Tuesday, June 15, 2010

1, 2, 3... Count em Up!

OK here we go. The first step in counting your calories is deciding how you are going to record what you are eating. You can do it the old fashion way and use pen and paper or if you have a cell phone that allows it, you can record your calories on it. The important part of recording what you eat is making sure that you are consistent with recording it. The best way to do this is to have your food diary with you when you plan on eating. If this isn’t practical or you just forget, make sure you record what you ate as soon as possible. Try not to wait until the next day to record what you have eaten. Do it sooner than later. Make this a habit!

After you have recorded your day’s worth of eating, the next step is to calculate the number of calories you have consumed for that day. If you are using the pen and paper method to record your diary you will have to look the calories up yourself. This can be done by either purchasing a book at the local bookstore that list several different foods with their calorie content or you if you have internet access you can search for the calorie content online. A nice website to use as an online resource is www.fatsecret.com We use this as our recording method. The website has several different features you can utilize, but starting out you can just use the database they have to track your calories. Once you have written down the calories for each food item you have eaten for a particular day, add them up and see what your daily calorie intake is. You will keep track of your daily calorie intake by using a food diary for at least 2 weeks. During this 2 week time frame you will continue to eat as you normally would. No changes should be made with your eating habits at this point! Just track the calories.

Another cool way of tracking your calories is either using your cell phone or an Apple iTouch. Nancy and I both have android based cell phones that we can use to look up and track what we are eating. If your phone has access to different applications I would encourage you to see if you can purchase a food diary application. If you don’t have a cell phone that supports this type of program another alternative is carrying an iTouch around with you to track your calorie intake. The application I would recommend for the iTouch is Tap & Track-Calorie, Weight & Exercise Tracker. What is nice with this application is you are able to use it without having internet access, that and having an iTouch is pretty cool. Guys this is a great way of talking the wife into letting you get a cool electronic gadget.

The take home message for this blog is, track your calories daily for 2 weeks using a food diary while eating like you normally would.

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