I had to stop counting calories, it was stressing me out. I know it probably sounds crazy, but if I saw that I had 200 calories to eat for the rest of the day, I would become slightly depressed lol. I felt like it just took up too much time to put in EVERY SINGLE THING that I ate in a day! And besides, I knew that I did not want to count calories for the rest of my life, so it was just inevitable that I would discontinue my relationship with MyFitness Pal (calorie counting app). Now don’t get me wrong, I think counting calories is imperative in your weight loss journey, especially at the beginning!! I had no idea how many calories I was eating in a day, or how many calories were in my favorite foods. And once I started using MyFitness Pal, I could finally start to see exactly why I was overweight! Counting calories have helped me to gain a better understanding of the calories I was eating and how much I should eat to lose weight. But since I gained that understanding, it has been easy to get rid of all my calorie counting apps and just eat, without putting as much thought into it.
I no longer suffer as much from guilt that came from going over my recommended calories for a certain meal. One thing the app did was whenever you exercised it would add those calories you burned by working out to the calories you could eat. So for example, If I had 300 calories left to eat for the day and then I just burned 200 calories on the treadmill, once I added that workout to the app, I could now eat 500 calories for the rest of the day. And you guessed it, instead of having the caloric deficit I would happily eat those 200 extra calories lol. So now instead of eating those calories, I maintain my caloric deficit leading to more weight loss. I don’t ignore my hunger cues anymore; when I used to count calories I would be hungry, but choose not to eat because I didn’t have enough calories for it, which lead me to overeating whenever I did eat because I was starving at that point.
Not counting calories has helped me to look at my diet as a whole; instead of just focusing on calories, I can now focus on the nutrients I should be getting from my food because a balanced diet is key! I am happy to say that I lost these last 50 lbs. by not counting a single calorie!!! So instead of counting calories, my trainer has me send him a picture of all of my meals. I believe this has helped me the most! The fact that someone is seeing what I eat, holds me accountable to eating healthy MAJORITY of the time lol. I still look at the nutrition label to check and see how many calories are in the foods I eat because that is still important, I just took away the negative feeling that came along with it whenever I tracked everything! I say all of this to say, do what works for you! There are a lot of people who lose weight by calorie tracking their entire journey and there are some that choose not to! It’s best to figure out what is best for your lifestyle and stick with it! Because at the end of the day, whatever you can be consistent with will get you the furthest on this journey!
Now when or if I hit a plateau trying to lose these last 20-30 lbs. I will go back to counting calories just to see if I need to make any changes to how I am eating, but until then I will enjoy this freedom lol.