Beginning of July, i decided to do something I can truly say I have never done before: Calorie Counting!
Most of my grown life (grown as in ‘past-teenage & childhood body growth’), I have been size 8 and almost always unhappy about lingering 5-10 pounds extra weight. Coming from a country that had ample source of fruits and vegetables, and a family of cooks from Mediterranean cuisine, I have always loved vegetables dishes and am known for having healthy eating habits. But, I also have impulse eating and over indulgent type snacking habits. Especially if it involves bread & cheese, I can eat it even if I am too hungry!!!
So food eventually became a source of instant happiness but also constant source of unhappiness and a reason for lower self-esteem. We can probably argue ‘weight’ should never be the reason for someone to feel less-than but for the sake of this article, lets continue taking that as a given or fact.
Now I dieted before which mostly ended up with increased unhappiness of not seeing results early enough/giving up too early/struggling to keep up with the goal etc…Basically failed enough times! This time was a revelation of sorts with types of discipline and tactics that really works with me. At the end, I cannot recommend it enough to anyone who tried other methods and fails and still wants to lose weight. Calorie counting really brought me a piece of mind while I went through struggles of “not being able to eat whatever the hell you want!” and really thought me somethings about my eating psychology. Here is how it worked:
First -> Download an app that lets you take notes. I personally used One Note so chose to use that even though it kept giving me some type of warning message when I tried to sync with my laptop version.
Second -> Measure your ‘idle’ metabolism calorie burn rate. Just Google “How many calories to maintain” . Bunch of websites offer this calculation. Make sure to note the calorie total with ‘zero to low’ exercise level. That way you know the real minimum of how much you can consume if you literally did no exercise.
Third -> Jot down everything you eat and their calorie count! Also include any major exercise as a minus (other than normal walking/ stair climbing etc).
Count literally e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. NO exceptions. Even the creamer you may choose to add to your coffee…
If you are like me and like to cook from scratch, you will have to sum up the calorie counts of each ingredient and then calculate how many portions you got out of that meal. WARNING. This item requires personal accountability and extreme truthfulness . Just by itself, this is transforming! (No kidding!)
4 pounds in 4 weeks was my goal. I will share an update on the results of the calorie counting experiment on my next post!