Friday, September 20, 2013

Importance of Food Tracking

I mentioned yesterday that one of the habits that I've developed into an almost second nature is food tracking. I truly believe it is one of the major tools that keeps me at a healthy weight. This brings up positive feelings (yay! I have something that will, without a doubt, help me!) and some negative feelings (sooo... I have to record every single thing I eat for... the REST of my life?!?!).

I will caveat and say that there are times I do not track my food: special events (weddings, etc), going out to dinner, a pre-set aside party night, and vacation. I, through time and work, do not let myself binge and go crazy at these times when I don't track, though! There are still rules. I still have to be strong. The past two vacations, I have come home at the same weight as when I left, or even a little lighter! That gave me hope that I wouldn't always have to track my food...

But my vacations are often exciting adventure vacations where we are always go-go-going. It's not exactly the normal life where I get bored or munchy or have access to lots of food and the option to not be busy.

Where I am right now - I plan to track my food for the foreseeable future. It takes about 30 seconds before/after I eat to input it into my iPhone app (so about 2 minutes a day, give or take). My app is simple, straightforward, easy to use.

And I weighed in at 119.8 today... so the results are undeniable!

This is a screenshot of my overall progress from yesterday - ate just under "goal." I don't always use the water cups to record my water, but I usually start the day doing it to remind me to drink water.

Sorry it's sideways! I love that my app tracks my macronutrients - I aim for about 50% carbs, and 25% each of fat/protein. I was pretty close this month! Before going paleo, I was eating 65-75% carbs, yikes.

Here's a screenshot of my "favorites" - I put the foods I most often eat in my favorites to make the process of recording my meals easier and quicker. Love this function!

I used to track my food when I initially lost the weight - at this point, I was writing foods and calorie estimates down in a little notebook that I had to carry everywhere with me. When I started dating Chris years ago, I stopped tracking to just act like a normal person and enjoy dating him. I put on over 15 pounds pretty quickly. I had a smart phone at this point, downloaded my calorie counter app and voila - realized I was overeating like CRAZY and had to tone it down.

I was obese. I was a binge eater. I had disordered eating. I medicated with food. I don't believe all that truly goes away. So, for now, I will continue to take a few minutes out of my day to track my food. Because I have never felt better or more at ease with my body than I do right now.

Namaste <3

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