Friday, May 21, 2010

Day 1 – Count the Calories Because Calories Count

I’ve accumulated plenty of diet books throughout the years and have a drawer full. Calories do count. It doesn’t matter which diet you do, the calorie content is what makes the difference between losing or gaining weight. Weight Watchers also takes into consideration the fiber content of food and uses a points system, but it’s still linked to calories. The Atkins and South Beach diet are a little different, but they promote filling foods which in theory should stop you from over eating as long as you don’t stray from their list of permitted foods.

There are many charts out there to work out what your daily intake should be. I found these tended to be a little high. I know that if I ate 1,700 calories a day for example, with little or no exercise, I would continue to gain weight.

One site suggested adding a zero to your goal weight. If your goal is 130 pounds, then your daily intake should be 1,300 calories per day.

The bottom line is, know your own body. Weight Watchers also allows an additional number of points throughout the week. That never worked for me. Unless I stayed within the minimum number of points and exercised, the scales did not budge. A Weight Watchers point is approximately 50 calories.

I’m starting out with 1,200 calories per day and will adjust this if necessary.

I clipped on my pedometer this morning, scrambled a couple of eggs for breakfast and scooped in some salsa for added flavor. The mid-morning snack was an apple that I’ve been carrying around with me all week. It’s not that I don’t like apples, it’s just an effort to peel them. Although the skin is supposed to have added nutrients, I have concerns about pesticides and don’t eat it. Lunch was 3 oz grilled chicken that I weighed on a kitchen scale. I’m trying to have at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day and munched on sugar snap peas which are crunchy and a good substitute for potato chips. In the afternoon I scooped 1/2 cup of vanilla yogurt into a bowl along with a cup of pineapple. For dinner I ate salad with Tuna. The evening snack was a granola bar. The total calorie count was under 1,200. I didn't do any strenuous exercise today because Wednesday I went swimming and yesterday I walked for an hour which together with my already 10,000 steps added up to a total of over 19,000. Today my muscles are a little sore. Instead, I mowed the grass and did some yard work, cleaned and vacuumed inside and my pedometer is now at 9,700. As Bridget Jones would say "v.g."

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Any information in this blog should not take the place of medical advice from a professional. I am simply sharing my journey.