I started with The Abs Diet, created by David Zinczenko, the editor-in-chief of Men’s Health magazine. I lost 7 pounds within two weeks of starting. That was pretty exciting after seeing little to no weight loss in the previous 5 months. I lost about 10 pounds over the first six weeks. After that, well not so much.

For a few months at the beginning of 2008 I experimented with counting calories. It was an enlightening experience but ultimately too time consuming for me. I’m glad that I decided to do it though because I think it affects my eating today. I have a rough idea of my daily calorie consumption now. I know the difference between a 2000 calorie day and a 3000 calorie day at least. Most importantly, I know what a serving size of most of my foods looks like. That was a huge eye opener.

I spent most of the the rest of 2008 basically winging it. I tried to get a lot of protein while keeping my calories in the neighborhood of 2500 calories. It didn’t work so well because I inevitably ate more than I thought. I ended up gaining almost 15 pounds.

I spent a lot of time in late ’08 and early ’09 on the Belly Off diet. It was helpful but I finally gave it up.

Today I’m back to the no diet plan. I feel like I’m at the point where I understand how many calories are in each meal I eat. I’ve completely given up the idea that you have to eat a certain amount of meals. I eat when I’m hungry and try hard to stop when I’m not. That might mean three big meals or it might mean six small ones. It really depends on the day.