Successful Journaling

I went out to lunch with a friend of mine the other day.  As we were finishing up our meal she starting pulling out scraps of paper from her purse.  Then she went back in to look for a pen.  She explained that she started keeping a food diary.  My normally otherwise sane friend seemed pretty proud of her mess of scrap papers.
I wasn't sure what to say at that moment.  (Imagine me with a lack of commentary!) I couldn't fathom how she would make any sense out of that mess.  When I asked how she was going to put all the scraps together she said she didn't need to do that.  Just to finding a piece of paper and pen was deterrent from eating.  With pride she admitted that last night she passed up a bowl of chips because she couldn't find a pen!  Then she whispered in a conspiratorial tone that this whole journal thing is really working for her, she lost 5 lbs. already this month!  Who can argue with that kind of success? 
This is in sharp contrast to me.  I tend to find cute little notepads and fancy pens, or gel pens, or glow in the dark with feather pens.  I make little charts and carry totals, then compare last week with this week.  I weigh and measure nearly all my foods.  For all our differences I'd have to admit we are both seeing success.  This brings me to the point of this blog.  It doesn't really matter how you journal only that you do.  You need to keep track of what is important to you and do it a way that will work for you.  I'm here to offer you a few idea's in hopes that one of them will appeal to you.  Then you'll journal your food and see how much it really does help.  

The most important rule to in keeping a food diary is that you write down everything you eat.  As soon as you lie or omit you've missed the point.  If you bite it, write it.  I write down everything I eat and drink as well as keep track of my exercise in a little pad.  It lies on my counter when I'm home and easily fits into any size purse I'm using.  In the evening I copy everything to my on line food tracker.  I enjoy the convenience and ease of just writing things down but I love seeing the graphs and goal setting charts.  One of my favorite all time features it the Track Your Diet calendar.     I just love how user friendly it is.  At one glance I can see my weights for the month.  When I am on the calendar page, I just click the link to Charts & Graphs and that brings me to my diet dashboard.  I love it!  I can see how I'm doing, where I'm going and at what rate in a glance.
There are so many health and fitness apps available for your smart phone so that if you find the pen and paper a little archaic here are alternatives.   Just remember that you should write down everything immediately.  No matter how many times I'm sure I'll remember exactly what I ate, I really don't.  It's also a great way to battle mindless eating.  From popping a handful of m & m's to the 1/2 of cookie you shared with your son every little bit adds up and it's important that you keep yourself aware of what you’re actually eating.

Make it fun, make it a habit and don't give up tweaking it until it becomes exactly what you need for you!

posted @ Monday, September 10, 2012 1:06 AM


Comments on this entry:

# re: Successful Journaling

Left by cutemonkey at 9/11/2012 2:28 PM
I agree! When I write down what I eat and what I exercise I find I am so less likely to do that mindless overeating thing that messes with my body, mind and soul!
I haven't figured out how to use many of the pages on the WLB website yet - but then again I am pretty techno-challenged!

# re: Successful Journaling

Left by tealady at 9/11/2012 2:54 PM
Feel free to message me with any questions. :)

# re: Successful Journaling

Left by MrsG.Journey at 9/12/2012 4:54 PM
I do better by entering my calories into my phone. I use an app on my phone. I can instantly see how many calories I have consumed and how many I have left in my caloric budget for the day.

My only complaint is when it doesn't load/start up as quickly as I'd like to. But the pros outweigh the cons.

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