This blog is an accounting of my personal journey to find fitness. All the content on this blog should be read as a biographical piece of literature, not a medical resource. I am a physician, but I am in no way giving medical advice or establishing doctor patient relationships with my readers. I am simply keeping a diary. If you are starting a diet or exercise program or require medical evaluation or advice, please see your own family physician.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Too Damn Hot and Tracking is KEY!

I am having a whilrwind of a week. I have so much to do before I can be off on my vacation next week. I sat in front of the computer for a while yesterday trying to come up with something to post and didn't post anything because I just couldn't. There are days I just don't have much to say. I have a lot on my mind, but it just won't budge out of there.

I was thinking about why last month was so unsuccessful with weight loss and I was getting really frustrated. I have a tendency to place blame everywhere but where it belongs. Truth is when I went back and looked I realized that there were many days I didn't track all my food. Now I know I wasn't out of control with my eating, but tracking makes a huge difference. When I went back and looked at July a year ago I tracked every single day. A week of that was on vacation. I lost about 7 pounds that month even with vacation.

This year in July I exercised way more, but tracked my food way less. I burned over 13,000cal this month with exercise. That should equal loss. I have to conclude that I've been eating more than I thought. Of course I had the steroid thing and my thyroid issue, but none of that excuses the fact that I haven't been tracking with the same dedication I had in the past.

So I am rededicating myself to tracking every bite, every morsel, good or bad, this month. We are 3 days in and I have done well with this. I am eating right and still exercising. I have a challenge ahead with vacation next week, but I will be tracking. I know I can do this on vacation as I have done it before. I am going to try to ignore the scale as it is frustrating me. If I focus on tracking, eating right and exercise, the scale has to respond, right? So that's my plan.

In June we did the June Boom challenge to exercise every day. I'm going to try to keep that going again this month, but I'm adding to that the challenge of tracking every bite, snack, pinch, and nibble for the next month. Do you track your food? Do you measure or eyeball it? I generally measure although sometimes I can eyeball pretty well. This month, it's back to basics on measuring and tracking for me. I even weighed the nuts I had for snack yesterday, 1 ounce exactly!

I am so super sore today. My back is hurting from the massive core workout my trainer put me through on Monday. We did sit ups, push ups, planks, squats, jumping and a bunch more I can't remember. Sheesh. It was again a tiring and challenging workout. I'm so impressed with myself every time. I can't believe the things I can do now. In addition to training I did 40 min on the elliptical, cardio intervals. I can get up to level 24 now, at least for a few minutes.

Yesterday I went to TKD class. It's the last week before testing so the classes are busy and hard in order to review material for the test. I struggled a bit yesterday as I was tired from not sleeping well the night before AND sore from the workout on Monday. Plus, they were resurfacing the floor in the gym so there were fumes that really got my asthma going. I took it slow and had to rest a time or two when I generally wouldn't, but I made it through class. I feel like I'm ready for Saturday. I'll be attending class twice more this week as well.

So today, I decided to rest and not workout, other than scrubbing the pool and packing/housework tonight.  I need to let my soreness improve because I need my strength for the test on Saturday. Our belt tests are about 3-3.5 hours long and they are spent moving the whole time. We have to demonstrate many skills-kicks, kicking drills, forms, breaking holds, one-steps, breaking boards and sparring. I want to be ready, but the last thing I need is to go into the test exhausted and sore. PLUS we're leaving Saturday evening after the test.

Food this week so far has been great. Monday I had 1400 calories. I ended up with an extra snack in the afternoon because I was STARVED after the hard workout. I burned 1384 calories in exercise that day. Yesterday I had 1187 calories and burned 1197 with exercise. For dinner I had some yummy frozen tilapia, parmesan crusted. It's 230 calories for 4 ounces and man it's good. Cooks in 15minutes and we get it at Sam's. We also had some new melon, a lemon drop melon which is a cantaloupe with a lemon flavor. It's pretty good and light for summer. Tastes like you took lemon and squeezed it over cantaloupe. Try it for a change of pace! We got ours at Sam's.

The rest of today will be spent with errands at lunch to prepare for the trip. Considering this heat from hell, 110 yesterday our 32nd straight day over 100, just getting out of the car ought to count for a workout. It is super hot and super dangerous. This evening I will be packing or at least starting to pack. I hate packing. Sigh. BUT, on the bright side, I love vacations!

So are you faithful with tracking your food intake? Does it make a difference in your efforts with weight loss? If you are maintaining, do you still have to track your food? Do you still measure?


  1. YES! I am faithful and track. I really started tracking in May. I credit this added tool with being a big part of my recent weight loss. The only time I allowed myself to stop was during the wedding and that was only 4 days. I am back at it. It is a great way to REALLY see in black and white what you are sticking in your mouth. I do every morsel, too.

    Hope it cools down your way. We are at 80 so far in MPLS~not bad at all. michele

  2. I'm so good at tracking my food and I'm so BAD about exercise. I keep trying. :(

  3. Yes, I track. Example..yesterday I wanted some wheat thins. I had some of the Kroger brand. I ate 3 of the small crackers and then decided I didn't want that. I thought, I'm not tracking that, I only ate three! Well, I did track it and those three tiny crackers were 25 calories!!!

  4. I go through phases of tracking and counting when I need to drop a few pounds. Even though I am on maintenance I still weigh and measure certain things like yogurt,cereal, salad dressings, nut butters and items that are easy to go way over on!

  5. I track like a beast. Right now I'm maintaining two trackers: SparkPeople and Weight Watchers. What can I say? I'm a data freak.

    Even when I dive face first off the wagon (hello peanut butter bundt cake with chocolate ganache glaze) I track that. I might have to backtrack the next day and put it in, but I make sure that food does get tracked, because I need to see the difference in my calorie and points counts to maintain awareness of how my intake and exercise may need a bit of shifting to offset earlier choices.

    My weigh-in will be hosed this week. Partially due to the afore-mentioned bundt, and partially due to hormonal insanity coupled with some steroidal treatment. Good news is steroids are now bye bye and I'm no longer a starving, frothing lunatic, so here's hoping the scale will start moving in the right direction again.

  6. I've tracked very consistently for about 2 months now, since I started using the MyTrak gadget I won. (I'll blog about it eventually.) I have reached "maintenance" and have never tracked when at that stage in the past. So part of me thinks I need to keep at it. At least until I stop snacking when I'm not hungry! I know so many bloggers who trust themselves with food, like the intuitive eating thing, but, honestly, I don't trust myself. I'm afraid that if I stopped tracking right now I could fall head over heels back into regaining.

  7. There are certain foods that I always measure (granola, nuts) and others that I mentally note - but when I was actively losing weight, I logged everything. EVERYTHING. And I do believe that is key.

    I'll have to look for that lemon drop melon - sounds interesting. Be careful in this heat. It's gone beyond ridiculous - I check the Weather Channel online for Denton weather since my son is there - they hit 108 before noon today, and stayed there all afternoon! Sheesh, we didn't hit 105 until around 1pm.

  8. I absolutely agree. I have not been tracking my food - for the last few years! And I have gained 30 pounds. I need to track my food - also , what worked for me was educating myself in nutrition and fitness. It motivated me . I went back to my old ways , and here I am starting all over again. We can do this!
    Have a pretty day!

  9. Hey Doc, I've been busy so I am playing catch up on the blogs, but I wanted to say good luck on your blue belt and have a great vacation!

  10. Yeah, have a great vacation! We have friends who moved to the Big D from Seattle. Wow, they are experiencing a weather shift! Cool here this year...just a few moments over 80 all year.

  11. Tracking is key and probably for life for those of us who need to do serious maintenance (from research on successful maintainers). Also, don't forget that they calories in/calories out mantra isn't also correct. Quality of food figures in there. BUT, your workouts are amazing!!!!


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