Friday, May 20, 2011

Hey Calorie, I'm Tracking You!

Hello Sugar Sweaters,

It must be Friday because my morning started here, like it has on almost every Friday for the past 2 years:
Finn's - Salt Lake City, UT

Although I am much more spontaneous than this post is going to make me sound, I ordered what I normally order at Finn's - 2 eggs over medium and 3 slices of sourdough toast (and coffee duh). When I entered my breakfast into Lose It - I got a Friday Morning Wake-Up Call:

Now don't quote this at a dinner party without verifying, but I believe it was Newton who came up with the whole Calorie In Calorie Out idea (paraphrasing here, he was trying to be all fancy calling it thermodynamics). I am not one to subscribe to any sort of diet style. So as dirty as it sounds to some ears I do in fact count calories. I do it on my iPhone or iPad using a program called Lose It (highly suggested!)

Before I go on, it is important to note that Finn's bakes their own sourdough and it is amazing. I am from California and I would have to say my sourdough standards are quite sophisticated! But using 65% of my food budget on breakfast makes a girl sweat (apparently sweat sourdough!)

I try to stay around 400 calories per meal. Since my calorie allowance goes up with exercise, 1 - 1.5 hours of exercise a day gives me wiggle room for desserts and drinks. I am going to have to add in a little extra exercise today to compensate. No matter how I roll the dice, tracking what I eat and my exercise is THE ONLY WAY I can lose or maintain my weight. It is just TOO easy to under estimate what I eat and OVER estimate what I am burning during my workouts.

 I lift weights 3 times a week and it takes me about 45 minutes to complete my full body routine. This is at a day dreaming- people watching pace.

I decided that going to the spin class at 24 Hour Fitness (1hr) in addition to my weight lifting will get me back up to 800 calories going into lunch. Imagine if I had not tracked this? I would have considered my breakfast "good" (meaning low calories) and would have done my weight routine (and maybe 30 mins of light cardio) and called today a good day - a day that moved me closer to my goal. I would have been totally oblivious to the fact that I consumed more calories than I had burned.

Now one day like that would not affect me, but what about 7 days in a row? 30 days? Months? That is how weight can creep on slowly or make you frustrated because you workout but nothing happens. For me, it is as simple as tracking what I eat - the rest just works itself out.

 This is just a little insight to what works for me. I would love to hear what works for you. Do you only eat certain foods? Paleo? Vegetarian?
"I can't tell if this is breakfast or leftovers from dinner."

Buckley manages his weight by eating 2 square meals a day of brown pellets and drinking plenty of water. For long trail runs, he will also eat sticks to keep up his glycogen levels.

If any of you are trying to maintain or lose weight- try tracking everything you eat and your daily exercise. This is not about depriving yourself - it is about awareness.

Until next time -


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