Two Guys Lose Weight: Justin Bieber made me eat popcorn

Singer Justin Bieber arrives at the premiere of "Justin Bieber: Never say Never" in Los Angeles, California on February 8, 2011.
Los Angeles Times

NOTE: This is a blog about two guys attempting to lose weight over a six-week period. They kicked off their weight-loss “strategies” on Jan. 10.

Somehow I was at the premiere for the new Justin Bieber movie at the Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live and there it was: a table filled with boxes of freshly popped popcorn.

The tween girls panted in anticipation and stood in line to take pictures with Disney Channel celebrities but all I saw were the rows of cold cans of pop, endless bottles of water, and tall boxes of popcorn waiting to be devoured.

I had done so well at lunch. While my friends ate delicious plates of hot, steamy Chinese food, I sipped on my Diet Coke and told funny stories.

But there it was 6:45 p.m., time for my Cookie Diet-approved serving of protein and salad, but there was no salad in the amphitheatre. All there was was popcorn. So I took it. And a bottle of water.


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Despite the fact that the kid seems to be down-to-Earth, friendly, grateful and talented, I was able to avoid Bieber Fever. The thousands of screaming girls all around me were a different story. They were clearly suffering from the symptoms. Escalated heartbeats, stars in their eyes, and loss of appetite.

I know this because there was no line at all around the popcorn table. Something I vividly remembered after I had completed downing the entire box of the lightly buttered treat.

The film was entertaining enough: Small-town kid with a cute haircut finds a loyal audience on YouTube and very quickly becomes a huge superstar capable of selling out Madison Square Garden despite having marginal talent.

What he does have is a sweet personality and permagrin that, after seeing endless amount of homemade video footage, he has seemingly had since birth.

Likewise, every time I have been to the movies, I have eaten popcorn. This was a habit that was, unfortunately, impossible to break.

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After taking the subway home I went to Subway and got a chicken breast footlong with avocado and lettuce. When I got it home I put the bread aside, microwaved a can of string beans, and ate the chicken, lettuce, avocado, and beans while drinking a few Diet Dr Peppers.

Later I nibbled a little on the bread, but not much.

One thing I did notice from Bieber that I could relate to: When I was 16 I weighed 120 pounds too. And like the pop star, when I was feeling low I wanted McDonald’s.

That’s pretty much where our similarities ended. For example, I doubt the teen ate six cookies throughout the day like I had, as was required of the Cookie Diet.

Poor kid.

Two guys lose weight: The journey
The beginning of the Cookie Diet
In his quest to lose weight, Jimmy summons Maverick from “Top Gun.”