Thursday, July 8, 2010

Automatic, systematic, hydromatic

So, I had a productive day, in that I made some pretty good food choices, and went for a walk after work, and didn't give in to a craving for a soft-serve ice cream cone dipped in chocolate from the place down the street... although I did stock up on some lower calorie frozen treats, like Skinny Cow ice cream bars, and Popsicles. But I feel the need for more organization around losing weight. I don't want to set up too many rules and restrictions for myself, because when I feel deprived I rebel with a vengeance.
However, I do want to come up with a better system, so that I don't have to do actual labor-intensive calorie counting on a daily basis, but can be reasonably sure that my calorie intake stays consistently low enough to assure that I will lose weight. I think I'd like to figure out a few food combinations that add up to approximately 200 or approximately 500 calories each, so that I can select 2 of the 500 cal and 2 or 3 of the 200 cal options per day, and keep my intake to about 1400-1600 calories per day. For instance, I already know that a salmon & avocado maki roll in the average sushi restaurant is 304 calories, an order of maguro (tuna) nigiri sushi (2 pieces) is 100 calories, and that a serving of edamame (the green fresh soy beans) is 100 calories, and therefore if I go out for Japanese, I could order the edamame appetizer, a salmon avocado maki, and maguro nigiri, and I would be consuming 504 calories.
Hopefully I can figure out about a dozen more of these 500 calorie meals, and then a bunch that are closer to 200 for breakfasts and snacks (I would guess that oatmeal and a fresh apple or yogurt with fresh blueberries adds up to around 200 calories, but I will research it tomorrow.) I will also allow myself unlimited extra non-starchy vegetables to supplement, because those will add a negligible amount of calories, all of which will be more bang for my nutritional buck, so to speak. And just to be extra certain that I do not feel deprived and overly restricted, I will have one "freebie" day per week, when I don't need to stick to the formula at all.

I feel very hopeful about this new plan! I probably will not try to implement it right away, because I need to do some math first, and then do some shopping, but perhaps by Sunday I can start this in earnest. It really seems manageable. What do you think?


  1. Sounds like a plan, but isn't 1400-1600 calories a day a bit low? I haven't done much research (yes, I admit my ignorance) but isn't 2000 a bit better? With still achieving weight loss? I admit, I don't count calories...perhaps I should!

  2. I know Kat, it is a bit low, especially at my weight, but I was factoring in the fact that I know I won't follow the plan "religiously", so if I aim low, and then "cheat" a bit, I should still lose weight. Also, I am allowing for unlimited veggies (other than the super starchy ones, or avocados which are loaded with calories) and even though stuff like lettuce and spinach and carrots and tomatoes don't have a whole lot of calories, I probably eat at least 100 calories worth in a day. I am also not planning to count the calories I drink, and although I try to mostly drink water, tea, and diet beverages, I do occasionally have a small glass of fruit juice, or some coffee with half and half, or some lemonade, so again, that is about 100-300 calories a day that I am not factoring in. So, when I "count" 1400-1600, I will most likely actually consume 1800-2100.

  3. Calorie count is important to track but you might want to track calories burned as well. The math is pretty simple when loosing weight "Calories out > Calories In" If Calories out < Calories in you gain weight. So even if you consume 1400-1600 calories a day but do nothing but will gain.

    Bike riding is great exercise (I love it) and it sounds like you love riding your bike, but I'm confused why you are waiting to ride?

    You got me hooked on your blog and I wish you all the best!