With the rates of obesity and diseases related to obesity on the rise, its safe to say that losing and maintaining weight loss is difficult for most people. It’s sad to see so many people with no control over their body and health, but for those of you ARE taking the responsibility to slim down and be healthy, there’s one mistake you can’t make.
Lucky for you however the mistake you really can’t make when embarking on this journey is really one of the most simple to correct.
Enough stalling aye, what the hell is it?! Well, it’s as simple as not even keeping a food diary or log of what you are eating.
You’re now thinking, that’s it? Really? On the surface it seems so small, it’s not like writing something down means it will have a different effect on your body when you eat it right?
This is of course true but the value of keeping a log of what you are chowing down on when looking to really chase after the body you want cannot be understated.
I’ll elaborate on the 3 main reasons this is absolutely essential to successful weight loss.
- You can’t manage what you can’t measure
If for instance your nutrition plan to finally get thin is simply to eat ‘healthy’ (which probably means something different to everyone) than it’s very difficult to objectively measure and manipulate that strategy to get the result you want.
If you haven’t been losing weight after a month say, where do you go from there? Do you aim to eat healthier? Does that even mean anything?
Anyone can see how this strategy won’t last very long, and if you are serious about transforming how you look, you’d want to have more of a back up plan than that right?
What if you had been logging what you had been eating and not lost the weight? Well then you can go and make a proper adjustment to kickstart the results. This could be in lots of different ways.
Perhaps you notice that the raw almonds you have been told are great for you are actually adding way too many calories to each days eating. So you switch them out for some fruit instead. Then voila, the next week the scale budges, and you’ve used your simple tool of the food diary to make the correct change and move in the right direction.
These controlled strategic adjustments is what separates those who sort of lose weight but don’t really quite get there, and those who nail it and have their friends raving about their progress.
- It’s the recipe you need for future success
One of my favourite analogies is looking at the food that you eat like a recipe for a cake. What would happen if you made a cake and made no note at all of the recipe you used?
Well, if it came out horrible, you probably wouldn’t have much idea where you went wrong or what to do. Doesn’t leave you with any clues.
On the contrary, if it came out as the nicest, most delicious cake in the world, you couldn’t even re-create it!
This is just like making some real changes to your body, even if you succeed you will have very little idea down the track what you really did to make that happen!
An accurate diary is a formula for success you can view again in the future if you find yourself slipping and need a boost. If you’re one of those girls who’s weight has yo-yoed in the past, this is even more valuable! It allows you to take the guesswork out of what has or hasn’t worked so you have full control.
- It holds you accountable
I said before that writing down what you eat won’t change what that food does once it’s inside you, but you’d be amazed how much people will improve their choices on food just from writing it down!
In fact, I remember the first day I began logging what I was eating and I went to an event in which some unexpected pizza was served up for lunch!
I had some food with me however, and managed to resist the pizza as I was currently really focused on getting myself in peak shape.
I can almost guarantee that if I hadn’t committed to writing down what I was eating each day, I would’ve been through half a pizza before you could say meat lovers.
No one wants to have to admit or write down that they have let themselves down and this is why this strategy works so well. This isn’t the ideal mindset of course, it should be to take pride in sticking to what we said we are going to do. But whatever works, works and ultimately we are really after the results however it happens.
To really nail this, agree on a once a week viewing of your food diary with a close friend who supports your goals. This is only further accountability for you and will really help you stick to your nutrition plan when the going gets tough.
You now see the value in spending that measly 5 minutes each day to quickly note down what you’ve put into your mouth. Not too mention with so many online food diaries out there this can be done anywhere at any time, so there’s really no excuse!
Keep track, keep working hard and keep making progress. You’ll get there sooner than you think!
To your long term success,
David Mifsud – Head Coach The Body Shapers