Workin’ on My Fitness: Food

The dreaded diet and exercise—two words that can strike terror in the heart of any bride- or groom-to-be! But if you have specific goals in mind and stick with a plan that works for YOU, it might not be as bad as you think. It might even be rewarding and make you feel healthier than you’ve felt in a long time. Remember that there is no magic bullet—fad diets don’t work nor does starving yourself. (I’ve had several friends who refused to eat any real food in the months/weeks leading up to their wedding. Please don’t do that.) It’s all about making small changes to your lifestyle and habits and eventually finding the ones that work best for you. Here are some food-related changes I’ve made.

Sauteed

Image via FaithfulProvisions.com

Cooking more meals at home.

Healthy eating seems a bit difficult at first, but it becomes much easier once you know what foods to choose. Even better, prepare food yourself at home. With busy schedules, it’s often difficult to make meals every day, but we try to cook as often as possible because we actually really enjoy it. Plus it’s WAY cheaper than eating out every night. And with sites like Pinterest, finding and storing recipes for future reference is a breeze. I also use sites like Food Network and All Recipes for inspiration.

1335714

Image via Seekyt.com

Tracking what I eat on MyFitnessPal.com.

Shedding pounds is directly correlated to your caloric intake. It’s very simple—the less you eat, the more weight you lose. My Fitness Pal allows you to track everything you eat—it basically allows you to set certain goals, then recommends a daily caloric intake for you. Now, I am NOT one who can do diets of deprivation (No carbs? No thank you. No sugar, ever? See you later.), but the more difficult challenge is a diet of moderation. So for example, if my calorie goal is 1,400 a day, sure I can eat a burger, but that’s already 40%–50% of my daily calories used up. So do I really want to spend all my calories on that one thing, or should I reach for something healthier? Sometimes, a burger really is worth it, so that just means I need to plan the rest of my day accordingly so I don’t go over my calorie goal. But after a while, you’ll start realizing that at most other times it’s worth just eating something healthy so you can eat more.

The site is fantastic because it really makes you think twice about what you put into your mouth. And it’ll let you know if you go over your calories, a huge motivating factor to help you stay in the “green.” Any exercise you do, you can log it on the site and it will tell you how many calories you’ve burned and can subsequently “eat back” each day. With little exercise, I lost about seven pounds in two months, just by watching how many calories I consumed. MFP is definitely tedious (bordering on obsessive) but if you have the willpower, it’s well worth the few minutes a day it takes to log your meals.

2012-1202

MyFitnessPal.com / My Personal Food Diary (Extra calories earned by doing one hour of Zumba)

Using Fitbit, the world’s most awesome activity tracker.

This isn’t exactly food related, but it ties in with calorie counting so thought it would be appropriate to mention here. Fitbit is basically this little device you wear every day that digitally tracks your steps taken, floors climbed, miles traveled, and, most importantly, calories burned a day. I am obsessed with mine and wear it every day (for women, you can wear it discreetly on your bra). It also comes with a wristband that you wear at night to track how efficient your sleep is. But the best part—you can sync your Fitbit with My Fitness Pal and it automatically shows how many calories you’ve earned by being active.

Side note: If you use a Fitbit synced with My Fitness Pal, use Fitbit solely for activity/exercise tracking and MFP solely for food tracking or you’ll end up double counting.

0610_fi

Fitbit / Image via Forbes.com

2012-1203

Fitbit.com / My Personal Activity Tracker for 12/5/12 (My activity spike between 8:30 PM and 9:30 PM was due to Zumba.)

How do you maintain healthy eating habits?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Mongoose

Location:
New Haven, CT
Wedding Date:
May 2013
Add a comment

comments

  1. Member
    Beltacular 51 posts, Worker bee @ 8:13 am

    I joined WW right before I thought I would get engaged. You’re right, its about making healthier choices, not crash dieting, to be at your best!

  2. Member
    farinw 38 posts, Newbee @ 8:27 am

    What’s the error ratio on the fibit? If you really climbed 44 floors in one day, good job! But I’m a skeptic on if there’s enough hours in a day to do that.

    I love MFP, the only times that dieting ever worked for me is when I consciously entered my info into that site. Does the lame counting for you!

  3. Member
    Reeniero 939 posts, Busy bee @ 8:32 am

    I love My Fitness Pal! Anyone who is on there can add me as a friend: Reeniero
    I’m thinking of getting the FitBit, wondering if it’s really worth the price. (We are saving every $$ for the wedding!)

  4. Member
    mswallaby 2069 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:57 am

    We’re cooking more meals at home to stay healthy. We have vegetarian weeks where I only cook veggie meals, and we both tend to lose a pound or two during those weeks – but we can never cut out steaks and hot dogs hahaah. I’m going to try MFP, I need to cut more of the snacks out of my diet!

  5. Member
    Miss Care Bear 193 posts, Blushing bee @ 9:27 am

    I love MFP too! Been using it on and off for about 2 years. I prefer the free iphone app (I think Android has it also) to the online version bc its right at your fingertips, and allows you to scan barcodes for most things, so it’s even quicker to enter :)

  6. Member
    pegsie 19 posts, Newbee @ 11:13 am

    I love my fitbit!! It’s the one thing that’s actually started making me feel guilty about not getting my butt off the couch.

    I love how well it works with MFP…now if only I can actually start to exercise & actually lose this weight!

  7. Member
    msmongoose 264 posts, Helper bee @ 11:58 am

    @farinw: It is totally accurate, I really did climb up and down the stairs that day 44 times (haha I think I went shopping at Macy’s in Manhattan that day, hence the constant up and down). I highly recommend the fitbit if you are considering purchasing it.

    @Reeniero: It’s absolutely worth it, you won’t regret it!

    @Miss Care Bear: Ooh I didn’t even realize there was a barcode scanner on the app! I have the Android app so I’ll have to look in to it.

    @pegsie: Agreed–I love how motivating it is. Like if I’m at 9,000 steps for the day, I’ll walk around even more on purpose just so I can hit my daily goal of 10,000 steps.

    @Mrs. Wallaby: That’s actually a great idea about cooking veggie only meals a few times a week–I’ll have to steal that idea ;)

  8. Member
    farinw 38 posts, Newbee @ 1:13 pm

    Oh! I thought it meant 44 flights of stairs

  9. Member
    sword 1029 posts, Bumble bee @ 3:33 pm

    Mr. Sword and I used to use Fitbits!

  10. Member
    ChicagoDreamer 509 posts, Busy bee @ 10:20 pm

    I love My Fitness. I use the app religiously throughout the day.

  11. Member
    mandika 77 posts, Worker bee @ 10:29 pm

    thank you so much or introducing this – i’ve totally started using it and love it! i’ve lost about the same amount of weight as you in 2 months! amazing and totally eye-opening to what i’ve been eating (and i thought i was relatively healthy). definitely i have moderated my snacking because of MFP! hope i can keep up the good habits for a long time!

add a comment

Find Amazing Vendors