Calories: To track or not to track?

It’s Friday night, you finished work and the week. Success! You deserve a treat! Right? You spent the whole week working away, hitting goals. So what do you do? Many times, the answer for me has been a pizza or a kebab or some other form of takeaway.

“I’ve been healthy all week, I deserve this” – My go to line to justify the amount of calories I’m about to subject myself to. Most of the time we know what we are about to eat is unhealthy, but theres been plenty of times I have no idea exactly how much I am consuming until reading the label.

Knowing is half the battle here for me. Most of the time its not shocking that what I just ate was bad for me, but rather how bad it is. If you told me that technically after eating a kebab I shouldn’t be having food for the next day, I would probably go ahead and at least consider the double cheese. A whole pizza, which after a few beers I can speedily consume, can run you upward of 1,500 calories (kcal for those of you who want to be technical). This is discounting the quality of the calories you are consuming, the fact that nothing in the pizza or kebab is of actual substance, but rather filled with fat, sugar and sodium!

As I said earlier, none of this is news to anyone really. Everyone knows:
Kebab = bad
Kebab with the double meat and the lot = more bad
Whole pizza with double cheese, double toppings and thick cut cheese filled crust = more more bad.

I am a big believer in calories in vs calories out. You are certainly allowed to eat these things every now and again, but you either need to go for a 15km run the next morning, or not eat for a day afterwards. The problem is, nobody does this, and therefore the calories just add up to more fat. In 2014/15 I dropped about 14kgs in 5 and a half months by following this. During weekdays I was disciplined and had only good foods, chicken, broccoli, all the boring stuff everyone likes but are too boring to eat day to day. On the weekends I would gorge on ice cream, meat, cake and alcohol. Overall, this was a zero sum game. Deficit of 2000 calories over the week, only to make them up eating crap over the next two days. The answer for me was that I was exercising at least 2 hours everyday, sometimes on the heavier days and as I progressed up to 4.

For me, a vital tool in losing the weight, and one that I plan to take up again was MyFitnessPal. It allowed me to easily record my food intake for the day, through scanning bar codes. When a food wasn’t listed in their database, all I had to do was input it in manually and it would be remembered for ever! Overall, I attribute this tool as one of the key reasons why I was able to lose so much weight. Not only does it force you to be accountable with what you eat, it also forces you to realise how much you are eating! It’s as if every piece of advice given by every nutritionist I ever had worked! (End sarcasm).

So now that I am faced with weight loss yet again, I plan on doing just that. MyFitnessPal app is back on my phones home screen, and I plan on using it again to ensure I stay committed and accountable. One of the key features of the app is you can have people follow your activity levels and your diet/progress. As such, I would love for anyone out there looking to lose some weight to follow me and hopefully we can keep each other motivated!

Follow me here!

Happy Tracking!

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