Post # 1
I completed Insanity about two months ago and while I lost some weight, and gained a lot of muscle, it wasn’t nearly the results I was thinking I would achieve. I did not track my food at all. I’m ‘overall’ healthy, but I think ‘overall’ wasn’t good enough.
So I’m trying to take tracking my food seriously, if only for a few weeks to gain a better understanding of how quickly what I eat adds up. Here is what I struggle with though, how do you calculate a meal for which you have no nutritional value on??
For lunch today I made a small salad from the salad bar, and a small cup of cream of broccoli soup. I put in a request for the info on the soup, but as for the salad, how do I account for that? The salad was mixed greens and spinach, with carrots, a small bit of feta, about 10 wasabi peas and about 1/2 tablespoon of sunflower seeds. How the heck am I supposed to know what all of that is?!
FI said just kind of guess….but doesn’t that defeat the purpose of tracking the calories? I supposed that if I have everything else throughout the day exactly, I can kind of figure if something I make up fits in. But this whole guesswork part is what I find especially frustrating when trying to stay positive and keep up with it.
Post # 3
This is why I stopped using my fitness pal, so I hope someone can help answer this question! I just started writing everything down in excel and sending it to my nutrionist and she would fill in the calories for me 🙂 Then I would use her notes for my future meals. I am a very picky eater so for me it worked since I don’t have much variety in my meals.
Post # 4
- Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House
Well you would add all of those ingredients separately. It would help if you measured the ingredients, but obviously that is inconvenient at a salad bar
Post # 5
This is what I do in these instances. I try to make most of my food though, then I know what goes into the food. When I can’t, I either take a similar measurement, or guess. After you start counting calories on a regular basis, you start to get an idea of the estimated calorie count on stuff you don’t make. The whole calorie counting becomes easier.
Post # 6
It really is just all guesswork, especially when you are trying to figure out your values for a portion of a meal that was cooked.
For example, our dinner last night was made with a sauce of non fat yogurt, a tiny bit of sour cream, cucumber and some seasoning. I am just guessing that I had about a 1/3 of the cup of yogurt.
Last night was the first time I built my whole meal into MFP, it’s a real pain to enter each item individually (especially because sometimes it will error, tell me the item exists, and really doesn’t, and I have to enter it in all over!).
I think in the future I’ll figure out the calculations of the meal and enter just the values rather than each individual component.
Post # 7
If you add them up separately long enough, you learn very quickly how many calories food is worth. I’ve been using MFP for about 2 years and I barely fill in anything anymore; I usually just end up putting a ‘quick add calories’ for each meal or the whole day. Because of that, I tend to use FitBit’s website more often now, because I have a fitbit and can track my exercise and food all in one place seamlessly.
Post # 8
I know it sounds bad to say guess, but I always try to find a few similar items in the search bar, then pick the one with the highest calorie count. That way I know I’m not underestimating how much I’m eating and if it’s an overestimation, then I saved myself a few calories for the day.
Post # 9
I made all of my food, so I actually measure and weigh everything. I’ve been on MFP for a year so when I’m out now, I’m really good about estimating how much I’m eating. When I first started, I was wayyyyy underestimating. So I would get good measuring supplies, including a scale, and start by measuring everything you eat at home.
When you’re out, you do have to estimate. For the salad, just enter everything individually. If it’s a salad you make regularly at lunch if you go to the same place, then you can create a food on MFP using the nutritional stats from when you entered everything indiviudally so that you don’t always have to do that. (Go to the Food tab, then click “My Foods” at the top, then “create food”)
I have my own foods for my lunch salad that I make almost daily, my morning latte that I make at home, the sandwich I get at Subway, the burrito bowl I get at Chipotle, common dinners that I make, etc. So if you spend a few minutes one day making your own food listing, then it’s super easy in the future.