Anyway, I cut back on treats (my beloved half of a cinnamon twist at Blue Baker went down to just a couple of bites) and I increased my vegetable consumption. And while I could see a difference in my face (always the first place where any kind of weight loss shows up on me), I wasn't feeling much different in terms of lightness. I do really good with portion control on a lot of things, but with some food, I go all Ron Swanson on it and that's where the trouble begins.
I understand, Ron...I do.
So, I decided it was time to dust off the password to My Fitness Pal, log in, and track what I'm eating. It only took me two guesses on the password to get in - not bad after five years! I went back to my weight-loss calorie allotment, which isn't much for me...1,200 calories. Let me tell you, after a couple of days of tracking, I realized why I wasn't seeing much of a difference when I cut back, because 1,200 calories adds up fast!
I've been doing this for about three weeks now, and it's going well. I'm managing to eat enough to feel full, mostly thanks to prolific portions of vegetables - this is a serving for one:
All this, for about 40 calories. Compared to a serving of sweet potato waffle fries, which is about eight of them. Sadness ensued when I measured out the correct amount. Happiness ensued when I ate them, because they were still dang delicious!
I go in jags with what I eat - this was dinner for three nights last week:
Sauteed mushrooms and onions, tossed with roasted broccoli; English muffin pizzas topped with same veggies and a measured amount of cheese...I will say that you get a nice amount of cheese for the quarter-cup serving size, but I also realized that I was being a little too generous with my cheese, previously.
The thing with cutting back on calories is that I'm definitely hungry for every meal, which is OK - nothing wrong with a little hunger. I usually go out to dinner at least one night a week with a friend, so while I don't want to skip lunch to save calories for a restaurant meal, I do try to cut way back on lunch. I was eating soup, but I was still pretty dang hungry before our dinner. Last week I was running errands and ended up drinking a 120 calorie protein shake at lunchtime, and then having a 170 calorie protein bar about an hour later (while still out and about) - I was not hungry at all, and I credit the 36 grams of protein that carried me through a busy afternoon and into the evening.
I don't track my meals over the weekend, but I am being a little more careful with what I eat (hence, the smaller amount of cinnamon twist). We still go out for frozen yogurt on Saturdays, too - and special occasions will merit eating something fabulous. Which is why this happened over the weekend:
My favorite - the Preston Trail chili cheese burger from Scotty P's. Oh heck yes!
Am I seeing any changes now that I've been tracking my calories? Yes. My pants are looser, so in my mind, that translates to my legs running faster. I don't feel a whole lot lighter just yet, but time will tell. Any case, it's been a good exercise in reminding myself to pay more attention to portion sizes and also that I can live on less calories - most days, anyway.