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Calorie Counting

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  • Calorie Counting

    I'm just wondering which of you out there are strict Fitday style calorie counters, and which are those who just try and watch what you eat.

    I've tried strict logging of everything for a while now and while I saw some results with it, I ended up putting the weight back on and I felt it was a bit stressful being a calorie slave and logging everything in. Currently trying to lose around 10-15lbs or so without counting calories as such, just eating healthy primal foods, and im wondering if its possible to do without having to write down every little crumb.
    My Primal Journal

    My Primal Goals

    1. Be healthy
    2. Get lean
    3. Get strong
    4. Enjoy life!

  • #2
    I calorie and macro count pretty strictly but only because when I dont I tend to go way under my calorie requirement. I have a busy schedule and will forget to eat.

    I think it is entirely possible to lose the weight without calorie counting. I'd enter a random day now and again just to see where you are but as long as you are eating the right things you'll be fine! Plus, stress is worse than anything so if counting stresses you out, dont do it!
    It is always too early to quit.
    Went primal- 02/25/12, height: 5'6", starting weight: 143.0, current weight: 133.8

    "Doubt never stops. Neither do you."- Prove People Wrong.


    • #3
      Yes you can lose body fat without counting any calories. However I think that counting can be beneficial if you have reached a plateau or you want to get a good idea how much you are consuming in a day.


      • #4
        I have food issues, and control issues, so counting calories for me becomes a dangerous dance. I am monitoring macronutrients every now and again, but since I don't eat sugar but once a week, and eat really clean primal, I don't really need to worry.

        I figure it this way: counting calories can often lead to dictating what we believe our bodies need, based on our intellectual (or sometimes emotional) concepts. But allowing the body to lead, and trusting that relationship creates an environment which is much lower stress, and allows us to return to a truly primal lifestyle. I highly doubt Grokette was overly concerned with her calorie intake. I realize for those (like me) who struggle with their relationship to food and can't quite trust themselves, this takes time. But for me, it has been a goal, and I'm finally getting to it after several years.
        The Sedition of Sisyphus: Go Find Another Rock

        Griff's Cholesterol Primer


        • #5
          I used to be an obsessive Calorie-counter and it ended up making me develop a disordered view of food. I scrutinized everything, weighed and measured every bit of food that went in my mouth, looked up all the nutritional information, and logged every morsel on an online site (similar to fitday). I decided that I no longer want to be like that any longer because it was really taking a toll on my mental health.

          Furthermore, I completely lost sense of when I was truly hungry, thirsty, or satisfied. I'd think, "Oh, I just ate a 700 Calorie lunch... I'm not allowed to eat more than 300 Calories for the rest of the night," which turned into obsessive restriction and ignoring my body's cues.

          I struggle not to track my food... it's like an addiction. I'm very numbers-oriented, so maybe folks who aren't like that have better luck in Calorie-counting without going overboard; unfortunately, I can't be that relaxed about it. Today I still find myself mentally adding up Calories in my head. (Hell, after four years of being so strict and meticulous, I basically have all USDA databases in my head!)

          In the end, it's up to you. If you don't have an addictive or over-analytic personality, you can probably count Calories all day long and be just fine. If you're like me, on the other hand, I wouldn't recommend it. (Easier said than done though!)
          >> Current Stats: 90% Primal / 143 lbs / ~25% BF
          >> Goal (by 1 Jan 2014): 90% Primal / 135-ish pounds / 20-22% BF

          >> Upcoming Fitness Feats: Tough Mudder, June 2013
          >> Check out my super-exciting journal by clicking these words.

          Weight does NOT equal health -- ditch the scale, don't be a slave to it!


          • #6
            I go between the two - sometimes count, sometimes don't. Calorie counting is a good kick in the ass when you fall off the wagon.... you can see right away when your "healthy primal indulgences" are adding up to quick.

            But when I'm in the groove, its pointless.

            Check out my blog. Hope to share lots of great recipes and ideas!


            • #7
              Not everybody feels that counting=obsessing. For some people it is, no question. Then there are people like me who don't find it stressful at all. I actually enjoy geeking out with the numbers.

              I don't feel like I'm a "slave" at all. I feel like I'm a scientist with myself as the test subject. It's interesting for me.


              • #8
                I'm analytical and numbers driven so I'm calorie counting in a healthy way. I dump everything into I'm at a plateau, and need to get past it --- so calorie counting is helping me to sort out what I need to change to go beyond. I don't have a relationship to food so this tracking is not detrimental to my mental health --- it's just a task to me ---- like doing laundry or whatever. I'm eliminating dairy and alcohol over the next 30 days so we'll see how that plays out on getting beyond my plateau.
                F, 48, 5'10"
                Start Date: 25-06-12 @ 161lbs
                Goal Reached: 30-09-12 @ 143lb. Now bouncing between 145lb - 149lb. I'd like less bounce and more consistency :-)

                Started Cross Fit 20.12.12 ---- Can't wait to submit my success story on the 1st anniversary of starting primal.


                • #9
                  I love tracking. I'm not a control freak but I have to have organization in my life.


                  • #10
                    I track it all. It is just part of my journey at this particular time. It is helping me stay on track and reaching my goals and stay on top of my health. Much the same way that tracking bank deposits/withdrawals help me stay on top of financial health. When I just guess at either, it doesnt usually turn out so well
                    65lbs gone and counting!!

                    Fat 2 Fit - One Woman's Journey


                    • #11
                      Yes I do, because I tend to OVEREAT a lot and I am still not versed on what a true portion size it. Leave it to me and I will eat a 15 ounce steak and think it was 4 ounces or used like 500 cals worth of butter to cook and think it was so ya....I need to but I am hardly a slave. I just know to get the results I need I need to count my cals most days at least


                      • #12
                        Since getting in tune with my body on when it's actually satisfied (~2 months into primal, started 100% january 2012) I haven't counted a single calorie. Just eat real,clean, nutritious primal food and the fat has been melting off my body.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by WeldingHank View Post
                          Since getting in tune with my body on when it's actually satisfied (~2 months into primal, started 100% january 2012) I haven't counted a single calorie. Just eat real,clean, nutritious primal food and the fat has been melting off my body.
                          I'm happy for you but it's not that easy and doesn't happen that quickly for everyone. If you eat as Lawerchick above describes while getting in tune with your body, you could easily end up gaining a lot of weight on Primal. I know. I did exactly that. Then I counted calories. Now, at a healthy weight, I am wonderfully 'in tune" with my body. Some of us need more structure to get from point A to point B however.


                          • #14
                            I count calories. I often want to figure out my maintance level so I can get a slow gain to build muscle. I'm not obsessing over it though. When I go on vacation or something I just eat primal as much as I can and as much as I want and have no clue about calories
                            well then


                            • #15
                              I don't usually track my calories. I decided to check them this past week, though.

                              I seem unable to have much control over calories at all. I cannot stand to be hungry. I regularly hit 1900 and above even while trying to be good! Now I feel like maybe I really am a glutton. This is why I prefer to stay ignorant because if I don't have little numbers telling me I'm a glutton, then I'm much happier ignorantly believing I'm normal.

                              I lost all my weight not looking at calories anyway, except for one two-week stretch last winter. I tracked and stayed in the 1200 calorie range the little app recommended for 2lbs per week of weight loss. I should have lost 4lbs during those two weeks. I lost nothing. So I stopped tracking. My weight is the same now as it was back then.
                              Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.