We can fool some of the people some of the time…and we can fool all of the people some of the time, but we can NEVER fool ourselves when it comes to our health! We know when we are on track with our healthy eating routine and we know when we are off track. But although we know the truth, we sometimes ignore this truth or, even worse, have a distorted view of that truth.
I have had the most success in weight loss when I have kept a journal. In fact, I have kept two journals, one to track my food intake and one to record my physical activity. While I can also keep this information on my smartphone, keeping a journal allows for quick access to information in a format that is helpful to me.
What I like about journaling my food intake is that it can tell me how close I am to achieving my food intake objectives or how far off I am from meeting that goal. For example, on one occasion, I ate a lot of food. A bag of popcorn and a few other items that I should have refrained from having. When I forced myself to count the caloric intake for the day, the popcorn, which was low fat/low calorie only added 400 calories to my overall day. Not even enough to gain a pound! So, instead of spiraling into a “death roll” about how much I had eaten and how far I was off on my weight loss goal, I told myself that I can correct the situation by extra exercise and getting back on the program immediately.
Having a journal saved me from eating more food because I felt defeated about going off a little bit on one day. When I found out that I didn’t do too much damage, I was grateful and reenergized to get back on track. Not the following week, not the next day, but with the next meal!
My other journal is a fitness journal. In it, I keep great notes about how much physical activity I exert at the gym. I really think I do this to delay my exercise schedule. If I have an important “task” (like preparing my journal page), I don’t have to work out right away. But on the other hand, and on a positive note, I get excited by seeing how far I have come. I started out walking 10 minutes on the tread mill and ended up walking in my first 5K! You can get a great sense of accomplishment by keeping a journal!
One of the best things about a food journal is keeping track of great meal combinations and to have quick access to ideas for meal planning. This week, I share one of my favorite breakfast meals, an Mexican Omelette which includes avocado and salsa! Try it, you’ll like it!
All the best!