My weight loss & the middle path!

To listen to the audio version of this blog, click here.

So, I’ve been working out with a new trainer for about five weeks now and I’ve been SO happy with the results. I feel like I’ve been waiting my whole life to meet this guy.

He walks his talk, he knows what he’s talking about and I’m seeing REAL changes. For those of you that have been reading the blog for a long time, you know that my weight has been something that I’ve been focused on trying to master for almost all of my life.

I’ve worked so hard at it for a long time, followed fads, and cleanses and all kinds of things in the pursuit of health and a slim body. It wasn’t until I met Steve  that it all came into place for me.

They say that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. Well I’m ready! I won’t get too into it, but what I can say is that I’ve lost about 10-15 lbs. of fat in the last five weeks and gained about the same in muscle. I’m seeing parts of my body that I’ve never seen before and it’s SO exciting!

One of my favorite things about Steve is that he is helping me bust through all kinds of food myths that I’ve believed for so long. There are SO many of them that I’m trying to get Steve to write a book about it. But, as I am busting through all the food myths, the good news is that I’m ALLOWED to eat food that I like.

The question is – HOW MUCH. I’ve been learning portion control. My mind is kind of ALL or NOTHING, so the education around portion control has been HUGE for me. Also, for a long time I would beat myself up for eating my favorite food on the planet – Arclight Cinema’s caramel popcorn. There is nothing quite like it. But what Steve has helped me see is that not only is it OK to have a healthy binge on Caramel corn once a week, it actually HELPS with weight loss because I’ve been eating a balanced, nutrient dense calorie deficient diet all week. So the surplus in calories one day a week is okay, and also lets my body know it’s not going to starve!

This is a crazy awesome revelation for me. I used to be so black and white about it, but I’m seeing there is a deeper shade of grey when it comes to food. And the PROOF is in the pudding. My body is changing. I’m hoping by year’s end or by my 31st birthday in January that I’ll be able to post some pretty rad before and after pics.

What I’m most thrilled about is that Steve has helped me bring awareness and the practice of “the middle path” to my body. Extremes are never healthy; it is always the middle path that seems to be the path of wisdom in my life.

I’ve been so impressed with Steve’s work and I’m most impressed that he has helped me to take the crazy insanity of neurotic calorie counting and guilt ridden favorite foods and turned this part of my life into a balance and middle way approach that is both illuminating and inspiring!

So, where in your life are you being extreme? Is there a middle path that you can take? Is there a way to literally have your cake and eat it, too? Maybe it’s just the portion size that needs to change? As always, the action happens in the comments below. Leave a comment and join the conversation! The TDL Community thrives in the comments and it’s a GREAT place to get support!



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Mastin Kipp is the CEO and Founder of The Daily Love. Follow him on Twitter here.

Take what resonates with you in this blog and leave the rest.

  • That’s so awesome Mastin! Well done on your physical transformation. I totally agree with your trainer, there needs to be a middle ground. Most people can’t stick with extreme. I live by the 80/20 rule and enjoy the occasional McDonalds chees burger meal of fries. One of the things I preach alot about on my blog is to be kind to yourself with good nutritous food BUT also not feeling guilty if you eat a piece of cake. If you want cake eat it, and find pleasure in it and savour every bite but NEVER feel guilty or fat afterwards. These emotions are far worse for you then the sugar you have just eaten. Enjoy it and move on and then eat healthy the rest of the time. When people get caught up in starving themselves or denying themselves they will struggle to lose weight.

  • rosiebattistasna40

    Love this post Mastin. I too have struggled most of my life with the ups and downs of all or nothing and weight fluctuations until I discovered the connection you speak of. Congratulations on your newly acquired wisdom and success! Can’t wait to see the pictures of your transformation. But even more awesome is the transformation that goes on in your head. 

  • Amber

    This is such a great post as it’s something I struggle with daily. I am the ALL or NOTHING kind of person.. so I’m either really strict or the complete opposite. There’s no balance at all and I’m constantly feeling either deprived or guilty. Which results in yoyo weight and major frustration. 

    I would actually love to hear more about Steve’s thoughts on food myths, portion control and the “middle path”. Do you think you could convince him to write a post on TDL about this?! He sounds great and would love the guidance! 

    Thank you for the positive vibes an inspiration as always! 

  • Z girl

    Loved this post!  As I struggled this morning with a relationship issue, writing furiously in my journal about lack of appreciation and love, the Daily Love popped into my inbox.   As usual, your words hit home – the middle path.  Why do I always want all (smothering ) or nothing ( leaving)?   Maybe what this particular relationship needs is more portion control – more time for ME and a little less time with HIM.   Hmmmmmmm

  • Sarah

    Love this. I too have a tendency to be ‘all or nothing’, which ends up with you beating yourself up – if you binge a lot, you feel bad, and if you live up to super high expectations, you don’t even let yourself let slip even a tiny bit, which creates inner tension. I’m learning how to be good to myself and choose the middle way, but it;s not easy.
    As Amber wrote, it would be great to know Steve’s teaching about choosing the middle way – not just to do with nutrition/health but in life more generally 🙂

  • kk

    I have been a life-long (68) dieter with excellent food habits.  Until about 6 mos ago, when I became ill with a digestive medical condition, resulting in surgery in August  Problem now is horrorfying me: good foods are unappealing.  I have taken pride in my addiction to salads, veggies, fruits, fresh, and now all I want are parmesean flavored godlfish.  I make a salad, I gag on the idea of eating it.  Help!

    • mg

      Read Doreen Virtue’s “Constant Craving” … there is a whole dictionary in the back of the book about what your food cravings mean. I’m no expert, but this book was eye opening!

  • Great news Mastin!…Having witnessed over 45 years of girls, boys, women and men obsessing about diets I have come to the conclusion that all of the people I know (or have met) who eat what their body desires in moderate portions maintain a perfect weight.  It’s all about healthy choices as well as the foods which feed your soul…be it fries, chocolate or super delicious popcorn! The easiest diet to maintain over a lifetime is one that allows us to eat what we fancy along with lots of healthy stuff, (also with a degree of portion control), that way there is no binge/diet cycle.

  • Congratulations – it sounds like you’re well on your way to achieving what you want! I was also all or nothing (mostly ‘nothing’ over the last few years if I’m honest) and then last year I decided to do something about it! Looking forward to before and after pics – you can see mine here: 🙂 

  • Maya Northen

    I love this because I am a very black and white person, partly due to a condition and partly just because it’s my personality. I struggle very hard with the middle path. I actually for a while wore a gray bracelet every day to remind me that there’s something between black and white (can’t take credit for this idea, sadly). So thank you for this blog as a reminder of the in between! 

  • Danielle

    I srtuggle with this concept all the time in dealing with my weight. I really only want to lose 5-7 lbs and I have been gaining/losing them for several years now. I can’t seem to find the balance that allows me to feel good about my body while not obsessing. Thanks for this post. Glad you are finding some middle ground!

  • Betty Mueller

    When you were born, no one had to teach you to cry for food every 2-1/2 to 3 hours.  With fuel prices as high as they are, nobody gives their gas tank twice the amount of fuel the tank can hold.  Why do we insist on overfilling our bodies?  Congratulations on your discovery process.  After losing over 100 pounds more than 3 years ago, I’ve continued to fuel properly and more frequently to maintain a much healthier lifestyle and weight.  It’s truly about learning healthy habits that work each and every day.  If you could choose health, would you?  Glad to hear your answer is YES!!!      

  • Jessie Atkinson

    go mastin! happy for you 
    thanks for the wonderful affirmation…
    the middle path is the path of wisdom
    love it!!! xxxx

  • Marisol

    Congratulations!!! 🙂

  • Rache

    Hi Mastin,
    I’m reading a book that has helped tremendously!! Its called A Course in Weight Loss by Marianne Williamson. AMAZING!! Its from a spriritual point of view about why you eat as an emotional escape and its very revelating. Thanks for the sare. 🙂

  • M

    Bonjour, This post resonates with me so much. I’ve struggled to lose weight for about 10 years. 2 years ago I had an anxiety attack that landed me in the ER. I realized I wasn’t happy with my life, especially my weight. Every time I eat something that I think is unhealthy, my anxiety comes on. I am doing much better. I am aware of what I’m putting in my mouth. @Mastin, I would love to hear what your daily regimen is like. Thanks!

  • Betty

    Great post, Mastin.  Ah, portion control.  It has been the bane of my existence and will be a lifelong journey, I am sure.  Getting over the feeling that you need an enormous amount of any food is a struggle.  It has also helped me to have one day a week when I eat what I like and get more calories than the rest of the time.  Right now I’m reveling in a new job after a year of unemployment – but along with the joy comes the trial and error of figuring out how to get exercise and not eat out for lunch every day.  I walked 90 miles the last two months, but that’s not going to happen with the new schedule and the dark mornings and evenings of winter.  Every plan requires adjustment!

  • Kevina

    The point you made about losing fat and gaining muscle simultaneously is eye opening. I have been working a great new fitness regime, but I’m finding it hard to control what I’m eating and measure what I’m doing properly (long story) and every time I’ve got on the scales over the last few months I have hovered around the same weight. I’m like “what do I actually have to do to loose the extra??”Anyway, I fell right off the wagon a week ago owing to my “all or nothing” attitude not appearing to get me the results I want. Proper binge eating, out of sheer frustration. But reading your blog today has not only enlightened me to the fact that all the exercise MUST be doing something, it has opened my eyes to the fact that I need to be a bit less extreme. Thank you.

    And congratulations. You’re going to be so stoked when you get the body you’re after!

  • Ang

    Wow – I am just so excited for you, Mastin.  And proud of you – I”m quite a bit older (so I can say that).  You have discovered the real truth behind the health of your body – that it comes from inside.  You are so right – extremes are never healthy. They create so much stress on the body that they have the opposite effect and create more unhealthy bodies.  We have seen this all over the world with crazy diets and obsessive work outs.  In fact, the word diet sends so many people into an unhealthy place in their hearts that the damage is done before the work begins.  The middle path is a wonderful place for us to walk daily – thank you for the insight!

  • Hi Mastin,

    Having read about fitness but unfortunately did not follow my real desires, I can attest that what Steve says is totally true. Getting to that perfect body doesn’t mean we should starve ourselves. A “cheat day” in a week is necessary to let the body know it’s not starving. If the body senses it’s starving it will start to conserve fat – totally the opposite of what “weight loss” intended. Some people have actually gained a little weight as a result of gaining their fitness but of course they couldn’t have been happier.

    I’m happy Steve is really making your dream come true for you because I know that factually he definitely is! 🙂 

  • I am so happy for you. I can definitely feel your determination and enthusiasm Mastin-congrats.  So, Where am I being extreme? Hmmmm…Well, I am definitely being extreme in my spiritual walk and so far I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am sure many would think I am over the top. I KNOW differently. My mentor chose to take the extreme path because if she didn’t- her life would have been EXTREMELY miserable after being raped by her father for 17 years.  I have had EXTREME challenges with my son. My husband and I are just like the parents on the Oprah show who had their son committed at 7 years old because of the violent outbursts. Because I have changed in a EXTREME way (I felt I had no other choice) our son has NOT  been on medication and is functioning well. PARENTS NEED TO LOOK AT THEMSELVES. I am sure I will write a book about it. I am learning to love myself 100% and therefore loving him 100% ( I have a blog on it) even when he is not being who he really is. So, I do agree that balance is often the way. In my case….”Extreme” is the only way to peace and serenity. Thanks, Kathleen

  • Shamika Thomas Ellis

    Love this post and congrats to you Mastin.  Keep up the good work! Btw, portion control is key, I learned this years ago and it has been my savior ever since.

  • This is a great post.  I know the battle on getting comfortable in the grey with regards to eats and exercise.  I, too, found the sweet spot of moderation and ended up losing weight and gaining freedom.  Yay for da grey!

  • Gaderogba

    Well written! you speak to my heart!!

  • Congrats to your success! 

  • Amy

    Glad I’m not the only one who thought it was ALL or NOTHING (I’m learning!!) 🙂 glad you’re doing well, Mastin. You rock.

  • 2yoshimi

    Mastin–isn’t the Arclight just the best film theater? I just love it and not the popcorn. Thanks so much for your blog.  It has caused so much growth and self-love in me. When I try to talk about this  to others the word “narcissism” is brought up. I reject this “label” simply because I was never taught self love and the more I learn to love myself the whole world opens and lets me love and accept others.

  • Tale

    Congrats on the progress & revelation Mastin! If I have been too extreme on the green juice and healthy eating my body craves a bit of dirt (haha) because it certainly needs everything in moderation. I can be like this in life too, all or nothing, so this post was a great reminder for me to RELAX a little. It’s hard to be around anyone who is die hard 100% of the time, we all need our own time away from it all. I commence studying in Nutrition in the new year, I cannot wait to obtain this new knowledge, and can only imagine at this stage what sort of revelations I will be having! There is so much nonsense written about diet & nutrition, time to set things straight. Xxxxxxx

  • Anyone else desperate to lose weight? Am I the only one who’s tried everything and still stay the same weight? Has anyone read the reviews over at, The products over there look half-decent, if anyone has any experience with these, please email me! 🙂 Thanks so much.

  • Renegadepr

    Best post EVER! This is why I ready The Daily Love! The journey to the “middle path” is no small feat,
    but this post reminds us that it is attainable through self love. Thank you Mastin.

  • JoAnn

    For me, Mastin – it’s definitely first about portion control, which relates to consumption control in general. Our culture is SO over the top with consuming – even in this economic climate! I’m astounded (and don’t even watch tv) by the out of control rise in food/eating celebs, shows, books on food. WE just can’t seem to satiate ourselves…..Or can we? 

    With yoga as my masthead, I’ve learned to just notice, witness myself and my behavior in a non-detached way – without judgement. Yoga and my long, slow commitment to the practice also brought my body to a place of strength never known before. In a gentle, compassionate way! Last year at age 59 I began to feel and use abdominal muscles I’d never known before! The stronger they got, the stronger they get! My little belly has flattened down, and I love it this new way! But it blows up again when I eat too big a portion, and that’s my awareness. For the first time in my life I can actually see these muscles, that have replaced fat, and I feel more beautiful now than ever.  I’ve discovered more important things to fulfill and satiate me beyond the comfort that overeating used to provide. 

    Lives really do heal when we can dig deeper beyond surface gratifications, truly loving ourselves ‘from the inside out’ FIRST – and let’s face it, the moderate middle path day in and day out isn’t often the emotional place where life-changing risks are born – except maybe from boredom! Right now I’m in a HUGE once-in-a-lifetime COMPLETELY LETTING GO – of my past in all ways on all levels, leaving my home and beloved friends of twenty-five years, moving on to find new friends and family, but who knows where yet – learning to live and LOVE BEING IN THE UNKNOWN……..making a giant breakthrough into a whole new life beyond imagination!!! 

    So no, this is definitely NOT a middle path time. But being in the extremes was where I would always falter into fear in the past. Yes, there was fear at the start of all this, and it still shows up, like yesterday, quite fiercely.  I just witness it, honor it equally as I do love and joy, when they arise. This time the gift of freedom and the unknown, to actually be living in the unexpected– feeds my hungry soul far more powerfully than overeating or fear ever could….

    Thanks for inspiring me to write all this, Mastin!

    • JoAnn

      JoAnn again – 

      Forgot to mention this all is being done with very very very little cash as well…..
      The end of allowing money to stop me from living in freedom, fulfilling my dreams and true life purpose!

  • Lisa Marie

    I’ve always struggled with weight loss. It’s really not easy and finding a balance is a challenge. But over the past 5 months, I’ve had success with a low carb weight loss plan and I think it’s something I might be able to keep up long term.