Monday, May 09, 2005

Oh.

I am a process nerd. I love systems, charts, graphs. I like to calculate amounts, distances, dates. I am addicted to counting down and counting up.

Or I thought I liked that stuff.

Then I started using Weight Loss Resources to track my food, and oh sweet jesus, I knew bacon was bad for me, but 322 calories in three slices? Son of a bitch.

Even though it feels like harsh tokes just at the moment (I grabbed the wrong tupperware from the fridge today, and ended up lunch-less, and Taco was out doing errands and I foolishly thought I could get an OK lunch at the canteen downstairs which, hey, I probably could have, without the bacon), it’s actually the best kind of sobering. I have been cruising along, in a slightly more enlightened version of my old state. I know what healthy foods are, and I usually eat them. And I’ve added exercise to the menu, so now I’m good, right?

Not so fast there, pardner. Avocadoes. Which I love. Which I eat every day. Are shockingly high calorie. Good fat, whatever. Two hundred and thirty nine calories in those little friggers. That’s rather a lot.

This kind of tracking, which I’ve never done before, has a way of bringing everything into sharp focus. Yes, I love seeing a calculation on fruit and veggie servings and how many grams of fibre and protein I’m getting in a given day (if only it showed calcium intake at a glance…). But it’s also making me think even more about what to have for supper. I can see, OK, I’ve put away X number of calories so far today, and I have 634 left, and that includes the ones I earned doing yoga this morning. Which means I need to find something I can make for supper that’s going to be pretty well fat-free and crammed with good carbs in the form of vegetables. I have some haddock in the fridge, which I’d been planning to dredge in cornmeal and panfry. Um, not so much, any more. Instead, I think that haddock is bound for glory in a modified bouilliabase. Heads up, Taco, supper plans have changed!

Yes, sure, the accountability part of it is great. If it’s all there on my computer screen, it’s hard to ignore that I’ve been just a little over my calorie allotment every day for the last three (that is to say, every day since I started tracking in earnest). But it’s also hard to carry on regardless, the way I would have say, last Thursday (the day before I signed up). I’d have eaten the bacon at lunch and made the haddock for supper and I’d have walked around with that vague sense of doom, which I would have pushed insistently to the back of my head.

I realise now, writing that, that I’ve been walking around with that sense of doom for years. Literally, for years. And I’ve been pushing it to the back of my head for exactly the same amount of time. What a sad waste of energy I’d have been better served using to kickbox or walk or paint a bedroom yellow or dance in the kitchen with Taco. Well, I won’t throw good energy after bad. I won’t lament that other state. I’ll simply be thankful I found that calorie-tracking tool now, rather than a year from now. I’ll put my energy (efficiently and accurately tracked as it’ll be) to good use from here on in.

2 Comments:

Anonymous dietgirl said...

oh wow! someone else is using WLR! it really is sooo freaky to see how it adds up, don't ya think? but after awhile it is addictive. i manage to work in half an avocado a day at least, if i trim back elsewhere. loooove avocados. it's funny how you think you are eating healthy things, but it's a shock to see how the portions add up to so many calories... eeeek!

good luck steph! i have been using wlr in earnest since january and for the first time in AGES i lost weight... really helps make you more aware of what you're chowing :)

10:34 AM  
Anonymous FB said...

Yes! Why is it that so many of us love to calculate, and graph and chart?

I also know what you mean about feeling dread, though I feel that way whenever I have to "begin" all over again. I begin a lot...

I'm new to your blog, I like it, its a good read, can't wait to read more!

7:36 PM  

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