One of the problems with calorie counting in most dieters is that they don’t understand the system of work and rewards. This is ok because I didn’t understand it for a long time either and once I did, I still didn’t know how to use it to my advantage. To make it easier there are many different ways you can use it to your advantage. The bad news is that some people just don’t get it or even want to accept that it is at your disposal. If you look at it this way, dieting is simply taking in more calories than you use during the day. Most people assume that this means you starve yourself and you exercise to exhaustion, and then hopefully you will get skinny. Any way that you slice that hypothesis up it doesn’t seem all that fun and exciting does it?
Ok let me break down the things you need to understand based on science. No, this won’t be like the hell that your 7th grade science teacher put you through. This is just life science that will actually make you a little happier if you look at it positively. The human body uses a certain amount of calories every day just for waking up, doing all the stuff you have to, and then going to bed. That amount is different for everyone based on weight, height etc. To make things really easy there is an absolute base minimum of calories that men and women MUST have or else the human body will rebel against any efforts to lose weight. Men must have 1500 calories a day and women must have 1200 calories a day. Sounds small but I have seen too many people try to go lower and get no good results, so at least you know you can eat while dieting.
The next thing people don’t seem to understand is that exercise is NOT really a way of cutting into those calories, but more a way to enhance the amount of calories you can eat. Here’s an example that will make you understand a little better. I am on a 1600 calorie a day diet as I cut up for beach season. I actually eat between 1900 and 2100 calories a day. How can this be so? Well it is because I have my way of tracking the calories I burn above and beyond the “waking up, doing the things I have to, and going to bed” calories. This changes everything quite a bit.
The best investment anyone can put forth into a good diet is a pedometer of some sorts. You can get a cheap one at the dollar store or like the rest of us you can just use the pedometer in your smart watch. On an average day I range around 15,000 steps, but I can always get more in if I want to, and I usually want to. I take nice leisurely walks throughout the day looking at birds or foliage, and can very easily bring that total up around 20,000 steps and I often do. In my case 15,000 steps is 610 calories. I add that to the 1600 calories and now I am allotted 2210 calories in that day. Usually I am under 2100 so I am at a double plus. On a day that I get in 20,000 steps that would equal about 850 calories, so if I add that to 1600 and I am looking at 2450 calories. If I still eat under 2100, I think you get the point.
Yes, it will take you a little research to figure out what your calorie per step actually is, but once you have it you know it and then before you know it you can calculate these things in your mind really quickly. That’s science and math that in and of itself is actually kind of fun isn’t it? Of course I am at a triple plus if you think about it because I also do an hour or two of hard lifting everyday, which I could calculate calories for but I don’t feel the need, since I get so many calories just for walking. If you think about it, just hitting weights for 30 minutes a day can add a lot of “hidden” calories to your daily diet, and really give you a surprise every few days when you step on the scale. Now go out there and get your diet working even better now that you have a little more knowledge on how it really works!