TRACKING YOUR DAILY CALORIE INTAKE PART 2: TIPS & TOOLS TO HELP YOU TRACK CORRECTLY
If you really want to be successful with your fitness goals and transform your body then you need to get serious about what your goals are and have a plan of approach to achieving those goals.
It’s one thing to want to look a certain way but in order to actually get yourself there it takes discipline, commitment and accountability.
The following are a list of tools and tips I’ve put together to help you stay on track:
You may think this is a waste of time but the amount of people I have helped with just this simple tool puts it at the top of my list. Accountability is key player in fat loss. Sometimes we forget or think it is irrelevant to include certain foods, drinks and snacks that we have had throughout the day without realising the impact it has on our calorie intake. It’s usually those people that claim they just can’t lose body fat that do this. By simply being honest with yourself about what you are doing each day and then also seeing it in writing and as a total amount, you can quickly realise where you are going wrong and how to fix little things that will get you bigger results.
FOOD TRACKING APPS/WEBSITE
One of the more popular food and calorie counters this is a great tool to keep on top of your calorie and macro goals as well as helping you stay motivated and committed to following a structured meal plan. It’s also an eye opener to the choices we make with food, for example, you can easily go over your intended daily calorie intake by just snacking on higher calorie foods like smoothies, biscuits, muffins, energy drinks.
A food database that you can look up and find the nutrition facts about foods and fast food options. Particularly helpful if you are unable to eat the meal you are meant to or are out in a social situation. This is also a great education tool when it comes to knowing what you are eating and can help you make better food choices.
FITBIT/ Fitness watches
These are great for people, especially those starting out, to keep on top of their smaller daily goals such as steps, water intake, calories in and calories out. It has a food log where you can log your meals and see your calories in vs your estimated calories out from daily activity and can also track your sleep quality. Another great way to educate yourself on how much movement you are actually getting in a day and a motivator for you to stay consistent with those smaller daily goals that all contribute to your bigger end goal.
MEAL PREPPING & DIGITAL FOOD SCALE
If you are one of those people who are easily tempted by the convenience of food choices around you then I cannot stress how important prepping your meals beforehand is. It has been a big contributing factor to my own fat loss success and for my clients who have previously tried and failed at their attempts to follow a structured meal plan. Ensuring that you have all meals planned out for the day will keep you consistent and within a routine which is essential for commitment and long-term results. Another bonus is that it will save you money.
The use of a digital scale will ensure consistency. Trying to guess portion amounts often results in under reporting and over eating. Using a scale to measure out portion sizes is also a good way to learn about how much food you should be eating dependent on your goals. This is important especially when you are eating out as the serving sizes of cafes, restaurants and take away food places vary and are also a lot bigger than the amount of food we should be eating in one sitting. Having an idea of portion amounts from prepping your own meals can help you make better food choices when eating out.
REGULAR BF/MEASUREMENT TESTING/DEXA SCAN
This is important for you to know exactly what’s going on with your current plan of action and whether or not things need to be changed. Taking regular measurements every few weeks helps you stay accountable for your own actions and can be a little reality check if you haven’t been as disciplined or consistent since the previous measurement.
Measurement and Body fat testing can be done by a Coach and should be done by the same person and aim to be done at the same time of the day to ensure consistency.
DEXA scans are a form of x-ray that can be done via a number of places and is probably the most accurate way to measure body composition. It can tell you your body fat, lean muscle mass and bone density as well as providing a visual report.
In my opinion, every one needs a Coach – even I need a Coach. A knowledgeable Coach can provide programmed progression and regression when needed. They can identify your weaknesses and strengths and program accordingly as well as provide support, guidance and another set of eyes on your movements. They can provide nutrition support which is often the hardest part of dropping body fat and ensure that you are doing so in the safest and most sustainable way for your health. A great Coach will motivate you and educate you as well as hold you accountable so that you learn from your mistakes and are able to maintain this lifestyle with or without their help.