Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Calorie Counting Complaints

Having declared my intentions to count calories for realsies this week in my weigh-in post, I thought it was about time to complain about this undertaking.

Holy hell is keeping track of everything you eat annoying.

How many calories are in the Swanson Family Salad Dressing? Um.... well.... what are the ingredients? In what quantities?

(Insert picture of me here surrounded by my computer, the iPad, a bottle of extra virgin olive oil, a bottle of balsamic vinegar, the maple syrup, the grainy dijon, with 16 different tabs open in firefox, one of which google-ing the calories in a frickin' clove of garlic. Because, dude, the nutrition site doesn't have fresh garlic in their database)

Good news? I can answer my own question.

For just over a tablespoon of dressing (15.6mL), it will cost me 59.2 calories.

Worse was calculating my portion of the pizza we had for dinner last night.

Pizza Dough
(82 g): 312 cal
Cracker Barrell Mozzarella Cheese (1.5 oz): 148 cal
Sauce (30 g Salsa + 30 g Chili Sauce): 53 cal
Baby Spinach (0.5 oz): 3 cal
Caramelized Onions (1 g): 1 cal
Mushrooms (42.5 g): 9 cal
Goat Cheese (0.5 oz): 39 cal

Grand Total: 565 cal

I burned half of those calories running around figuring out the breakdown. Or, at least, it felt like it!

Also, my kitchen scale has moved up in the world. It's lowly home in the cupboard has been eschewed for a brand new countertop locale.

Nothing goes into my mouth without first being weighed, measured or researched. It makes eating more like a chore than I think it should be. I love to eat.... and now it's so much work!

There are, however, some excellent side effects.

1. I have been overestimating most of my food. Smoothies? Not 500 calories. Only 285. Woot.

2. I am much more careful about what I eat. There are no more careless foods slipping past my lips. A chip off the kids' plates? Hells no. I would have to figure out its damn calorie count. So not happening.

3. I am on track calorie-wise. I am aiming to run a 500 calorie deficit every day (1 lb per week weight loss). I am running a deficit on top of my deficit. Hurrah. Take that 130 lb plateau.

All in all, this is going to be one of those endeavours that I'm glad I did but I hated doing. Or, I'm going to screw it all and start buying pre-packaged meals with it all worked out already!!


  1. you should really get the fitness app it has a recipe counter and all you do is scan and it puts it all together for you!

  2. I know what you mean - it takes so much time! I usually count my calories but just add in my head as the day goes by, and I don't always weigh or measure everything - 1 banana = 110 cals, regardless of size.

    Weighing and measuring everything exactly is nice to know exactly what you're eating, but I just don't have the time to keep up with it. Especially having to enter in all the data into a program - what used to take 3 seconds to read the portion size on a label and know how many calories that is now takes 5 min of copying the label into the program because it doesn't have that brand of product I bought.

    I'm so impressed you've kept up with it and that you're doing so well!