Monday, September 12, 2011

Pilates done, The "C" Word, Real Food Trumps Crap, and a Recap of my First Day of the CDC Challenge...

Okay, I'm back from Pilates. Still  in workout clothes, as I want to try to get in a walk, so hoping the weather cooperates.

Was reading Cranky Fitness on the C word: Calories. Yes, I believe in counting calories. I think when you get used to it and good at it, then you learn the QUANTITY and types of foods, makeup of meals, portions, that work for you to lose/maintain/gain. It's a tool. I use it.

When I've tracked meticulously for weeks or, in the past, months, it helped my efforts. It made me accountable and showed me what food make-ups worked best to keep me full and get the weight off and give me energy. Then I'd not track, but didn't get fat again, cause I had learn "this much omelette", "this much steak", "this much cheese on my baked eggplant" add up to the calories I can have. Learning the LOOK of what is reasonable calorically FOR ME to lose meant I could coast for a while, eyeballing.

Then I'd stop losing or regain a bit and it was time to track again, cause I had let portion creep or something else happen to take me out of the "losing" caloric zone.

Whether it's Points--used properly, not like hyperconditioned overeaters, which, trust me, if I was on the current points, I'd excuse eating 15 servings of fruit a day--or calories or sized portion plates with minimally processed food--there is always a system of knowing how much is enough to lose or maintain.

I think calorie-counting helps us know what our boundaries are. If we earn 5K a month, we better not spend 8K a month, or guess what? Financial issues will arise.

If you get to eat 1600 calories a day to maintain your weight at your activity level, and you eat 2000 calories a day, guess what? You're gonna start packing on the ounces that become pounds. You'll regain. You'll get fat if you let it go on long enough.

I know many folks out there--Paleo, Primal, Low-Carb--think calories don't count.

Well, for me, they do. I cut out gluten/wheat. I cut down on starches. I still have to watch calories or I stop losing or regain. Period. I have to.

I don't believe I am alone.

What I find is tweaking the macronutrients so that I'm lower-carb keeps me APPETITE CALM or calmer. I can eat less food--even less QUANTITY, not just fewer calories--comfortably cause I'm not as hungry. When I up my starches/sugars, even from whole foods like potatoes and brown rice, even from organic fruit, I get hungrier. Period.

But for me, it's still CICO (calories in, calories out).

And for me, REAL FOOD TRUMPS CRAP. If you're losing weight thinking it's fine to eat a bunch of rejiggered food, frozen or boxed, super-preservative and chemically-laden, then I have to say: I understand. Convenience is...well...tempting. But I don't believe that leads to ultimate health or ultimate sane eating for life. I want to NOT be fat FOR LIFE. I want to be healthier. I believe that takes real food, not a bunch of chemicals tossed together with uberprocessed fake proteins and salt and colorings and this and that.

Fake foods can be treats, if one wants them...the occasional thing. But real food heals. I totally believe that. REAL FOOD HEALS. Real food satisfies with micronutrients. Real food was created (hey, I'm a Christian, so I term it that way) for people to eat. Off a tree. From the ground. From the ocean. From the hunt.  :) Whether one's conscience chooses vegan/vegetarian or chooses omnivore or anything in between, I recommend you choose REAL FOOD.

If what you eat is mostly from boxes or, read the ingredients. If it's more than a couple...or if it's more than one or two and the list includes NON-real food items...think...what the heck are you eating? Does it even SOUND like food? Would you buy that ingredient at a farmer's market? A butcher's shop? A cheese shop? Is it made for the human body? Did God say, "Yea, go and eat of the bounty of monosodium glutamate , hydrolyzed whatchamacallit and texturized vegetable whatisthisthinghere? Refresh thyself with Potassium Metabisulfite, Red #5 and Yellow #6 food colorings! And be liberal in treating thyself to caramel coloring and sodium nitrite!"

Well, maybe we'd see Him sooner if we keep ingesting those. :D

What the heck does texturized even mean when it comes to vegetables? To me, texture is to boil it and mash it, or dice it, or chop it, or blend it, and then soup it. That's making a texture out of a veggie. What are they doing in those plants? It sounds scary.

Grill shrimp. Roast some beef. Saute chicken. Boil eggs. Poach fish. Bake eggplant. Grill asparagus. Stir-fry broccoli. Slow-cook lentils. Pit-roast a pig. Chop onions. Slice an avocado. Sliver almonds. Roast cashews. Ferment milk. Steam cabbage. Grill salmon. Roast a turkey. Tartare a steak.

That's real food. Simple ingredients. Lots of vitamins, minerals, and still-unnamed nutrients that you need. Remember back in the 70s, when you never heard of phytonutrients and resveratrol and Omega 3s. What will they find in REAL FOOD in the future that's good for you, that no one has any idea now is so potent--like what's in green tea and mushrooms?


Okay, rant on food over.

The first day of the challenge is well over, and this is how I did:

Tanita-san today: 183.4
Initial challenge number was: 184.2

Exercise: bupkis--family time
Calories: 1170
Fluids: made the 12 glasses
Book: Began reading THE POWER OF SELF-COACHING...
Blogs: Been commenting on a bunch, but by no means all 30 yet. Sorry if I missed ya so far.
Dress: Took it out of the plastic protector, touched it, still doesn't fit. HAH.

It's nice to feel like I'm getting some of my control mojo back after the bobbling around last week.

First weeks for challenges are always energized some. Let's keep the energy going. Cause, remember: DO NOT QUIT. :D

Be well...


Anne H said...

Even Dr A (Atkins) said that LC isn't an excuse to gorge ourselves on fat!
Still gotta try to keep it between the lines! Right you are!

Looking good, PD!

Anonymous said...

Another beaut of a post from the Princess. I have a friend who is seriously hooked on Doritos. I told her to flip the bag over and read the ingredients, if she got to one she couldn't pronounce she should probably put the crap down. It worked for her, for a while then she had them again. I'm working on changes and learning as I go - I hope to inspire one day like you do. Whether it be about Doritos or.... losing, say 100 pounds? :) Thanks for posting. As far as calories - yes, we have to count them. CICO is a great acronym, thanks!

Crabby McSlacker said...

Great post--I totally agree about Real Food over Crap. Not that I don't eat some of the latter on occasion, but in very limited portions. Whenever I'm traveling or out of the house to eat, I'm shocked at how horrible the choices always are--because most people WANT junky crap, not real food. Sigh.

Oh, and thanks for the mention!

Losing it in Vegas said...

I ALWAYS go the box food route when I first start a "diet". I usually make it 1-2 months and realize it is expensive, doesn't taste good and is a general pain in the butt. Then I go back to real food. Does anyone want 30+ days of boxed dehydrated meals??

As for calories, I was in the mindset of not counting them...BUT I figured out that if I keep track, I usually eat around the same amount every day. By keeping track, I know if I get on a plateau, I know to cut I guess they do count, right?

Great post.

Betty said...

Finally! Someone else who believes in Calorie counting! I have always done it that way and it´s the only way that works for me.
Thanks for the great post!

lv2 said...

Great post!

Jane Cartelli said...

Really good post! You know me: I'm a calorie-real food-lower carb maven who shuns any food I cannot pronounce and spell. I do not argue with success. it has been working for several years and hundreds of pounds on my own body. I know it works for others and none of us are tripping out and taking the neighborhood McDonald's kitchen hostage.

Thanks for sharing the message.


Anonymous said...

Absolutely awesome! I'm so glad I found your blog and thanks for setting up the challenge. I'm looking forward to following!

squerrytx said...

Eating "real" food is one thing that my fiancee' and I have been doing. We cook dinner every night now. It used to be crap, all day, every day. Its made my digestive system much, much happier eating whole foods and not all of that processed crap.

Jo said...

Real food, yes. No boxed stuff. Ingredients scare me, especially the food colorings. Do we need our food to be artificially colored??

Counting calories is the only way for me. I tend to forget the bites if I don't have to write them down. I tend to not eat the bites if I DO have to write them down. I will be counting calories forever. It's just a good way to stay in charge of my health.

Karla said...

Go true!!! Thats why I stayed on the old weight watchers, I would be the one getting fat scarfing down TONS of fruit
did you see my post yesterday? The cashier gave me that cereal bar.... Eewwww

Give me a strawberry ... Fresh, not processed any ole day over those "healthy" cereal bars thingys any day!!!

No quitting!!!! Love it

Angela Pea said...

Real Food. Real Food. Real Food. You're preaching to the choir, Honey! I started pursuing real food when I started having kids twenty some odd years ago. I've fed my family real food ever since.

Calories vs. Points? You are spot on about how points can kill you if you are a conditioned overeater. I use points, but I also measure my portions. Seriously. With measuring cups and a food scale. A 'zero' point serving of apple is HALF of a regular sized apple. Yes, it's still zero if you eat the whole thing, but if you eat an entire bag of apples, it's no longer a free food, more like 12 points worth of calories and sugar. Even broccoli will make you gain weight if you're eating 2 pounds of it every day! Portion control is important when you're counting points.

Debbi Does Dinner Healthy said...

I agree, I'm a calorie counter. That is how I lost weight and it's really the only way for ME to do it. I've been trying to weed out the fake food more and more. *cough* (we won't talk about the Morningstar Chipotle Bean Burger for lunch).