I am glad to hear your endorsement of calorie counting Robby, it was just the encouragement I needed I have calorie counted on and off for sometime, both in efforts to maintain a healthy weight, and also to keep myself "accountable" for both the food I consume and my level of fitness/activity. I have been on several backpacking trips where I know my performance suffered because I wasn't eating enough/or the right stuff to keep my body fueled during heavy activity. I have found that calorie and activity tracking in my regular life keeps me more tuned into what I need to do when my energy output skyrockets due to hiking with heavy loads, a lengthy bike ride, etc.DEW, sorry I haven't posted today. Just getting back to my computer after long day at work. Anyway, before I get into the food choices, you really should start tracking your calories so you know where you're at.
This part takes WORK and where the diet gurus try to discourage you and get you to eat their top 10 foods. I'll admit, that is easier for awhile than calorie tracking, until you get tired of those foods and you will (see New England Journal of Medicine May 2003 for studies on restrictive diets).
If you are a smart phone user, you can download apps from calorieking.com and myfitnesspal.com.
If you're pen and paper, like me, a great resource is the T-Factor fat gram counter available at Barnes & Noble and probably Amazon. While it focuses on fat grams, it's also got the calories for thousands of foods and it's small enough to take along with you.
This brings up my next point, calorie tracking requires you write down what you eat either before or immediatly after you eat. You need a small journal with you at every meal. I make no aplogies for the work that goes into this because it is what teaches you how to eat properly and keep lost weight off. I've tracked my calories (I struggle with my weight too in this food rich, no-exercise culture of ours) on and off for 10 years and learn something new everytime I do it.
I'll be back at my desk tomorrow and will post more on the healthy eatiing side of this issue.
When it comes to counting calories.... Calories are just that, calories.trying not to thread jack, but, isnt it as much the right calories as just counting calories.