From Tech Heavy to Sleek Geek – how a Silicon Cape couch warrior lost 14 kilograms in 14 weeks

Last October – JUST 14 WEEKS AGO – I was 92 kilograms, and in the worst shape of my life – now I’m 78 kilograms, and in the best shape of my life.

(ummm, maybe not as good shape as when I was 20, and spending 4 to 8 hours EVERY day on surfing, squash, martial arts, and bodybuilding, but pretty close!!)

Here’s how I did it…


They say up to 90% of losing body fat is due to what you eat & drink.

Starting 1st November 2012, I did the following:

The NO list:

  1. NO chocolate, chips, biscuits, sweets, cake or unhealthy desserts – very quickly, I lost the craving for junk! And air popped popcorn is amazing!
  2. NO (or minimal) carbs after 2pm
  3. NO coffee after 2pm
  4. NO unhealthy foods – so plenty fruits, vegetables, fish, lean meat etc
  5. NO (or minimal) takeaways, and when I have it, it needs to be as healthy as possible
  6. NO added sugar in hot drinks
  7. NO additional salt in anything
  8. NO second helpings. Choose what you think is the right portion for each meal, and that’s it – no seconds!

The YES list:

  1. YES to 2 glasses of water just after I wake up
  2. YES to at least 10 glasses of water during the day
  3. YES to a couple of cups of Green Tea in the afternoon (as I can’t drink coffee after 2) – Green Tea speeds up the metabolism
  4. YES to a power breakfast – I know some people don’t like grains, but I’m loving my combo of Weetbix, honey, seed mix, fruit, and digestive bran with… WATER (you’re probably thinking “he’s crazy!!!” but from this week, I’ve started having my cereal with water instead of milk, as the body finds it very tough to digest pasteurised milk. – The crazy think is I’m finding my cereal with water, heated up for a few seconds, more delicious than with milk!!)
  5. YES to a weekly food plan, showing what meals I should eat when (I don’t follow it to the T, but it’s great to have a guide on the fridge)
  6. YES to 6 meals a day – BUT NOT really 6 – I eat a good breakfast, lunch and dinner, and make sure I have something nutritious to eat mid morning, mid afternoon, and in the evening.
  7. YES to high quality protein supplements sometimes taking the place of the mid morning, mid afternoon or evening meals (not the 3 core meals, but the alternative ones)
  8. YES to a high quality multi-vitamin every morning – I’m currently taking Pharmaton


You’ve got to get your mind right – that’s the secret! You start losing weight, building muscle, get fit, have high energy levels, and start feeling great – and that needs to become a way of life!

It’s all about keeping the motivation up every step of the way!

I did 2 things:


Early on I got involved with Elan Lohmann’s incredible initiative, SleekGeek to get the tech community in South Africa healthy (it’s now expanded to include a lot more people than just SA techies!)

They have thousands of people facebooking, tweeting, and meeting in real life to get healthier & fitter 24×7. It’s great for both support & education.


I started researching tons of different opinions on nutrition, and training techniques.

In addition to a large number of conversations, & looking at tons of internet articles, and video clips, I’ve also read 2 books focusing on diet / fitness:

  • Body for life
  • Renegade Diet


My 3rd pillar is getting fitter / stronger / burning fat through excercise etc etc, but in my opinion this only brings in big results if coupled with the first 2 points.

I decided to do 2 things:

1. High intensity weight training (3 times per week)

  • alternating my program every 6 weeks
  • lasting ideally 45 minutes (although sometimes the workouts go on for a few minutes longer)
  • recording everything I do
  • taking glutamine after my workouts, so that I’d recover from them as fast as possible

2. Cardio (between 2 and 3 times per week)

  • currently cycling often as training for the argus cycle tour
  • but also including plenty of walking & squash


I’m currently 78 kilograms, with a body fat percentage of 22%.

THE OBJECTIVE BY MID 2013 (I can’t wait to write my follow up blog post to see if I achieved this!!!)

Get down to between 70 and 75 kilograms with a body fat percentage of 18%


In addition to feeling GREAT, I’ve said to myself that when I reach my 18% body fat objective, I’ll introduce moderation on the “NO biscuits, sugar, sweets, chocolate, dessert” rule I created.


To ensure that this is a way of life for EVER, I’ve created another rule that AFTER I reached my desired body fat %,  if my body fat percentage ever goes up 2% over my ideal Body Fat Percentage (to over 20%), I’ll reintroduce my “NO biscuits, sugar, sweets, chocolate, dessert” rule, until I reach 18% again.


If you like what I’ve achieved so far, please leave me a message in the comments – it’s REALLY motivating to read your comments!

Eric EdelsteinFrom Tech Heavy to Sleek Geek – how a Silicon Cape couch warrior lost 14 kilograms in 14 weeks
Jean says:

Well done Eric. Have to agree it’s all in the mind!

Thanks all.

Rich – good luck with the challenge! Remember, getting your mindset right wins you the battle before you even begin…

Sam, i’m thinking you’re wanting a coffee after midnight, which by definition, is morning! :)))) But I’d say from the time the sun comes up – so in summer in Cape Town, from around 5.30 am. And if you’re really an early riser, then when you get up…

Dave says:

Congrats Mr. E! This is really inspirational and motivational for me. Keep up the awesomeness.

Sam Clifford says:

I like it all except no coffee after 2pm – from what time can coffee start in the morning?

Rich says:

Well done Eric! Very inspiring!
I have been checking out the Sleek Geek stuff for a while now and considering taking up the challenge and I think you might have just added the final inspiration to try it out!
Also I did the Body for Life stuff about 5 years and lost a ton of weight and got lekker fit etc. but found it to be just too unsustainable… I really like your eating plan and fitness plan, very much more attainable and sustainable and more likely to make it a “way of life”.

So well done and keep it up! You the man! :-)

Cliff says:

Brilliant Eric !

Well done.
An inspiration…