Calorie Awareness

I’m not getting paid to endorse this site. It is actually just awesome.

Weight loss tip you’ve probably heard before: Track your calorie intake. Or keep a food diary.

When I decided to get serious about my health, I thought it would be a useful exercise to try calorie counting. What I got out of it was a serious wake-up-call about the food I was putting into my body. And it wasn’t the cake and cookies I would have occasionally – it was what I was eating every day.

Here’s an example list of things people commonly eat:

1 tablespoon of oil: 120 calories (after realizing how calorie-dense oil was, I started cooking my food by simmering in broth or water)

1 tablespoon of ranch dressing: 145 calories

1 chicken breast: 260 calories

1 cup of skim milk: 103 calories

1 tablespoon of heavy cream: 51 calories

1 banana: 100 calories

2 slices of bread: 250 calories

1 cup of yogurt: 100 calories

1 teaspoon of butter: 102 calories

20 corn chips: 200 calories

5 oz wine: 123 calories

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese: 228 calories

Total: 1782 calories

Whoa! What just happened?

Can you see just how quickly things add up? Add that to the fact that you don’t actually know what restaurants put in your food. I didn’t have any rice, pasta, or even dessert on that list!

Unfortunately, yes – every little thing really counts and you are probably eating more than you think.

When I was losing weight, I used the MyFitnessPal app on my iPhone to track my calorie intake. The app (you can also use the full website) allows you to input your weight and weight loss goal and it will calculate your daily calorie intake allowance. You can also add calories burned from your workout. Best of all, it’s free! Keep in mind that you burn a certain amount of calories at rest – this is called your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). You can calculate yours here.

The exercise was more to educate myself about how much I was eating than to really track my calories, but I learned a tough lesson about my eating habits – they were actually terrible.

So try counting your calories – religiously – even just for a week, and if you have anything you’d like to share about your experience, leave it in the comments below!

3 thoughts on “Calorie Awareness

  1. Right nutrition plays crucial role. When you are working on your fitness and weight loss goals, your body needs lots of energy in order not to be exhausted. At the same time you should avoid overeating. I was recommended to take dietary supplements developed for the U.S. Army – Military Grade Nutritionals. I must say, the result was awesome! I feel energized even after highly intensive workouts, my pounds go off much easier, and now I am in the best shape of my life. Will definitely go on like this.

    1. It’s really encouraging to hear true success stories like these! Good for you Michele!! It makes so much sense and yet it’s so difficult to do. Isn’t it funny how it works – using more energy gives you…even more energy?!

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