The question I get more than anything when it comes to losing weight is “ Eric I don’t really want to count calories can you please tell me how to lose weight without counting calories ?!”.
I totally get it. Counting calories can be time consuming, tedious, and sometimes not very practical.
Like if you are going out to eat you aren’t going to bring your food scale with you are you? (I may or may not have done that a few times when I was younger…).
Or if you are constantly traveling for work it you may not be able to weigh out every single thing you eat.
Don’t worry because I am going to give to everything you need to know on how to lose weight without counting calories.
Just be sure you fully understand each strategy I am going to give you here. That means pay close attention to the entire article.
Dealio? Groovy, let’s get started shall we?
How To Lose Weight Without Counting Calories
Before We Dive In..
I want to set up some preliminary mandatory guidelines.
First things first, how do you actually lose weight?
There is counting calorie, there is keto, there is intermittent fasting.
Which one of them is the best for weight loss?
None. You know why?
Weight loss is simple an energy balance equation.
For you to be able to lose weight, you must intake less energy than what your body is burning. Energy is the equivalent to calories.
To lose weight you have to intake less calories than what your body burns.
This is called creating a negative energy balance, or being in a calorie deficit.
It doesn’t matter if you count calories or don’t count calories. It doesn’t matter if you do keto or fasting or random weird juice cleanses that make you use the restroom way more than you want to.
The only way to lose weight is to be in a calorie deficit. The sooner you understand that, the sooner you will start seeing results.
Your next question is going to be “How many calories should I eat to lose weight then?”.
Don’t worry, I got your back. Head HERE to get my free calorie calculator that will tell you exactly how many calories you should be eating.
But Wait, I Thought This Was An Article On How To Lose Weight WITHOUT Counting Calories?
You are darn right it is, yet this brings me to my second preliminary point.
I am a firm believer that everyone should count calories for at least 30 days straight.
Why is this?
Through you tracking calories legit for 30 days straight you will gain so much knowledge about food you did not have before.
- Proper portion size
- What foods have certain calorie & macronutrients in them
- What foods keep you full for low calories
- How many calories you need to lose weight, maintain your weight, or gain weight
And so many more.
This knowledge will be able to set you up not only in your current weight loss journey you are on, but 30 40 50 60 years after this current moment in time.
They say knowledge is power, and personally if you told me I would do something for 30 days straight to set up the next 50 years of my life.. I will take you up on that offer any day of the week.
I personally no longer count calories because I do not have to.
Through my journey I counted calories for years straight and that led me to have knowledge now where I can look at a plate of foot and approximate how many calories it is within 5-10% error rate.
On top of that fact, I know about how many calories my body needs to lose, maintain, or gain weight.
With those two things combined, I am able to be at a point in my life I do not have to count calories for every single meal. I believe this is actually what most people should strive for.
Yet if I did not have that initial first few years of calorie counting, I would not be able to do this today.
You don’t have to do it for years like I did, but at least 30 days. I promise your return on your investment will be worth it.
Therefore do you have to count calories to lose weight? No. But remember this.
You don’t have to count calories, but calories always count.
No matter what you do you have to eat less calories than what your body burns, aka creating a calorie deficit.
Methods On How To Lose Weight Without Counting Calories
Now that you know the importance of what a calorie deficit is and how calorie counting for at least 30 days straight can set up the rest of your life nutrition wise, let’s dive into methods on how to lose weight without counting calories for those who don’t want to count calories.
These methods below are going to be a game changer for you because you must also remember fat loss is more about how much you eat rather than what you eat.
Let me explain.
We learned above the importance of creating a calorie deficit, simply intaking less calories than what your body burns.
Therefore if you can find a way to consistently and sustainably control your calorie intake and be in this deficit you are going to lose weight, whether that is through calorie counting or not.
No one food inherently makes you gain weight or lose weight. It all comes down to your total calories for the day.
If you follow these guideline below, you will have a fool proof way to limit your total calorie intake for the day in a consistent and sustainable way, allowing you to lose weight without ever tracking a single piece of food.
3 Meals And 2 Snacks Method
This method is something I pulled from two great resources.
Number one would be the Level 1 Precision Nutrition Certification. If any coach out there is reading this, I would 10/10 recommend that certification.
I also got some of this from one of the best coaches in the industry Jordan Syatt.
This method has been a fool proof way for my online coaching clients on how to lose weight without counting calories.
Some of my clients do this directly off the bat, some of them do this after the first 30 days, some of them do this after the first 30 days, and some of them do this when they cannot track their calories perfectly.
There is no right or wrong way to go about this, this is simply your guideline to be able to see what works best for you and keep rocking with it.
These 3 meals are usually breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
I know you might ask “what if I don’t eat breakfast?”.
My response to you would be I highly encourage you to eat breakfast. I did an entire YouTube video on why eating breakfast may not be the best option if you are looking to lose weight, so head to my YouTube channel to check that out.
Beyond that, the guidelines for those 3 meals are below.
Each meal has to
- Fit on one plate
- Include at least 1 palm size portion of protein (or 1/4 of the plate is protein)
- Include at least 1-2 fistfuls of vegetables (or 1/2 of the plate)
- Can include 1 cupped handful of carbs or 1 thumb size portion of healthy fats (or 1/4 the plate)
For protein you can have things like chicken, steak, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, egg / egg whites.
Vegetables you can have things like asparagus, broccoli, spinach, peppers, carrots.
You can have things like quinoa, white or brown rice, white or sweet potatoes, fruits for carbohydrates.
For fats you can have things like olive oil, almonds, pecans, egg yolks, cheese sticks.
I like to have the snacks included to be able to have some type of food throughout the day to keep your body full and satisfied.
Each snack has to
- Fit in the palm of your hand
- Has to be a source of protein, fruit, or vegetable
Examples of snacks could be greek yogurt, proteins shake, banana, watermelon, carrots, rx bars, snap peas, to name a few.
I know you may have a question about alcohol.
Who doesn’t love the occasionally beer or two (or 8?). I myself don’t drink but a ton of my clients do so this is what I do for them.
For every 1 drink, substitute it out for 1 snack and or 1 cupped handful of carbs.
This way you are still able to enjoy alcohol in moderation, still match your calorie intake to where you need it to be, and still lose weight.
Why Does This Method Work?
Great question, got a few answers for you.
First off as mentioned earlier this is a simple way to control your energy / calorie intake for the day.
If you are having a palm size portion of protein at every single meal you are going to be full and satisfied throughout the day.
This will automatically help you keep your calorie intake under control.
If you are having 1-2 fistfuls of vegetables at every meal, you are going to be getting a ton of food volume for not a ton of calories.
This again, will help you stay full and keep your calorie intake under control.
You can only eat so many calories if you base your eating around this method.
Second, god willing, you will always have your hands no matter where you are or what you are doing.
As opposed to carrying a food scale around with you every single place you go, you can have your hand to set your guidelines for you.
It is portable, always the same, and can be easily referenced.
Therefore no matter if you are at home cooking dinner, or you are out at your favorite restaurant, this method will be the same.
It also helps with your individual portion control.
I am a 6’4, 270 lb male. My hand is a bit bigger than most people and that is okay because my portion sizes will be bigger than someone who is a 5’2 160lb female.
We both need different portion controls and our hands do that already for us.
Meaning you can consistently stick to this which is the only way you will see long term sustainable results.
Feel More Confident On How To Lose Weight Without Counting Calories?
Truthfully I believe what I just laid out above is one of the best methods on how to lose weight without counting calories.
Yet I have to make this clear. This is not an end all be all.
You can tweak the portion size here and there, sub carbs for fats, amongst a few other things.
This does not have to be the only way to go about doing things.
My plea to you with this article is to simply try. Put something into place, try it with 90% consistency for 4-6 weeks, track your results, and see what happens.
I don’t care if you count calories or don’t. Whether you eat paleo or vegan. Keto or fasting.
At the end of the day weight loss comes down to intaking less calories than what your body burns.
If you do that, you will lose weight, I promise.
Got any questions? Feel free to drop a comment below.
If you got some value from this and think you are going to start using it, let me know below :).
I am here to help, don’t hesitate to reach out.