The million dollar question, “ How to lose weight without dieting” .
Let’s face it, dieting sucks.
There is no two ways around it and there is no need to sugar coat it!
Luckily for you, in this article today, we are going to cover exactly what you can do in order to successfully and sustainably lose weight without crying over your celery sticks.
The number one reason people fall off their “diet” is because they absolutely hate what they are doing.
You feel restricted, hungry, and pissed off. Good luck sticking to anything for any significant amount of time there champ!
In this article we are going to cover everything you need to know on how to lose weight without dieting.
Without further ado, we are going to dive right in.
Just be sure to keep your eyes peeled to every tip and trick that I am going to give you, I don’t want You missing out on the goods, ok?
How To Lose Weight Without Dieting
The Problem With “Diets”
Here is the deal. The problem with traditional “diets” that you have tried to follow in the past is actually quite simple.
Think about it.
Keto diet – you have to cut out carbs.
Intermittent fasting diet – you can’t eat at certain times of the day.
Carnivore diet – you can only eat meat, cut out everything else.
Are you catching onto a theme here?
The problem with most “diets” is that they are all based around elimination and over restriction.
This is why you might hear people say “90% of diets fail”. I despise this statement, for reasons we will talk about soon, but of course that diet is going to fail if you center your eating habits around eliminating and restricting things!
Think about it. Can you really keep up not eating carbs forever?
If you can, you are a sicko man… True sicko.
What happens when you are on vacation and your spouse wants to go get breakfast at 8am?
“Oh, nope, sorry honey, I am intermittent fasting… No food for me over here until noon!”.
Don’t even get me started on not eating fruit.
Who, in the hell, do you know… that ever got fat from eating watermelon.
Seriously. Who was ever like “Oh man, the last 60 lbs I gained, you better believe it was all of the bananas I am eating!”.
No. Just, no.
These diets inherently go wrong by over restricting and cutting out certain foods or food groups.
Any “diet” that is based around those two things is inherently going to fail.
Therefore, it is about time you took a smarter approach to things wouldn’t ya say?
The Good News
Here is the good news.
In order to lose weight, you don’t need to do any of those crazy diets. No really, you don’t.
For you to lose weight, one thing has to happen.
You have to create what is called a calorie deficit. This simply just means you are eating less total calories than what your body burns on a daily and weekly basis.
That is quite literally it. We will get into a bit more detail later in this article, but this is important because this solidifies that You don’t need to cut out your favorite foods to lose weight.
( If you want to know how many calories you should be eating to lose weight, you can check out my calorie calculator HERE ).
You don’t need to be afraid of carbs or eating past 7pm.
You can live a normal life, eat foods you enjoy in moderation, and still lose weight.
There is no special “diet” you need to go on. Let’s also remember the word “diet” just means the foods you are consuming on a day to day basis.
This is why saying “90% of diets fail” is kind of irresponsible in my opinion.
Sure, those idiotic diets fail where you cut out all of your foods and over restrict yourself.
Yes, that “diet” fails. Yet saying all diets fail does two negative things.
- It deters people away from even attempting to lose weight and makes them think that no matter what they do, they will fail anyway so what is the point of trying.
Which is just 100% inaccurate and not true.
2. It does a disservice to the word because changing your diet just means changing the way you eat.
You can change your diet without over restricting or eliminating all of your foods that you enjoy.
In fact, that is what you should do if you want to not only see progress, but maintain that progress forever.
Now, let’s cover a bit more specifics open how to lose weight without dieting.
How To Lose Weight Without Dieting : Counting Calories
The first option I always turn people onto is simply counting your calories.
You may think “Eric, that is a diet!”.
Well actually, it is not. Remember, being in a calorie deficit isn’t a “diet”. It simply just means you are eating less calories than what your body burns.
Therefore, if you want to ensure you are in this calorie deficit, the most efficient and effective way to do that would be to track your calorie intake.
It is very similar to doing a budget.
Let’s say you want to go on a vacation 6 months from now.
Right now you are making $5,000 per month. You want to save $500 each month to in order to pay for this vacation in 6 months.
What are you going to do?
You are going to do a budget where you make sure each month you are spending $4500 per month.
This way, you make $5000, you spend $4500, which leaves you $500 left over at the end of the month to save and put towards the vacation!
Perfect! That doesn’t mean you can’t buy things, it doesn’t mean you have to live in a hole for the month.
It just means you have to make sure whatever you spend your money on is within that budget.
Counting your calories is the same exact concept, you are doing a budget for your overall calorie intake.
You don’t need to cut any foods out or restrict yourself from eating at certain times.
Simply just need to make sure you are within the calorie budget for that day.
If you do that, you will create your calorie deficit, and you will see weight loss progress.
Pay Your Bills
Now, the question you are going to ask me next is probably something to the effect of
“Eric, so I can eat whatever I want and still lose weight?!”.
The short answer is yes, the long answer is no.
I have done an entire video answering this exact question in depth, so feel free to head HERE if you want the long answer.
The short answer is going to be yes you can, but it is very similar to paying your bills.
Let’s continue with the budget analogy from above.
When you do your budget, there are certain things you have to make sure you pay for.
Rent, utilities, groceries, etc. Those are your monthly bills that you have to cover first and must be worked into the equation for the budget.
Then you have calories leftover for “fun” stuff. Going out to eat, buying clothes, gifts, etc etc.
Calories can be looked at the same way.
When talking about calories, there are a few staples you need to make sure you get down first.
One of them is protein. You need to hit you protein goal as one of your “bills”.
If you want to know how much protein your protein goal is, head HERE to check out that.
Another one of them is getting in your fruits and veggies.
I don’t necessarily care if you like them or not, especially veggies.
If your kid came to you and said they didn’t feel like doing their homework, what would you tell them?
Too bad, do your homework buddy or you are not living in this house (ok, maybe just my parents?).
Same thing with you and your vegetables. They need to be paid for, just like the electricity bill.
If those things are taken care of, then yes, for sure, feel free to work in things you enjoy while staying within your calorie budget for the day.
You can eat them and still lose weight because remember how you lose weight is through eating in a calorie deficit.
But in the same way you can’t just spend all of your money on a budget on clothes, shoes, and going out to eat.
You can’t just spend all your calories on cookies, chips, and donuts.
You have to pay your bills first.
If you want some extra help on how to count calories, I did an in depth article HERE on how to make calorie counting easy, feel free to check it out.
How To Lose Weight Without Dieting : 8 Daily Non Negotiable’s
Now when it comes to creating a calorie deficit, there are many ways to skin a cat.
By the way, where did that even come from and who in the heck is skinning a cat?
Maybe you don’t want to count calories at this moment in time or can’t, which, I understand.
I am going to clearly lay out here 8 things you can do every single day in order to help get yourself into a calorie deficit.
Remember, yes counting your calories is the most accurate way to ensure you are in a calorie deficit.
Yet you don’t have to count your calories to lose weight, just know that calories always count.
Meaning, your overall calorie intake for the day is what matters most when it comes to losing weight, therefore finding tips, tricks, and hacks to set you up for success is key.
Honestly these 8 things below should be down whether you are counting calories or not because they are so incredibly beneficial in your weight loss journey.
Let’s dive into them.
#1 Have 3 solid meals per day
I am going to speak from a bit of anecdotal experience so hear me out.
I mentioned above that the only thing you need to lose weight is to eat in a calorie deficit.
This means you could eat 3 meals, 5 meals, 2 meals, whatever, and still lose weight.
This is 1000% true.
But, just like your car can go 160mph, doesn’t mean you should.
If there is one thing I have seen coaching people over the years that holds them back from sticking to their calorie deficit is that they over eat ( duh ).
Why do you over eat? Also, when do you over eat?
You typically over eat at night because you are hungry, right?
Why are you hungry and over eating at night?
Generally because you are skipping meals throughout the day, so you get home at night, and completely tear the pantry apart.
Not only do you come home and have a snack a palooza before dinner, you then eat a massive dinner because you are still hungry.
Then of course you have to have something after dinner because you aren’t fully satisfied, so you go to your after dinner treats.
All of this is causing you to over consume calories, leading to not being in a calorie deficit, leading to you not losing weight.
Yet the issue isn’t you eating at night, the issue is you not eating throughout the day.
If you would consume more calories throughout the day, your body would not be ravenous and starving at night.
This means you would be much less likely to over eat, resulting in you sticking to your calorie deficit, meaning you will see the weight loss progress you are looking for.
Also, what I have seen coaching thousands of people, is you get in trouble snacking.
You snack on this here… that there.. this here..
And these snacks are 0 calorie pickles or celery. These are chips, cookies, things that have calories.
This constant snacking all day just makes the total calories for the day pile up pile up pile up.
This makes it, once again, incredibly easy to over eat on calories.
So how do you avoid these two things?
Have 3 real meals throughout the day. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
This will keep your body full and satisfied throughout the day to combat the night time over eating and constant snacking throughout the day.
You will be full, you won’t be searching for other things because you will be satisfied with what you have!
Make them real meals too. Having a coffee isn’t breakfast. Having a 150 calorie kids snack pack isn’t considered lunch.
Let’s touch a bit more on what these 3 meals should consist of.
#2 3 Meals Structure
Now you know you should be having 3 real meals a day, let’s take a look at how you should structure those meals.
First off, make sure they all fit on one plate.
No seconds or thirds. Again, we are looking to control your overall calorie intake, so what better way to do that than simple portion control?
You can only fit but so many calories on one plate.
Make it a normal plate too, not a lunch tray, but not a tea plate.
Next follow this plate distribution rule.
- 1/2 of the plate vegetables
- 1/4 of the plate protein
- 1/4 of the plate carbs
A few notes here.
First, I understand getting veggie at breakfast might be hard ( although you can easily throw some spinach and peppers into an egg white omelette and make it bomb, just saying! ).
So if you want to sub veggies for fruit at breakfast, you can.
Second, I am going to attach some sample protein, veggie, and carb sources here below.
Use this to help guide your decision making for the meals.
If you follow this structure with your 3 meals, I promise you, your overall calorie intake is going to be kept in check.
Thus leading you to be in a calorie deficit and losing the weight you want to lose.
Now, let’s cover the next part of the equation, snacks.
If you want a little pro tip, make one of your meals per a BAS.
What is a BAS? So glad you asked. A big ass salad of course!
This can ensure you load up on good quality veggies, without necessarily loading up on calories.
Throw some protein on top too like chicken, fish, steak, whichever.
Yes, of course, don’t bathe the salad in ranch dressing. Find a dressing you enjoy and take into account the calories.
Yet making one of your meals per day a BAS can quite literally be a game changer!
#3 Limit yourself to 2-3 snacks per day
We mentioned snacking a bit earlier in the article when talking about why people over eat.
You better bet your bottom dollar that too much snacking is one of the main causes of over eating.
You may not feel like it is much, but I promise you…
60 calories here, 100 calories there, 80 calories over there… They add up, and boy, do they add up quick.
This is why I am such a huge fan of counting calories because through counting your calories you can see the true scale at which these snacks throughout the day add up.
You wouldn’t be so confused as to why you weren’t losing weight before, trust me!
So, to combat that, limit yourself to 2-3 snacks per day.
I know this may sound outrageous to some people, and my response to that would be two things.
- This is why you need to eat real, nutrient dense meals throughout the day like how we laid out above. I promise if you do that, you will not feel the need to constantly snack.
- If you are someone who read this and was like “No way, he is crazy!” Then you for sure need to follow this because this is what is probably holding you back.
What should your snacks consist of? Let’s talk about it now.
#4 Snacks Must Be A Protein, Veggie, Or Fruit
Okay so you have your 3 meals set up for the day and how to rock that, let’s now talk about your snacks.
We said your snacks are going to be limited to 2-3x per day.
What these snacks should be made up of are a few things.
- They should be able to fit in the palm of your hand as a general rule. If you are having “snacks” that take up 4 handfuls, that is not a snack, that is 4 snacks. Remember, overall calorie intake is what we are trying to control, so portion size plays a huge role.
- They should be some of fruit, veggie, or protein source. For example, greek yogurt, banana, apple, carrots, protein shake ( my favorite is Legion Athletics HERE ), cottage cheese, boiled eggs, to name a few.
Now, I understand sometimes you may want to make one of your snacks something you enjoy.
Chips, cookie, ice cream pop, whatever it is for you.
That is totally fine, but, remember it has to fit in the palm of your hand. Portion control is such an underrated tool when looking to lose weight that I strongly encourage you to utilize it.
This strategy can make sure again you are “paying your bills” so to speak.
You are covering your 3 meals with your protein and veggies.
Then you are coming over to your snacks and paying your bills some more by incorporating fruit, veggies, protein, etc.
While having the occasional treat or something you enjoy.
This is how to lose weight without dieting. You can make sure you pay the bills, while still leaving room for things you enjoy.
Plus, no one said you can’t have anything. I never said you couldn’t have rice for example. If you enjoy eating rice, work it into your dinner meal. If you enjoy a certain kind of fruit, perfect, work that sucker into the palm of your hand.
This is truly learning moderation with food while understanding overall calorie intake.
#5 Drink 2 Liters Of Water Per Day
Okay so a few things here.
Number one there is nothing “special” about 2 liters of water. I just have found it to be a good landmark number for people to grab onto and shoot for.
We as humans like guidelines so I put 2 liters here. If you get 1.5 liters, that does’t mean you failed and won’t lose weight.
The bigger point here is this is another one of those “paying the bills”.
Water is obviously beneficial for your weight loss journey because it is going to keep you hydrated number one.
Usually when people think they are hungry, sometimes they are, but other times you are just dehydrated. Dehydration can mask as hunger, so if you stayed hydrated, you would be less hungry.
Also, water quite literally fills your stomach up more.
If you have less hunger and more of your stomach filled up, don’t you think you will intake less overall calories?
If you intake less overall calories, don’t you think you will stick to your calorie deficit better?
I think so too. You are getting the hang of this huh! 😉
#6 – Walk 5-10k steps per day
This one doesn’t have much to do with nutrition, but it is super important.
There is something called your NEAT, your non exercise activity thermogenesis.
Basically what this is is allllll the movement you do during the day that is NOT dedication exercise.
Walking to the car, walking outside, walking in the store, everything.
This NEAT takes up 15% of your total calorie burn for the day.
Therefore, if you can increase your step count, you are increasing you neat which is increasing your overall calories burned for the day.
This is going to play a massive role in losing weight because it is shown in studies that when your body goes into a calorie deficit, your NEAT significantly decreases.
Therefore if you can make sure to keep your NEAT as high as you can by getting in an adequate amount of steps, you are going to help yourself that much more create that calorie deficit.
A good number to shoot for is getting 5-10k steps per day. That is what I do with every single one of my online coaching clients and it works to perfection every time.
That is the only “cardio” we really do. If they want to do extra cardio on their own they are more than happy to, but the only cardio in my programs ar getting 5-10k steps per day.
If you do that, I promise you, your weight loss and your future self will thank you.
#7 Limit Alcohol Intake
Let’s get one thing straight.
Can you lose weight while drinking alcohol?
Yes you can.
Does drinking alcohol make weight loss a tad bit harder?
Yes it does.
Number one alcohol has calories so you will have to simply work those calories into your daily limit for the day if you want to be able to drink alcohol and still lose weight.
Number two let’s think about the foods that come along with drinking alcohol.
Again, usually not snacking on pickles or spinach when drinking alcohol.
Usually wings, pizza, burgers, cheese, you name it. All of the delicious foods right?
Therefore the issue is not only the alcohol, but is the extra food calories that come along with the alcohol that make it harder to lose weight.
Once you start drinking you tend to be a bit less mindful of your decision making, aka why you can’t drink and drive.
You become more snacky, and higher calorie snacky at that.
You don’t have as much willpower or dedication to your goals.
It makes it harder. It is not impossible, it just makes it harder.
What I typically tell my online coaching clients is that if you are going to drink, limit it to 1-2x per week max.
Then when you do drink, again, try to limit your intake. If you are on a 1700 calorie deficit diet, don’t make 1100 calories come from beers and wine.
That beer and wine is going to do nothing for keeping you full, keeping you satisfied, providing good quality vitamins and minerals to your body.
That is why they call it “empty calories”, it doesn’t really benefit you much.
I would try to make no more than 10-20% of your total daily calorie intake come from alcohol on the day you choose to consume some.
Again, when it comes to lose weight without dieting I am not telling you you can’t drink, but I am saying being able to limit it to moderation will make things a hell of a lot easier for you.
#8- When you fall off your “Diet” just get back on track
This might be the most important one which is why I saved it for last.
Listen, one of the other problems of “diets” is that there is this all or nothing mentality you have associated with following a diet.
You think you have to be 110% perfect, follow everything to a T every single time, or else you failed and ruined all of your progress.
I am here to tell you, that is 100% complete and utter BS. Seriously, it is.
You don’t need to be perfect in order to lose weight.
One day of being perfect on your diet doesn’t produce insane results, does it?
No, you WISH it did.
So one day off your diet doesn’t make you ruin all of your progress.
It takes time in both directions. The issue most people have with “diets” is that once they have a day where they “fall off”, they use that as a justification to quit all together.
You are not doing that anymore.
Seriously, do you understand me?
You are not doing that anymore.
I am taking that excuse away from you. The only way you can f*ck up on your diet is by quitting all together.
As long as you don’t do that, then you cannot fail or ruin your progress.
You aren’t going to be perfect and that is ok, you don’t have to be. You just have to be consistent.
Track Your Consistency
A great way to help you get over this all or nothing mindset is by creating a consistency calendar.
This is something the great Jordan Syatt created and I am all here for.
Get a physical calendar, yes, a real one you can write on.
For everyday you hit your goals here above, mark a big red X.
For everyday you don’t mark a big red O.
This way, at the end of 31 days, you can add up your consistency to see what it came out to.
You want to be shooting for 80-90% consistency.
This means 25-27 days you want to be hitting your goals. Not 31 days.
If you do that, I promise you, you are going to see incredible results.
When it comes to how to lose weight without dieting, you must must must realize, one day off does NOT ruin all of your progress, okay?
How To Lose Weight Without Dieting : Strength Training
Something that I did not mention above in the “daily goals” Section is strength training because that is not something you do every single day.
Yet that does not mean it is not massively important in your weight loss journey.
You saw above that your NEAT played a big role in how many calories your body burns during the day, right?
What plays an even bigger role is something called your BMR, your basal metabolic rate.
This basically means how many calories your body burns at rest doing nothing, just laying there.
One thing that can increase and improve your BMR is lean muscle mass.
The more lean muscle mass you have on your body the higher your BMR is going to be, which means the more calories you burn.
How do yo build lean muscle mass? Following a properly designed strength training program like the hundreds of ones created inside my Clubhouse .
If you are not currently following a strength training program, you are certainly missing out on untapped potential.
I would strongly suggest getting your hands on a program that you can follow.
Whether that is joining my Clubhouse, heading to my YouTube channel to check out the videos I have on there on how to create a program, reading some of the other articles I wrote on how to create a program .
Do whatever you gotta do but please, get on a real program.
I don’t mean a beach body or P90x. Those are cool and all, but there if a big difference in just exercising and actually following a real program.
If you want to optimize your results, follow a real strength training program.
How To Lose Weight Without Dieting : The Sum Up
Well there you have it, how to lose weight without dieting.
Like I said at the beginning, you don’t have to cut out your favorite foods or over restrict yourself in order to lose weight.
You simply just have to take care of a few “bills” first and foremost, practice things in limited moderation, and then you can make room for the things you enjoy.
I am not going to sit here and tell you that it is going to be easy, it won’t.
I am also not going to sit here and tell you you can just eat and drink whatever you want and still lose weight.
Because again, you can’t. That is probably how you ended up reading this article to begin with.
Yet what I am saying though is with a few clear guidelines and a solid plan, you can lose weight in a sustainable fashion without hating your entire existence during the process.
You don’t have to eliminate or cut things out, rather practice moderation ( I know, such a crazy concept right?! ) and you will be golden.
Hope this article helped you.