Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Calorie Counting

Do You Try To Control Every Calorie?

I struggle with this because I believe tracking my food helps me greatly with accountability to myself and makes it more 'real' what I am putting in my mouth.

But a famous health coach says that one of the things she used to be so guilty of was trying to control every calorie she ate. She'd give herself certain food rules she had to follow (such as no eating after 7 PM, no eating fat, no eating out, no eating certain types of foods, no eating after she ate 1200 calories for the day, etc.). She says what she didn't realize is that when you focus on what you CAN'T do...it makes you want to do it MORE (by the way...this is a human psychology thing, NOT a willpower or self-control thing).

She believes that success lies in focusing on what you CAN do, not what you cannot. It makes you feel empowered and liberated (as opposed to deprived...as we are accustom to feeling when it comes to our weight loss plans). The truth is, eating out or eating after 7 PM isn't our problem...it's what we do when we feel deprived and restricted on our plans.

Me personally, I find this somewhat true.  I know so many people who say that It is during the times we feel deprived and restricted that we binge, decide that all this work isn't worth it, and throw in the towel. The key to weight loss success is avoiding all that, therefore the real key to long-term results on your weight loss plan is to avoid feeling deprived and restricted. What’s ironic is that most programs out there make you feel deprived and restricted, so much so that we’ve literally come to expect it. We’ve trained ourselves to believe that losing weight has to be hard. We feel like if we aren’t busting our butts and stressing ourselves out…we aren’t going to ever see results. And that is EXACTLY why hardly anyone is able to lose weight and keep it off in the long-term. According to her that is.

I know for me (Debra here) ... that if I say I need 7 servings of fruits/veggies, that makes less room for other junk.  If I have to have 64 ounces of water, there is less room for soda. You get the idea.  Focus on what you SHOULD have and CAN have, and not so much of what is a no-no food.  I don't believe in assigning emotions to food or qualities like 'allowed' or 'not allowed'.  I don't eliminate entire food groups just for the sake of doing so.  I'm not Vegan or Paleo or Gluten Free or Pescatarian or anything else... I am just me ... someone who pays attention to how food makes her feel and makes choices based on that information.   And as for me, I am still going to track.  I don't leave my bank account up to chance, I track what I spend so I can see the big picture and know what is going on.  Same is true for my diet.  Even though I hate that word diet.  Really, it's just what we eat.  Truth of the matter is - everybody is on a dang diet because everybody eats.  If not, you're dead.

~SO HERE IS A JOURNAL PROMPT~  {Yes, I highly encourage journaling, as well as tracking}
In the past, have you tried to control every calorie you consumed? Do you give yourself certain food rules you had to follow? What ended up happening when you did? Do you feel like losing weight HAS to be hard? Where do you think this idea came from? How do you think it is impacting your ability to lose weight? How could you start letting go of this belief? Why do YOU think no one is able to keep weight off in the long-term? Have you noticed that when you focus on what you CAN'T do...you just want to do it even more? How has focusing on what you can't do impacted your goal of losing weight? What do you usually do when you feel deprived and restricted? Do you binge? Throw in the towel? Feel like all this work isn't worth it? What would it look like if you stopped focusing on restricting yourself and started focusing on all the healthy choices you have? How would would focusing on what you CAN do make you feel? How do you think it would relieve those feelings of deprivation? What are some things you could infuse into your plan today that would make you feel more empowered and free (as opposed to deprived and restricted)?


As always, make champion choices,
Debra

Adapted from source: Lauren Wardell