Typically weight loss happens when we decrease food intake, add on an exercise regimen or both (caloric deficit), that’s why keeping track or logging your meals will help keep you in check. Well, there are factors that play a role in weight loss.
Provided below are just a few mistakes when tracking your meals and also give you some tips to get it right.
1. Budgeting Calories by Day, Not By Meal
Know your Daily Caloric Budget. Divide them into the number of meals that’s realistic accordingly to your lifestyle. It could be 3-6 meals per day. Just make sure your budget is fulfilled at the end of your day.
Focusing on one meal at a time have better chances of success In Journal of Consumer Research when weight watchers planned and budgeted their calories by meals, they’ve actually achieved a caloric deficit for the entire day.
This works like this. You plan, organize, and execute according to what your schedule dictates.
2. Overestimating How Many Calories You Really Need
You’re not losing weight even though you’re working out and tracking your meals. WTH?
You crushed it and work extra hard during your HIIT session or your group fitness. So what do you do? You figure you may have burnt “X” amount of calories during that session and increased your calories. You have now overcompensated your calories because of the extra hard work you did.
To get an idea of how many calories you’re burning in a given exercise, go to Calories Burned During Activities, Sports and Exercises Chart Enter your information on your tracking app and make adjustments as necessary.
3. Weekenditis Dilemma
Mondays are always the best day to reboot after the weekend for some. That’s great in some sense that one has decided to get back on track after pausing one’s efforts by Friday. That’s when one realize their results have gone nowhere. Before you know it, whatever progress you’ve done during the week has set you back from where you started because about 20-40% of your total calories has just added up during Friday thru Sunday binge eating and drinking.
4. Not Logging All Foods Ingested
You got hungry between your meals and ate a snack or something not in your meal plan. Believe it or not, extra servings small or large is added calories. A little tablespoon, few ounces here and there add up.
Stay true to your nutritional logging. Be precise because of this is where it’s determined how your caloric parameters are either working or against your weight loss efforts. Getting your portion sizes correctly means a lot when it comes to tracking your food intake.
Get in a habit of preparing your meals in advance. Cook them, weigh each portion and store them in Ziploc and Tupperware as you’ve planned your daily meals. Knowing your portion sizes will also help you when dining out. Be mindful as usual as it can easily jack up your calories.
5. Not Tracking Between-Meal Snacks and Bites
And there goes the office candy basket, cookie jar and Goody-Days.
Well, “I just had a bite.” or just a small piece of a doughnut, or 1 candy. This happens between your planned mealtime and decided not to log it in your nutritional log. Nothing wrong with snacking between meals. Simple, add those in-between snacks to your planned daily intake so there are no surprises on why you gained weight. Be diligent about your caloric intake tracking.
Most importantly, most of those between snacks are processed foods that are high in sugar and fat combined and can easily jackup your calories and derail your weight loss efforts.
6. Not All Calories are the same
It’s a great tool knowing how to track your food intake but also very important to learn the difference between food groups.
Some foods may weigh the same and have the same calories but there’s a difference between processed foods (sugar-loaded junk foods most chips that are loaded with unhealthy trans fats, etc.) Your caloric intake may be at 1500 calories, but you just ate 1 doughnut which can be close to 600 calories. You’ve just eaten 40% of your daily calories!
You’re doing your health more harm than good. Those empty calories are not helping your quest for a new healthy and fit body. Choose low calorie, high nutrient-dense foods that are packed with nutrients, vitamins and minerals, fibers and muscle-building proteins.