My own Accountability

- POSTED ON: Mar 11, 2011


While it is true that many people get tired of calorie counting, and many people don't manage to continue calorie counting under stress, this is not ALWAYS the case.

For example, in my own case, for the past six and a half years I have continued to consistently log ALL of my food into my computer software food log, DietPower, EVERY SINGLE DAY, and this program counts the calories and other nutritional values of that food. That computer program says that today is the 2364th day without any missing data.

This does NOT mean that I never overate or never binged during the past six years, It merely means that I ALWAYS entered ALL of my food into the journal. It became, and is, a HABIT.

This is the principle of ACCOUNTABILITY.
I am accountable for every bite I eat.... even on vacation days, sick days, stress days.
This has provided me with long-term success.

My life has not been stress-free during this process. I have all of the ongoing NORMAL stresses of life, both good and bad, and I have also had some EXCEPTIONAL stressing circumstances. I'm going to list some of them below, not to show myself as a "victim", but as an example of the stress one can go through while successfully counting calories.

  For Example:

I have two unmarried adult children. During my weight-loss phase, my son was severely burned in a fire, and spent over a month in a hospital burn unit in severe pain, receiving skin graphs.

During my maintenance-phase, my daughter was in the hospital in a coma, and upon physical recovery spent long periods in mental health facilities, which resulted in long-term disability SSI, making her mother (me) the one responsible for handling her ongoing income.

During my weight-loss phase, I was responsible for my aging mother, who had Alzheimer's, and was the one who had to place her in a facility, visit her daily, advocate for her, and witness her death.

During my maintenance phase, my father-in-law died; we were forced to place my disabled mother-in-law into a nursing home, where she was visited frequently until her death, about 6 months ago.

During my maintenance phase, the nephew with whom I had a close relationship, became a Marine, and spent a tour in Iraq, and after coming home safely, spent another tour in Afghanistan, which resulted in his receiving two purple hearts.

During the past 5 years of my maintenance phase, my husband has had eye surgery twice, as well as another unrelated surgery. My best friend for the past 25 years, was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, and I spent time with her almost every day until she died 5 months later.Other beloved family members have also dealt with severe illness.

During my maintenance phase, three years ago, I developed a life-threatening medical condition, which resulted in emergency surgery and hospitalization for 10 days. During this time I lived on IV's, and was unable to log my food, but as soon as I was released from the hospital and returned home, I logged in estimates of the amounts of all the liquid food I received, during that past 10 days, and continued with my ongoing food entries.

During the past 6 years, I have also had numerous vacations, holidays, and celebrations...all involving food. I overate during many of those occasions,but NO MATTER HOW MUCH I ATE, I LOGGED IT ALL.

And So Life Goes.
During that time, I also brushed my teeth, combed my hair, got dressed daily, and used the toilet when necessary. I prioritize entering my food into my computer journal as equal to, or more important than, those activities.

I know for a fact that one CAN develop a HABIT of counting calories; and I know for a fact that one CAN continue counting calories under stress; and the truth is, IT ISN'T ALL THAT DIFFICULT.
Except to my family and friends, I'm not all that Special, and I think that there is a very good chance that this is something ANYONE can do, IF THEY DECIDE TO.

Leave me a comment.

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Existing Comments:

On Mar 11, 2011 rroush wrote:
This is very impressive and quite a habit to develop! I go through periods of tracking in stretches that range from a couple of days to several months. Yes, you are correct that anyone CAN do this if they decide has to be willing to make that kind of commitment you have made though. For you, I believe this has been a major contributing factor to your success. When I track my running miles when training for races, I always do better at getting out there for a run and running that extra mile. There's something about tracking that automatically holds us more accountable! :-)

On Mar 11, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Thanks Rebecca. Tracking my food IS the most important thing that I do, and I am certain that, personally, I would not have achieved my weight-loss success without it.

On Mar 11, 2011 sad wrote:
That is a powerful blog. I didnt realize just how long you have been on the diet power program. Maybe one day i'll decide to use it too...

On Mar 11, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             SAD, I hope you do. If you need any help with it, let me know.

On Mar 12, 2011 Karen925 wrote:
I know for a fact that one CAN develop a HABIT of counting calories; and I know for a fact that one CAN continue counting calories under stress; and the truth is, IT ISN'T ALL THAT DIFFICULT. ***** This is exactly correct. My hair dresser asked abut my weight loss method. I linked daily weighing and food recording to basic daily activities. In the same list as brushing my teeth, showering, making my bed, combing my hair, etc... I did not do it for years because I thought it was tedious and prone to celery eating. With the computer & in my case apps, this is an outdated judgment. Now, when people ashew CC, knowing these tools, I think it is because they do not want the clarity that comes from recording. I wince sometimes when I reveiw my meals, but wince I do because it is easier than being fat. Truth is ultimately easier than a lie.

On Mar 12, 2011 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Karen, when you said ............. "I think it is because they do not want the clarity that comes from recording" .......... you really hit the nail on the head. Your statement .... "Truth is ultimately easier than a lie." .... is VERY true.

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