Yes, it does take time in the beginning, but it gets easier once you have ingredients entered. It takes me no more than 10 minutes to enter my data.... WELL worth the effort.
Remember that weight loss is 80% nutrition. If you don't know how much you are eating, you will not get the results you're expecting.
Fitness Minutes: (42,043)
789 12/10/12 5:59 P
I'm the same way - planning a week in advance helps a lot, since I can usually enter dinner at lunch if I have a basic idea of what I'm making. Sometimes I'll just enter the basic ingredients on my tracker rather than creating a recipe. That way, I can enter approximate amounts when I have time before I cook and then go back in to edit them once I know the proper weights. If there's a combo you use often that's not quite the same each time, you can create a grouping for it. For example, my normal weekend breakfast is oatmeal with fruit. I have a grouping of oats, ground flax, cinnamon, brown sugar, and a couple common types of fruit that I use. I just add the whole thing, delete the fruit I didn't use and edit the weight of the ones I did.
For improv meals, I keep a magnetic whiteboard on my fridge. I just jot down the weight/measurement of everything as I add it and then take the board to the computer when I'm done. Usually I can enter it as the dish is cooking. If it's a one-off meal, it's enough to just jot down the ingredients and portions, which only takes a couple minutes.
Edited by: CHRISTINA791 at: 12/10/2012 (18:01)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
2,171 12/10/12 5:25 P
I cook dinner almost every night from scratch, from a recipe usually. I also rarely repeat recipes, so at this point, I'm an old pro at using the recipe builder.
What helps me the most is I meal plan a week at a time. I start doing it on Monday, for the following Saturday-Friday. When I'm making my plan, that is when I enter the meals into the builder. I've done it 100+ times at this point so I'm very fast at it, each one only takes me about 5 minutes unless it has some really odd ingredient that I can't seem to find anywhere in the tracker, which rarely happens. What helps to speed it up is entering my own ingredients in ahead of time. So for example, I tend to use the same brand of chicken broth. So I entered that in and it's saved in my favorites, so it's quick and easy to find. Also, my dinners also tend to be used as leftovers for lunches which also helps to save time with tracking. Once it's entered once, I can just copy it to the next day for lunch.
It is a lot of work at first, but after you get used to it, it really doesn't take long at all. Usually my whole meal planning process takes about an hour, and that includes the time spent building the recipes. I have a huge recipe database to pick from on my Pinterest page, and I have it divided up by main ingredient (ie beef, chicken, pork, sides etc) so that makes it quick. I tend to eat chicken on Monday nights, some sort of pasta on Tuesdays, pork on Thursdays, etc etc. That also helps.
If I am making something that doesn't involve a recipe, I just put in my best guesstimates of what I think I'll be using, then once I actually make it, I go back and adjust. This takes much less time than going back and re-entering the whole thing.
I have a really hard time keeping track of my food I eat. I think the biggest problem for me is that I cook most of my food and don't eat processed or packaged food. This creates a problem because then I do not have a nutritional guide to go by. To track my food I then have to enter a recipe (and sometimes I don't follow one) to calculate what I am eating. This tends to be to much work so I just forget to do it or blow it off. Anyone else have this problem? What have you done to make it work for you?
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