WIAW-The calorie counting question

by Chelcie on February 1, 2012

Helllo and happy WIAW

Check it out over at Peas and Crayons!

So I am kind of hesitant to talk about topics surrounding “calorie counting” and “caloric intake” on my blog because it is such a controversial topic. However I talked a little bit about disordered eating in this post and how for a while I restricted my caloric intake to 1200 calories a day. I lost about 12 pounds restricting my intake this much, which I am fully aware is too low of a number, especially when I was exercising on top of everything else

However, I feel as though I’ve been stuck in the “calorie counting” trap for a while now and I’m finding it really difficult to get out of it. Its sad that I pretty much could tell you the caloric value of any type of food because I memorized so many, and I find myself adding up calories using the calculator on my phone pretty much every day to make sure I don’t go over a certain number

What is that number you ask? I couldn’t really tell you exactly..usually a range between 1300-1500, but I can guarantee you many days (especially weekends) I go WAY over that number just by alcohol consumption alone (note: i’m not an alcoholic, I just attend a party school:) )..but what I’m trying to get at is that I don’t really know what number I should target for, or if I should just quit calorie counting all together and focus on eating balanced, healthy meals.

So just for example, lets go through my day of eats yesterday and add up the calories

I woke up at 7:30 yesterday morning randomly STARVING (maybe because I didn’t eat enough calories the day before? not sure..) so I decided to wake up and make myself breakfast

1 chobani greek yogurt, 1/2 sliced banana, a sprinkle of granola, and 1 tbsp PB2: So 140 + 35 + 60 + 25= 260 calories

I contemplated working out a little while later, but instead I went back to bed until 11:) Yes pretty pathetic I’m aware lol

At 11 I had a little snack, 1/2 handful of cocoa dusted almonds

so around 80 calories

then around 1 I had brunch with my friends, and this was my plate!

I had 1 more small pancake, and 2 more egg white fritatta muffins. So 120 (two small pancakes), 170 (scone), 120 (3 mini fritattas), 30 (fruit) total: 440 calories

And for dessert I had 1 magic bar and 1 little biscotti so apx 240 calories

A little while later I completed this circuit 1 time through, and this circuit 2 times through..if I were to guess I would say I burned around 150 calories..so we’ll count that as -150 calories

I had another small handful of cocoa almonds (apx 100 calories) and 2 baby clemenintes (apx 50 calories) + 150 calories

Right after my workout I went to dance practice for my sorority, where I danced my butt off for 2 hours..I don’t know how many calories I burned exactly but I would say at LEAST 400 calories..I was dripping sweat..cute I know..so -400 calories

Dinner was a big salad and soup

Spinach, cucumber, tomatoes, carrots, green pepper, non-fat cottage cheese and balsamic vinegar. delishhh I was so hungry when I got home!

For the butternut squash soup I used this recipe

So the soup was around 80 calories and the salad was around 200: So the total being 280..this is getting annoying right?! I know

For a nighttime snack while watching Glee (btw OMG BEST EPISODE YET!!) I had a individual bag of popcorn and a clementine

So that’s about 120 calories

So my grand total for the day: 1,570 (subtracting the calories I burned while working out) =1020 calories

Now 1,020 calories seems low right? But the fact that I consumed 1,570 calories still gives me anxiety because 1200 calories is so instilled in my brain that its still hard to break the desire to restrict my intake to that number..but obviously as you see my average daily eats normally do not fall below 1500 calories

That being said I know I have come a long way from how I use to be, because I let myself enjoy treats and dinners out at restaurants more than I use to (note magic bar and biscotti consumed today! which are considered “extra calories” that use to be off limits for me!)

But I know I still have a lot to work on because I feel as though I worry too much about how much or little I am consuming on a daily basis. Whenever I am eating breakfast I always have thoughts in my head ..(so in 3 hours I can have a snack, but since my breakfast was 300 calories my snack can only be 100 calories, which means my lunch can be no more than 300 calories, which leaves room for 500 more calories until I reach 1200 for the day..)

I know this may sound crazy to all of you, and as I’m typing this out it makes me sound like a crazy person..but a lot of the times I don’t listen to the voice in my head because I realize how crazy and paranoid I’m being

Most of the time on my blog I like to share more positive rather than negative topics, but I feel as though people reading can relate to where I’m coming from

I feel as though some of it might be because I’m not 100% happy with my appearance..but I don’t feel as though I’ll ever be because I’m way too hard on myself

I know this is a long post and if your still reading I appreciate it..writing these types of posts is therapeutic in a way because it sheds light on an area of my life that could still use improvement

I want to stop worrying so much, and just focus on living a healthy lifestyle!

So I’m going to keep yelling at the silly voice in my head, and keep slowly increasing my caloric intake at a pace that I’m comfortable with

And eventually I WILL stop counting calories


Question for ya: Have you ever restricted your food intake too much? Did you ever or do you count calories? Advice for breaking the calorie counting habit would be greatly appreciated:)

Note: I am not saying calorie counting is bad, just for me its become a little too obsessive. Its time to focus on healthy living!

And I will hit the publish button rightttttt now.