I’ve been back to counting calories now for just about a month now and it’s been going pretty good.
(and a little bit of the mental frustration I remember)
When I decided to go back to counting calories I did so understanding that this was a tool that worked for me throughout my weight loss and what worked before should very well work again. Calculating how many calories I would need to eat to maintain the current weight of 170 from varies different websites gave me a range of numbers (as can be expected)…
- Nutrition BizCal = 2351 calories
- Free Online Calculator = 2341 calories
- Calorie Control = 2239 calories
- About.Com = 2240 calories
- Calorie King = 1950 calories
- Calorie Needs Calculator = 2338 calories
I took the average of all the estimates (2200 ish) and because I’m not one to want to lose all the weight “right away” but lose it the right way I subtracted 500 calories per day and came up with 1700 calories / day if there were no exercising. Sounds pretty reasonable…
But I do exercise.
That’s where the sticky part of this journey comes in. There are a lot of arguments to the ever popular “eat your work out calories” theory. The whole idea of “net calories” can seem confusing (eat 1/3 back, eat half back, eat 3/4 back, eat all of them back except on the full moon of the 3rd passing of the phoenix on a rising saturn return…). I don’t necessarily eat them all back all the time especially if I’ve run a particularly large amount of miles and just can’t eat 3200+ calories in day.
But it’s tempting to try.
And that may be part of the problem for me right now.
I’m not eating off the deep end but there has been a shift in my thinking as of late. Logging my food into my fitness pal and seeing the “remaining” number of calories has been giving me that feeling of “oh my god Tara you have to keep eating” and since I can’t eat a gazillion pounds of broccoli or snap peas or whatever other colorful veggie is currently stocking my fridge I’ve been using the excuse to eat a little more out of my “comfort zone” with the added excuse of “Well I AM logging it and I AM still under my goal“.
It happens to a lot of people when counting calories.
This feeling of freedom. This feeling of “well I do have (insert caloric number here) left over so what the fuck give me the bag of Doritos and while you’re at it throw some chunky monkey ice cream on top of it!” The same goes for those days that I don’t work out and that feeling of “oh great I only have (insert caloric number here) because I didn’t work out so here let me munch on this piece of celery and my 1/2 of spoonful of almond butter“
It’s a precarious balance.
And so far that balance has seen a some success. I weighed in last week at 166. Down 4 pounds since returning to logging / counting calories. It’s been interesting how my mind reacts to the calories left over and that little voice that says “You know 1/3 of that dark chocolate bar in the freezer would bump you up to the necessary calories” even though I was way done eating for the day as well as the “Oh way to go on the going over your calories by 700! I hope that beer or ice cream or whatever you stuffed in your face was well worth it, you just ruined everything!” voice…
In other news:
Meegan are unplugging for the next couple of days as we head up to Stonehame cottages this week. And by unplugging I mean we are U.N.P.L.U.G.G.I.N.G!! No laptops. No counting calories. No heart rate monitors. No phones (except to take pictures and make sure we don’t get lost while walking the trails). No Twitter. No Facebook. Maybe the occasional Instagram. Cribbage board in hand and a good pair of sneakers we’re going to be spending 3 days remembering why we continue to do what we do and make the choices we make. We’ve got some delicious steaks with our names all over them and hoping for a terrific rain storm so that we can put the wood stove to good use. But not too much rain of course because we have some swimming at Melmerby beach on our “to do” list!
Life can’t always be about logging miles run, calories burned or what kind of food I should and shouldn’t eat today. Some days it has to be about skunking the one you love (that cribbage speak), while holding hands in front of the fire and eating your favorite candies from your favorite candy store!
(I have Mike & Ike’s, Swedish fish and JuJuBees)