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How to Lose Weight Fast (Without Torturing Yourself)

The One-Day Diet

You know you can have this if you really mean it

Many of this site’s readers are here because they read my book or followed me on my former weight-loss blog.  In both, I detailed my version of how to lose weight fast — that is, my own story of rapid fatness to fitness.  If you can follow my path, you WILL get skinny, and it WILL be amazing.

But not everyone has the motivation (or the ability, when you look at life realistically) to emulate my path to success.  Sometimes I don’t, either.  Problem is, often life gets in the way and slows or stops your progress—which bumps you “off the wagon,” so to speak, and precipitates your demise.  “Why bother,” you ask yourself, “when I always screw up anyway?

Here’s my advice to you.  You can either:

  1. Jump on the wagon and not get off until you reach your destination; or
  2. Take short rides on the wagon, on a regular basis.  You’ll still get there, eventually.

First, a Reality Check

Must. Gain Weight. Then enter months-long food coma, mmm....

Must. Gain Weight. Then enter months-long food coma, mmm….

Are you steadily gaining weight like a bear preparing for hibernation? If so, I’m sorry, but this post is not for you.  You need to make serious and permanent changes to how you view your health. If you don’t know how, I recommend my book as a starting point (not because I think I’m awesome, but because hundreds of others have told me that my book has changed their lives—and I believe it can change yours, too).

Are you, more likely, hovering at or around a weight that’s too high for your (or your doctor’s) liking? Do you know you could lose those extra pounds if you really, really tried, but you’re not so keen on the idea of “really, really” trying? If so, this post IS for you.

The Method? Reverse Splurge Days

You heard me right.

If you have been trying to lose weight for any length of time, you’ve run across the “splurge day” idea: eat really frickin’ well each day of the week, but give yourself carte blanche to stuff yourself to the gills one day out of seven.

This advice is TOTALLY AWESOME … for those who have massive self-control abilities six out of every seven days, and for whom the one day of  splurging doesn’t snowball into a week-long binge and its resulting food coma.  But would you even need to lose weight if you had great self-control six days a week?  Yeah, I didn’t think so, either.

So here’s something that can work for the remaining 95% of us.  I’m calling it a “reverse splurge day,” because I’ve never heard anyone else mention the idea, and Google shows no results for it, (so I get to name it!).

Here’s how it works:

  • Day 1: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on running this race.
  • Day 2: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on fighting this fight.
  • Day 3: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on battling this battle.
  • Day 4: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on truckin’.
  • Day 5: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on keeping on.
  • Day 6: Try to eat and exercise fairly well. If you overindulge a little, don’t beat yourself up, but just keep on … uhh … I’ve run out of metaphors!  But keep on [something something] regardless.
  • Day 7: You made it!  A whole week without overindulging! Regardless of how little or how much the number on your scale has budged, you are a success!  So celebrate your success by turning this week into a real accomplishment: let this week’s capstone project be a single day of AMAZING success, a day which will turn a week of “not failure” into a week of Victory.

In other words: if you’re at the place wherein you already eat “fairly well” and exercise “a little”, you’re probably not shedding the fat, but you’re probably not gaining it, either.  If Hitting it Hard, Gung-Ho,Gangnam Style isn’t your thing, that’s okay; it needn’t be.  Instead, keep on doing what you’re doing, but at the same time, stoke that fire inside you that wants to get you into your best shape, to become the real you, the slender, healthy and happy you, and promise yourself that one or two days each week, you will decide:

One or two days a week? Yes, you can.

One or two days a week? Yes, you can.

“Today is going to be amazing.  I’m going to eat only as much as I need to get by, and only foods that are really good for me; if I get a little hungry, that’s okay, I can handle it for a single day. The rest of the week, I’m still going to stay sensible, still avoid my known pitfalls, still take satisfaction in the fact that I’m no longer gaining weight on a regular basis.

“Today, if I can, I’m also going to get some exercise, or at least try to be active in some way.  And when I get home, rather than bingeing on junk food, I’m just going to drink some water, take a shower, eat a small and sensible meal, and glory in the knowledge that I made one small step toward skinny, and one giant leap toward healthy.”

In Conclusion: The One-Day Diet is the Recipe for Super-Fast Success!  Ish.

Okay, I know this article is titled, “How to Lose Weight Fast (Without Torturing Yourself)” and I also know it’s only half-true—but hey, what else is click-bait for?

Point is: for those of us who aren’t quite dropping the pounds as much as we’d like, or whose schedules and lives don’t permit us to be as active and as iron-willed as we like, this method truly can be wonderful.

Is losing a pound each week (or half a pound) “fast” weight loss?  When the alternative is losing nothing, yes, it is.

You don’t have to torture yourself in order to lose weight.  Just be sensible most of the time, and be inspired the rest of the time.  Keep your goals realistic, and your patience well-stocked, and  you will become the person you want to be, one day at a time.

In health, and with love,


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About Alyssa (57 Articles)
Author of The Real You Is Skinny (the cult weight-loss book) and several professional publications which have been well received but would bore you to death, Alyssa Dahl loves writing about health and weight loss. Since writing TRYIS, she certified as a Clinical Weight Loss Practitioner and decided that this website needed to happen. She also occasionally says silly things on Twitter (@AlyssaMDahl) and loves to answer questions and comments---so please leave one below!
Contact: Website

2 Comments on How to Lose Weight Fast (Without Torturing Yourself)

  1. i’ve been killing it (as in indulging in a healthy life style) ever since you’ve come back online.
    Looks like you may have a truly heartfelt letter from me soon. You’ve sincerely changed my life (for the best)

    • My dear … you have no idea how much I needed to hear that tonight. I’ve been wondering whether all the work is worth it. It is.

      Your heartfelt letter will be read with wide, unblinking eyes 🙂 <3

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