If you are starting your nutrition journey, an easy thing you may think you need to do is start tracking calories or macros in an app. There’s a time and a place for food tracking, but it isn’t for everyone, & it shouldn’t be long-term for anyone!
So how do you determine if tracking your food is HURTING you & your progress?
Simple. Once it starts to become a PART of your life or you obsess over it & NEED to track it in order to feel okay about yourself & your food choices… you’ve gone too far.
Honestly, with a lot of my clients, we never even NEED to talk about calories, especially at the beginning. Instead, we focus on lifestyle changes, habits & skills that my clients can act on immediately. Food is more than just calories in versus out… how does stress impact food choices? Sleep? Water intake? Your career? It doesn’t matter how well you can count calories if at the end of the day you’re going to over-indulge anyway due to stress & then “start over” tracking in the morning. Finding out the root cause of stress & learning new coping mechanisms & tactics are 100% more important than trying to hit a goal calorie limit.
So, if calorie or macro tracking is starting to make you feel OBSESSIVE, even for a couple of months, you are too focused on the numbers instead of focusing on how you FEEL, what your hunger cues are, how your sleep is going, etc.
Don’t let whether or not you’re able to stick within a calorie deficit determine HOW you feel about yourself & how it affects your mood & day! And most importantly, never let an EXTERNAL measurement define your success… things like calorie-tracking in MyFitnessPal, the scale, hitting macros, counting WW points, & millions of other diets!
My advice, especially if you feel more obsessive with tracking… find a different approach. Maybe track your calories for a week to get a baseline, but then move on & focus on those skills, behaviors, & actions you’re taking to make progress. You got this!
Don’t know where to start? I can help! Hit REPLY if you’re ready to ditch the diets & the tracking & start focusing on the food, your body & how you feel!