A major reason for my past successes (I once weighed 214 pounds) was my data entry. When I keep meticulous notes about my daily habits my success rate skyrockets. My latest journal tracks my sleep, sleep quality, water intake, hours of eating, exercise and what I ate. I typically track calories, carbs, protein, and fat but MyFitnessPal also gives my fiber and sugar. Since they are useful I keep those handy for my handwritten book.
Why should you keep track of things like this?
- Accountability: You know that you have to report your intake. Knowing this throughout the day makes you think twice before you grab a handful of those M&Ms.
- It tells you the truth: Friends and family will comfort you if you’re unsuccessful but your journal will tell you the truth about what you did wrong
- Trends: If you’re not feeling well on a given day you may be able to go back and look at you hydration, diet, sleep patterns, etch to see if there is a legitimate reason.
- If you notice you go for the same naughty foods, you can see this trend and correct it
- If you don’t take in enough water (or lack sleep) in a certain day and all of a sudden your calorie and sugar intake goes up…you can figure than one out
- Physical Proof: It’s a point of pride when you’ve finished an entire journal and you’re able to look back and see how much progress you’ve made
- Personal Reflection: You’ll be able to return to this anytime and reflect on what worked and what didn’t
I’m noticing that my lack of sleep has been deteriorating my exercise habits and I have too much fat in my diet. I know this because my journal tells me. I know it too because I tend to eat a lot of nuts when I travel (I love my Kind bars) since it’s the most available protein when driving around. Surprisingly I have had no problem sticking with the calorie allowance I’ve set for myself (again, not counting but it’s good to set up expectations).
- ~6 hours sleep/restless
- Began @ 10:30, stopped @ 18:30
- Paleo People Banana Nut Snack
- 300 cal/22g carb/6g protein/24g fat
- Carrots 1/2 pound
- 96 cal/22g carb/3g protein/ 0g fat
- Salad (w/ cucumber, cherry tomato, 1 egg, 4 oz chicken, Ginger vinaigrette)
- 244 cal/4g carb/24g protein/13g fat
- Kind Bar Caramel Almond Sea Salt
- 200 cal/15g carb/66g protein/16g fat
- Fresh Berries
- 50 cal/11g carb/1g protein/ 0g fat
- Kind Bar Chocolate Peanut Butter
- 200 cal/17g carb/7g protein/13g fat
- Wegman’s 97% Fat Free Deli Ham (8oz)
- 240 cal/0g carb/36g protein/ 8g fat
- Empire Apple
- 80 cal/21g carb/0g protein/0g fat
- GOAL: 1350 cal/135g carb/101g protein/45g fat
- TOTAL: 1410 cal/112g carb/83g protein/74g fat