Healthy Beginnings

Food Journals: They Don’t Have to Be a Chore

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Generally, weight-loss success stories tend to have something in common: logging your meals. And we know what you’re thinking— the thought of logging every single meal just sounds daunting. Don’t fret! It’s not as awful as you think.

First, there are several apps out there that can help you. Among them are Lose It, My Fitness Pal and SparkPeople. The interfaces are all very different and even unique between iPhones and Androids, so download them all and play around. Whichever feels the most intuitive to you is the one you should go with.

Apps take a slight time investment at first, but then, they’re a breeze. When a food- logging app is new to you, you have to do a lot of searching for the foods you’re eating, as well as entering some of your most common recipes. But the more you use it, the easier it gets. And this isn’t just because you’re getting more comfortable with the interface, the interface also learning you and all your typical foods and exercises. Nowadays, my logging in my Lose It app takes less than a minute since it shows a list of suggested foods that I often eat for each meal. Here are a few tips to help you successfully log your meals:

1. Be sure to guard against burnout. This might mean only logging on weekdays when you’re starting out – or taking a day o now and then once you’ve been doing it for a while. And if you’re super crunched for time during the day, simply take a photo of the food you’re eating and, rather than scrolling through Facebook right before bed, go through your photos and log your food.

2. Join with friends! Most food-logging apps have the ability to connect with friends for additional support. Ask a friend to do it with you and become accountability partners.

3. Lastly, don’t be a slave to the app. If you miss a day, don’t stress. This is about holding yourself accountable and being more successful in the long run. Making food logging a habit gives you an additional leg up on your goals.

Caren Roblin is a Kaia FIT Sierra coach and NCCPT (National Council for Certified Personal Trainers) and TRX certified personal trainer.