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Thread: tracking calories... Do i have to?

  1. #1
    Wannabebig Member civrob's Avatar
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    tracking calories... Do i have to?

    Im planning on starting up training in 3 weeks having been absent for 8 months. This was due to finical constraints and uni work taking priority, I could not afford the diet and the gym membership. Now that I have graduated and found I job I can start again....

    However I want to do it properly this time, I want to learn from my mistakes. I have made all the clasic complete utter noobie mistakes such as the high reps give the toned look and buyiung overpriced/overmarketed?" supplements when a cheaper one would do exactly the same thing!!

    However i'm wiser now, im going to plan carefully and read read up...

    Diet is a major part of weight training and my question is Do I have to track calories? It seems a little daunting...

    It just seems difficult to do and if I need to do it 7 times a week then its likely ill lapse and not keep it up.

    A suitable alternative in my mind is to track my diet a few times to get the figure I eat and then work out how much more I need to eat etc.... Once I have found a mental eating routine thats close I can stop with the tracking my diet??
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  2. #2
    Ex-Manwhore KingWilder's Avatar
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    I have found greater success when I track calories...I def. wouldn't get enough protein or healthy fats without doing it

    some people on here don't track anymore though, so they could prob. give you advice on what to do if you seriuosly can't find it in yourself to do it
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  3. #3
    Senior Member BFGUITAR's Avatar
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    I did track at first but than ended up tracking and realized I wasnt getting enough of everything, eating at only about 2000 calories. Now im well up to 3000 and seeing very good gains. I dont track anymore because I more or less know what I need ot eat.

  4. #4
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    It's not a big deal. Five minutes on fitday and then you'll know exactly what you're putting in your body. Many people, myself included, didn't see results until they started tracking.

    Of course if you're progressing without tracking, then there's no need to start now!

  5. #5
    It's a Republic dammit! reloaded's Avatar
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    It's not a big deal. Five minutes on fitday and then you'll know exactly what you're putting in your body. Many people, myself included, didn't see results until they started tracking.
    Tracking is pretty much a lifestyle now.

    In my experience, the biggest single problem with people who can't make gains or hit a roadblock: They don't track their calories!

    Advice: Start tracking. If you want to optimize your training, do what's necessary and don't half-ass your nutrition. You'll be sorry in the long run.
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    Team Chesticles! Unholy's Avatar
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  7. #7
    Back in business WBBIRL's Avatar
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    Its very easy to be WAY off on what you "think" your consuming.

    Track those calories, chances are your not doing anything better with those five minutes anyhow.

    I thought i was staying under 2000 per day during my "new years resolution" cut a year ago and I was probably off by over 1000.

    I don't track in the traditional sense, but I do read food labels more carefully now. My fix for the moment is to only eat food thats very easy to tell how much you had and to figure the macros out very easily.

    Soon enough I'll get a kitchen scale, and use measuring cups and start recording in fitday. So far in my cut I don't need to be THAT strict, but I should be.

    Practice what you preach eh =p

  8. #8
    1000 or bust motoko013's Avatar
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    the only problem i have with tracking is i eat the cafeteria food here at college and i have no idea what they put in it....so it's like i'm guessing on fitday.....

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  9. #9
    Wannabebig Member civrob's Avatar
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    Okey I have been convinved sort of...

    ill track for the first 3 weeks or so to get a feel and adjust my diet to one that reaches my intended <yet to research amount>. If I make steady process then ill stop tracking. Then every 6 weeks ill do it for a week or something.

    Its not that 5 minutes its knowing what you have eaten. For example if you get the odd takeaway or something.

    Im serious about weight lifting but I want it to be a part of a balanced life and one where suits what I do. Im willing to make sacrifices but if i promise myself to record everything I eat I will find it difficult... I'm still going to drink and have a night out during weekends. Im going to think really hard about it over this month and find a good personal balance for me.
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  10. #10
    Cross trainer & DL addict mikesbytes's Avatar
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    Fitday taught me a lot about my diet. I'm no longer tracking, but if I feel the need again, I'll be doing fitday. Only negative was that it wasn't really geared to my country, some foods were hard to relate to it and metrics/imperial issues sometimes arised.

  11. #11
    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
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    I'm one of the few (it seems) that doesn't track on FitDay. It's just a pain in the ass to have to add in all the foods I have that aren't in the system, or to correct the information that is in there.

    I just read labels and keep portions under control and keep totals in my head. It's tracking, but I'm not anal about it and am still able to keep seeing improvement, though I've been maintaining for a month or so. Starting the cut again may require a closer eye for detail.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by civrob View Post
    Okey I have been convinved sort of...

    ill track for the first 3 weeks or so to get a feel and adjust my diet to one that reaches my intended <yet to research amount>. If I make steady process then ill stop tracking. Then every 6 weeks ill do it for a week or something.
    that sounds like a good compromise. If you ever find yourself at a plateau, you should consider tracking again. It's amazing how much of a difference diet makes.

    Its not that 5 minutes its knowing what you have eaten. For example if you get the odd takeaway or something.
    I'm a college student as well. I eat takeout fairly often. You don't have to know exactly what you ate, but a ballpark estimate isn't a bad idea. For example, if you're cutting and ate a whole large pizza, you know you probably shouldn't eat much else for the day.

    Im serious about weight lifting but I want it to be a part of a balanced life and one where suits what I do. Im willing to make sacrifices but if i promise myself to record everything I eat I will find it difficult... I'm still going to drink and have a night out during weekends. Im going to think really hard about it over this month and find a good personal balance for me.
    We all do man! That's what makes college so awesome - random tuesday night drinking parties. I don't bother tracking anything when I know it's going to be a ridculous night. What fun is it getting drunk and regretting it while you're doing it? You should at least wait until the next morning before going "that was a bad idea"

    Here's my appraoch: Whenever I'm at the computer (quite often....I'm a CS student) I go to fitday and put in what I've eaten. Come the end of the day, I usually notice I'm short in calories. I pound back some more food and I'm fine. I guess if your cutting you should track during the day rather than find out you're over your intake for the day.

    That's just my view on tracking.

  13. #13
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    I'd definitely track your calories. I didn't see nearly as good results before I started tracking everyday on fitday. Now, it is second nature. Like RedSpikeyThing, I am a CS student though, so at school, work, and home, I'm usually within 5 ft of a computer. If you are like me, you are forced to eat a lot of fast food. Turns out, it's usually easier to track those foods than home cooked meals as more and more fast food franchises post nutrition facts on their websites.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member miken5254's Avatar
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    Man tracking is hard, especially when you eat home cooked meals, I'm always guesstimating.....I need a scale.
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  15. #15
    Team Chesticles! Unholy's Avatar
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    After a while you learn to Eyeball portion sizes.
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