(This is part of the “Ask me anything” Series.)
Amber asked: “How about more of your process of maintaining your weight loss. Do you track everything you eat? If not, how do you make sure you eat the right amount of carbs/fats etc. to maintain your weight loss?”
I wrote about the My Fitness Pal app this morning, but there are a lot more things that go into maintaining weight loss. First, let me describe how I count my calories.
Every day is a new page. A new start. This is what I see in the morning:
1570 calories is my base. That number has decreased in the last year as I lost weight. I entered my age, sex, weight and how much I was trying to lose, plus how many pounds a week I wanted to lose. Currently it’s programed at 145 pounds, and that I want to weigh 140. My goal is to lose .5 pounds a week.
I enter everything I eat into the app. I’ve never not found something in their system–except at restaurants. They have chain restaurant calorie information but not everything. A lot of times I have to guess or estimate. Estimating is much better than doing NOTHING. Even if I am off by a few calories, I’m still keeping myself accountable.
I also log in my exercise.
I don’t let the app calculate my calories for the exercise because it’s always off. Instead I change the calories burned to what my heart rate monitor says I burned. I know that 45 minutes or so of swimming burns 350 calories instead of the 500 or so the app says.
If you look at the top of the above picture you can see the stats for the day:
So I basically eat the calories I burn. I burned 350 extra calories that say so I ate about 300 or so more calories. When I was losing weight and hand wrote everything I ate for 2 years…I didn’t really eat the calories I burned. Even if I burned 600 calories at the pool, I still only ate 1900 calories for that day. Probably not the best way to do it, but I didn’t know any better at the time.
Now that I workout for fitness and not necessarily to lose weight, I look at food as fuel and I need fuel to workout.
It’s All About Balance
The crucial component to maintaining my weight loss is twofold:
1. Exercise. Moving my body 5 days a week.
2. A lifestyle change. My lifestyle has changed a great deal. I’m a different person than I was before and I like my life. I want to continue that. Just because I lost the weight doesn’t mean I can sit on my butt and not do anything to keep it off!
Calorie counting is second nature to me. I don’t even think about it. It’s easy, it makes sense and it works. It’s how I lost the weight and it’s how I’ve maintained it for 2 years now. I will probably always count my calories. I am a-okay with that.
I pay attention to serving sizes and measure my portions. I also follow the 90/10 Rule. I drink wine. I drink beer. I eat cake. I eat pizza. But I eat it in moderation and always enter it into my calorie log!
I have goals for myself. Not necessarily weight loss goals because I’m pretty happy with where I am. I do however have a lot of personal fitness goals I want to achieve.
P.S. Don’t forget to enter my giveaway! It closes tonight!