I was interviewed on South Florida LIVE last week, and I received several emails after the show saying I was too tough. One person even said I was ‘mean’. This is NOT an uncommon response to the mental toughness message. I’ve been called every name in the book since I started delivering speeches about mental toughness back in 1996. Jack Nicholson said it best to Tom Cruise: “You can’t handle the truth!” The middle class mentality would rather die fat than grow up and solve a tough, (but simple) problem like obesity. That’s all I was saying in this interview, and it’s why I wrote the book, Die Fat or Get Tough.

(www.diefatbook.com) Middle class thinking is the problem and mentaltoughness is the answer! You want to feel great? Get fit. You want to look even better? Get fit. You want to make more money, have better sex, enhance your self esteem, be more productive, and be happier? GET FIT! But first you have to get mentally tough. World class thinking won’t make you thin and healthy, but that’s where it all begins. Watch this 3 minute interview and judge for yourself. Was I on track or did I sound like a jerk? You decide. I’ll look forward to hearing your comments. Steve Siebold (3 minutes)

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Steve Siebold
Author and Professional Speaker since 1997. Past Chairman of the National Speakers Association's Million Dollar Speakers Group. Author of 11 books with 1.4 million copies in print.

22 thoughts on “Siebold’s TV Interview on Die Fat Book”

  1. Of course Nick I’m sure is not speaking for a majority of obese folks, there are many out there who do heed the advice of people like Steve, or their doctor, or their personal trainer. and these brave folk are doing it hard and achieving great results. try telling a fat person who has worked his Butt off to lose thirty pounds that he is wasting his time Nick try telling him it’s all because we were all fat years ago. Nick states ‘We aren’t necessarily stupid or lazy, and most do certainly want it bad enough. We constantly try to lose the excess weight. The fact is though, unfortunately, obesity, like most human caused problems, is difficult to fix.’ You bet your life its difficult to fix
    it didn’t get there overnight. But Thats not a reason not to attempt the task. The difference between doing and just trying is the difference between success in anything you attempt. getting rid of more calories than you consume is all it takes and the dicipline to persist until…..

  2. Hey Nick!

    This Siebold guy is a piece of work, isn’t he? I mean, as you have said “the only thing that makes Steve Siebold an expert on the subject of obesity is that he lost forty pounds once”.

    Who does he think he is??? Only I’m not sure that he see’s himself as an expert on obesity, just an expert at coaching the Mental Toughness required to GET fit.

    And besides, he really needs to have lost more than 40 pounds to be an expert… right? At least 60 pounds should do it, or 50 pounds and a lot of hair. Like, there has to be some credibility, right? Some ‘skin’ in the game??

    Oh, except that many of the greatest coaches that have ever lived have never reached the heights of the world class performers that they have coached, so I guess that having had to overcome an obesity problem himself to coach the solution is not a pre-requisite to do so.

    Now that’s too bad, because I was starting to get pumped by your own ‘motivational’ tirade that you rained down on this guy!

    Go Nick!

    And Siebold being “another one of a long line of people running the “motivational speaker” scam by stating the obvious to anyone willing to buy a ticket” as you put it, is very pointed. I see these types of scams being metered out by other ‘motivational speaker’ guys just like Siebold all the time.. you know… those ‘scam’ speakers like Brian Tracey, Dr Phil, Bob Proctor and Dr Steven R. Covey. Who wants to listen to them? They are obvious scammers just like Siebold (just HOW Siebold and these others manage to ‘scam’ some of the sharpest minds on the planet who run billion dollar companies and dramatically increase that organization’s performance I’m not quite sure though)

    And Nick, when you wrote “.. most do certainly want it bad enough” I know exactly what you mean! Who is this Siebold man to even think you wouldn’t want it bad enough. Of course you want it bad enough! YOU would do WHATEVER it takes… wouldn’t you Nick? I mean really… WHATEVER it takes???

    And I loved it when you wrote “Leave the obesity problem to the obese”. Where does this Seafoam guy get-off thinking he should get involved? I mean why should a Mental Toughness coach get involved with fat people??? I think even the sporting codes should follow suit and leave the coaching to the players who want to play. And we could leave the saving of the whales to the whales, and global warming to the… well… globe.

    I think you’re right Nick, this Seafoam fellow just wants a quick buck…

    maybe that’s why he stays fit chasing elk!

    Get angry Nick. Then Get fit!

    Happy Holidays!

  3. The fat people who complain and try to shoot the messenger (Steve)are only relaying the same excuses they have been feeding themselves all their life.
    Being obese is not a crime but it is an injudgment in responsability which taken over a number of years results in being fat. If people who are overweight realise that they could well extend their time on earth by changing their thinking towards their excess weight, they might take it apon themselves to do something about it. But no! making excuses and passing the buck is so much easier that losing one oz. let me tell you folks there is no sympathy and should be no sympathy for a fat person who will not continually try to help themselves lose the excess blubber they are carrying around on there bones. And the essence is on the word ‘Continually’ You wanna lose weight. Stop whinging and do something about it. Anything but complaining. It wont help you lose anything but your life!!!

  4. Hey Nick!
    Thanks for your comments. I agree with your leading thoughts 100% – we are indeed hunter-gatherers, but in a concrete jungle. It’s our responses to this environment we now find ourselves in that are becoming increasingly innappropriate for what nature intended us to be. I can see I was less than clear in the point I was trying to make earlier. It is our genes that drive us in the search of food and the ability to turn it into fat – the fuel of our aerobic energy system. This used to be our default energy system – the one we used the most back in those times. In this modern age we seldom do anymore and it has become largely neglected, hence, as you correctly observe, our amazing ability to get fat. We also have an in-built ability to build and maintain an incredibly athletic physique – again this is in our genes – if we choose to do so. The point is that in this modern sedentary world it is now a matter of choice and not neccessity forced upon us as a matter of survival. Yet having said that it is. We know that when we do become over-fat, our health suffers badly. Most cancers, diabetes, heart conditions, stroke, dementia and a whole host of other fatal diseases are directly linked to obesity and, more importantly, the things we do that create it – a failure to exercise and eat appropriately. And here’s the genetic thing again: we have evolved with an incredibly agile brain. This brain should be able to discriminate when we’re behaving incongruently to our environment and when we are not. When we are doing things that support our health and wellness, and when we are destroying it. We have the intelligence to figure it out for ourselves, but what stops us doing the right thing? As you say there are many reasons and it’s a complicated matrix of environment, habits, choices and attitude for each individual to address in order to be successful in attaining a naturally athletic physique. One of the key elements is our state of mental toughness, and this is the thing Steve, and many others, have identified, zeroed in on and have chosen to study and research in order to help those for whom this is a problem. That’s his speciality – his area of expertise. Coming from a state of morbid obesity myself I’ve experienced first hand the disease and all that comes with it. Since getting back in shape I’ve spent 20 years at the top end of the health and fitness industry studying and researching the human physique. That’s my area of speciality. I’m highly qualified in this area and now called upon to lecture at fitness conventions, medical conferences and in the media around the globe. I’ve personally supervised thousands of successful weight-loss and physique programmes with individuals of all shapes and sizes, and can state with some authority that there is no human being that can’t attain a fit, lean and healthy physique if they really want to. Just as we have the genetic ability to get fat and soft, we also have the ability to get lean and hard. It seems to me that the missing ingredient in many cases is the failure to ask our brains to do the same, and this is where I believe Steve has a legitimate and authoritative contribution to make, and why I support his views on this. My apologies for going on so, but I trust this all makes sense. Thanks – Tim Bean

  5. Nick,
    I’m glad you took time to post this comment. I’m sorry you’ve had to struggle with obesity you’re whole liife. I can’t imagine how painful it must be for you. Everything you wrote is interesting, but has nothing to do with you getting fit and healthy. The most disturbing thing you wrote (to me) was when you suggest that we “leave the obesity problem to the obese”. That’s like saying leave the poverty problem to the poor. Is it possible that so-called pseudo experts like me actually have an answer, and that we might actually care? Nick, the thinking that made you fat won’t make you thin. You CAN get fit and healthy. But you have transcend this angry frustrated level of thinking and direct all this energy into solving the problem. You’ve made all of these wild, uninformed accusations about me and the people who follow this blog, (most of whom are fit) and meanwhile, you’re still fat. I’m not judging you, Nick. I can see that you’re angry and I feel for you. I’m just suggesting taking all of this rage and redirecting it to change your life. On the other hand, if you’ve given up and are resigned to being obese for the rest of your life, thats up to you. But I doubt someone with your passion would give up. I hope you’ll consider some of these ideas. I’m sure you’re a great guy and you deserve to be fit and healthy. You can do it, my friend! Why not go for it? What have you got to lose? I wish you the best, and I hope you’ll continue to share your thoughts on this blog. Thanks, Steve Siebold

  6. Hey Tim Bean,

    Actually, being lean is not in our genes. Our genes actually make our bodies very efficient at turning every excess calorie into fat. Our ancestors from 100,000 years ago were “lean, hard and brutally tough,” because of their environment. It takes a lot of energy to track and kill a mammoth or a boar with a spear. Far more than driving to the grocery store and buying a package of ground beef.

    Our genes also programmed us to eat as much as possible when food was plentiful. This wasn’t a problem when food was rare and required so much energy to obtain. Now food is abundant, cheap and requires very little energy to obtain. 100,000 years ago, our job was survival and that required being very active in the constant search for food. Our job still is survival, but it now requires working 10 hours a day sitting in an office or car, neither of which burns much energy, to earn money to buy food. So, you see, our environment has much more to do with how obese we are than our genes. You can see it just by looking at the last hundred years. Obesity rates have risen as food has become cheaper and the amount of physical labor required at the work place has declined.

    I am a very obese person. I have been overweight since I was a baby and it has gotten progressively worse ever since then. I am completely responsible for my “state of being,” as you put it. Do the environment and even genes in certain cases contribute to obesity? Of course they do to some extent. They apply to everything else in the human world, so why wouldn’t they apply to obesity. However, I, along with most overweight persons, know the solution is ultimately in our own hands. We aren’t necessarily stupid or lazy, and most do certainly want it bad enough. We constantly try to lose the excess weight. The fact is though, unfortunately, obesity, like most human caused problems, is difficult to fix. Everyone has their own self-inflicted problems at some point in their lives that affect their mental or physical well being. When one is obese, this problem is out in the open for the entire world to see and this causes people who are not obese to think they have the knowledge and the right to give their unsolicited, and usually uninformed, advice on the matter.

    The apparent hero of most of the people on this board, Steve Siebold, said the following in an interview:

    “I’ve never seen people as self-delusional as they are with their weight. They don’t want to take responsibility. Losing weight isn’t rocket science. Do it or don’t.” (http://www.sun-sentinel.com/health/sfl-weight-loss-book-081409,0,2529532.story)

    If only solving all human problems were so easy. There would be no more war, hunger, hatred, pollution, rape, murder, etc. From what I can tell, the only thing that makes Steve Siebold an expert on the subject of obesity is that he lost forty pounds once. That and being another one of a long line of people running the “motivational speaker” scam by stating the obvious to anyone willing to buy a ticket.

    Obesity is a big problem, both for the individual and society as a whole. People like Steve Siebold who peddle this brand of pseudo-intellectual nonsense and people like you who eat it up and regurgitate it back at others do nothing to help the situation. By clicking on the various links, it looks like most of the others here are trying to push the same kind of garbage. The only thing you do is help to line Steve’s pockets. Do yourself and everyone else a favor. Leave the obesity problem to the obese and those others that are actually knowledgeable about the problem and honestly want to help instead of just making a quick buck.

  7. Hi All,

    Has anyone seen the Biggest Loser? Steve is not the only one that is touting a better quality of life through the process of becoming mentally tough, however, he is the only one that I can see who is being truthful about what it really takes to reach a level of mental/physical well being without pushing some magic potion, pills, or lying that you don’t need to excercise!

    “A mind that’s most in tune with objective reality enjoys the highest level of mental health. Self-delusion is the disease of the middle-class thinker. The first step towards world-class results is giving up the addiction to kidding yourself about how good you are in any area of your life. Kid the world, if you wish, but never delude yourself”.

    People, stop kidding yourself that being over weight, over fat, or obese is okay. Those like Steve who say it out-loud are not out to get you. There is a great book out there that I highly recommend. It’s called 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of The World Class.

    Steve, keep up the great work and your passion for telling the truth. Those of us out here that want to learn, expand, grow, become, highly appreciate your insights.


  8. Sabrina, there’s no war against obese people. Obesity is not a condition but rather a state of being that people sometimes allow themselves to become through the decisions they make. For some people becoming and remaining obese is an acceptable state. However at the point where being obese becomes unaceptable then all a persons decisions will reflect that, and their physical state of being will change as well. If change isn’t happening despite doing the best you can, the simple truth is that your best effort isn’t good enough yet for what you want to achieve. Either you need more and better information or you don’t want it bad enough. I’m sure you’d rather be fat and have compassion too, but in calling people “skinny bigoted little fuckers” clearly shows that you still only score 1 out of 2 on that front. So good luck with that…

  9. You8r book is nothing but a lot of hateful propoganda designed to be a war on obese PEOPLE, not their actual obese condition. This is the same garbage that the Nazis used to dehumanize Jewish people. How dare you make the kind of rude comments you make. There are many of us who are doing the very best we can and still are large sized! You have no right making outrageous statements like this: “Fat people are controlled by their emotions. Fit people exercise emotional control in everything they do.” Given the choice I’d rather be a person who may be fat and has some COMPASSION than some skinny bigoted little fucker like you who is nothing more than a bully passing as a “motivational expert!!!!”

  10. You are spot on with your line of reasoning. I have a few points you would benefit to consider in my hilarious treatise on the subject at noneforyou.net

  11. The truth always hurts especially when it comes to being fat…..so take it on the chin if you really want to change your lifestyle and get thin….being mentally tough doesn’t happen over night, you need to work at it, practice makes perfect like everything else in life.
    Stop lying to yourself and pay attention to what steve is saying and thank God you found someone who really cares about you and is willing to be brutally honest and turn your middle class thinking into 1st class thinking….its time to get tough………..WITH YOURSELF…

    Paulene Mu’tamir

  12. Whoah Nelly! No punches pulled here!
    I think you are absolutely right AND I recognize most of us live in a world where mental and physical fitness is NOT the norm. Nobody teaches this stuff, or if so it may be at a military academy where discipline is used almost as punishment, rather than as an exemplary way to make good choices about optimizing our human experience.
    I teach thinking skills, and despite the fact we ‘think’ every day, we have flabby, untrained thinking. I’ve found that starting with awareness of what’s possible, along with tips, tools and strategies for thinking skill development is the route to successful deployment.
    I look forward to reading your tome and sharing the strategies! Thank you for speaking out to a dire need and offering what I presume to be win/win solutions, even if tough.
    (See you in July too, neighbor from WPB!)

  13. Well said, John Regan! Paleo-anthropologists tell us that our DNA has remained unchanged for nearly 100,000 years – we are today exactly who our hunter-gatherer ancestors were all that time ago. They were lean, hard and brutally tough. Those who weren’t didn’t make it. Being lean is in our genes – it’s who we are. Being lazy, fat and soft isn’t. It’s a consequence of a lazy, fat and soft attitude, and living in a state of denial of our true origins. Being tough and thinking strong is a hallmark of being a human being – the alpha male and the alpha female. This does not preclude us from compassion, sympathy and kindness – we just have to recognise which is appropriate and for what situation. Thanks Steve for cutting through the fluff once again – brilliant interview, awesome book!

  14. Steve you tell it like it is! and That’s the way it should be. Being overweight is not natural. it can be an addiction.It can be a state of physical and dietry upbringing.(Your parents were all fat) perhaps you enjoy eating the wrong foods. All these things can be debilitating and in fact life threatening. Making excuses for your obesity wont lose one single ounce, so Yeah Steve its time to get tough and as you so rightly state making that decision and sticking to it is really the way to begin losing Fat. Being fat is against the law. The law of nature. Nature does not supply food that makes people fat if eaten correctly and in moderation. Mental toughness is in short supply around the world this is why your message Steve and your book is so important. Good luck mate John Regan

  15. How dare you attack the ‘delusions’ of the middle class! Calling them liars! What are you trying to do… Save them from an EARLY GRAVE??? How will McDonalds survive without people lying to themselves? Jobs will be lost! The economy will get worse on the back of the LENTIL BURGER! Fit happy people prowling the streets could mean a drop in crime! Police will lose their jobs in droves! More sex means more kids! The schools can’t cope as it is, resulting in more unemployed! And what about the owner of the local donut shop, Slavos Gianopolus! He’s a wonderful man who makes a mean cream-custard tart! His future would be ruined! What do you expect him to do… grow soya beans!!!
    We hear about that courageous man in Australia who risks his life to save a baby kangaroo from the surf and the sharks and we get interrupted by this dose of reality! What is the world coming to?? This is very typical of a man who has for decades done everything he can to discover what makes world-class people lead healthy, happy lives! And who has run the gauntlet of middle-class consciousness himself! Your very real ‘non-delusional’ message can only result in people living longer, happier lives contributing significantly to their community, the economy, and morality as a whole. You nasty piece of work!
    Love the book though! Really!

  16. Steve,

    I survived a head on car collission one year ago and as a part of my rehabilitation, I was lucky to have one of the best physical therapist in the world, David Reavy, who successful works on star professional atheletes. He took my body from painfully weak to pain-free and strong. Throughout our time together, I used my mental toughness to work through the exercises after each sessions 2-3 times a week. We made a great team together, but it was my mental toughness mindset and the actual discipline of doing what I needed to do for 100% strength.

    Now that my body is strong, I am able to take it to another level. If I choose to not stretch or do the special exercises he recommended, then my body will go back to being stiff and painful. It is not healthy for anyone to just sit, and not be active daily! Being 100% compliance is the only way to achieve true health both in nutritious food/portion control and physical exercise.

    Health affects everything in our lives – relationships, careers, and the ability to achieve large dreams. We need energy! More energy comes from being tough on oneself. I agree with your philosophy 100%.

    It’s about taking responsibility for what we chose to create. Thin, Slim and Healthy is the BEST choice!

    Great Job Steve! Someone needs to be the Advocate for Fit with an in-your-face approach! I’m 100% supportive.

    Michelle Strbich

  17. Hi Steve!

    We somehow evolved into a society where we think shirking personal responsibility in every area possible in life is acceptable. The time for sugar coating, patronizing and coddling is OVER! Thank you for having the courage to say the truth. In the end, getting lied to makes any challenge in life that much harder to overcome because of the delusion it creates. Thank you for the book, thank your wife for the book! Please keep up the much needed, tell it like it REALLY is, contributions!

    Best Wishes from a Recovering Middle Class Thinker! (haha!) 🙂


  18. Steve,
    Excellent interview. You are being very kind by telling people how it is. We are lazy and fat. We need to hear that we are the only ones who can make the decision to improve our health and lose weight. It is all up to us and it is so rewarding when we do lose the fat.. energy soars, confidence soars, beautiful is ours.
    I am loving your book.

  19. FatTubALardSteve – I can picture you that way – not a pretty sight at all Steve!

    Fat people lie! Fat people are delusional. Programs work – they don’t work! 99% complience sucks!

    Quit making excuses. It’s not an easy thing to do to lose a lot of weight especially if you are obese – it’s simple but not easy. Grow up and get mentally clear!

    Number 1 tip: make a decision. No middle class thinking! Grow up and get emotinally mature.

    Steve you are so blunt and In Yer Face! Listen — I spent two decades teaching middle/high school, adult education and some adjunct college – I was a straight talker and my students loved me because they knew I loved them and would not lie to them. I could be blunt and I also knew what was appropriate to say to kids – most of the time.

    Can you imagine how straight talk appropriate in the language of the age beginning in middle school through high school and up could impact lives. Kids can take straight talk when they know it comes from adults who respect them, love them, and have their life long interests in their hearts.

    I watched trim 9th graders graduate 100 lbs over weight – thousands of them. From beginning the day with junk food to lunch with junk food and physical education programs not worth the money being spent on them I watched this happen. Now look at this nation.

    Your book comes at a critical time – keep up the straight talk. You’d be a jerk not to tell the truth.


  20. I agree that making a firm decision is the most important step in loosing weight. I have also come to think that what many people want is the short-lived uplifting feeling they get from unhealthy food. This can surely be replaced by healthy nutrition, in due time. Meanwhile sticking to your goal can be made easier by emulating a feeling of physical satisfaction. To really let that feeling of intense well-being run through your body, without eating the bad food.

    As you write in your book 177 Mental Toughness Secrets, people can condition themselves. They can decide to experience certain feelings without actual stimuli.

  21. Great interview Steve! I love your direct style and know this book is going to help many people! See you in July.


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