Friday, November 1, 2013

Calorie Anxiety

I use MyFitnessPal to track my calories every day.  Every single day, otherwise my calories get away from me.  It's a truly perfect tool for me.  I love that it scans bar codes and imports nutritional info.  I love completing my diary every day and getting the evaluation, "If every day were like today, in 5 weeks you would weigh Xlbs".  Talk about keeping your eyes on the long term. 

But something I've noticed is what can only be called "calorie anxiety" and I'm a little worried that it might be interfering with my health.

Essentially, calorie anxiety (as defined by me, and I'm making it up) is skimping on breakfast and lunch calories out of fear of running out of calories later in the day, and ending up hungry.

It tends to be my general MO.  I'll eat a packet of oatmeal for breakfast--130-160 calories.  And then for lunch I'll limit my calories to around 320-350 calories.  What this often means is I've only eaten 500ish calories by dinner time, and I end up eating the bulk of my daily calories in the evening between dinner and bedtime.

So far I've been extremely lucky that this practice hasn't sent me into starvation mode and I've continued to lose weight.  But it's something I continue to work on, with some success lately.  I've left my breakfast routine alone most days, although I've added a glass of juice before I leave on work days.  I had to do this because I've had days so busy that the first time I've thought about eating has been about 2 in the afternoon.  At least with the juice I've had a few calories.  Lunches I've allowed myself more calories--500-550.  Choosing wisely allows for a great deal more food than before. 

I've continued to lose weight, so I can only assume that it's at least as effective, and probably more.  I think it's probably a more healthy approach both metabolically and mentally.  At times I could see how people might end up with an eating disorder...

Overall it's a lot less anxiety.

How do you break down your calorie intake through the day?