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SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (256,880)
Fitness Minutes: (41,586)
Posts: 27,299
5/18/13 8:37 P

Apart from the site issues, I don't use my meal plan at all. I create my own, and because most of what I eat isn't in the SP Data Base (I live in NZ and our foods are different (breads, Soy, even a lot of fruit/veggies, etc.) so I enter my own. Initially what I did when I had time was to enter a few items and they would be in my favourites. Other than that, I enter them in and save them into favourites when I use something new. I you were to look at my Nutrition Page you will see that I have tons of entries, BUT because they are now firmly in the favourite section, it doesn't take more than a couple minutes a day to enter them all in. Believe me, in the long run you will thank yourself for hanging in there. It was only by weighing all of my food for increased accuracy, and using the Nutrition Tracker, that I have been able to lose a bucket load of weight, and maintain over 2 years, after having been overweight for about 30 years, on an already very healthy diet AND calories, but unfortunately, not the calories for me.

Take care,

ANARIE Posts: 13,205
5/18/13 7:10 P

If you're getting the same meals over and over, it's likely that you put a lot of restrictions on the plan. Check your settings to see if you accidentally clicked the boxes for "no eggs," "no tofu," "vegetarian," etc, etc. It's a computer, and it's not very smart. If you put more than one limit on what it can choose, it narrows way down and picks from a much tinier pool of foods than a human would. (Part of the reason I suspect you accidentally did check some boxes is that most people complain about the exact opposite-- it gives them something different every day and they never use up a whole package of anything.)

Also, when you say "hummus (yuck)," is that yuck because you've tried hummus a million times and you really don't like it, or is that a "yuck--what's that?" type of yuck? One of the secrets to healthier eating is trying lots of new things. Often, once you stop eating super-salty and sugary things, you start to find that you like things you wouldn't have tried or didn't like before. Eight years ago, I wouldn't have tried hummus because it was "weird," but now I really like it. I used to think I hated vegetables, but I "had to" eat them to lose weight, and I got to the point where I care more about veggies than about meat.

What Unident said is true. This isn't going to be easy. You have to change, and change is hard. You have to learn, and learning is hard. But that's kind of the way life works-- nothing worth having is easy.

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
5/18/13 4:34 P

Are you perhaps exaggerating things a little out of frustration? Three hours to switch foods in your tracker? It would take less time to switch a few things out than it would to manually track your own foods, so you're still (time-wise) better off to do that than to turn the plans off.

If something is going to take you an extra 10 minutes a day I am going to ask you this - is your weight loss goal worth 10 minutes a day? If not, maybe it's just not that important to you.

The thing is, it's going to be hard to do this. You're going to change habits. If one of those habits is how much time you spend tracking food, initially this is going to help you out heaps and help you get to a place where eventually you don't need to spend time doing that any more. But food tracking is the absolute single number one weight loss tip world wide that actually WORKS. So I highly recommend that you persevere - because this is actually what will help you succeed.

And yes, it's common to not lose anything at all for up to 6-8 weeks after starting a healthy lifestyle. Stick with it! You're making good long-term results, undoubtedly, even if your scale isn't showing anything yet.

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 65,997
5/18/13 1:52 P


I've asked our staff to check into the walnut entry to see if there's a mistake that needs to be corrected.

As far as weight loss goes, 5 days isn't enough time to know whether or not it's working. It can take up to a month for weight loss to begin, but as long as you're tracking your food and exercising regularly, eventually it will happen.

There's no reason you have to use the meal plans, so if you'd rather track your own food, you should do whatever works best for you. It can take some time in the beginning to enter the foods you eat or find favorites in the database, but if you can hang in there, it does get easier and faster :)

Coach Jen

DMC101 SparkPoints: (528)
Fitness Minutes: (178)
Posts: 1
5/18/13 9:26 A

I started Sparkpeople just 5 days ago and am not losing. The meal plans (sparks choice) are about the same everyday, which always gives me some kind of nuts or hummus(yuck) to eat (I am not a vegetarian). I happen to like nuts so this was not a problem for me until..... Their suggested amount of walnuts is 14 halves for a nutrional value of 46 calories, 1 carb, 5 fats, and 1 protein. Just today it dawned on me that I should measure these 14 halves. It measures 1/3 cup. Since the amount on my bag for halves is 1/4 cup for 200 calores, 4 carbs, 20 fats, and 5 protein, that makes 1/3 cup (14 halves) at 266.66 calories, 5.33 carbs, 26.6 fats and 6.66 protein. Is it any wonder I'm not losing since I've been doing this for 4 days! I know I can switch this out for something else and I do, but then I spend quite a long time doing this. I don't really want to spend 3 hours doing this every time I want to eat something different. There are also nutritional values imput by other people which are wrong, so I have been imputting my own so that I can use these, but it's so frustrating as a Newbie and makes me what to give this up. Is there an easier way to doing this? Plase help.

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