Dieting and weight loss report. | Dafacto

The personal website of Matt Henderson.

Dieting and weight loss report.

14 August 2009

In the sport of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, I've been fortunate (having trained under some great coaches) to have won gold medals two times at the European BJJ championships. On both occasions, I fought in the lightweight division, 76 kg (including the gi/kimono). Generally walking around at 76 kg, I would need to only lose about 2 kg a couple days before the event (to compensate for the weight of the gi), and would generally be one of the bigger and stronger participants in the division (being at the very top of the weight range).

This year, my walk-around weight increased to about 81 kg, and prior to the European championships, I decided to forego trying to lose 7 kg, and just fight at middleweight, 82 kg (including gi). That turned out to be a major mistake, as the fighters in that category walk around at 84- and 85 kg, and cut down to 82 kg for the event. It felt like fighting monsters, and I didn't win a single fight.

So, for 2010, I will, without question, try to return to the lightweight division. Losing weight, permanently, takes time, and so I decided to start the process a couple months ago. My goal is to reach 76 kg. I began at 81 kg, and after 45 days, have gotten down to 77 kg -- so I'm almost there.


If you have an iPhone, there's no better tool to track your weight than Weightbot, from the people at Tapbots. As a product developer myself, I have mad respect for the effort these capable guys have put into make the user interface beautiful, simple and efficient to use.


The reason I ended up at 81 kg is simple: I love to eat, and I love beer (in particular, Corona with lime, or the Spanish Cruz Campo).

Getting my weight back down to 76 kg was going to require a change of habit (or, the establishment of some habits, depending how you want to look at it.) The things I didn't want to give up included my yummy daily lunches, and my afternoon post-workout couple of beers. The resulting strategy included:

  1. Eliminate all between-meal snacking. This has been the most difficult part. I was so used to grabbing a snack frequently throughout the day.

  2. Eliminate all sweets. This hasn't been as difficult as I expected it to be.

  3. Reduce consumption of breads to a minimum. No problem here. I have a piece of toast with breakfast, and maybe a small piece at lunch.

  4. Cut back on sauces (ceasar salad dressing, kebab yogurt sauce, things like that). Again, no real problem here.

  5. Eat well at breakfast and lunch, and eat very lightly at dinner. (Note, lunch and dinner, here in Spain, happen generally generally around 2:00 PM and 10:00 PM, respectively.)

Following this simple plan, I've been losing about 0.5 kg (1.1 pounds) per week, and without feeling deprived of what I really like.

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