This is my 12 week plan. I think keeping a semi-public record will help me stay on track. I've tried a number of diets to get in shape, which have worked to varying degrees - but I've never gotten and stayed lean for an extended period. I revert back to my bad habits after the diet and undo any good work I have done. This is an attempt to change my lifestyle.
I'm fairly strong right now (deadlift ~400), but my lungs are weak and I've got 30-40lbs of excess fat.
Ultimately, I want to become lean. I would guess I should weigh 160-170lbs. I also want to gain more strength. Strong and lean. Pretty basic. Over the next 12 weeks, I'd like to add some strength while losing around 20lbs.
2x a week (Mon./Thurs.) I will jog to the park and do sprints.
2x a week (Tues./Sat.) I will lift heavy. I've a got a pretty simple 2x a week routine from Dinosaur Training that I will follow.
Also, I'll walk at least 2 miles a day.
I have already given up alcohol for a year (I'm about five months dry already.)
For the next 12 weeks, I'll eat fairly strict paleo. No grains or sugar. Ocassional Dairy. No "cheats".
I plan to cycle my carbs with my workouts. On days that I do not exercise, I'll have under 30 grams. Just meat and veggies. On days that I sprint, I'll get 30-60 grams by adding some fruit. On days that I lift, I'll have one 100+ carb meal after the workout, using tubers like sweet potatoes.
Other than that, I'll just try to eat wholesome meats and veggies, and try to keep the calories low. I don't plan to obsessively calorie count; I'll just try to stay hungry. It'll be a lean couple of months. I'll try to get in a good breakfast most days, which helps keep the carb cravings at bay. I'm sure I'll do some IF, but I'll let that happen naturally. Again, I'm using the next 12 weeks to establish a sensible routine I can maintain for a long time.
Lastly, I plan to fix my sleep schedule. I tend to stay up late, just wasting time on the internet or watching TV. Then I sleep until noon. The day is pretty much shot at that point. Early to bed and early to rise, from here on out. All these pieces seem to work together.
Finally, I need to remember that all these guidelines do not in themselves constitute living a good a life - but by following them, I will allow myself to live a good life. I will be more energetic and more focused on my studies, which will make me a happier person. At least, that is the goal.