Tuesday, August 12, 2014
my weight loss toolbox: my food journal
I've been food tracking for a few years now- not faithfully, but regularly. I even tracked throughout my pregnancy (see here). Though I typically track points as a Weight Watcher member, I didn't when I was pregnant (because I wasn't trying to lose weight). I decided to continue tracking what I ate without worrying about points- and focusing more so about proper servings from the various food groups. As I mentioned in this post, to find the proper serving sizes when I was pregnant, I went to choosemyplate.gov to personalize my servings. I figured I would go back to tracking points without worrying about food servings once I wasn't pregnant anymore. I did just track points for a while, but I missed tracking food servings. I decided I would track both points and servings for some time and see how it works out for me. I'm super motivated by it right now- so far so good.
If you'd like to make your own, this is what I did. I went to choosemyplate.gov- specifically this page:
You'll have to register if you haven't used the site before. I logged in and updated my profile. I'm not pregnant anymore, but I am breastfeeding. Also my weight went down somewhat (not as much as I would have liked. ;) Once I updated my profile, I went to "My Plan:"
On that page, my serving sizes were listed (they're not different right now that I'm breastfeeding as when I was pregnant):
This is a break down of my categories and daily allowance with examples of various food group servings and tips:
(The images above are from the choosemyplate.gov website. See their site for a personalized plan).
All I had to do was print labels that I had already created from when I was pregnant. (I used Avery labels and the Avery labels template document. I made a daily checklist of each food group category with an appropriate number of check boxes for each category. For example, I require 6 servings of protein a day, so there are 6 boxes to check next to "protein").
Now comes my favorite part, I took a cute, new notebook (from a set of 3 from Target) and added a label on every page.
I also printed out a quick reference chart for what counts as a serving in each food group. For example, 1 oz. of chicken, beef, fish, etc. counts as 1 protein serving. 1/4 cup of beans counts as 1 serving of protein, as well.
(I had made the reference chart when I was pregnant. I have what I'm supposed to eat during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters of pregnancy on the dairy servings. Oops. Shoulda deleted that! It's still the same right now that I'm breastfeeding though).
I glued part of the chart on the back of the journal and the other part in the front (it wouldn't all fit on one side).
I'm, like, really and ridiculously into this. I like to throw out factoids to anyone who is willing to listen. "Do you know that 7g of protein counts as 1 protein serving??!" My statements are often followed by blank stares. ;)
Want to know more about My Weight Loss Toolbox? Start here, and continue here.