Penn Jillette lost 105 pounds the hard way: going total vegan and 23:1 IF. He recommends choosing the hard way:
My first tip is this: “If you take health advice from a Las Vegas magician, you are an idiot.”
That said, my advice is … make it hard. Easy is your enemy. Don’t believe those articles that say, “Just cut your portions down by 20%,” “Skip dessert” or “Cut out sodas.” Yeah, that seems logical. But it doesn’t work for me — I want to lose a pound a day. I want to see the scale go like this [points straight down]. So I went for a radical change in diet — whole-food plant-based, hard-core vegan, vegetables, no processed food, no sugar. And I limited my eating to just an hour a day, so I’m always fasting 23 hours.
So do it the hard way. Go all the way.
He goes on to make a point about achievement and self-esteem (emphasis added):
I don’t consider myself special. For anybody, there’s no pride in doing things easy. No one brags about walking up the little grassy slope. They brag about climbing Everest. Decide it’s going to be hard and do it like the other things that are hard in your life.
When dieting was compared to something simple, I had no interest.
But when someone said, “This is going to be as hard as getting your own theater in Vegas” — then I was interested. That would be something I could be proud of.
I don’t respect moderation. In my whole life, I always thought, the easy way is not fun. So the way I lost weight made me proud. Because it was hardcore.