Total Weight Loss

Monday, August 16, 2010

Perhaps This Is the Problem...

I've moaned and groaned, whined and complained on this blog for a couple of weeks about not losing weight and using sparkpeople to count calories & nutrients.  I felt all along that I was consuming more calories that old sparky was saying.  I even considered looking at another calorie counting website to confirm.  I decided not to, because I'm trying to work on the control/perfectionism issues in my life.  Who am I to check up on sparkpeople, particularly when so many people have had success with them.  Now, I am reconsidering the whole thing yet again.
Yesterday J-boy and I went out to eat at a chain restaurant after church.  I felt confident that I could find something within my calorie range for the day.  I'd had 314 calories at breakfast leaving me 882 to 1,236 for the rest of the day.  I poured over the menu looking for the best possible way to spend my calories.  I selected Baja chicken.  It was a grilled chicken breast served over black beans, with pico de gallo, rice, and a dollop of sour cream.  I thought that everything was a good choice, except maybe the rice.  It was probably the white stuff with a lot of carbs and not much else nutritionally.  I figured I could eat around it.  I was wrong.  Everything was served in a big pile on the plate.  The black beans were almost soup and could not be separated from the rice at all.  They were marginal taste wise.  I decided after a few bites they weren't worth the trouble, and thought I'd never order that again.  I ate the chicken and only some of the pico (since that has tomatoes in it).  I still thought, however that I'd made a good choice with regard to calories.
During the afternoon, I went to sparkpeople to log in my lunch.  I first did a search on the particular restaurant, but their info wasn't a part of sparkpeople, or at least it wasn't coming up the way I was searching.  I tried a couple of different ways.  Instead I entered each 'ingredient' in my meal, being very generous, I thought with portion size.  I entered chicken breast, black beans, rice, pico & sour cream, individually.  The calorie total came to 338.  That was good, I'd have another 300 calorie meal in the evening and an afternoon snack of about 200.  That would put me squarely in my range for the day.  Go me!!
Not quite.  I had the bright idea to go to the restaurant's website and see if they had the nutritional information listed.  They did, but it was not easy to find.  I was about to give up when I decided to look at the FAQs.  I thought I wasn't the only person in the world to want that information.  I found a link to the pdf there that had complete info.  It was cumbersome and hard to use, but I was determined at this point.  I was not going to let this defeat me.  I was astounded to learn that the calorie count listed on the website for my dish was 990 calories!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  With breakfast, I had already exceeded the 1200 calorie minimum and only had 246 to meet the maximum!!
I was glad that I was persistent and learned that little tidbit of information.  I would have exceeded my calorie limit for the day, by as much as 600 calories.  I know that is a long way from a pound, but good grief.  I can't lose weight with errors like that.
I've decided to give this calorie counting thing one more week.  If it doesn't work, I'm going back to counting carbs.  Although, I don't want to put unattainable deadlines on myself, I don't want to flounder on like this.  It is time to cut my losses (or gains!) and move on.


  1. It is so frustrating to me how many calories are in restaurant food. Ridiculous!

    I too suffer from perfectionism and control. Ugh...not easy traits to go along with losing weight...

  2. Whew! I don't blame you. I felt exhausted just reading about all your efforts. But bravo that you were persistent and found the actual calories. I wish restaurants would have separate menu's for the calories (like Applebee's does). That would make it so much easier. Heck, while I'm wishing, I wish ALL restaurants would just make healthier foods! How many calories and unhealthy fat and carbs would that save us all? You are making such great efforts. Good for you!


  3. Getting an accurate count for calories is key for me. I love to eat out but find that when I do a lot that the weight doesnt come off. It is so hard to guess what other people are putting in the food(and that is probably why it is so yummy!!!). I find that when I prepare my own food it is so much easier to count calories because I know just what is going in. Hang in there!


  4. Lisa,
    It seems to me that perfectionists should be fit & trim, but it just doesn't work that way for me.

    I choose Applebee's a lot because of the ease in getting the calorie count. J-boy and I have explored several websites getting calorie counts of our favorite foods.

    I always wonder what is really in the food, probably lots of butter!