Just to age myself- back in the day when I struggled with my weight by yo-yo dieting, there was no google or cell phone app. I had to read labels, add in my head (and anyone who knows me knows math is NOT my strong suit). Frustrated with losing and gaining weight I tried an over the-counter dietary supplement. Wooohooooo – why not accelerate the weight loss?
I passed out at the health club at age 19 and woke up to a defibrillator with pads attached to my chest and and a team of people staring at me. The doctor asked my friend if I took any drugs. She grabbed the supplements from my gym bag and he shook his head. “She could have died. Throw these away.” Ephedra was legal at the time however doctors knew how dangerous it was for the heart.
It took me two years to lose thirty pounds in a safe, healthy long term way but I have kept it off for over 20 years.
(Left pic age 19/ Right pic age 39)
I know-not very glamorous and super boring. There are no short cuts. And if there are-they are likely to backfire. Obviously my passion for health and lifestlye balance led to a career in fitness and wellness.
Sensitive to the emotional component and frustration of dieting and because I am not a nutritionist I discourage clients from extreme diets and fads. I encourage clients to find a realistic, long term, sustainable plan that they create based on foods they like.
With all the apps available to track food, I have used tracking as a beneficial tool to check in on what the current eating habits are as well as awareness of what choices are available. I have had clients lose weight just by switching their lunch choice and adding breakfast in.
Tracking food may seem like a laborious task but thankfully the apps are so savvy that they are prompted with the ease of a google search or Suri anticipating your next word.
Here are my tracking tips:
DON’T CHANGE ANYTHING
The key to coming up with a sustainable program is to do an honest check in of your current situation. If you start tracking after you “go on a diet” you will lose out on that honesty look. Take it one day at a time. Track at the end of the day midweek and then don’t track for the rest of the week.
REVIEW with BALANCE
Once you have your honesty look, be kind to yourself. As you can see below I consumed 100 grams of fat. I have no intention of cutting back to 60 grams of fat -however what if I reviewed my food log to see what non-beneficial food items I consumed and try for 80 grams next week?
Buddy up with a friend or a coach! On My Fitness Pal you can chose to share diary with friends. If it is useful to you, have a coach check in on your food weekly or monthly.
Pick one Goal a Week
Instead of trying to change everything all at once or “eat perfect” what if the focus was on one goal a week? Notice the sugar choices one week and how the body feels with a balanced intake of sugar. Another goal might be to not skip meals or be calorie heavy at one particular meal.
Tracking is a great tool to stay on track with choices and accountability. Create the best program that serves your lifestyle and needs and consult a doctor and or nutritionist for longterm health and wellness!
Feel free to friend me on Fitness Pal this month if it will help for motivation! I don’t promise to not be boring-but I will cheer you along!