Lose Weight Now!

Posted by on Jul 30, 2009 in How To | 4 Comments


I have, in the past, publicly talked about trying to slim down, drop a few pounds, and as a result, become faster on my bike. That ongoing endeavor has proven more difficult that I thought it would be. However, I discovered a not-so-secret secret. That is, the answer was staring me in the face all along. The most effective, fastest, albeit rather unpleasant way to drop a few pounds is simple:

Get sick.

Today I weigh 174 pounds. That is what I weighed in 2006, and is only 9 pounds heavier than my senior year cross-country running weight at Orem High School, class of 1996. In January of this year, at Camp Lynda, I tipped the scales at 190. As heavy as I have ever been. But sometime in late February or early March, after dropping about 5 pounds, I got sick. Nothing serious, just a head cold accompanied by a loss of appetite and energy. A week later I was 179 pounds.

And then, last week I had a stomach bug. It kept me home from a race. It was miserable. I hated it. But after it passed (literally…ewww) I was down another 5 pounds, to where I am today. Surprisingly, the weight dropped while I was sick, has never come back, as I expected it would. I don’t know if the increase in calories that I am burning these days (it is after all, summertime) is helping that, or if the lower intake of calories while I was sick is carrying over, that is, perhaps I am consuming less? I suppose I could fire up the Livestrong calorie tracker once again. But I hate those things. So tedious. Yet, they are effective.

So, who needs gimmicky diets or expensive pills to lose weight? Forget all the well-established “science” about caloric intake and metabolic rate. That is all so academic, so serious. Want to drop weight? It’s easy!

Just get sick.

It is just like that line from one of my wife’s favorite movies, The Devil Wears Prada: “I am just one stomach virus away from my goal weight!”


Now, you may be wondering, “how does one just go about ‘getting sick’?” I am glad you asked. That too, is very simple. There are a few proven methods. One very obvious strategy is to hang around with other people who are sick. If you live in a community like mine, with a lot of small children, and a lot of churches, attend one for a few weeks. Hang about in the children’s classes, maybe playing with the communal toys a bit. But beware, a new face at a Mormon church meeting is a monumental event for the regularly attending members. Be prepared to be attacked like Alberto Contador on Andy Schleck – but in a loving way.

That is one method. Another involves a less awkward social setting, and might be even more effective. In fact, this one is so obvious that you are going to slap your palm to your face when you read what I am about to write: Drink out of a river*. Yes, it’s that simple! Giardia, or any number of its cousins will certainly have you, um, running out of both ends. And when that happens, you can be sure that the pounds will melt off like hot butter in a microwave.

You can thank me now, or later. Either is fine.

*I’m joking!


  1. goreedgo
    July 30, 2009

    I’ve found eating Betos Mexican pretty effective too. You get the pleasure of eating greasy Mexican food without any of the guilt.

  2. mark
    July 30, 2009

    Years ago I went on a backpacking trip to Montana with some guys from grad school. At the time, I had a pink backpack. After the trip, one of the guys said to me “on the first day, I was going to give you crap about the pink backpack. Then I saw you drinking straight out of the stream. I decided I’d keep my mouth shut.”

    I won’t drink out of just any stream, but so far it’s never been a problem. Water filters are a PITA anyway.

  3. SkiMoab
    July 30, 2009

    While living in Mexico back in ’98 I ate some bad chicken. Got sick for a week and lost 14 lbs! One of the happiest times in my life. 🙂

  4. Jared
    July 30, 2009

    My preferred and sure-fire method is to lick shoppng cart handles at grocery stores. I hear that the viruses are higher end and more natural at health food stores.

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