Tag Archives: counting calories

Free Spirits and Tools of the Trade

phoneCounting calories is so not me.  I’m a free spirit who hates numbers and isn’t too crazy about routine.  I don’t like that much structure, and I hate math. Yet when I first started losing weight I tracked my food religiously. It was hard, but I found it a necessary tool in meeting my goal. I believe refusing to take this step would have been self-sabotage. Getting the My Fitness Pal App on my phone helped a lot–it did the math and already knew many of the calorie counts for the food I ate.

Eventually I tired of counting calories, but I stuck with it long enough to get the general idea of the “price tag” of the foods I was eating. Equipped with this knowledge I can “budget” my food much more wisely. For the first time in my life I have a sense of how much that cookie really “costs” and what a “great deal” all that lettuce is.

I bring this up because certain personalities (like mine) rebel against such structure. I couldn’t sustain calorie counting forever; it would drive me crazy. But I did need to step outside my comfort zone for a few months so I could learn the “truth” that would set me free to make better and more educated decisions for the rest of my life.

As I edited the above thoughts conviction hit. There are some new “tools” of the trade I need to embrace as I’m making changes in my work life, seeking to fit more into the day and feeling scattered and not nearly as productive as I’d like to be.

I’m considering structure again. A more detailed plan for time management. A stricter schedule. I’m not sure what that is going to look like, but at least I’m to the point of being open to exploration of the concept, despite the fact the idea makes me what to kick and scream. (Ya’ll can pray for me.)

What about you? Are there areas where you self-sabotage in weight loss or in life rather than step into a place of discomfort, even for a season?

Even a free spirit sometimes needs a little structure here and there.

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Weight Loss Journey Day 7

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Balsamic chicken over rice from Life Force‘s Meal plan recipes. Yum!

Tried the Balsamic Chicken from Life Force’s meal guide. It was SO good. Keeping the angel hair pasta portions small doesn’t rack up many calories. But this recipe also works with brown rice. I’ll serve it both ways . . .

Glad to be done with the cleanse. It doesn’t smell or taste bad. It’s just drinking green gunk at the end of my eating day . . . and there was that whole bloating, cramping, crying thing. lol

Yesterday was my birthday, but we didn’t do anything special, so it wasn’t hard to think about food. I’ll worry about that later this week when we go out with my neighbor for my annual birthday dinner.

It’s hard to believe I’ve been at this for a week now! At first it was overwhelming to think about what was going in my mouth. I wrote everything in a journal. I drove Jerry crazy asking, “how many ounces in this portion?” But once I got into the routine of paying attention, it wasn’t so hard.

Oh, and I’ve discovered My Fitness Pal. I put it on my phone. It makes it so much easier to track calories! It separates out nutrition, stores daily data, and even gives me daily and weekly averages. I love that it has a search engine connected to the tracking device, so I can just Google foods to learn how many calories they have, and it will put it directly into my log. AND if the food came packaged, I can just hover over the UPC code, click, and I have all the nutrition and calorie information imputed immediately!

Now that I’m more comfortable thinking about what to eat and how much (not that I’m done learning, but I no longer burst into tears at the thought), I want to get serious about walking most every day. There are many exercises I can’t do yet as I heal from the whiplash and other issues related to the accident. But I can walk. I walk slowly. I breathe hard even at that, especially up the hill by our house. I am so out of shape. But if I don’t what I can’t, if I don’t push so hard I feel unsuccessful or hate the experience, I can do this.

Real Time Update:

This post was originally written October 30th. Since then I find it much easier to eat responsibly. I still use the My Fitness Pal App and love it! I also have gone from walking short distances slowly to walking at least 3 miles most days–AND running part of the distance. As I started to become more active and continued to heal from my car accidents, I did the stretches given to me by my physical therapist, Ann. I’m much better now and have added in a few tummy exercises, like crunches 3-4 times a week.

How About You?

If you’re new to the journey, what are you struggling with today? What is your success? If you’ve been at it awhile, what helps you succeed?