Yes, I track calories. I have been able to control my weight without counting calories only when I was walking more than seven miles per day while carrying a twenty pound load. Otherwise, if I eat sensible portions of healthy food and stop eating when I am 80% full, I gain ten pounds per month. I have kitchen scales at home and at work. I must limit my purchases from Whole Foods because Whole Foods does not provide nutritional information on all their foods. Trader Joe’s does. There is a new restaurant near my workplace serving delicious vegan sandwiches, but I can only eat there sparingly because they do not have nutritional information.
I have tried a calorie-counting goal with Beeminder: Log 80% of calories consumed. The penalty helped me overcome self-consciousness about hauling out my kitchen scale at a restaurant and lifting each item away from the plate in order to track its weight.
I know that when eating meals I did not prepare there is a risk the chef added 240 calories of oil, and because of that my logging will understate calories for the day by 15%. For this reason, I need to track and target gross body weight in addition to calorie deficit or balance.
I have considered but not tried a calorie deficit goal with Beeminder. I have rejected such a goal because the uncertainties of restaurant calories and exercise calories, I think, would prove insurmountable.
This is great news! How do I make a custom goal? I created a Withings Weight Loss goal, and I do not see the option.
BREAKING NEWS: custom road width is now live in advanced settings on
custom goals! (Ie, available for Bee Lite subscribers.)
Over the past 24 hours, I consumed a measured-calorie 694 calorie surplus, and my weight *reduced *by 1.2 pounds.
Are you also tracking things like calories, etc?
Holy cow! Gain ten pounds a month when you stop eating at 80% full? That’s a nasty thing for your metabolism to do to you.
One thing you could do is “assume the worst” when you don’t know how something has been prepared. Generally a cook won’t add more than a tablespoon of oil (120 calories) to a cup of food, unless it something like deep-frying, where the food tastes very oily. I always assume a tablespoon of oil per cup of food when something has been stir-fried or sauteed. Conversely, sometimes you can tell there’s basically no oil at all, as with steamed vegetables. It seems to me you should be fine assuming an extra tablespoon of oil in a serving of food you didn’t prepare yourself, where you think there’s some chance that oil was used in cooking. This has worked well for me, at any rate. At some point I reached the ability to estimate the approximate number of calories in something just by looking at it and sizing it up: 100 calories for a 1-inch-wide slice of pizza, 100 calories for a 1.5-square-inch brownie, 0 calories for fresh or steamed vegetables, 200 calories for a big scoop of rice, 300 calories for a moderate serving of meat, etc. (I’m lucky that my cafeteria has lots of small portions available for me to satisfy my desire for variety with small numbers of calories.)
I agree that exercise calories are also uncertain, but I find that the estimates from an app like LoseIt are approximately right (on average) for me. Also, I don’t count every single bit of physical activity, such as the few calories burned each time I take a flight of stairs at work (and I do this at least eight times a day), so this gives me a little extra buffer as well.
Lol seeing this thread go to the top now got me really confused for a minute… I was like “are they coming back now?”