Like many of us, 'NCIS' star Michael Weatherly says his poor eating habits and time management for exercise came from the stresses of juggling a young family and work. The 46-year-old, who plays Anthony DiNozzo on the CBS series, realized his health was in need of a shakeup after he managed to split five pairs of pants while filming season 11.

"I have two very small children, ages 2½ and 1 year old. That means I had been living with a pregnant lady for a long time," Weatherly joked to People. "While my wife [Bojana Jankovic] never gave in too much to her Nutella craving, we weren't doing too much. And I found it very hard to say to my wife and children [Olivia and Liam] that I need to spend a couple of hours on me. And the job was demanding."

Weatherly says that in addition to his hectic schedule, the food catering offered on set often wasn't very healthy - leading him to graze from a buffet of high-calorie foods with very little activity to match. "It reached a tipping point," he said. "Even the writers made jokes about Tony needing to go on a cleanse."

While on a break between seasons this summer, Weatherly embarked on an exercise regimen that included a variety of cross-training activities like boxing and swimming. Dude even ran a triathlon:

Perhaps the biggest change, however, is how he approached his diet. 

"No food that comes from a package like potato chips," he said. "I stayed away from pasta, rice, bread, potatoes … anything that's fun to eat, I did not eat. And I pulled way back on alcohol consumption." 

As a result, Weatherly says he dropped more than 35 lbs. off his 6' 2'' frame in only a matter of months; a rapid change that he says led to more energy, stamina, and a figure he hasn't seen in more than a decade. 

"I discovered great things about myself at this stage in life," he said. "You have to take time for yourself, whether it's reading a book or going for a walk or just spending some time talking to a cat. At a certain age, you have to take care of yourself. No one is going to do it for you." 

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Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

'NCIS' star Michael Weatherly reveals the secret behind his healthy weight loss
Actor, who dropped 35 pounds, says he has more energy and stamina thanks to some very simple changes.