I recently ran into a friend I had not seen in several years.  He was looking more fit than I remembered. So, I asked him what his secret was expecting the typical response of, “I’ve been working my butt off” or “hitting the gym.” However, the first thing he mentioned was his diet. When I asked what kind of diet he was on, he said it was easier to explain what he ate than to give his diet a name. That’s when he described his extremely regimented diet that went like this; “at 7 a.m. I eat [this], at 8 a.m. I eat [that], at 10 a.m. I eat [something else],” and so on.  Even his snacks were weighed and calculated. At home or on the road, day and night, seven days a week my friend had this nutritional routine. Good for him, but unlikely for me. There is no way I could maintain that regimentation.

Having a regimented diet is great for some people and kudos to those that can stay on one. However, most of us can not. It takes willpower to stay regimented to the specific meal plan or time, and to prepare every meal every day for several days. I sincerely, believe diet is the primary way to lose weight, fight off many disorders, and maintain fitness.

My take is that you already have a diet. You eat things that you like, right? First thing you need to do is stop eating as much as you do now. Stop at one serving. Limit with the number of sweets, not the entire box. Stop ordering some gigantic breakfast and eating it all by yourself–share it with your spouse. American restaurant servings are way to large, so share it or plan to take some home. Then you get twice the pleasure. Little things like using a smaller plate gives the illusion that you have more food. Try putting your fork down between bites, chew slower, and enjoy your food.

Of course, if your diet is primarily comprised of crap, then any amount isn’t going to help with your health or fitness. Slowly start replacing your crap food with something healthy. For example, grapes are as sweet as many candies. They are baby steps, but you gotta start somewhere.