How To Be Skinnier

As my endless effort to become skinnier continues, I carefully read Ian Rogers post “…look at me I’m skinny…” Diet, exercise, nature, and nurtureI’ve enjoyed getting to know Ian through our investment in Topspin and have had several significant substantial meals with him.  Little did I know that I was actually doing all the eating (well, I did, I was just in denial.)

Ian’s post is dynamite.  If you struggle to keep the pounds off, run (don’t walk) over to FistFulaYen, toss your Coca-Cola down the drain, and read “…look at me I’m skinny…”

As I whittle away a little bit of weight each week, I just keep telling myself “eat less, exercise more.”  As my weekly running mileage continues to creep up (I’m now steadily adding 10%+ / week to my base) it gets a little easier, but all it takes is one double large dinner and an extra big bowl of ice cream to completely wipe out the progress.

Ah, that tuna burger and truffle fries at Larkburger sure was nice today.  I guess that’s it for the week.  Thanks Ian for sharing what works for you.

  • jon

    So this was "Save starch-containing foods until after a workout or for breakfast" I LIKE IT

    @bfeld I like planet earth. I think I'll stay here. Nice two hour run reward. – Photo: http://bkite.com/091i5

  • http://karyng.typepad.com Karyn German

    As someone who used to coach people on fitness and weight management and actually got paid for it, I have learned a little secret along the way. Ready? Unless you are extremely disciplined with your diet and/or you are 22 and/or you are an elite athlete with nutritionists and cooks at your disposal, hardcore endurance activity can help you to be….um….not skinny. Believe it or not, the people who are most successful at taking off weight and keeping it off, exercise at moderate intensities for moderate amounts of time. The average Joe or Josephine who starts running marathons and riding centuries often puts on weight. Seriously. That seems so wrong, but the toll of hard endurance activity has impact on hunger cues, hormonal responses and physcological habits that make it damned near impossible to shed weight.

    I'm much skinner now that I work out a lot less. :'} For more, I blogged on a similar topic 2.5 years ago.

    http://karyng.typepad.com/soaking_in_samsara/2007

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/bfeld Brad Feld

      I am living proof of this.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/jim122 Jim

    My wife always tells me its about "moderation". Its just that I am impossible at that. I have gotten more fit recently by just deciding I will not drink soda or beer (a yucky vodka soda is my drink of choice now – not liking it makes me drink less of it btw), and will not eat breads or pastas. I have also not eaten anything buy fish and chicken. Seems to have worked. Also, green tea instead of coffee.

  • http://WhoHasTimeForThis.com David Cowan

    I lost 10 pounds by skipping breakfast. Most important meal of the day? Urban legend. Pancakes, fried cereals, bacon strips, and sugary juice is not good for you. And when you drag your ass out of bed, are you really hungry? WhoHasTimeForThis?

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/rickgregory Rick Gregory

      Tons of science contradicts you. The point is to eat some food – not to eat 3000 calories. Instead of the crap you list, have some decent cereal or oatmeal. Will you lose 10 pounds if you eat nothing for breakfast vs high fat high calorie meals? Duh…

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/bfeld Brad Feld

      Yeah – but it’s pretty hard not to eat after a 1+ hour run.

    • Julie

      Try eating in reverse. Big dinner in the morning, moderate lunch and eating light, cereal/yougart, you won't be hungry, in the evening. You'll be amazed! Julie from Minnesota

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/danmayer danmayer

    My friend swears by protein diets… Only thing that has kept weight off for him.

    http://www.melonandorange.com/dom/2009/06/inspira

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/scottshapiro Scott Shapiro

    Interesting.

    I've heard that excess exercise produces cortisol which makes you retain weight…

  • Brad

    Next time you are in Seattle, call ahead and go to the http://www.xygm.com for a complimentary workout. I lost ~30lbs in a year doing this along with my cardio. Then talk to PJ (the owner) and get him to franchise one in Boulder.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/rickgregory Rick Gregory

    Brad,

    Ian's post isn't anything really new. If you eat well, eat limited amounts and work out, you'll stay skinny/loseweight. Um, yeah. The thing I didn't like about it and generally don't like about those kinds of posts is that it was either/or. Either his kind of a diet or Totino's Pizza. Those aren't the only choices. What we've lost since the 80s is the habit of actually cooking stuff from scratch. Prepared food is evi – usually high salt, sugar and fats which means calorie dense. All people need to do is learn to cook a dozen health meals that they like and then try variations. You can easily end up with 20 or 30 different meals that take 30 minutes to prep – and I reject the notion that most people don't have the 30 minutes.

  • http://www.intensedebate.com/people/rickgregory Rick Gregory

    Brad,

    Ian's post isn't anything really new. If you eat well, eat limited amounts and work out, you'll stay skinny/lose weight. Um, yeah. The thing I didn't like about it and generally don't like about those kinds of posts is that it was either/or. Either his kind of a diet or Totino's Pizza. Those aren't the only choices though and his regimen sounds, well, dull and boring. That doesn't mean you have to fall back to prepared garbage though.

    What we've lost since the 80s is the habit of actually cooking stuff from scratch. Prepared food is evi – usually high salt, sugar and fats which means calorie dense. All people need to do is learn to cook a dozen health meals that they like and then try variations. You can easily end up with 20 or 30 different meals that take 30 minutes to prep – and I reject the notion that most people don't have the 30 minutes.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/bfeld Brad Feld

      I agree that cooking helps a lot.  However, Amy and I both eat a lot of these 30 minute meals and my biggest problem with them is portion control.  I find that I chronically overeat, even when I eat healthy.  Yeah – I know, “eat less.”  Grrrr.

    • Julie

      Hey Rick, This is Julie. Are you still the love of my life?

  • http://chizang.net/alex/blog/ Alex Chiang

    Hi Brad,

    Maybe you've already heard this before, but I highly recommend "Good Calories, Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes. His main thesis is: our intuitions about weight loss are misinformed, due to bad science starting around the 1950s or so.

    "Burn off more than you eat" is simple, intuitive, and wrong, because your biochemistry isn't simply a set of meters that say "convert ice cream to numeric equivalent of 1500 calories ; ooh, now we're running, we've got some surplus so let's burn it!" Perhaps unsurprisingly, body biochemistry is more complicated than that. :)

    And really, should we be surprised? After all, we software guys have internalized the concept of GIGO in the computing domain; to apply it to biochemistry (a much more complicated system than a computer due to its analog black magic) shouldn't be that much of a leap.

    cheers,

    /ac

  • http://blog.oneriot.com tobias

    Brad, i'm not a nutritionist, so I’m only guessing that certain food groups impact different people in different ways… but the one I learnt to stay away from was ice cream. When I eat it, I carry a tire. When I don’t, I don’t.

    I think the real trouble is that I can’t eat ice cream in moderation. It’s the whole tub of Haagen Dazs (straight from the tub) for me, or nothing.

    But try an ice cream free month and see what happens… you might be surprised.

  • Jamey

    Brad –
    Does this mean I should cancel Vetri?

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/bfeld Brad Feld

      Nah. I'll just eat intelligently. Damn this is hard.

      • Jamey

        You don't know the half of it! Vetri is considered by many to be the best Italian restaurant in the country.

        Bing and purge, bing and purge…

  • http://chrisyeh.blogspot.com Chris Yeh

    I've lost 35 pounds in the past year with one simple method: Making bets with friends. Health, looking good, the desire to be there for my family–all meant nothing in comparison to the opportunity to win money and trash talk.

    As shallow as it sounds, my advice is to make a bet with someone to whom you'd hate to lose.

    The other thing that helped me was setting up hard rules about what I would and wouldn't eat. Portion control requires exercising willpower. Far better to just tell people, "Sorry, I have a rule."

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/micah105 micah

    given Ian is the CEO of TopSpin, anyone else get his reference to Digital Underground's Humpty Dance?

    within this song is the true secret: Dont eat at Burger King, get busy in its bathrooms.

  • http://www.siliconverse.com Ruchit

    Thanks for sharing this Brad. I have started riding bike daily to my office uphill 4 miles. i feel lighter.

    Thankfully I dont eat so much of precooked boxed food, but yea…I need to dash beer with wine :)

  • http://www.estatecreate.com Henry Yates

    The killer is that if you lose just a few pounds running becomes SO much easier. When I'm overweight I feel like I am cracking the pavement (sidewalk) as each stride thuds downwards. Lose a few pounds and you get that feeling of actually running – your effort seems to propel you forward instead of downward.

    The most effective way for me to lose weight is reducing the carbs you eat. I focus on cutting out bread, potatoes and pasta. Fewer carbs + running = pounds off quickly. Good luck.

  • http://www.GeekMBA360.com Bill

    Hi, Brad,

    Have you looked into Evolutionary Fitness? (here is the PDF: http://www.arthurdevany.com/webstuff/images/Revis… I think it'll be helpful to you. :-)

    cheers,
    Bill

  • Judy Herman

    @bfeld….., so 33 weeks later I run into your blog by accident! I've been trying to lose a bit of weight myself, so I've been tracking all my food intake (calories and protein mostly) and working out a ton (6-7 days a week). I just got home from eating a super yummy Larkburger truffle burger with truffle parmesan fries (O.K., I fell off the eat right wagon a little today), was trying to figure out the nutritional info for what I ate, and ran into your blog (Googled Larkburger nutrition and you came up the #3 choice)! I didn't even realize it was you until after I had read through it! I thought it was funny to accidentally run into "you" here, and decided to comment.

    So far, I've been loosing about a pound a week (I'm on lb 8 now), basically using the easy thing we all know: eat less calories than you burn (although someone above said that was wrong). Of course, I also try to eat the right kind of calories (more veggies, less processed junk, less sugar, less meat, but still get plenty of protein – pretty much eat less everything but veggies). For me, tracking what I eat has really helped me. I know how much I can eat that day (how many calories and grams of protein I need), and as I eat, I count down how many calories I have left in the day. If I chowed down and ate a big fat burrito or something (like Larkburger), I know I'm screwed and have to eat something like veggies and broth for dinner :( For me, and it sounds like you, weight loss is tough. As you know, I love love love cooking and eating food, and I need will power to hold me back from shoveling all the yummy deliciousness into my face! Tracking what I eat gives me that,….or at least it makes me feel guilty when I go over…and I don't like feeling like that!

    Anyway, hope you and Amy are well. Would love to see you both sometime soon. Now off to find the nutritional content of my Larkburker and fries!

    Judy

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/bfeld bfeld

    Congrats on the weight loss and thanks for the story – I totally agree with you approach although as I sit here at The Cup, eat a hummus bagel and a mocha latte as a snack before a sushi orgy at Kasa in an hour I realize I am undermining myself.

  • Karen

    for the past two months i have drank nothing but water ( no soda, tea, cofee) and have lost about 10 pounds, and i just changed what i drank

  • http://www.convertmodfiles.biz mod converter

    some tip about this issue are welcome and really sorry if my question is very simple. Thanks in advance
    Thanks again for your help. Your site contain a many useful information.

  • Pingback: force quit mac

  • Pingback: online cash advance