Last updated: May 21, 2009

When Krista Vernoff, head writer and executive producer for Greys Anatomy, needed to lose her pregnancy weight, Az Ferguson, million-dollar-prize winner of the annual Body for Life Challenge, kept her motivated by making a game out of weight loss.


Vernoff lost 15 pounds in nine weeks using Fergusons strategies, now available in The Game On! Diet: How to Kick Your Friends Butt While Shrinking Your Own (HarperCollins, 2009; $14.99). Try these to lose your own 15 pounds:

  1. Reward yourself: For every pound you lose, put $5, $10, or $20 into a piggy bank that you get to break open and spend on new (smaller) clothes once youve reached your goal.


  • Sleep more: You may fall behind on your TV watching, but studies show more shut-eye will lift your mood and help you lose.


  • Weigh in daily: The scale is not your enemy! People who weigh themselves each day seem to lose more weight than people who ignore the scale completely or even weigh in once a week.


  • Pair up: Exercising and healthy eating are more effective in a group setting. Challenge your co-workers to a weight-loss contest, or ask your friends to walk around town for a half-hour instead of sitting and drinking lattes.