How I Lost 25 Pounds in 6 Months!



There’s an old story about going to the gym in January.  It goes like this: 

              “I walked into the gym right after New Year’s Day, and I was shocked to see it was crowded! I asked the manager at the desk why. And he responded, “Oh don’t worry, every January a bunch of people make a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight and get in shape and they crowd the place.  Most of them will drop out around the middle of February and then we will be back to normal with our regulars.”


I suspect, well actually I know, that most people believe that they can do some cardio on the treadmill or elliptical trainer and the weight will fall off.


Recently I noticed one middle aged gentleman in my gym, who has an enormous midsection spending all his time on the cable machine doing side bends.  The entire time I was in the gym, one hour, he spent that time doing side bends thinking that will take the weight off.  Each time I thought, I can get that weight off in just a couple of months, just stop eating so much!  In fact, I know if he restricted his calories to about 1500 a day, he would lose most of his big gut!  But he slogs on and on with no results and will probably drop out soon.


Did you ever see that exercise equipment company’s commercial where a well-built young man says, “Just 20 minutes a day, three days a week on this machine and ‘eat right’ and you can have a body like mine?”

Well, the fact is, it’s the ‘eating right’ that makes the difference not the machine!  Most experts agree that your diet is about 80% - 85% of your success in your physical condition.


When I anchored the morning show on channel 10 in Phoenix, Arizona, there came a time when I just absolutely thought I had to get my eating under control. I’m one of those types of people who need a program, a system to follow.  My weight was up to 165 pounds! That’s 25 pounds over-weight! So I tried a plan and I got my weight down to 139! That’s a loss of 26 pounds in about 5 months.


I got on NutriSystem. I want you know that I don’t get paid from the company, at all, I just want you to know what worked for me.  While I was employed at the tv station, I was prohibited from mentioning any commercial product I was using.  If I ever hinted at anything like that, the managers would have conniptions!


Here’s how it happened:


We were on a cruise in the Caribbean, having dinner with an Italian couple from New York State and I mentioned that after the cruise I would have to go on a diet. The lady said, “Try NutriSystem.” I said, “What’s the food like, is it any good?” “Oh my God it is terrific!” She replied.  Hey she’s Italian, she knows what good food is!


So I ordered the system off their web-site, it cost me about $300.00 a month.  And I just ate the food!

Omelets for breakfast, cookies for snacks, hamburgers or chicken sandwiches for lunch, ravioli and lasagna for dinner, ice cream sandwiches for evening snacks.  I lost 26 pounds!   I was never more than 3 hours away from food.  (with the exception of sleeping, of course.)


I also went to the gym 3 or 4 days a week and did 20 minutes of cardio and 20 minutes of strength training. Which I can tell you about later.


Oh, by the way, Marie Osmond was a guest on our show one morning, and the first thing she said to me was, “How much weight have you lost on NutriSystem?” I said, “26 pounds!”  (I think I heard one of the TV executives screaming throwing himself out the window!)


The reason this plan works, and as I suspect Jenny Craig and The South Beach Diet and others, is they control the amount of calories you eat every day. Weight Watchers too, but you have to be true to yourself as to how much food you really are eating.


So now, I’m retired and I have since left NutriSystem. (I no-longer need to be real skinny to look normal on TV!)  and using a free plan by Under Armour.  It’s called My Fitness Pal.


“MyFitnesspal” ( ) is a smartphone app and website that tracks diet and exercise.  Simple to use.  Download the app, and log your food and exercise.  Want a Big Mac for lunch?  Enter in Big Mac and find out how many calories you’re having and adjust the rest of the day’s calories accordingly. (I like this plan more than NutriSystem because I get to go to Joe and Myra Aiello’s restaurant and eat what I want and still keep track of my calories.)


So what’s really important here is the amount of calories you’re eating every day compared to the amount of calories you are burning every day. (Myfitnesspal does that for you, it subtracts the calories you burned versus what you ate and keeps you on track, and every now and then you’ll get a coupon for 40 % off your next UnderArmour purchase when you hit your goals! Pretty cool!)


This calorie in and burning calories out thing hasn’t changed since God created Adam and Eve.  You just have to get on a plan, or use a system that helps you to keep track of it all.


So let’s see, this morning for breakfast I had Quaker Maple and Brown Sugar Instant Oatmeal, with some raisins and a banana.  278 calories, 1,222 left to eat today if I don’t work out, or if I do work out: 1700 calories to go! I might get that Big Mac, or Joe Aiello’s Meatballs!