I got a great e-mail from an old friend (as in I've known her since she was in 6th grade not that she's old, thank you very much) that really made me think. I love e-mails like that. She sent me some great tips and ideas about foods to try and exercises (it's all about strength training, baby). But she also expressed concern about how it's not all about tracking calories.
And I know I talk a lot about how many calories I have or have not eaten. But I also have ranges I track in other categories too.
I make sure that out of the calories I eat I get a certain amount of protein, fat (yes you're supposed to eat this too), and carbohydrates to keep a balanced diet of all the food groups. So while I'm tracking my calories I'm also making sure that I'm not overdoing it in another category and if I'm lacking in one I make sure I eat something that fills it. It also helps with each mini-meal I eat that I make sure I hit every food group. Then I know I'm hitting all the areas I also track and it helps keep me full until the next time I can eat.
I know I haven't drastically changed my diet. I've just come up with ways to make it healthier -- like inventing my own recipes for favorite foods so I know exactly how much of what I'm putting in my body. And while I occasionally make a boxed food item for my boys and eat it (I'm so not cooking two separate meals) I make sure to make it healthier where I can and then watch how much I eat of it.
The whole point of this lifestyle is that it's for life and to do that it has to be doable for me. If I'm forcing myself to eat foods I don't necessarily like because they're healthy then I'll feel like I'm "dieting" and then I'm going to sabotage myself. It's how I work. So I might eat things that aren't necessarily classified as healthy but as long as I'm not going over my range goals in the categories I track then I think I'm ahead of the game.
So far it's working for me.
--Previous Day Tracking --
Exercise - 47 minutes on the Wii Fit -- burning 349 calories. Drank 12 glasses of water. Day 13 of no soda.
Breakfast - toast w/ peanut butter and sliced banana
Lunch - tuna salad, 2 dill pickle spears, and Ritz Reduced Fat Crackers
Mid-Afternoon Snack - 1/2 turkey sandwich, pretzels, and 1/2 a Skinny Cow ice cream cone
Dinner - Teriyaki Chicken, brown rice, and broccoli
Evening Snack - 1 cup of Frosted Mini Wheats
total calories = 1432
total days = 19
total pounds lost = 9.7