I like tracking because even though I consistently come in under my calorie range, I find I am eating SO MUCH fat! I think this has happened since I have been having a difficult time eating fruits and veggies, and I am trying so hard to get my protein level up. I didn't know protein would be so difficult to get without all that fat!
I do both, but I can agree with SARAHANN01 that not everyone has to count calories. I've had times in my life when I was active enough or similar that I just didn't 'over eat', so I didn't have to worry about calories. Now I do.
But (1) count calories and (2) eat heathful foods ... not the same as being 'restrictive' or such. I record what I eat, sometimes after I eat it, other times before so I can see what I 'have left.' And I eat healthful foods by inclination, especially using greens and vegetables for 'volume' on the plate. If I don't keep junk food in the fridge or pantry, I don't have to worry about eating it ... and when I do treat myself to 'junk,' I usually find afterwards that I didn't enjoy it that much.
Fitness Minutes: (930)
124 1/11/13 9:20 A
I might get flogged for saying this, but I don't think counting calories is necessary for everyone. I personally don't count calories, but, that being said, I have never been able to eat huge portions. I was gaining weight because I was eating junk.
I do plan to an extent. I have baggies in my freezer of fruit that I have chopped and frozen so that I can put together a healthy "green monster" smoothie in the mornings. I bring a bunch of healthy snacks (fruit, veggies, low-fat cheese stick, nuts, hardboiled egg, etc) with me to work that I can eat at my desk throughout the day since I typically work through lunch. I also write out what my dinner menu is going to be for the week and do as much prep work as possible on the weekends so that when I get home at night I eat a healthy dinner rather than a bag of chips. However, I do not put everything I eat in a tracker and count calories.
I know for myself if I had to be that strict it would be much harder for me to stick to it. Maybe one day I will have to track and count calories, but I haven't had to yet.
I eat and track when I can a few times a day but now I know things like if I am having salmon no eggs because too much cholesterol... I also try to keep an eye on my carbs and calcium... the tracker is an eye opener and I never really know the full answer until I have done it.
After a while I can eyeball it and estimate my calories for the regular stuff I'm familiar with. But I have to continually step back and count because my portion size tends to expand.... weird, but it does. So I have to stay on myself.
Fitness Minutes: (147,897)
20,522 1/10/13 9:17 P
I track everything at the end of the day. I have a good idea of what I can eat, I just use the tracker to keep me honest and on track.
Fitness Minutes: (35,001)
5,088 1/10/13 4:48 P
I eat healthy and track everything on a regular day
Fitness Minutes: (11,285)
3,116 1/10/13 3:33 P
I too eat healthy for the most part and track everything that enters my mouth. It can be an eye opener.
Fitness Minutes: (9,144)
622 1/10/13 2:12 P
I track everything and eat better. I don't want to starve and eat a bunch of crap, so I get my fill of healthy choices, but still keep track because it is amazing how quickly you can go overboard, even on healthy things.
I try to eat a 75% plant base diet, but when I eat a steak or chicken I go on the small size and really enjoy ever bit, if the family wants pizza hut we go thin crust and I only have 2 peices max and a large salad with smached avocado and lemon juice for dressing! I don't count calorie's but I consider them.
Fitness Minutes: (12,368)
1,539 1/10/13 12:42 P
For losing wt, I track calories AND make healthy choices. My problem has never been what I eat, it's how much of it I eat. I also measure/weigh what I eat because it's more accurate. It really isn't that much of an effort & it's worth it because then I'm not accidently sabotaging my wt lose effort.
I track (and thereby count calories) very rarely. Generally my focus is on making healthier choices rather than worrying about how many calories may be in a meal.
That being said, I have tracked enough to have a pretty good handle on my most common meals. And I am aware of the calories in food and try to make better choices rather than elminating any particular food from my diet.
At some point I may have to get more serious about tracking, but I'm hoping that I don't. In the past, obsessively tracking what I ate lead to a serious lack of enjoyment in what I was eating, which ultimately lead to me quitting the whole healthy eating thing entirely. My point of view is that I was maintaining my weight (and had been for years) eating the way I was, so any improvement in my diet could only have a positive influence. Add in exercise and I have a nice gradual weight loss. Maybe not as spectacular as some people, but nice and slow and steady, and I'm happy with that.
Fitness Minutes: (355)
72 1/10/13 10:46 A
not tracking was my downfall. I lost a hundred lbs and then fell out of the habit of tracking on here... gained back 60lbs and now I'm back! For me, I need to track so I can keep my goal in mind.
I track about 75% of the time. I always try to make healthy choices, but when I feel like I've slipped too much I track everything until I feel like I'm back on track and making healthy choices again. It works quite well for me.
Fitness Minutes: (135)
7 1/10/13 9:12 A
ok thanks for everyones comments :) I always try to eat healthier first, but I think I just like making excuses for myself. I am gonna get out of that habit!
When I am in the process of losing weight, I track and try to make healthy choices. However, when I am maintaining I don't track. After awhile of tracking for so long, I find I naturally make choices that fit in my parameters. Occasionally I'll input what I ate to see if I'm still on track, and I usually find that I am. This makes maintaining more low-key and less stressful and strict for me.
I use the tracker. I do find that if I plan my meals out ahead of time and my snacks I am much healthier. If I just try to eat healthy and then go back and log what I ate I'm not going to stay on plan as well.
Fitness Minutes: (36,520)
2,235 1/9/13 3:59 P
I eat healthy AND count calories. You can't do one or the other or you won't get anywhere!
I do both. I track everything, but I also still eat what I want most of the time. I just eat smaller portions. I have increased my protein and decreased my carbs to make up for a deficiet I had because I don't eat enough meat. You can still lose weight while eating the things you like. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't.
I also try to eat healthier and track everything I eat. I only schedule 1 meal at a restaurant a week with friends. My friends and I are going for walks or hikes, play golf, go bowling, and take classes together. We also go to concerts or shopping events if we want to socialize. We all want to remain healthy.
Edited by: SBECKER526 at: 1/9/2013 (15:04)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
2,171 1/9/13 2:28 P
I eat pretty healthy, count calories and track my food 90% of the time. The other 10% is for times like pizza & cake at a friend's house, or a burger and beer when I'm out at the bar watching sports. I try to track and count those the best I can, but it's not always possible. I don't ever think of any foods as "off limits" or "bad". It's more like there are foods for "every now and then". But, as I got used to this new lifestyle, I realized some foods just aren't worth it... like pop tarts, or store-bought cookies, all things I used to love and think I couldn't do without. Now I have very little interest in them unless I'm PMSing LOL
I will also say it's very very possible to eat great food and have it still be healthy. Definitely not an either/or situation and if it was, I never would have lost weight as food (talking about it, cooking it, eating it) is my hobby :)
Neither. I eat healthy, and count everything. Good food can still cause weight gain, and even if you count the bad food, and control the calories, you are probably lacking in your nutrition. You want to eat nutritious food, and stay within your range.
I just started tracking whatever I ate. And slowly my taste has turned to healthier options.
Fitness Minutes: (135)
7 1/9/13 2:15 P
do you count calories and eat what you want or eat healthy but not count calories? I wanna eat healthy and exercise and let the weight fall into place, but i always find myself eating bad then i will say "eh, well i can eat this, but not anything else because of all the calories" just curious what everyone else does :)
SparkPeople, SparkCoach, SparkPages, SparkPoints, SparkDiet, SparkAmerica, SparkRecipes, DailySpark, and other marks are trademarks of SparkPeople, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
SPARKPEOPLE is a registered trademark of SparkPeople, Inc. in the United States, European Union, Canada, and Australia. All rights reserved.