Rebuttal to a MyFitnessPal Article

Earlier this week I read (and reposted on FB) a MyFitnessPal article titled “13 Highly Useful Pieces of Weight-Loss Advice. It showed up in my FB feed and I quickly posted it to my fledgling BigZigFitness FB page albeit with the caveat, “To be honest, I have NOT read this yet, but am blindly sharing it to my page. What say you about the contents?”
Well, my fine readers, I should have read it before I posted it. Lesson learned. Here are my beefs about the 13 pieces of advice in the MyFitnessPal article:

    1. Prioritize taking care of yourself. I agree with this one, for the most part. But the example they give? “I might chose to eat French fries after a harder day at work, but I’d only eat a small portion, and I’d also take a walk.” WHAT?? A small portion of fries at McD has 230 calories. You’d have to walk almost 2.5 MILES just to negate those calories before you started to burn off excess calories. How is THAT taking care of yourself??
    2. Make a fallback plan. I actually like this one. “What’s the ONE THING you need to do to feel like you’re still on track?” Find it, do that.
    3. Think about whether negativity impacts your decisions. Well, yes. They say, “if it doesn’t align with who you are, what your beliefs are or what’s important to you, let it go.” Yes. Then why would you encourage me to eat fries?
    4. Keep adjusting your calorie intake. Please. There is a lot of chatter online about ‘eating back’ the calories that you burn during exercise. If you are looking to MAINTAIN your weight, this makes sense. If you are looking to lose weight, don’t eat them back…
    5. Eat an adequate amount of protein; it fuels fat burning. I am all for a high protein diet for many reasons. It keeps you ‘full’ longer, it helps repair and build muscle, it helps keep the fires burning. If you are using a protein supplement, please read and research the labels carefully. There are a lot of nefarious ingredients out there..IMG_20140507_223332_397
    6. Focus on the bigger picture. This is the one that tripped me up and spun me around. Why? Here’s what they said, “At the end of the day, it’s not about a number on a scale, the number of marathons you’ve run, or the weight you can lift. It’s about how you feel and the positive impact you can make on the lives of those around you.” Ummmm. No. MY weight-loss isn’t about making an impact on others. It is about ME controlling my weight. It is about ME making LESS of an impact on the ground and my knees and my hips. Sorry I’m not sorry
    7. Be strategic about eating back your calories. Here’s a strategy: don’t. Not if you are trying to lose weight.
    8. Drink more water. I need to do this. In fact, I’m doing it right now.
    9. Add exercise to help maintain your weight loss. If you just cut calories without adding in some exercise (and by exercise I don’t just mean MOVEMENT. They’re different. GOLFING is not exercising. Weeding a garden is not exercise. That’s movement.) Get your heart rate and respiration rate up. Feel your muscles working. Get sweaty.
    10. Get in the habit of consistent tracking. Aside from the redundancy in the title, I agree. Whether you like to use an app or a notebook, tracking your intake (and caloric output) can be a big help. You’ll be able to SEE where you struggle. You’ll be able to see where those extra, hidden calories are coming from (helloooooo, ice cream!). I wish that MyFitnessPal had a spot for users to write comments along with their intake. I believe it would be helpful to be able to track mood, too. Then I could search a mood and see that most of the time when I was ‘happy’ I ate fruit and when I was ‘cranky’ I ate jelly-beans (I don’t eat jelly-beans) or whatever (cookies. I eat cookies.).
    11. Reconsider the quality of what you’re eating. Blah blah clean eating blah blah no refined/processed foods blah blah organic. Stop me if you think that you’ve heard this one before.
    12. (omg are we done yet?) Create an environment that’s hospitable to healthier eating. Yea, this one seems simple enough. Until the others in your house aren’t at ALL interested in doing this, so you’re stuck still having chips, goldfish, white pasta, ice cream, and cookies in your house. I spend most of my awake hours at work, so I try to keep that area free from distractions and temptations.
    13. PRAISE THE LORD! Consider the quantity and quality of your calories. Ok, is it just me, or haven’t we covered this at least TWICE already? Numbers 11, 7, 12, and 5. Go back and read them. Not sure why they decided to go for the baker’s dozen with this list, but there you have it.

    Thanks for sticking with me on this rant rebuttal. What say you of this MyFitnessPal Article?

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