We are all guilty of thinking that the calories of a cheeky post-lunch Snickers bar, followed by a one off Maccy D’s and a famous Tuck Inn milkshake, can be easily worked off at the gym and therefore don’t count. Well, having recently started using an app that keeps track of what I eat, I have come to the hard hitting realisation that this just isn’t how it works. Unfortunately, all those treats add up and then at the end of the day you are left wondering why the pounds aren’t shedding even though you’re hitting the gym 7 days a week.
In fact, sports dietitian Marie Spano, M.S, R.D says “consistently averaging even just 10 percent of calories or more than you need qualifies as overeating”.* With this in mind, it’s easy to see that if one treat turns into a meal full of treats the calories will pile up. I have always dismissed the advice that all Personal Trainers give about the importance of diet hoping that a few extra minutes on the dreaded reclined bike will help burn off my favourite snacks. Their rule of thumb is that weight loss is mostly dependent on diet. In fact, weight loss is generally 75% diet and 25% exercise and I have only been able to truly understand this now that I have started using the app.
I was definitely sceptical when I first downloaded the app. I thought that it would involve a lot of meal planning and faffing. But I’ve just hit a 17 day streak and in retrospect it’s actually not that hard. The program records what you have eaten throughout the day and breaks down your meals into the percentage of consumed proteins, fats and carbs. This is handy because it enables you to spot exactly where you might be going wrong. For example, I have realised that I consume way too much sugar and very little protein and with this in mind have accordingly adjusted my diet. There is a section that allows you to quickly input recipes from online and it is relatively easy to find the stats of things you’ve eaten out as long as they were at a chain like Pizza Express. You can even scan the barcode of the food you would like to input!
All this app gadgetry may not be new to many of you, but I speak to those sceptics like I who thought these apps were a waste of time. From personal experience, I have found this an effective tool that has helped me understand my eating habits and would definitely recommend that you try it out not only for weight loss but also to help maintain muscle gains!