude again.
You have though hit the nail on the head… the killer for my diet has been the junk food that has slipped into my eating.
I’m going to continue as I am for the moment because I feel obliged to follow through with it to see how far I can get with my sub-optimal approach, and if at the end of the month I’m not close to where I want to be, I’ll optimize my diet.
One of my failings with writing about this process is I’ve never taken the time to create a page where I fully explain what I’m doing and why I’m doing it.
It was a great point you made and I’m grateful you took the time to make it.
Thanks πŸ™‚

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