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CJADERUN Posts: 688
9/18/12 5:59 P

That a cup is smaller than I think it is.
A tablespoon is bigger than I think it is.

That eyeing it DOES NOT WORK!

APPLEPIEDREAMS SparkPoints: (155,832)
Fitness Minutes: (73,900)
Posts: 8,855
9/18/12 5:22 P

I eat. A lot.

WILSONWR Posts: 6,373
9/18/12 5:07 P

There is a reason for those extra pounds, and it becomes painfully obvious once you start tracking. I like tracking because I can predict how I will do on my program for the week based on how well I've been eating.

CATMAGNET SparkPoints: (38,973)
Fitness Minutes: (51,134)
Posts: 1,183
9/18/12 4:41 P

It helps keep me accountable and focused on what I need to do in order to achieve my weight loss goal.

I'm also amazed with how much food I can really eat for 1500 calories!

JULIA1154 Posts: 1,783
9/18/12 3:47 P

That knowledge is both empowering and liberating.

I've also learned that it's entirely possible to eat well and be satisfied on 1200-1500 calories a day.

DIANAHALLOCK SparkPoints: (31,438)
Fitness Minutes: (20,949)
Posts: 1,248
9/18/12 3:33 P

...I don't look at the calorie totals until after a healthy breakfast and lunch. Then I can determine what's for dinner. If all is well, I can add a bit of butter. If I'm near my totals, I opt for a crisp salad or lots of cold fresh fruit. emoticon

JUSFOLK Posts: 1,827
9/18/12 3:11 P

..once most folks have done it for a considerable amount of time, they know if what they are eating is keeping them where they want to be, and it's less of a must-do thing. I know some would disagree, but I've found it to be true for me as I've reached the maintenance stage, basically because I eat about the same number of servings from the various food groups daily, just out of habit.

KNIGHTRUNNER Posts: 7
9/18/12 3:08 P

that it's not nearly as hard as I thought it would be. It's also fun in a weird way to see what goes into my body.

MILLIE5522 SparkPoints: (42,474)
Fitness Minutes: (17,773)
Posts: 1,352
9/18/12 3:08 P

Through being painfully honest with myself I finally realised that what I used to think was a 2400 calorie day consumption was closer to 3500 calories! It made me realise why I could put on weight so easily! I had been underestimating (by guessing! emoticon ) the amount of calories I was really consuming. Tracking also made me realise that I consumed a lot more calories on the first Friday in the month. I call it my Fat Friday. Still not sure why I consistently want to eat more on that particular day but the numbers don't lie!

JOYFULROAD Posts: 283
9/18/12 2:52 P

it helps me plan out my day accurately

KATE10161 Posts: 45
9/18/12 2:47 P

It always keeps me on track and makes me watch what I eat better

ANNELISES SparkPoints: (1,104)
Fitness Minutes: (1,169)
Posts: 14
9/18/12 2:38 P

If I don't track, I gain!

JCKIRNER SparkPoints: (23,998)
Fitness Minutes: (38,884)
Posts: 28
9/18/12 2:00 P

Yes, it's that honesty with myself that's so important.

And tracking makes me aware of how I need to plan my next bites to keep the numbers in range.

HEALTHY-SPARK SparkPoints: (41,878)
Fitness Minutes: (47,660)
Posts: 1,063
9/18/12 1:18 P

It's made me pay alot more attention to how much fat, protein and carbs my diet consists of. Very enlightening and helpful!

JEANNETTE715 SparkPoints: (4,277)
Fitness Minutes: (3,147)
Posts: 63
9/18/12 12:56 P

portion control!!

DIET_FRIEND Posts: 737
9/18/12 12:54 P

I have learned that tracking is the most important part of my program. I really believe that what I put in my mouth impacts my weight more than any other thing, so being honest about it has made all the difference. I really enjoying looking at my numbers and ensuring I get adequate protein daily as well as not veering too often below the minimum calorie number in my plan.

CUPCAKE_PIRATE Posts: 863
9/18/12 12:31 P

that it is essential to staying on target! It's so easy to "think" you're doing right, but when it's there in black and white, there's no fooling yourself.

PURPLEDRAGONM SparkPoints: (8,503)
Fitness Minutes: (111)
Posts: 177
9/18/12 12:29 P

Tracking my food has given me control and power over the food, not the other way around. Now my choices are conscious. If I really want something unusual, or a piece of chocolate, I can work it into my day. And even if I go over my calories occasionally, it's MY CHOICE, as someone else said in another post. I'm in control. That gives me peace of mind. And if I'm not stressing over food, the cravings and crazy eating happens hardly ever. It's all good!

2PB4JSNM SparkPoints: (16,127)
Fitness Minutes: (11,858)
Posts: 17
9/18/12 11:29 A

Agreed! Even in maintenance mode or when I know I'm not focused on my diet and weight loss goals it's just a great barometer! So little gains don't become big ones. And I find when I am focused eating "the right things" I struggle sometimes to meet my caloric needs.

CINFAR Posts: 3
9/18/12 10:19 A

Tracking helps me to exercise more and make healthy choices on what I eat.

JCEDIT89 SparkPoints: (180,936)
Fitness Minutes: (189,955)
Posts: 9,945
9/18/12 9:50 A

It is essential to weight management

LOSIN_IT4GOOD Posts: 588
9/18/12 3:17 A

What I've learned about tracking is that if I plan all my foods ahead of time, I am more likely to stay within my goals.
I have also learned that I accumulate A LOT of calories and fat with toppings, this has made me think twice before I slather a baked potato with butter and sour cream! I do not eliminate those toppings, but I will scale down the proportion sizes.

LESSISMORE2010 Posts: 1,380
9/18/12 2:43 A

it's a great reality check. I need constant monitoring of my portions. Tracking allows me to see what I'm putting into my body that is good, as well as bad, and where I need to make changes.

COCOAHONEY Posts: 13
9/18/12 1:54 A

I overestimate calories in. So at the end of the day I'm wondering why I'm woozy, it turns out that I've only eaten 1100 calories in a day when my upper range is 1800--possibly a little more, as when I was eating at that rate I dropped enough weight to alarm my doctor. (No, I don't THINK I have a tapeworm, doc...)

So now I'm having to remind myself TO eat so my body doesn't kick me into starvation/hibernation storage settings.

Oddly I've lost weight since INCREASING my intake.

BFMONICA Posts: 1,580
9/18/12 12:05 A

I love knowing what nutrients I am putting into my body.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

MELAYAHM SparkPoints: (31,697)
Fitness Minutes: (63,089)
Posts: 104
9/18/12 12:03 A

Tracking showed me that I really can not guess at what I think I'm eating. I started SP in April, and I'd given up chocolate, snacking between meals, already, but when I was logging my weight once a week, it wasn't shifting. After a couple of months of this and getting fed up, I bit the bullet and started tracking. It was a revelation at how much I was still eating, even though I wasn't nibbling. And once I started tracking and staying under the 1550 a day, the weight started falling off! The proof of the pudding, or lack of it, is in the eating and tracking it, lol!

MJZHERE Posts: 727
9/17/12 11:13 P

that it is a good thing that I was tracking! It helped me discover that I was undereating and that was the cause of my plateau. Really glad to have found out before it went for a long time!

BROOKLYN_BORN Posts: 2,785
9/17/12 10:19 P

I use the tracker to plan each day. I like to play "what if I eat this and not that" Then I adjust as necessary. Otherwise, It's just too easy to underestimate the calories in and likewise in fitness overestimate the calories out.

ANJA58 SparkPoints: (2,117)
Fitness Minutes: (1,621)
Posts: 44
9/17/12 9:05 P

tracking helps me stay focused and accountable for what I eat

ASHLEYKR Posts: 36
9/17/12 8:29 P

Tracking has been so empowering. It allows me to make the healthiest and most satisfying choices.

AMANDAROX Posts: 304
9/17/12 8:00 P

What I've learned is how important measuring is!! If you're not measuring, most likely you're eating more than the recommended serving size. Even the little things add up very quickly!!

BETTSI SparkPoints: (12,707)
Fitness Minutes: (6,711)
Posts: 392
9/17/12 7:55 P

Tracking has been the single best thing I've done so far. Now that I've been doing it for over a month, I can see that I've really (finally) internalized what the right amount of calories is for a day. Even I don't enter my meals until later, I am finding that I've got the portions and volume dialed in and I don't get too many unhappy surprises any more!

But I wouldn't have even gotten to the tracking if I had not focused on developing the exercise habit first. I spent a month just working on that first just like SparkGuy recommends! It's all working!

MELAWEN SparkPoints: (2,668)
Fitness Minutes: (1,829)
Posts: 13
9/17/12 6:23 P

The tracker really helps me see just how much I have consumed or on some days still need to consume. I can be really bad at my eating habits and could use the reminder every now and again. Sometimes I will sleep in late on my days off and then I won't eat till early evening. So on days like that I eat one big meal and nothing else all day. Doing the tracker helps me realize that I need to eat at various times of the day in order to have the energy to get through my day. The tracker also helps me not to feel guilty if I want something extra like a small spoonful of ice cream, or add some cheese onto my sandwich. The tracker helped me gain a perspective I wasn't even aware that I desperately needed.

THERESACHANGED SparkPoints: (37,518)
Fitness Minutes: (67,479)
Posts: 1,330
9/17/12 4:52 P

I underestimate calories, I consume way too much sodium and hardly ever reach my calcium or iron levels without a conscious effort.

Tracking is with me for life now and is probably the single biggest tool that has kept me on track. It frees me from the second guessing, magical thinking and guilt.

PRESBESS SparkPoints: (60,496)
Fitness Minutes: (34,517)
Posts: 3,543
9/17/12 4:05 P

It Works! It Works! It Works!
emoticon

It keeps me accountable and it establishes control.

KENDRAB9 SparkPoints: (12,591)
Fitness Minutes: (7,703)
Posts: 121
9/17/12 3:53 P

It brings a sense of control of my life, which helps with RELAX! I used to eat constantly, little things that added up. Now it's a fun puzzle trying to find the food that keeps me most satisfied and feeling best while staying in my calorie allotment. Sometimes I slip up, but by tracking I can see that overall, I am staying consistently in my range!

UGAKATE85 Posts: 2,630
9/17/12 3:40 P

2 main things: One, it keeps me from mindless snacking b/c I'll remind myself, "Do I REALLY want to put this on my log and be reminded how many empty calories I ate?" And two, the little stuff adds up very, very quickly.

COURAGE2CHANGE Posts: 31
9/17/12 3:31 P

Tracking my food intake keeps me honest and accountable.

FRENCHIFAL SparkPoints: (101,545)
Fitness Minutes: (78,820)
Posts: 2,361
9/17/12 3:20 P

A lot of people think that tracking is time-consuming and onerous...but I've learned that tracking is empowering! It lets you work treats and favorites into every day and every week, make smart decisions and have a plan for your day, and finally take control of your weight, your body, and your lifestyle! If you are like me, you felt so helpless and out of control at your heaviest weight....and tracking made it all MY CHOICE!!

MEG0733 SparkPoints: (891)
Fitness Minutes: (2,885)
Posts: 8
9/17/12 3:15 P

Th tracker showed me that I yo yo with my eating some days I am very high and others not even 1,000.00 calories a day I need to get better about that

MIDROAD Posts: 1,184
9/17/12 3:05 P

Tracking is invaluable! For me it adds a whole new dimension of ACCOUNTABILTY and
AWARENESS that I never had when I ate whatever, whenever I wanted.

Although I still have many more lbs to go I know it will be a key to maintainence!

Tracking is the most important tool in our arsenal!

MIMIKIM75 Posts: 7
9/17/12 2:58 P

Just do it. No matter the result. It really makes you aware of what you have eaten. Even on days I have overindulged, tracking keeps me reigned in from letting it become a binge. IT REALLY WORKS if you are faithful to the concept. emoticon

ALANAMEADE Posts: 16
9/17/12 2:01 P

it works. Like others have stated it is so easy to mindlessly eat without thinking of how many calories you are actually consuming. I have been tracking now for about 20 days and it amazes me to think how many calories I had to be consuming before SP, I would probably take in my current daily allotment before lunch!!!

MICHELLE73101 Posts: 299
9/17/12 1:31 P

To track EVERYTHING even if it was a crazy day of eating and I went way over my goals. Just the reality of it makes it manageable - when I see the numbers, I can get past it with little stress.

"Your body keeps an accurate journal of what you eat regardless of what you write down."

MAHGRET Posts: 103
9/17/12 1:25 P

I always pretrack the dinner I have planned for my family, and then I can see what fits in for lunch. Both calorie-wise and nutrients- if dinner is carby or high fat, I know lunch should not be.

SMORALES99 SparkPoints: (1,450)
Fitness Minutes: (212)
Posts: 5
9/17/12 1:08 P

I rely heavily on the Trackers too. It's so easy to consume excess calories and fat, etc when one is not conciously aware of what is being put into the mouth!

I've noticed I pre-track as well. Not all the time, but on a regular basis. It helps me visually see if what I'm about to eat will meet my dietary goals. And if it doesn't, I can tweek it as neccessary.

EIDOTHEA1 SparkPoints: (23,842)
Fitness Minutes: (12,368)
Posts: 1,539
9/17/12 1:05 P

Tracking is the only way I've ever been able to lose wt. It's far too easy to underestimate the number of calories I consume if I don't track.

AMILLER1124 SparkPoints: (16,453)
Fitness Minutes: (53,337)
Posts: 232
9/17/12 12:07 P

The tracker amazes me constantly. I really never knew how many calories I was consuming until I started using it. It keeps me accountable and I've avoided a lot of foods after realizing their nutritional value (or lack there of). I have to contribute a huge portion of my success so far soley on the nutritional tracker. I never just grab something to munch on now. I think about where I'm at for the day and what I can spare and if the food in question is really worth it.

JANEKGETTINGFIT Posts: 200
9/17/12 11:52 A

The trackers are a great tool. I used them for several months and you see what you are eating and can make the necessary changes in your diet intake based on the fat, protein and carb breakdown.

BARKLESSWAGMORE SparkPoints: (45,344)
Fitness Minutes: (56,975)
Posts: 2,007
9/17/12 11:34 A

that it really does help me! I'm focused on the nature of what I'm eating. The best thing for me is when I track my not so great choices and see exactly what I'm so casually putting in my body! It is 1 thing to say I ate a brownie but a totally different thing to say I ate 200 calories, 6 grams of saturated fat......etc! Yikes! Really helps me stop and think! Last night I actually pre-tracked my supper and snack to see if my plans would keep me in range and that really helped too!

Thanks SP Coach ad SPeople!

Mary:)

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