I was having a problem staying motivated to enter everything. I live in Japan, so a lot of what I can find in the store isn't in the tracker- and often there are things that I may only try once, and never have to enter again. I can read enough of the language to read the nutrition labels, but entering everything every time was a pain- especially since the one thing that helps me most is the calorie count. So I created a food called simply "100 calorie food" in my tracker, and use a portion of that to count calories on those one time foods I was tempted to just drop off the tracker. For example, if I have something that is 237 calories, I have 2.37 servings of "100 calorie food." This makes it easy enough to enter that I'm not tempted to not log it. It may also make it easier if you have to use other sources than Sparkpeople to look up your food. If calories are your main concern, you could just look up the food on a reputable web site, then easily log the calories.
There are TONS of great websites online to find out the calorie count of foods if they aren't labeled. First, many restaurants and brands have nutrition information on their actual websites, so check there first. You can also try the following sites:
Fitness Minutes: (68,349)
7/20/12 1:35 A
When you have to seek info other than what's on the box, try and find one or two good sources and stick with them. You can also find what other folks have put in, but be careful, sometimes they only put in the info they want or they make mistakes or the food may have been reformulated since they did it.
If you are just talking about the math part of portions of food you eat, you'll just have to learn what they tried to teach you in the 6th grade about measurements and such. The more you do it, the easier it is to figure it out. Eventually you will even be better at eyeballing some foods, but again, be careful. It will surprise you how far off one's estimate is when just an ounce of that food can mean 100+ cal. So measure as much as possible.
Fitness Minutes: (79,333)
7/20/12 12:33 A
In the beginning it is difficult, when you are not used to tracking. But, just like every habit, it eventually becomes automatic. The only trick is to keep doing it. Every day it will get easier.
Fitness Minutes: (410)
7/19/12 11:36 P
I am having a hard time trying to find the actual calories that I am having