How To Keep Your Healhty Eating On Track
So as some of you may know, I have started my Summer Shape Up. Not specifically to lose weight, but to flatten the stomach a little, get bikini ready, but most importantly clean up my eating. I am probably like quite a few of you - know what to eat, but find it easy to stray into the biscuit tin, go back for seconds when I am already full, or give in to those sugar urges. I have tried being good by sneaking the odd sweet thing here and there, but before I knew it I had eaten the Easter egg, but rather than doing so in one sitting, I had just grazed throughout the day. What I really needed was something to make me accountable. So after a few friends' recommendations, I have been trying out my fitness pal.
My fitness pal is a free app that works out how many calories I should eat in a day and what % of my diet is made up of protein, carbs and fat. You then log all your food using the barcode scanner, or searching for it on their database, plus any exercise you do. And I have to say it has worked. I am not a calorie counting fan (more to come next week on that) but my fitness pal has many benefits -
It makes me accountable - I am doing it properly, so if I want to eat something naughty I put it down, or plan to. What actually happens is I look at the ingredients and nutritional informational information and am horrified by either how much sugar is in it, or how many additives there are. Therefore my Easter egg grazing has stopped, and my healthy snacking has started.
It's made me look at my portion size - on the first day I plonked my muesli in the bowl as usual and was about to add my fruit and yoghurt, but decided I should weigh it to see if my 30g portion of muesli was actually 30g. I nearly fell on the floor when I realised that I had been eating 4 portions of muesli every morning instead of 1!! The calories can also be altered, so I have worked out how many I should actually be having and that gives me a rough bench mark to work from.
I am sharing out my macronutrients correctly - You may have gathered before, I like to eat for my body shape, so I know what % of protein, carbs and fat should make up my daily intake. However I had no way of measuring it, unless I wrote it all down at the end of the day and added it up, which is far too time consuming for me. With my new pal, I have edited the %'s for me, and it works out how I am doing each time I add something, helping me to reduce my carbs and up my protein intake
It's fun - now not everyone has the same sense of fun as me. You may have gathered that I am a 'little' competitive, so anything that is seen as challenge always gets me hooked. As well as daily macronutrient %'s, is also tells me when I have eaten a food that is high in protein, flashing up with a green sticker, or when I reach my recommended fibre level etc. I love getting green stickers, but it also helps people to understand what foods are good, and what they contain high levels of. I also hate to have a day where I don't log any exercise, or drink enough water.
It reminds you - if you forget to log your meal, or have yet to eat, it will flash up on your phone telling you, reminding you to eat and or log your food
Now don't get me wrong, I am not planning on eating perfectly all the time, but what was a cheat meal every week, had become a cheat day, and then a cheat weekend, so this nifty little app has so far got me back on the straight and narrow. The only thing to bear in mind is it is only as accurate as the numbers on the system, so make sure the data you are adding from the database is the same data as the food you are eating.
Right, must dash, my smoothie maker is calling - soya milk, strawberries, blueberries, flax seeds, chia seeds and some protein powder - that should get me a few green stickers!!!