The Seven Stages of Dieting. How to Lose Weight Fast.

1. Shock or Disbelief
You step on the scale and see a new digit, or a number that was never there before. You step off, step on again. The scale must be broken, this can’t be.
Your clothes don’t fit you anymore, they must have shrunk in the dryer.
No! It’s not possible that you gained weight, that can’t be.


That picture of you in a bikini on holiday, it must be a bad angle, “Surely I don’t look like that every day!”
This is the first step of dieting, discovering and/or fighting the shocking news that yes, you are a lard ass.
You go through all your recent pictures, and compare them with older ones to see if it’s true. You try on clothes you haven’t worn in a while and realize you can’t get the zipper up. Your coat won’t close, your shirts pop open and then you realize: it’s not the clothes that make you look fat, it’s the fat that makes you look fat.
Utter and complete shock blossoms in your core.

You realize that you have developed an enormous ass, that when people ask you if you’re pregnant it’s not because they’re stupid, it’s because they are confused.
A loud crack rings through your ears as your self-image crumbles and the shock sets in: you have to go on a diet.
Please pass the chips!

2. Denial
You immediately go on the internet and hunt for things like “I’m not fat, I just retain water” or “Overweight people are harder to kidnap, so eat cake and stay safe!” or even “Fat people live longer, diets are a waste of time!”
You read stories about people who are happy with their (over)weight, about anorexics who never felt better now that they can eat without stress or guilt and former fitness models who complain about how unhappy they were when they lived off of two egg whites and a carrot each day. You tell yourself that you don’t need to go on a diet, you may be overweight, but it’s nothing serious and it will go away by itself.
Like the panic revolving around Y2K, you think your fears are unfounded. You’re big-boned, not overweight. A diet wouldn’t work anyhow, how could it when your colleagues are always offering you food? You can’t run because it hurts your knees and you don’t have time for the gym because that’s when all the good shows are on TV. Nope, not overweight and I don’t need to diet.
Pass the beer and chips!

3. Anger
So you order your Halloween costume online, size M which is what you always wear. At first you are furious because you believe that they sent you the kiddie size by accident, until you realize that none of your other Halloween costumes size M fit you either.
Hot anger starts to shoot out your ears in puffs of red steam. This is just not fair!
How come my sister/colleague/friend eats the same as I do and never exercise and still not gain weight? How come I just look at a piece of cake and weigh more? How did this creep up on me without evening knowing it?
Oh cruel world, how dare you do this to me and give me genes that store fat when you know how much I love chocolate? Why can’t I be like my sister/colleague/friend who eats chocolate and candy all day and is still rail thin?
Why me?
Are you saying I will have to go hungry now and be miserable just to stop being fat? This is about the worst thing that can happen to me, everyone gets off scot-free and I am going to have to pay a high price just to be normal!
Pass the chips and the tissues! *Sniffs*

4. Bargaining
The internet spits out a slew of different diet plans, ranging from eating whatever you want, to eating only one thing, to not eating at all. You ask yourself what would be the most sustainable.
They all tell you the same thing: no sweets, no alcohol, no sugars and lots of exercise.
What? No alcohol? How do I get by each evening? You keep searching until you find a diet that allows you to have wine, until the fine print tells you it’s allowed after 6 weeks. Curses!
Maybe if I only have a little bit of wine, then it will still work? Yes? Or maybe if I don’t give up sweets entirely, but just have it on the weekends. This is what we can do, belly fat, let’s cut a deal here, man. I will give you some gummy bears twice a week and in turn, you need to sweat about 10 times a week with me in spinning class.
What do you mean, it won’t work? C’mon, I’ll trade you sugars for sleep. I’ll get up an hour earlier to work out if I can have some chocolate.
The bargaining and trying to find the easiest way possible goes on late into the night, as you lie there with your fat belly growling.
Pass the tissues!

5. Guilt
All diet programs will tell you that you need to start logging your food and exercise, just to make sure you’re on the right track. So you obediently enter the food you ate yesterday, and the app sends you a big red error message stating that your fat intake is off the charts, you whale, and you haven’t exercised long enough to even burn off your morning coffee. You take inventory of your pantry, and see all the chocolate and cookies you bought because it was on sale. The plate of pasta you ate last night was delicious, yes, but did you know that it also contained one billion zillion calories? Do you know how long you need to burn that off? More than your lifetime, buddy.

Guilty Dessert

To eat or not to eat, that is the question.

On top of it, you’re getting dangerously close to springtime where everyone will be wearing shorts and sleeveless tops, and you will most likely be wearing a tent. Or hiding in one.
All your friends sit around as they order a piece of cake with coffee, and you sit there sipping your water as you sigh, “Mmmm, I’m so stuffed!” It’s your own fault and you know it, you chose to stay on the couch reading a book instead of sprinting around the neighborhood. Nobody forced you to eat the delicious homemade bread your friend dropped off, and you could just say “no!” when your friends want to go out for drinks and tapas.
Your mistakes over the year come screaming at you, and you feel a horrid pang of disappointment and guilt for not having been dieting rigidly up until now, but waiting until the last minute.
Pass the calorie-free, tasteless water!

6. Depression
It’s been a few weeks now and you’re still at your diet and exercise program. Your coworkers know by now not to ask you what that noise is when your stomach growls during meetings, and they eat their lunches as far from you as possible, as not to upset you. You’re cold on a permanent basis and want to sleep all day, but you drag your fat ass to the gym and try not to ogle the bouncy teens who are under 100 lbs and eat ice cream on the treadmills. Slowly you start to wonder if this will even work. What if my destiny is to be overweight, who am I to fight it?
Can I even look as slim and fit as the girls on pinterest? Will the weight on the scale ever change?
Everyone around you is slim, happy and laughing as they munch on their chips and snacks. Oh, but that celery stick is delicious, you tell yourself. You make a comment and the response is, “Just be sad and eat your salad!”

Everyone else is enjoying themselves and having a great time, while you’re obsessively counting calories and running around the block once again. Adding to this, you get insomnia so that you can now lie awake at night, hungry and stressed. Your waking hours are spent mulling over how many calories you have left, and your evening hours are spent sweating at the gym. When you list all the exercise you do, your friend replies, “But shouldn’t you be fit with all that exercise you do?” and you have to use all your remaining willpower to not gouge out her eyeballs.
Yes, I’m dieting and working out like a madwoman, and no, you can’t tell from the way I look.
Pass the cyanide!

7. Acceptance (and occasionally, Hope)
More weeks have passed, you haven’t given up yet even though you’ve been close a few times. You’re still cold, tired and grumpy but you’ve gotten used to it as your daily routine. People stop questioning if that’s all your having for lunch, ever since you bit off that marketing guys’s ear for the same question. Nobody asks you to go out to dinner with them anymore, which makes everything a lot easier for you. Your children eat their snacks in secret so that you can’t smell it and get upset at them. That low-carb headache is just a permanent part of life now, and on some days you don’t even notice it. Despite your initial dislike for diet coke, it’s now your go-to drink to boost your energy and fake you into having something sweet. Your pores ooze Magic Cabbage Soup, and people ask you if you’re pregnant mainly because of the sweaty glow you have on your face from working out so much.
You’ve given up worrying what people think when they see a fat runner, and you can efficiently zone out when you’re at gym to not notice the skinny girls sitting on the stationary bikes with cupcakes.
Or any girls with cupcakes.
Or cupcakes.
Out of sight, out of mind. “One day!”, you vow to yourself, “One day, someday I will be like them too. I’ll be able to wear a tank top, or leggings as pants, or even just fit into my old clothes again.”

With a trembling heart you step on the scale—a full 200 grams less! Your efforts were worth it. The weeks of headaches, the diet coke, the bland foods, the salads without dressing, not eating bread, not eating rice, not eating much at all really, has all come together in a big fat “thank you” on the scale.
Just 9.800 grams to go, or a mere 68.600 calories to burn! Yippee! Time to celebrate!

Pass the diet coke!