During my weight loss journey I lost a good bit of weight without really doing a whole lot. When you’re really overweight just putting the cupcakes down can shed the first 10 to 20 pounds. But, each pound gets harder. As you get closer to your goal weight you will find that there is less and less room for error. And that is where a food journal comes into play.
I’ve been keeping a food journal now for about 4 months. I do it religiously. When I started the first thing that I realized was that I wasn’t eating nearly enough protein. I was probably eating about 60-80 grams of protein. For someone my size and activity level that isn’t nearly enough. I’m now eating double that amount on most days.
I’ve also learned alot about some particular foods. I learned very early that baked foods like cookies are one of the worst things that you can eat! Want to add about 1,000 extra calories worth of sugar and saturated fat? Eat a handful of homemade chocolate chip cookies! Second, I’ve learned that cottage cheese is awesome! And by awesome I mean that it is awesome for you…..it tastes like crap. But, thankfully cottage cheese doesn’t have a very strong flavor. Pumpkin is also a great food. Pure pumpkin is low in calories, and high in fiber. It tastes good and is very filling. I have a breakfast of equal parts cottage cheese and pumpkin with some cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and splenda. I mix it all up and put strawberries or blueberries on top. Awesome! Tons of protein and fiber and very low calorie! I’ve also found out which foods are deceptively high in calories and sugar…such as bannanas.
By knowing exactly how many calories I’ve eaten and watching my weight carefully I can see certain problems and figure them out before they sabotage my weight loss plans. For instance, I went for a number of weeks eating too few calories. At first I was loosing two pounds a week. Then one week it was a single pound…then nothing. I didn’t lose any weight for three weeks. Eventually I was able to realize that I wasn’t losing because my metabolism was slowing down to match my consumption. I’ve had to up my calories by about 200-300 calories, and now I’m back on track and losing one or two pounds per week.
I could probably drop the journal now and not see any ill effects. But knowing that I’ll have to write something down and see it there in my journal is a powerful motivator when tempted by a particular craving. So, I keep doing it because it gives me some accountability and doesn’t take much time.
Speaking of time, I use gyminee.com for my food journal. It’s one of the more simple programs out there. Fitday is the most popular, and I’ve tried it before, but I found that it took too much time. Searching for “eggs” brings up thousands of results. I was never able to make that work. So, gyminee gets the nod from me.
Filed under: Diet and Health