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YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
4/23/13 12:24 P

In addition to using the favorites and copy meal function, I do mine ahead of time. I do it a week in advance. So when the day rolls around I'm not stressing about what to eat, and I don't have to scramble around to find what I want to input. I set aside about 5-10 minutes in the morning the week before to enter in the following week day's meal. So like today, I am going to go over in a bit and enter in everything for NEXT Tuesday. Then when the day comes, I can just tweak here and there as needed.

Also, after you do it awhile and have built up your meals and favorites, it becomes very fast. Like, I tend to eat the same breakfasts and snacks, so I just use the copy meal function for those, so the only thing I have to worry about entering is lunch and dinner.

CARRIENIGN SparkPoints: (29,374)
Fitness Minutes: (28,455)
Posts: 395
4/23/13 1:36 A

It definitely gets easier after doing it for a while. It's especially helpful when you get some foods in the "favories" section that you eat frequently. Something I've found that makes it WAY easier is tracking from a computer versus doing it from a smart phone. It takes me forever if I try to track from my phone, so I don't do it unless I absolutely have to.

LADYSTARWIND SparkPoints: (24,063)
Fitness Minutes: (20,656)
Posts: 1,325
4/23/13 12:15 A

The other thing that the Tracker is Really Nice For: you can pre-plan with it! Thinking about what to do for dinner?? You can check what calories/nutrients you need....put in some of your favorites to see what your meal would count up to. You can easily remove them from that meal if you choose something better for your needs or the refrigerator gives up a particularly tantalizing leftover!

It really does get much easier once you have some favorites tagged! I know I was somewhat overwhelmed when I first tried it, and continued using a handwritten form I had from working with a dietician several years ago.

My only complaint now is that I really would like to be able to adjust my Carb/Fat/Protein goals somewhat...but since I registered with the Diabetic program, the Tracker won't let me. Hopefully someday a new version will allow that and include a place to enter meal/snack times! I have started putting the times into the notes section, so that at least helps me.

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,310
4/22/13 11:48 P

I use "Favorites" and "groups" and the "copy meal" feature constantly. Saves me having to re-look the same foods up a second time.

STARFISH1961 SparkPoints: (49,550)
Fitness Minutes: (20,465)
Posts: 2,578
4/22/13 11:18 P

As for me I , I love the food tracker , I try to enter my meals soon after I have them. I always try to have a good carb-whole grain , a protien-meat , bean or egg , and fruit and or veggie usually both and also a dairy- milk or cheese, which counts as protien too. This is the only way I can lose, you will find it easier the more you do it. I also try to eat as close to the % that the pie chart shows on the full report at the bottom of the food tracking page on the right side. Im pretty darn close most of the time.
Have lost 18 lbs in 7 weeks, and I go high in the calorie range too!

Keep tracking emoticon 1961

GRACIEGIRL93 Posts: 16
4/22/13 10:57 P

Even if you can't find time to manually enter it into your nutrition tracker, keep a notebook handy with you and write it down when you eat it with the nutritional facts (if you know them), then, if you can find time to enter it later, that's great. If you can't, at least you kept track of it. Getting a visual of how much you're eating is key.

MUSCATDBQ SparkPoints: (3,439)
Fitness Minutes: (1,708)
Posts: 214
4/22/13 10:35 P

The first few weeks are a drag but it gets much, much simpler after that if you use the favorites and groupings features. Most people (eating healthier or not) have a relatively small number of meals that they make the majority of the time. I think I read somewhere that it is around 15? Once you get though those, then the majority of the time you can just copy meals from previous days, maybe changing out one thing here or there. When you make something new, sure you will have to enter it in new but with luck, most of the ingredients you will have already added because they were used in something else already.

Good luck! I find tracking to be THE key to making this work. If I gain weight, I can guarantee it was during a week where I didn't track like I should.

AUTUMNHOPE Posts: 860
4/22/13 9:25 P

Hey Spark People ! I really like the trackers but am having a VERY difficult time trying to track my food. It is sooo time consuming for me. Trying to find each food, entering it ... When I try this I have almost no time for anything else. Any tips to make this quicker/easier ?
I see that this is a very useful tool & my food intake is definitely my weakness, so this could be beneficial to me. Thanks!

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