Day 2 - Tracking and Making Small Changes
Friday, August 16, 2013
Okay, so I know I said I was just going to track for a week, but sparkpeople makes it so darn easy to see what you could do better, you might as well start doing better, right?
Last night for the first time I used a feature on sparkpeople that I'd never used before (well, besides starting this blog!)... NOTES!
After I finished tracking my food, I opened up a note for the day and started going through what I'd eaten, making note of what I could do better. For example: I had a leftover breakfast casserole... I could have made that with less cheese, substituted rutabaga or cauliflower for the hashbrowns in it, and used turkey sausage instead of real bacon. I also had a glass of orange juice... as a floridian, something "orange" with breakfast is a staple! But instead of 8 oz of orange juice, I could just have half an actual orange and get my orange fix, saving me from the sugar and calories and giving me a bit more fiber.
So I went through my whole day and noted what I could do better. Tomorrow I'll skip the OJ and have that half an orange. I bought "wide noodles" that I thought were egg noodles - tricky tricky! I do better with the extra hit of protein in egg noodles over plain semolina flour. Won't do that again... the post-noodle insulin spike had me craving a carby late-night snack.
The same theme has come up in other aspects of my life and it's almost a motto for me: Pay attention. Be deliberate. Keep learning. There are so many things in our life we can learn from if we just take the time to look, listen, analyze, and learn the lesson.
I used to think tracking was about accountability. If you have to write everything, you have to admit to yourself that you ate it. You are motivated by your guilt not to eat things you know are bad. That's certainly part of it, but I think this new approach, seeing the tracked foods as "data" to be analyzed and learned from, is even more valuable to me... (LOL - can you tell I'm a scientist by training? )
The previous was a negative reinforcement - motivation by guilt. This new perspective is positive reinforcement - motivation by learning.
I'm far more motivated to learn than I am motivated to avoid guilt.