measuring food

M is for Measuring Mistakes

M is for Measuring Mistakes

Whenever I start to see some weight gain, the first place I look for the culprit is in my measurements. Food serving sizes and portion control are a huge piece of the weight loss equation, maybe even one of the most important parts.

It’s so easy to get off-track when we don’t measure. I used to measure pretty diligently when I was trying to lose weight. For two years I ate a turkey sandwich for lunch with one serving of Wheat Thins. (Boring, I know.) I would count out a serving of crackers and put them in my lunch bag.

Now that I’m in maintenance mode I measure less often. I tend to “eye-ball it” instead. Most of the time this is effective. I’m not restricting food, but eating in moderation within a certain calorie range.

The bad news: it’s so easy to overeat when not measuring.

Every so often I get back on track by measuring out my food. I usually know when I’m getting out of control again with my measuring. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: a portion size is never as much food as you WANT to eat!

Here are a few examples of serving sizes. Let’s go with the Wheat Thin example. A serving size is 16 crackers for 140 calories. This is what a serving size looks like:

But what if you ate “just a few more crackers” than the serving size? It often seems like “just a few more” isn’t a big deal.

22 crackers–“just a few more” equals nearly 200 calories (193 to be exact). While it doesn’t seem like much, it all adds up pretty quickly when we’re not calculating the calories accurately. Pretty soon those “just a few more” bites, nibbles and snacks can be hundreds of calories in a day.

It’s easy to get lazy with “eye-balling” portions. Just a handful here…a few bites there…and soon it adds up fast. Especially if you aren’t recording those bites and nibbles. I recently decided to banish the mindless candy eating at work and so far it’s been going well. One thing I found by avoiding that Candy Room: I have hundreds of calories left over for the day. Wow! What a difference measurement, accountability and restraint makes! It fueled me to keep going and break the candy habit!

QUESTION: Do you measure food? Do you track the “nibbles and bites”?


A-Abstinence * B-Balance * C-Calories * D-Vitamin D * E-Emergency * F-Fast Food and Fine Dining * G-Gym Bag * H-Happy Weight * I-Intervals * J-Jumping * K-Keeping Sane * L-Losing Weight *

…And…I’m Still Limping

I realized on Monday how much of an ass-kicking I got on Saturday’s workout. I did:

30 squats (warm up)

30 jump squats (warm up)

30 medicine ball squats (warm up)

60 pull-ups with the band (60!!!!)

60 tire jumps/step-ups

60 squat/medicine ball tosses

60!!! 60 pull-ups? I’m amazed by that number. Truly amazed that I was able to do it–and even more amazed that my upper body is not sore at all.

All those squats sound devastating, don’t they? I can’t believe I did that. No wonder I’m still crippled! Monday morning I slapped on some of those heat patches on my thighs and then headed to work. I walked across the Hawthorne Bridge to work (about 1.9 miles) and I was stiff, sore and slow. The walk helped loosen me up a bit but sitting at work all day didn’t help much. I was hobbling and limping everywhere.

Monday was a Rest Day. Thankfully I had steak for dinner. I was really craving steak and I knew the protein would help me heal (should have eaten it Sunday honestly).

I made a really delicious marinade: Worcestershire,  Soy Sauce, Teriyaki sauce, salt, pepper, fresh thyme, freshly sliced garlic and a little onion powder. I baked Michael and I sweet potatoes brushed with Grape Seed Oil.


I weighed the sweet potatoes so I could accurately calculate the calories. There was a large potato and a smaller one.

The bigger one (Michael’s) was 250 grams, so a little bigger serving. Mine was 200 grams and that is 180 calories. That’s one of the things I love about sweet potatoes: less calories than a white potato.

I topped the sauteed asparagus with salt, pepper and fresh Parmesan. The steak was a very thin New York Strip. The marinade was fantastic and we loved the steaks.

I also had a glass of red wine. Michael’s stepbrother Doug had given us this bottle of wine for Christmas:

2007 Steltzner Claret. It was a lovely, bold red wine! But I restrained myself and only had one glass since it was a Rest Day (and I wanted to save room for cookies!).

Anyone else watching the new Top Chef Masters? I don’t like it as much as the regular show but it’s a good alternative to nothing until the new season starts. We watched the new episode and then I got ready for bed. Poor Michael had to endure the aromas of Icy Hot.

I slapped on an Icy Hot patch on both my thighs and crawled into bed. Don’t judge the super sexxxxy white socks. 🙂

It worked wonders! I woke up Tuesday to much less pain and soreness. I’m going to try and walk it out some more today, maybe the bike will help.

My plan for the next few weeks: incorporate the moves Christian taught me at a smaller scale. I’ll start with 20 squats, then the following week 30, and so on. My hope is that by the next time I head over to his gym I’ll be a little more prepared (and perhaps less sore afterward).


QUESTION: Do you measure your food?