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Calories count, but are you counting them?

By December 5, 2010 3 Comments

Hello everyone, this is Kris one of Dustin’s contributors.

I had an eye opening expereince a few weeks back and I thought there might a lesson here for everyone.

I gained not one pound during my 2 months off of exercise after my knee injury.  I was pretty good about keeping my food journal so I thought that as soon as I picked back up on the exercise  the numbers on the scale would start to go down.   I was wrong.  Granted my workouts were modified but I had to be burning more calories then sitting on the couch with an ice pack. I estimated my calorie intake to be 1300-1500 a day.

I plugged my information into an online Harris-Benedict calculator.  This calculation is an estimate of what your Basal Metabolic Rate is-or how many calories you burn existing ( a google search will give you several if you want to try it). I found out that to maintain my weight while exercising 5 days a week, I would need to eat almost 2500 calories a day!  There was NO WAY I was eating that much! 

I quickly decided that something had to be wrong with me and I needed to get labs done and find a nutritionist or a dietician.  Before I made any appointments I decided to track my food in an online food journal that calculated calories.  I was brutally honest; weighing and measuring-it was crazy!  I was shocked to find out that with my *honest* daily diet  I was consuming, on average,  a whopping 2300 calories a day. 

Obviously no need to go to my doctor, but I had to get real.  It’s been said before that you can not out train a bad diet, and since I am still under doctors orders to keep my intensity low-I can’t even try.  

I honestly eat pretty well, the core of my diet is right on target (dense whole grains, lots of fruit and veggies, chicken, fish).  What has been sneaking in on me is about 1000 calories day of mis-measured portions and extras.  For example, 1/4 of a cup of sunflower seeds on my salad costs me 170 calories, that mini cupcake that takes 2 bites to eat is 93, what I thought was a 3 oz chicken breast was actually 4.5 oz, and please don’t ask me about the Egg Nog Latte that I can’t pass up at the B&N! 

I have modifed my diet ever so slightly, taken out the extra creamer in my coffe, I order a ‘skinny’ latte  at the book store cafe, I removed the  additional 3 tablespoons of salad dressing-when I thought I was using 2, switched purses so that I can stash apples and  nuts for the kids and I when we are out and about.  Just like the bad stuff adds up, the good stuff adds up too.  It really hasn’t been that hard, what I have found is that I need to stay in the moment and conscious of my choices-always.  I am happy to report that as of this morning I have lost 6 pounds in 3 weeks (not earth shattering, but hey-down is down!).

Have a great week everyone!