How You Can Lose That “Dad Bod” in 5 Easy Steps

3 min read ★

Guest post by Peter Minkoff, edits & additions by Jeff Campbell

Are you struggling with trying to lose your “Dad Bod”?

Perhaps you packed on the pounds during the last holiday season and just can’t shake them?

Or maybe you’ve never had the body you wanted or are just tired of being embarrassed at the pool.

Whatever the reason, guest blogger Peter Minkoff is here to help us lose our Dad Bod in 5 Easy Steps!


The dad bod has become a raging topic and a fad that never seems like it’s going to end. But the time has come to bury it once and for all.

Sure, you’re a dad. Sure, you have a lot on your plate, but dammit man that doesn’t mean you can’t have a Thor-like physique your spouse will love and your friends will want to touch!

The narrow shoulders, the protruding belly, the skinny legs and the noodle arms – it’s un-befitting for a real man.

So suck it up, pour out the beer, and follow these five simple steps to a body you always wanted. Don’t thank me, just do your part.

1. Get your diet in order

Put down the nachos.

No, put them down. The first thing you need to do if you want to get rid of that silly “dad bod” physique is to tidy up your diet. This means no more junk food, no more sugary snacks, no more overindulging in starchy carbs.

You want to start counting your calories, making sure you are eating according to your goals. And your goal is to lose one pound of fat per week.

Determine your maintenance calories, and eat 500 calories less than that until the belly is gone. No “buts”, no “ifs”, just do it.

Not sure how to determine your maintenance calories?

There’s a million schools of thought, but as a quick start method, multiple your current weight by 15.5. That will definitely get you in the ball park.

If you have kids, get the whole family on board with the 9 Best Healthy Eating Habits For Children They Will Love.

2. Eliminate unhealthy drinks from your life


The second, but equally important step is minding what you drink on a daily basis.

Up to 60% of the human body is made of water.

Thus drinking enough water throughout the day is crucial! We need it not only for weight loss but for overall health and well-being in general.

Most of us are chronically dehydrated and we rarely drink the recommended 8 glasses of water per day. According to Mary Grace Webb, Assistant Director for Clinical Nutrition at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in Queens, “Over time, failure to drink enough water can contribute to a wide array of medical complications, from fatigue, joint pain and weight gain to headaches, ulcers, high blood pressure and kidney disease.”

You also want to strictly limit soda consumption. According to the CDC, more than 50% of children and adults consume at least 1 sugar-sweetened soda every day. Every 12 oz. can contains a whopping 9 teaspoons of sugar!

And you should completely avoid any artificially sweetened soft drinks. According to the National Institutes of Health, “artificial sweeteners . . . was associated with higher risks for depression”. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg with concerns about aspartame (the #1 artificial sweetener used, typically sold under the NutraSweet name).

In fact many studies have suggested that aspartame and other artificial sweeteners actually can cause us to eat more!

Lastly, consider pouring out all of the alcohol from your life – you don’t need it. It’s not healthy no matter what popular media has to say. And it can easily add empty calories or carbs to your diet with no nutritional value.

Stick to good old aqua, freshly-squeezed juices and teas, and you will have no problems shedding fat and pulling that gut right back in.

3. Focus on burning fat with cardio

Next, exercising will be crucial in making your transformation dreams a reality.

While you should hit the gym more often (more on that in a bit) you should focus the bulk of your training efforts on cardio, high-intensity interval training, and explosive movements. You can do this in many different ways.

While your regular cardio routines such as running, jogging, and walking are effective at burning calories, you want to maximize your weight loss by taking up a more vigorous sport, such as martial arts.

This can be anything from boxing to dynamic MMA training and everything in between.

Hitting the dojo several times a week will not only teach you numerous lifelong skills, but it will also help you shed fat faster.

Martial arts is also great for your kids, so if you’re confused about finding a great martial arts school, check out How to Choose a Martial Arts School For Your Child.

4. Pump some iron as well

This is not to say that you should forgo your strength and hypertrophy (muscle growth) training.

Losing fat is essential in battling the “dad bod” condition. But expanding your frame and putting on some much-needed muscle is equally important.

Make sure you follow a strict weightlifting routine entailing weight training numerous times per week.

You want to work on gaining strength as well as building muscle in order to burn fat faster, become healthier, and allow the fat you do have to sit more evenly across your frame.

5. Get more sleep and eliminate stress

Now, this one might seem next to impossible, but eliminating stress from your life and cramming in a few more hours of sleep can do wonders for your dad bod physique and general well-being. But only if you stick to proper training and nutrition.

Stress is a common cause of unwanted weight gain. It can regularly lead to obesity and numerous health conditions down the road.

According to WebMD, “Levels of “the stress hormone,” cortisol, rise during tension-filled times. This can turn your overeating into a habit. Because increased levels of the hormone also help cause higher insulin levels, your blood sugar drops and you crave sugary, fatty foods.”

So not only can eliminating stress help you prevent numerous illnesses but it will also help you keep your dad bod at bay.

According to a recent study by the National Institutes of Health, fish oil is one of the best natural supplements to help manage stress levels.

Interested in the #1 rated fish oil supplement on Amazon Prime to help manage healthy stress levels? Check out SmarterVitamins OMEGA-3 FISH OIL. No fishy burps, no fishy taste, no citrus flavors that turn fish oil rancid such as lemon or orange. 100% sourced from Wild Alaskan Fish from the Bering Sea.

The dad bod has become synonymous with a flabby, weak, unappealing physique and the time has come to change this definition once and for all.

The modern dad should be synonymous with health, vigor, strength and virility, so make sure you do what is necessary to create a body you will love for the rest of your life.

The author of this post on the Dad Bod, Peter Minkoff, is a parenting writer for Voice Boks magazine. Follow Peter on Twitter for more tips.


Want to write for Middle Class Dad? Get all the info you need here: Guest Blog for Middle Class Dad!

Confused about how to lose your Dad Bod?

Any suggestions not covered here?

Feel free to comment here or email me with any questions!

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I also have to add that neither Peter nor I are doctors, health practitioners, scientists or any other position related to health, wellness or medicine. Thus the opinions expressed here are simply our thoughts and views based on our experience and research and they should not be construed as medical advice. If you need medical advice, please consult a doctor or health practitioner.

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