Popping the Hood on Your Diet

IISTD Hood OpenIt can be both defeating and frustrating when you’re “cutting back” and not seeing any real improvement in the way your pants fit. Especially if you’ve been on a specific routine for a couple of weeks, all the while telling yourself, in the absence of any visible results, that you’re making progress. But now, it’s been long enough and nothing has changed. Even the most positive spin on things can’t manufacture the affirming dynamic that you need and expect, so you’re better off relieving the tension of unmet expectations and just quit.

That’s what you’re thinking.

But do this…

Take a step back for a moment and take a wise inventory of where you’re at because it’s at this point that a great number of people actually do pack it in and you don’t want to do that.


First of all, ANY kind of effort inevitably leads to more information and a more informed approach is far better than an ignorant attempt. So just because you’re not where you want to be, despite a quality effort, don’t feel like anything has been wasted or you’re better off quitting altogether. You’ve got a good idea of what’s not working.  You need to tweak something. Let’s do that rather than sitting in front of the TV with a half gallon of ice cream muttering to yourself that, “You don’t care…!” You are making progress, you just need to change some things up a bit.

So, what do you need to change?

“I don’t know,” you say to yourself. How many books, videos, guides, apps does one need? How many diets are out there? Where do you begin? When does it stop?


To lose weight you need to burn more than you consume. The human body is an amazing machine and you can approach that one, simple truth in any one of a number of ways. But, however you want to do it, what you’re attempting to do is not complicated, nor is it especially difficult. You just need to be aware of what you’re actually putting into your body.

You need to be aware of what you’re putting into your body.

You need to be aware of what you’re putting into your body.

Like a lullaby that sings your better judgement to sleep, you get locked into a pattern that doesn’t produce the kind of results that should be occurring. You think to yourself, “I just need to tighten it up, a little!” but there’s more going on under the hood than what you’re aware of and it’s not until you actually calculate the number of calories you’re consuming that good things actually start to happen.

For guys, a good starting point is less than 2000 calories. Even if you want to cut back even further, that’s a healthy place to start. I figured I was close, but when I actually did the math, I found that I was exceeding that amount by several hundred calories. The good news is that I made some changes and I’m not having to restrict my diet to tooth picks and water to make it happen.

I’ve got a spreadsheet attached to the bottom of this post that you can use to calculate what you’re eating so you can ensure that you’re staying in your zone. Try it and see just what can happen when you “pop the hood” on your diet!

Go get ’em!

Diet Spreadsheet

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