How I Lost 34 Pounds in Six Months Without Dieting

Twitter exploded with questions yesterday when I announced I had lost 34 pounds and am only 1.8 pounds away from my goal weight.

How did I do it without dieting?

Be warned, you may not like what follows. You may not agree. But it worked for me.

Three simple steps and six months of absolute consistency:

1) I decided to start by running six miles three times (Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday) a week. I started very, very slow. A 12 minute plus pace. I use Jeff Galloway’s run/walk method. For me, that means run for six minutes, walk for one, then repeat.

I added one mile on Sunday every other week. I now run 13-15 miles every Sunday.

I also gradually sped up the pace. I am now running the long runs at about an eleven minute pace. Tuesday is an easy pace, Thursday is as fast as I can go. I just ran 6.2 miles yesterday at a 9:24 pace. My pace times include the walks. So to run a 9:24 pace taking a walk break every six minutes, that really calculates to around a 9:00 pace while running.

2) I started an upper body weight training regimen three times per week. Low weight, high reps.

For me that is bicep curls, tricep, shoulder, back, chest and arms. I started bicep curls at 45 lbs and 3 sets of 15 reps. I am now curling 115 lbs at 3 sets of 15. Same holds true for other exercises. Chest press started at 3 sets of 15 reps of 80 lbs and now it is 3 sets of 45 reps of 130 lbs. You get the idea.

I also started doing 45 sit-ups. I am now doing 200.

3) I skip one meal a day. Either breakfast or lunch. I eat no snacks. On the long run days on Sunday I eat three meals. I always have a cup of applesauce with a tablespoon of steel cut oats before my long run. I use GU sports gel at mile 7. I then enjoy a full breakfast. Bacon, eggs, biscuits, jelly—the works.

For days when I eat breakfast, I have a cup of rice mixed with two scrambled eggs and two strips of bacon.

For days when I have lunch, anything goes except fried foods.

At dinner, I drink and eat what I want. I have stayed away from most fried foods as a rule. I eat half portions of dessert, but usually opt out of dessert for an extra drink, coffee or glass of wine.

That’s it.

I have lost 34 pounds during this six months with these three simple steps.

I realize this is not for everybody, but it works for me and I find it enjoyable.

Question: What works for you?

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32 Responses to “How I Lost 34 Pounds in Six Months Without Dieting”

  1. Randy, I recently tested out Tim Ferris’ Slow Carb diet from his “4 Hour Body” book. The results were astouding. I lost 15 lbs in about 60 days and have continued to keep it off. It’s the easiest diet to sustain in my opinion because I can eat all the meat I want and splurge for 24 hours once a week (I tend to go crazy on that day). It’s funny what I’ve tried is sort of the opposite: diet and no exercise; however, I’m hoping to get back into running now since I do enjoy it.

    Did Jeff Galloway train you or do you simply read his material?

    Thanks for the tips!

    • Yes, David. Mike Hyatt & I have talked about Ferris’ diet. Congratulations on your success!

      And no, Jeff Galloway did not personally train me( wow! That would be a dream come true!) but I heard him speak almost 20 years ago at the Disney Marathon expo and subsequently bought his book “Marathon” which has become my “Bible” of running.

  2. Great job Randy! That’s awesome!

  3. Since February 1, I have lost from my most regret-able 178 pounds to 160 (just this morning) by working out (20 min of [email protected]%incline on the treadmill and weight training) 3 times per week. I even missed two weeks due to a nasty allergy to Bradford Pears blooming (yuck). I also started eating Jamie Lee Curtis’ yogurt (Activia) for breakfast -instead of nothing at all. I changed from 2 cream/ 3 sugar coffees to plain black coffee (and I like it), and I cut down on meal sizes at lunch and dinner. Thats it. 10 more pounds and I’m back to my 25y/o body. So, its like the experts say: FOUR SIMPLE WORDS: EAT LESS EXERCISE MORE.

  4. This plan sounds great, unfortunately not workable for me due to too many disc herniations and other orthopedic issues. That said I have been on the Jenny Craig program and I have lost 45.2 pounds since November 1st and have another 40-50 to go. I well understand that Jenny is not the “answer” but a tool for me. People ask me all the time if Jenny Craig is “the best program to do” and my answer is always simple. The best weight loss program for you is the one that works, and whatever method you chose will only work when you commit to it mentally, emotionally and physically.

    • Scott, Congratulations!!! You are doing awesome!! And yes, I so agree,”The best weight loss program for you is the one that works, and whatever method you chose will only work when you commit to it mentally, emotionally and physically.”

      Thanks for joining the conversation!!

  5. Exercise alone didn’t work for me because my health and energy levels did not support it. BUT I recently found something that did. I’ve lost 22 lbs in 56 days. :)

    Congratulations on your accomplishment and thanks for sharing your story.

  6. Congrats!
    Love that you found what works for you … and then were consistent at it. Way to go!

  7. Woo hoo! Good job. Several years ago, I heard a lady point out that anytime God supernaturally fed people in the Bible, they ate in the morning and the evening. This was so liberating from the darned obsession over feeding every few hours. Still I was under nourishing myself, so in the last 3 weeks I added the Isagenix milkshakes and liquids to my diet and lost those stubborn 10 pounds (from 19 years ago!) without ever feeling that yucky afternoon slump. I was really surprised. I also change up my workouts to just get stronger and faster as a beginner martial artist. :)

    • Awesome, Gina. Congratulations!!

      I love this, “Several years ago, I heard a lady point out that anytime God supernaturally fed people in the Bible, they ate in the morning and the evening. This was so liberating from the darned obsession over feeding every few hours.”

      Love it!!

  8. Currently I am doing Insanity workout.
    This works best for me because I do not have any free weights or much space.
    I am at week 2 and have already noticed that I am losing fat (lost about 6 pounds) and gaining muscle.

    But one thing that I need to do more of is run. Hopefully start doing that soon.


  9. @LaureeAshcom April 15, 2011 at 18:54

    what i like about your plan is that it seems sustainable…. that you have not really denied yourself things that give quality to life….

    good job!

  10. Thanks for sharing the strategy that works for you, Randy. I joined a gym mid-February, and try to get there about 4 times per week. I ride the bike + the elliptical and work the miscellaneous weight machines. In addition, I am running about 3 miles twice per week. My husband, Fred, and I are participating in the Nashville Marathon on April 30 (fundraising for Team 413; my donation page is if anyone feels led!). I will be walk/running it. We’ve done at least 6 marathons and 6 half marathons since our first in May 2008 in Cleveland (mostly walking them until recently).
    In addition to running and the gym, I have been subbing one meal per day with a protein shake for the past few weeks. They’re kind of addictive – and yummy!
    The scale is not moving – yet! – but I am not discouraged! I know muscle weighs more than fat, and I am toning up.
    It is exciting to see what discipline and hard work – with the Lord’s help – does! Team 413 is based on Philippians 4:13 – ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me’ – so I am leaning on that truth!

    • That is awesome, Andrea. Your regimen will definitely move the scales. It just takes a bit of time. I love that you are combining your marathons with a great cause. Thanks for joining the conversation!!

  11. Congratulations Randy.
    I have about the same routine as you…cardio 3 times a week alternating between running and riding a road bike; and 2 or 3 days of the week in the gym doing weight training. The difference for me is that I try to hit all areas of the body, not just the upper body.

    Also like you I use ‘loseit,’ not to loose weight but as an accountability to what I eat each day. It is a great reminder to fuel with good food.

    Thanks for the post. I am sure I will see you running through Franklin…

  12. Congratulations Randy. :)
    I am going to the gym everyday (except Sunday) for about 1 and half hour per day. After 6 months, I can feel the fit of my body but I lost only 6.61 lbs. I am now 119.05 lbs. still 6.61 lbs. to go. ;)
    I have no diet plan too.

  13. You look great man!
    Im trying it! You’ve inspired me yet again my friend! The adding a mile every Sunday scares me but Im up for the challenge.

  14. As I’ve told several people as of late, there is no greater time in the history of man to want to loose weight. The common rule of weight loss: give up on guilt driven weight loss and find what works for you. Congrats on finding your groove Randy! Keep it up and keep moving forward.


  15. Good to hear your details regarding your weight loss. A year ago I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes. Man, that hit me hard. My doc might as well have said. “You eat horribly, exercise is not in your vocabulary and now you will suffer the consequences. 12 months and 52 lbs later I feel like a new person. I still have a long way to go for good health, but I do know a system that works for me. Thanks for the encouragement!

  16. An impressive feat!

    Your post has refueled my desire to start running regularly again. Thank you for that.

    I see you have a race number on in your picture. Do you often compete in races and, if so, what length?

  17. Amazing!

    I need to get back at it. I might adopt this interesting approach.

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