The 12-Week Challenge – Analyzing Your Food Journal

Yay you! You’ve made it to your 3rd day of the Challenge. I know from the emails and conversations I’ve been having that this challenge is coming at a great time and that you are motivated.

Today, as promised, we’re going to drill down into your food journal.

On Monday I asked you to start tracking everything you are eating and drinking for three days. Yes, even the mik and sugar for your coffee and the handful of grapes you grabbed on your way out the door or chicken nugget butts off of your child’s plate.

Our goal today is to take a look at what you normally eat and see how we can start to clean it up so you can eat nutritious foods that are satisfying and filling.

Step 1: Take a look at your food tracking log and review what you ate.

Step 2: How does it look?

Is your food journal balanced?  Does it include a lot of fruits and veggies, are you drinking water, eating lean proteins and proper portions?  If not, don’t worry, we’re going to make a little tweak that will yield great results.

Step 3:   Now here’s where the rubber meets the road and the magic happens.

I’m a big believer of adding lots of healthy things so that it makes less room for the junky foods.

Fruits and Vegetables

7-9 servings is what you should aim for. Produce is bulky, has water and fiber plus a ton of nutrients. I eat fruit with breakfast, as a snack, with lunch and in the afternoon with some yogurt or a handful of nuts. I also bulk up my meals by using a ton of veggies. Mushrooms, zucchini and sautéed spinach make a great bed for eggs, and steamed broccoli tossed with a half cup of pasta and marina sauce and a drizzle of olive oil and you are set.

Drink Water

Water is awesome. Drink it. A glass when you wake up, a glass with each meal and snack, during or after your workout and if you have a strong bladder, a glass before bed.

Step 4:  Now what?

Now that you have checked out your food journal, have found some substitutions you can make and some suggestions on how to do it, it’s time to start taking charge.

Start with drinking water and eating more fruits and vegetables. In a week or two, or three, work on incorporating some other healthier foods and now is the time to start taking a look at your portion sizes.

We, as a nation eat too much food.  Restaurant portions are out of control and many of us serve our dinners “family style”.

If you want to lose weight start paying strict attention to portion sizes.  Pop a chicken breast on a scale and see where that puppy comes in at.  You don’t have to give up any foods you love, just keep track of how much you are eating.  You will soon start to see that you can eat smaller portions and still be satisfied.

Really calorie dense foods such as nuts, oils, nut butters, cake (ha ha) should be carefully measured.  You (I) can easily smear 3T of peanut butter on a sandwich without thinking about it.  Count the bread, pb and jam and that’s a hefty sandwich.

In a (pea)nut shell, be smart with how much you need to eat!

Step 5:  Your new food journal

Continue journaling what you eat.  The simple act of writing it down helps keep people accountable and on track with their healthy eating.  If you are trying to get a handle on emotional or stress eating, it’s helpful to also jot down how you are feeling when you are eating.  More on this later.

Changes don’t have to happen all at once.  Small steps will still add up to a mile as long as you keep going.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂







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