So last night after the tire and McDonald’s incident, I ditched my food journal yet again. I have a habit of doing this, especially on weekends. I’ll start the day feeling good about my food choices, with an optimistic feeling for the rest of the day, and then…
BAM boom CRASH
Something shoves me off my path.
I’ve gotten better about recovering the very next day instead of waiting weeks/months like I used to. I’m convinced this is one of the reasons I’ve been able to maintain my weight for so long — I never let one day dictate the next in a negative way.
However, I thought it would be useful for me to really analyze all the reasons why I walk away from food journaling because I feel like it’s coming from that all-or-nothing/perfection place we talk about so much when it comes to dieting/food choices.
- I don’t want to see the damage in black and white, or for fellow MyFitnessPal users, green and red. On days like yesterday I simply rather walk away than know the true extent of my choices. Of course this is counter productive because if we keep walking away instead of being accountable, we’ll truly never learn from these situations. I have been pleasantly surprised after entering every single bite and realizing it wasn’t as bad as I thought. However, when I just walk away, not facing the truth, chances are I keep eating because, well, I already ruined the day, I might as well …
- I get lazy. It’s true. There are days I find it exhausting and annoying to measure out a serving or calculate totals for recipes. Other days I find it fun, exciting even. Unfortunately, it’s the cumbersome days I probably need to journal the most. Those are the times I’m simply unmotivated, and having a sense of accountability helps put things in perspective. However, I do think it’s important to take a conscious break from the journal so you don’t start to despise it. At the end of the day it’s a valuable to tool to help you reach goals.
- I don’t want people to see what I’m eating. This is my own fault because I keep a public journal, and most of the time that keeps me honest. But there are some days I don’t want the world to know I ate my way through a bag of Doritos or a pint of Ben and Jerry’s because I had a fight with The Husband. Yet again, this is the time the food journal would help the most!
- It can’t be perfect. This happens to me a lot since I cook so much. Sometimes there are recipes I make that are just not easy to measure. Rather, I don’t want to be bothered to measure when I’m cooking and then I don’t know how much is in a serving or even how many servings there are. Take today for example: I made Quick Asparagus Soup with saved ends. I didn’t measure how many I added or how much broth I used. So how the heck do I enter this in the journal? Then I realize, hey… I’m eating pureed asparagus. What’s the big freakin’ deal?! Enter something similar and move on. In these situations I truly believe it’s the “thought” that counts. It’s not a reason to walk away. It’s time to estimate and move on. Forward progress. :)
- I’m too busy. There are some days I don’t have time to shower *cough* like today *cough* It’s kids, gym, work, kids, dinner, kids, work, bed with barely time in between to eat let alone take a minute to enter something in my journal. Then I realize, again, the pause, the moment to breathe and acknowledge I’m eating something is exactly what I need. I’d literally get through the day on handfuls of M&Ms, cheese sticks and nuts with a visit to a fast food drive through for lunch. The older I get the more I realize we’re only too busy for the things we don’t make time for.
Keeping a food journal has been a valuable tool for me to not only lose the weight but maintain it for this long — I’m going on 8 years!! It’s not something I see myself doing constantly for the rest of my life, but it will always be a tool in my arsenal because it works.