Quick-fix short term diet, exercise plan, or supplements?
June 26, 2008 9:42 AM   Subscribe

In need of quick fix short term diet, exercise plan, or supplements to lose 5-10 pounds in 2 months.

There are so many diets and supplements out there, and the main thing I hear about them is that they work for a few pounds, but are not recommended for long term weight loss. Given that, and knowing that I'm not looking for a magical long-term diet that's all junk and no exercise, I'm looking for a diet, exercise plan, or supplement that will help me lose 5-10 pounds at a minimum, but 20 would be ideal, in about 2 months. I do plan on beginning the couch to 5k program, which should get me a fair distance toward my goal, but I would appreciate suggestions or advice as to the best way to accomplish this weight loss.

(I know, I know, YANAD and YANAN[utritionist] but I would still like to hear your experience and/or information.)
posted by alpha_betty to Health & Fitness (20 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I started the Zone diet (Barry Sears, Enter the Zone and others) on May 5th, and between that and Crossfit (and some karate classes) I'm down 17.2 pounds as of this morning. So... I'm a believer :P

(Not to self-link egregiously, but if you want to look at my day-to-day progress, feel free to check out my blog.)
posted by restless_nomad at 9:53 AM on June 26, 2008

Weightwatchers. You can expect to lose between 1 and 2lb a week, and it works. You can get the same effect yourself through calorie counting, and exercise... but WW take a lot of the fiddly stuff out of that.
posted by handee at 9:53 AM on June 26, 2008

(To be honest any diet, followed properly, will get you that level of weight loss -- but I've been having personal success with WW and it's basically just healthy eating with fat restriction)
posted by handee at 9:54 AM on June 26, 2008

calorie counting and exercise

That's what I'm doing and am down 10 pounds in 4 1/2 weeks. Oddly enough I'm getting told I look like I've lost more than I have.
posted by Hugh2d2 at 9:55 AM on June 26, 2008

I cannot repeat it enough: exercise twice a day. Twenty five minutes in the morning, and your regular workout after work. IF you can shower at work, do something then, too-make it three.

I ate like shit and still lost ten pounds in the first 2/3 of this month by swimming before, running at lunch, and biking after work. (I'm also insane, but...)

Basically, you don't just burn calories working out. Your metabolism ramps up, then tapers off for each session. If you have more sessions, you'll have more tapering periods and suddenly, the weight falls off.
posted by notsnot at 10:00 AM on June 26, 2008

I'm on week 7 of couch to 5k and I've lost 15 lbs while also eating sensibly.
posted by chugg at 10:09 AM on June 26, 2008

Dr. Ian Smith's "Extreme Fat Smash" plan will definitely help you to lose >10 lbs in 2 months -- I lost about 20 lbs in a month.
posted by justonegirl at 10:13 AM on June 26, 2008

Keep in mind that the general consensus is 2 lbs a week is healthy weight loss - anything more than that is probably lean mass (water, muscle, or both.) Trust me, you do NOT want to lose muscle - it'll trash your metabolism and you'll gain everything back twice as fast.

The first four pounds I lost, I lost in two days - it was purely water weight (I'd just come back from a rich-dinner-heavy business trip, so I was plenty bloated.) After that, it's been two pounds a week, nice and steady. I'd recommend you aim for that, and not try to drop 20 pounds in a month.
posted by restless_nomad at 10:18 AM on June 26, 2008 [2 favorites]

Second the Zone Diet – it will get your protein intake in line with your carbs. SimpleFit.org provides a great exercise plan if you don't have a ton of extra time in the day and/or available equipment.
posted by BirdD0g at 10:48 AM on June 26, 2008

Weight Watchers.
posted by RussHy at 10:52 AM on June 26, 2008

Go to The Daily Plate, put in your weight and goals, and let it calculate your calorie limit.

You lose weight when you consume fewer calories than you burn. Metabolism, genetics, and other issues can complicate this, but that's the basic principle.

I lost 7 pounds after the holidays this way, I ate real food in a real world, no complicated plans or fake foods required.
posted by for_serious at 10:54 AM on June 26, 2008

The best tip I know? Drink only water. Really. No soda, no juice, no alcohol. Iced tea I let slide every now and then, because it's only an infusion, but really? Only water. We drink so many "empty" calories without realizing it.
posted by fiercecupcake at 11:00 AM on June 26, 2008


Look into GABA.

I know nothing about it, but a supplement-freak friend of mine told me that it curbs fat absorption. There seems to be supporting info on the internet from body builders, but I'm not sure how reliable that is.
posted by sunshinesky at 11:02 AM on June 26, 2008

That's what I'm doing and am down 10 pounds in 4 1/2 weeks. Oddly enough I'm getting told I look like I've lost more than I have.

If you're exercising regularly, that's probably because you're gaining muscle!

Is there a reason you need to get down to a specific number? Numbers are difficult with diet and exercise for precisely that reason - if you're eating healthy and exercising regularly and well, you can build a lot of good muscle relatively quickly, which will make your measurements drop and get you looking amazing without necessarily giving you the results on the scale that you're looking for.

You might try aiming for a body fat ratio or a measurement goal instead of a poundage lost goal.

As others have said, just about any regimen that you stick to with rigid precision will likely get you where you want to be (or damn close to it) on your schedule.

I had great success (as in 75lbs lost) with calorie counting and exercise. I found Spark People to be a great, free site with a lot of good information and some pretty good online tools that will help you track your progress and what you're eating; I had more success with that site than I ever had with any other method of weight loss.
posted by pazazygeek at 11:08 AM on June 26, 2008

Seconding The Daily Plate and simple calorie restriction. Certainly takes a lot of the pain out of estimating and tracking your intake (less spartan than FitDay, less gaudy than SparkPeople).
posted by wheat at 11:18 AM on June 26, 2008

South Beach stage one for two or three weeks will pull off 10 lbs if you stick to it. Awesome for finding out you are too fat for your event dress when you have a wedding coming up! Other than that, Weight Watchers, and exercise.
posted by Medieval Maven at 11:50 AM on June 26, 2008

I tried South Beach and it turned me into a raging beast - YMMV, but dropping carbs that drastically, that suddenly, was rather hard on me. I wouldn't be at all surprised if it worked, but I lasted a week and a half then drank three liters of mountain dew at a sitting :P
posted by restless_nomad at 3:08 PM on June 26, 2008

3 meals per day, with 2 servings of vegetables with lunch and dinner, 1 serving of fruit at breakfast. Plain greek yogurt is great for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a snack. Also, lots of water.
posted by saturn25 at 4:08 PM on June 26, 2008

calorie counting. The hacker diet was a good intro to it for me. My favourite weight loss foods are black coffee, pepsi max, subway sandwiches with no cheese.
posted by daveydave at 3:54 AM on June 29, 2008

If you're doing calorie restriction, which is what I do, make sure you eat often enough. In addition to the big three (breakfast, lunch, dinner), include in-between-meal snacks. But keep those low in calories and protein-heavy: light yogurt, protein bar, etc. That'll keep you from getting hungry and will keep your energy up. Protein seems to ward off hunger quite a bit better than carbs do. So, you'll end up eating smaller "meals" more often. But a lot of those meals will really be 100-150 calorie snacks.
posted by wheat at 6:20 AM on June 30, 2008

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