Tools for weight loss: The Food Journal

Published February 17, 2014 by TrueLifeDiva Sparkles and Shines


Tools for weight loss: The Food Journal

Hello Divas!!!  How is it going?  I’m hearing from some of you that you’re having a hard time getting started.  Believe me, I understand.  When I began my fitness journey I had several false starts.  You can’t just want it to happen.  You have to actively go after it.  One of the main things that I attribute to me finally making progress in the beginning was keeping a food journal.  Studies have shown that people who track what they eat lose significantly more weight and keep it off in the long run compared to those who don’t.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had someone tell me that they are struggling to lose weight and then when I ask them do they keep a food log/journal, they reply “I don’t have time for that.” or “It’s not that serious.”  Well, I guess you don’t have time for real results and it’s not that serious to be healthy…

journal  cartoon

     I have been keeping food journals for the past 7yrs.  Yes, you read that right.  I write down 90% of what I eat on a daily basis.  The exception being I throw all of that out the window during the last week of December because I’m not fooling myself :-).  Keeping a journal allows me to see where I’m messing up.  Sometimes I get stuck in a rut and I can look at my patterns and see where I need to tweek things.  If you don’t know what you’re doing wrong, how can you fix it?  If you are currently not journaling, try it out for a month.  And be honest with yourself.  I once knew a guy who needed to lose weight.  I bought him a journal and made him promise to check in with me weekly.  When I  looked at his notebook the following week, he was so proud.  He said, “I’ve been keeping track of everything I ate.  I even overestimated the calories against my favor.  I’ve been eating 800-1200 calories a day.”  I was concerned because this was a large man well over 6″ tall and men shouldn’t eat less than 1500 calories a day.  Well, when I looked at his journal… this is what I saw






He didn’t write down a damn thing, just what he thought the calories of the food he ate had.  And boy was he off.  This dude would eat a foot long sub from Subway, with extra cheese, extra meat, bacon, avocado, Ranch dressing, and large chips on the side.  And then jot it down as a 200 calorie meal. He also had this crazy theory that if he had  a big bowel movement immediately after eating a meal, that he was passing the meal he just ate and therefore hadn’t absorbed any calories.  If that were the case we’d all be slender. #SMDH

Everyone has a smartphone these days.  Please take a moment and add a fitness tracking app such as MyFitnessPal , SparkPeople or CalorieKing.  I use CalorieKing to find out the calorie counts of food of fresh foods as well as restaurant items.  It just takes a few moments and I feel better knowing I’m making informed choices. When I first began my fitness journey I went on Nutrisystem.  They provide you with little purse size journals to help you stay on track.  I follow that same model to this day using composition books.

Here are a few food journal/diary templates that I found on the internet.  There are literally hundreds of different styles available.  Just google “food journal” and pick one that meets your preferences.

food journal temp 2food journal temp 1

Dear Fitness Challenge Divas,

We are entering week 3 of the challenge.  Please submit your bios ASAP!!!  I don’t care if you aren’t running marathons and losing 10lbs a week.  It’s all about the journey 🙂

Follow me on Twitter and InstaGram  @TrueLifeDiva1

Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog so you don’t miss each new post as it publishes. :-D


2 comments on “Tools for weight loss: The Food Journal

  • Hello, here is my info below……….

    My name is Donna and I have been trying to lose for a while and still figuring out why the weight is not coming off. I restarted my plan on 1/1/14 and have lost 10 pounds so far. I work out about 6 days a week. My goal is to get down to 200 pounds by 10/8/14. Short term for this challenge is to be about 240 by 6/1/14. I started out at 279.2 pounds. I log my weight on fit day and I have a body bug. The bug I have had for about 6 months. I have learned a lot about myself with the body bug. One thing it has told me is that I am burning a lot of calories per day from about 2500 on workout days up to 3300 on Zumba days. If I don’t work out I burn about 2200 per day. I try and eat about 1500 to 1700 calories a day although I don’t count calories as I am on a low carb plan. The one issue I have found out is that I do not sleep enough from the body bug. You lose weight when you sleep.

    I eat healthy and do not enjoy eating junk food anymore. For me a great piece of meat and a big organic kale salad with raw sesame seeds, strawberries, gorgonzola cheese and my homemade orange and evoo dressing is so yummy. As of 1/1/14 my husband is on board with me and doing the same plan. He of course has lost about 18 pounds already and almost to his goal. We found that he is gluten intolerant and this has really helped him to feel better. This has helped the most since we went through the house and got rid of all the bad foods. He is no longer sabotaging me with junk food he used to bring to the house, so we are both on track.

    So, my goals are to get more sleep, continue to lose weight, get into my too small but very cute workout clothes, build muscle so I need to add weight training to my workout plan and feel more comfortable in my own body.

    I choose to give myself a break and know that this way of eating is for life. I know that doing it slow is the best way to keep the weight off. I have a vacation coming up 2/28/14 so pray for me to stick on plan during those eight days in Hawaii……

    • Good for you, girlfriend!! Sounds like you have a plan in place that will definitely help you meet your goals. I love the BodyBugg, it’s SUCH a great tool :-). Let me know if there is anything- topics or research, that I can blog about that will help. We all have needs and concerns. Thanks for being so open and honest. See you in Zumba class!!! Love you 🙂

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