A Calorie Saved is a Calorie Earned


When I was in high school I lost 50 pounds by just working out. I ate taco bell and drank cherry-lime-aide every day like all of my friends, but spending an hour in the gym each night was all it took for me to burn off the burritos and then some. Because of that, I base most of my weight loss plan on working out even though experts say I shouldn’t.

“80% of weight loss is your diet/what you eat”

“You get fit in the gym… you get thin in the kitchen”

There are so many quotes and adages that focus on eating as the main component to weight loss. But its a hard shift for me to make.

I’ve been working out 4-5 times per week lately and while I’m on a downward trend with my weight loss, I know that I will lose so much more as I adjust what I put into my mouth. Skipping the cupcakes at the office meeting is waaaay easier than spending 2 hours in the gym to work it off.

In the same way that “a penny saved is a penny earned”, a calorie not eaten is a calorie earned and hopefully a pound lost!

I know that right now I’m exercising in order to balance out the extra calories I consume. But exercising as damage control is not a sustainable way to lose weight and keep it off. Its time for me to (once again) start looking at what I’m eating… and how much. I’m making a commitment to increase my fruit/veggie intake and say “no” more to foods that I don’t need (i.e. red velvet cake, an office staple at my job).

Anyway, I lost 1 pound again this week… next week I’d really like to lose 2 pounds.

  • MD

    When I was really on the diet wagon, I used fatsecret.com to track everything that I ate. You can download the mobile app as well. You can scan the barcode on your phone and it’ll find the item and then you just put in how much you ate. You can also search by restaurant and all of that. It’s not exhaustive but it’s a fantastic site/app and you can add stuff to their database. When I first started using it, my intentions were purely to see how much I was eating and what the caloric/fat cost was. Let me tell you it blew my mind! Even when I thought I was “good”, I was being pretty unhealthy! After a couple of weeks of seeing that, I decided to cut back and make wiser food choices. I lost 50 pounds! Oh, another great thing about the site and app is that you can also log all your workouts and it’ll give you a total of caloric intake and expenditure for the day. They have a ton of diet plans online that you can follow if you want and you can connect with people that are following your diet or just dieting in general. They also have recipes online. I really can’t speak highly enough about this website! My bff and her fiance joined it and we were diet buddies across the country for a year before her wedding. I plan on using it again after my move to Chicago. It really was a great resource for me and made dieting so much easier.

    • Anonymous

      I’ll DEFINITELY check that site out… thank you!!

      • MD

        I hope you like it!

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          Following on that you get thin in the kitchen, the best exercise you can do it to put down the fork.

  • LC

    This is just what I needed to read today. I’ve been doing damage-control workouts and its soo not okay!

  • Matilda

    My diet sucks! I love the Gym, and I am there 5 or 6 days a week logging some crazy hours….I am even attempting working out twice a day now….but my diet is Horrible…I battle emotional eating constantly….thanks for sharing….gonna try harder…..thanks again!

  • http://exposingthefairytale.wordpress.com/ Aria

    I have the habit of doing the same with the working out to offset my diet. It definitely helps when I watch my diet as well. Expedites weight loss. Thanks for inspiring me today!

  • Beth

    I recently did the 21 day Daniel Fast and it totally changed my life. It’s meant as a spiritual exercise, but it’s also just a great cleansing process to go through and a helpful beginning to a new way of eating. Although I completed the fast three weeks ago, I have continued with the basics of it and I feel like my life is totally changing. I’ve lost over 20 lbs in six weeks just by changing what I eat and it’s been an incredible journey. The first four days are super difficult, but beyond that point… I felt great! Check out http://www.ultimatedanielfast.com if you’re interested in learning more! (and seeing some delicious recipes!)

  • pinkrose

    Have you ever thought of trying the weight watchers approach? I don’t necessarily mean following the plan but they basically suggest you eat food a certain number of points but by doing activity you can also earn a number of points. It really puts into perspective how much activity you need just to earn a few points and thus makes you realise diet is imperative to weight loss.

  • Guest

    did you know your posts no longer show up in their entirety on Google Reader? Just the first few lines and then a link to read the rest on your blog.

    Just thought i’d let you know so you can take care of it before you lose followers :)

  • Tina

    I’ve been focused more on adding things to my diet..veggies, fruit, yogurt etc. I don’t make anything off limits. I just had a bowl of salad followed by a scoop of mac ‘n cheese and a slice of chocolate cake. But I was so full from the salad that I ate way less than I normally would.

  • GoneShoeShopping

    Hey Cece
    It sounds like you are going really well!
    Here’s a few little tips that worked for me – I hope you don’t mind me sharing these. I lost about 40 pounds and have kept it off for years (give or take a few).
    - To get me started, I tracked everything I ate and drank by either keeping a food diary or logging it on Weight Watchers, right down to dressings, drinks and portion sizes. I was eating far more than I thought – but not just in portions. I was packing on the calories through little slices of cheese and constant snacking. It helped me understand the actual value of the foods I was eating.
    - I cut down on “drinking the calories”, by elimating or reducing soda and fruit juices. I generally swapped wine and beer for vodka and diet soda, or champagne.
    - I tried to get into the habit of gently reducing my portion sizes by about 1/4 – 1/5. Over time, it became second nature and now I eat slightly smaller portions of everything – it’s a really easy way to reduce calories without really noticing
    - I tried to avoid “diet” products – they are often packed with sugar, or “high frucose corn syrup” (another word for sugar) – which can be worse for you.
    - I still had chocolate and a piece of cake here and there – every week, just not every day.
    - I did exercise that I liked, such as walking home from work. At the gym, I did some cardio but also focused on strength. Body Pump classes were fun really toned up my arms and legs.
    - Vegetables – I pack them into all sort of yummy recipes.

    Now I guess it’s more of a ‘healthy-ish lifestyle’.

    I still eat chips every other week, drink wine and have weeks where the exercise doesn’t happen, and I go up a few pounds – but I think that’s real life. The pounds come down again when I get back to my normal routine again.

    I hope that might have helped. x

    • Anonymous

      THANK YOU!!! that was very very helpful :-D

      • GoneShoeShopping

        You’re welcome. :-) I guess being healthy all comes down to making choices as part of a lifestyle, rather than a quick fix. If we can make a good choice about 8-or-so times out of 10, I personally think that’s a great way to live. Good luck! x