Dear (Food) Diary

One of the questions I’m asked frequently is, “What do you eat?” Another is, “why don’t you blog your meals?” Still another is, “Do you track your meals?” Today, I’ll attempt some answers. Let’s start with the last question first….

I do track my meals most days. This usually involves jotting down what I’m eating in my little daily notebook (meals on the left-hand side, MITs on the right). I guesstimate the calories and keep a running total for the day. Every now and then I use SparkPeople to track for a day or two, just to make sure my calorie and nutrition memories are in check.

As for why I don’t blog my meals, there are several reasons:
1) I am too lazy busy to take photos of my food.
2) I eat the same 5 or 6 meals 90% of the time.
3) I’m not much of a cook. I lean more toward stirring and assembling, and I don’t really care about presentation. In other words, my food is not photogenic. On the other hand, I wouldn’t have to worry about making people hungry! :)
4) I’m no shining example of clean eating, and I would hate to send anyone down a bad path.
5) I’m not a food photographer.

But for today, and today only, I did manage to photograph most of what I ate. Let’s review:

Breakfast #1 was a banana. No picture, as it was just before 6 a.m. and I was practically sleep-eating.

Breakfast #2 was my version of Lori’s pancake. I use oat bran and greek yogurt in place of oatmeal and cottage cheese, but the idea is the same.

oatbran pancake

oatbran and yogurt pancake

After the gym, lunch was also split into 2 parts. Lunch #1 was “turkey roll-ups” (turkey w/a wedge of laughing cow queso fresco), too many olives, a few sugar free bread & butter pickles, and a small apple.


finger food!

About an hour later, I took the remainder of the very last sale Fage 0%, stirred in a 1/2 scoop of chocolate whey protein and a 1/2 tablespoon of mini chocolate chips, and called it done. A better food blogger would have served herself in a pretty bowl or cup, but I just ate it from the container. :)

protein glop

protein glop

I had two snacks in the afternoon, neither of them photographed. The first snack was nine almonds; the second was a McDonald’s Chocolate Chip Cookie. One was planned; the other was a spur-of-the-moment decision. Guesses? :)

Dinner was a repeat of last night: Mexican Chicken Burrito, DIY Taco Chips with salsa, and a small salad:



It didn’t seem quite so…beige when I ate it. Thank goodness for the salad or I might have fallen asleep mid-meal! Oh, by the way, these are not my normal DIY chips. I didn’t have any corn tortillas, so I used one of my fiber wraps. Cammy improvs!

I forgot to take a picture of my dessert, which was a New Mornings Honey Graham cracker (1 sheet) with a tablespoon of marshmallow fluff as a spread. If I hadn’t had the stupid cookie, I could have had another 1/2 tablespoon of mini-chocolate chips on top of it. But it was plenty good as it was.

And that was my food day in pictures. If you’re more the numbers type, here’s what SparkPeople had to say about it:

MEAL FOOD Calories Fat Carbs Protein Fiber, total
6:00 a.m. Banana, fresh, 1 medium (7in. to 7-7/8in. long) 109 1 28 1 3
8:00 a.m. Oat Bran, 0.33 cup 29 1 8 2 2
  Egg, fresh, 1 large 70 5 0 6 0
  Flaxseed, 0.5 tbsp 30 2 2 1 2
  Fage – 0%, 3 oz 49 0 3 9 0
  Smart Balance Omega Plus Buttery Spread, 0.5 Tbsp 40 5 0 0 0
    327 14 41 19 7
11:45 a.m. Spanish Olives w/pimento -6 small 45 3 3 0 0
  Apples, fresh, 1 small 63 0 16 0 3
  Honey Roasted Turkey Breast, 2 oz 60 1 4 11 0
  Body Fortress Whey Protein – Chocolate, 0.5 serving 65 1 2 13 0
  Laughing Cow Queso Fresco, 1 wedge 35 2 1 2 0
  Mini Chocolate Chip Morsels, 0.5 tbsp 35 2 5 0 0
  Fage – 0%, 3 oz 49 0 3 9 0
    352 9 34 35 3
snack 2:30 p.m. Almonds, 9 almond 62 5 2 2 1
snack 4:00 p.m. McDonald’s Chocolate Chip Cookie, 1 serving 160 7 22 2 1
7:00 p.m Ole High Fiber Low Carb Tortilla (2 tortillas) 142 4 10 16 24
  Chicken Burrito Filling, 1 serving 162 1 19 18 7
  Black Olives, 3 jumbo 20 2 1 0 1
  Kraft 2% Mild Cheddar Cheese, 0.5 oz 45 3 0 4 0
  Romaine Lettuce (salad), 1.5 cup 12 0 2 1 1
  Tomato, small 0.5 10 0 2 0 1
  Newman’s Own Low Fat Italian Dressing, 0.25 serving 15 1 2 0 0
    406 11 36 39 34
snack 8:00 p.m. Fluff – Marshmallow – 2 tbsp., 0.5 serving 30 0 8 0 0
  Honey Grahams, Organic – New Morning (1 full) 65 2 12 1 1
    95 2 20 1 1
  Total 1402 48 155 98 47

Hmmm, that puts me about 500 calories short of my daily average. I’ll have days like that, just as I have days that go 500 (or more) calories in the other directions. As long as they balance out, I’m fine. :)

So, you see why I don’t “blog my food”. I admire those who prepare pretty meals and remember to photograph them in a nice way. I’ll just live vicariously through them. I’m doing good to track my meals.

I did enjoy using SparkPeople today. It had been a long time since I recorded an entire day, and I may do it again tomorrow. I’m changing to my tuna and Italian chicken meals, and I’d like to see how it breaks down. :)

Are you one of those amazing people who prepares a different meal every night? Or are you my sister (or brother) in sameness–wait, let’s call it ‘continuity’. It sounds classier.

25 thoughts on “Dear (Food) Diary

  1. Oh, I just love food and of course eating. Like you I just guess the number of calories I take-in everyday. It is a good idea though, to take a picture, so the doctor would know the exact medicine to prescribe! But kidding aside, we have to be careful of what we eat and how much we eat, that is one way to have a fit and healthy body.

  2. Boring meals works for me/us. It keeps food as a fuel rather than a focus. Not to say that when I hit maintenance for good that we won’t be more adventuresome.

  3. I for one, am sooooooo glad you did blog your food! It was meant to be for me! I was looking for some “treats” and you gave me not 1, but 2 AWESOME treat ideas! Throwing the protein powder and chocolate chips into your yogurt is brilliant! BUT even better is the graham cracker with fluff and chocolate chips! MMmmMM! And you put the NI so I can easily calculate the WW points! THANK YOU! I think you are an awesome food blogger! :)
    I eat the same breakfast and lunch pretty much everyday. I try and get a little creative with dinners.

  4. You already know this, but for everyone else’s benefit…….my meals make YOURS look boring. My reasons include I am simply not someone who enjoys cooking AT ALL nor do I even appreciate the finished product (unless someone else cooked it!). I’m busy doing other things and when I realize it’s meal time, I need something right then. Taking too much time to think about it leads to eating too much.

    Thanks for this post. Much as I love reading the bloggers who truly love cooking and posting recipes/pics, it helps me in MY journey to know there are others like me who prefer the simplicity method.

  5. I’m impressed with the protein pancake. When you spoke about this last weekend, I was a little skeptical… not of flavor but of texture. But it looks like it browns up nicely. I may have to try this.

    I like your finger foods lunch… simple… quick… and not too many carbs to induce a post-lunch nap. :)

  6. I’m home alone every other month because my husband works in Korea, and during that time I find that I cook a huuuge casserole of something, and then eat that until it’s empty… So not very exciting in other words.. :p

  7. I am so like you Cammy in terms of eating the same types of foods although I changes the order or spices or I do add in new things every so often. BUT, the presentation – NOT! I love when people do that but I am like you! 😉 Hey, I love your pancake! I rather use oatbran & yogurt.. are the measurements the same as Lori’s pancake. It looks fluffy!

    • Yes, all the other measurements are the same as Lori’s excellent recipe. I usually omit the cinnamon. Okay, truth? I usually *forget* to add the cinnamon. :)

  8. Nice food options. I think you have the right idea not blogging about food. It’s good to share healthy eating pointers and keep an eye on what’s being put in our bodies. But, at least for me, blogging about every meal and taking photos can come dangerously close to the food obsession that lead to my obesity. Food, even healthy food, shouldn’t be put on a pedestal and fetishized and obsessed over. Writing in detail and photographing your “grass-fed, free-range, organic, braised and roasted tenderloin in an acai berry/agave nectar glaze with a sized of cauliflower mock cheesy taters” hits the same red button that talking about the last bag of Doritos we tore into does. The less food obsession, the better. Food is just fuel. It isn’t meant to give us pleasure and isn’t meant to rock our world and be “OMG so good.” Sure, it’s nice sometimes, but the food expectations need to be dialed down some.

    That said, your protein gloop looks delish.

    • Oh, I’m grateful for the food bloggers. I get lots of ideas and if they have pictures, I can see what it’s *supposed* to look like. (That’s how I knew my black bean brownies shouldn’t have looked like steak.) I can also see it as a good accountability tool.

      But yeah, some folks do get carried away with the adjectives. :)

  9. I don’t think you day of eats was boring at all! You had variety and were creative with food. You are too hard on yourself. :)

    I happen to love left overs and I often double recipes to make sure we do have plenty for more meals. I don’t mind eating the same soup for lunch for a few days in a row. Having said that I do cook different things from week to week. Love to try new recipes and new to me foods. Food is just so much fun!

    I enjoyed seeing what you ate and how it stacked up nutritionally thank you for sharing it.

  10. “It didn’t seem quite so…beige when I ate it.”

    You so often have me laughing – I just love the way you write, Cammy. Your information clicks with me and makes so much sense. And I’m clicking back and forth to your links – takes forever to read your posts, thank Heavens. Keep it up, Cammy!

  11. Well, I could eat the same few things over and over. I get into a rut – let’s call it a “routine.” Makes life easy. Especially since I don’t like to cook. Now that the teen has moved out, I rarely make “family” dinners for my husband and me. He and I both find it easy to be spontaneous. Last night I had steel cut oats (with flax meal and SF maple syrup) for dinner and quite enjoyed that:)

  12. LOL. I go both ways, as you know. I like ‘continuity’ in eating as well as in other aspects of my life. And many days I look at my food and think “it looks like baby food.” So those days don’t get recorded. But I like cooking and some days its fun to share the food with others! You gave me some good ideas that I hadn’t tried yet. Like your pancake ‘recipe’ and the protein glop looks great.

  13. nice job.
    Now I feel fully informed, thank you.
    I don’t mind eating the same things over and over. I’m so grateful that I still really like tuna. (not thinking about the mercury for now)

  14. I am big fan of food, cooking food, looking at food, taking pictures of food etc. I have simple meals most of the time, but I like to make them look nice (you may have seen some of my dinner pictures on Facebook).

    Breakfast and lunch on work days are pretty simple, protein shake in the morning, some kind of protein for lunch, snacks of nuts or cheese.

    I like it be varied when it comes to dinner though.

    Thanks for showing us what you eat in a typical day. I always find that interesting!

  15. Thanks for sharing what you eat. I am always curious about what other maintainers eat.

    My meals are fairly simple, I think. I do like the quick meals, but I also love to make them look colorful and pretty for me to eat.

  16. I have a lot of meals that I rotate around, but I’ve got a lot of people to please. If it were just me, I’d eat much more simply. Thanks for sharing your food plan!

  17. I have to log; it’s a discinpline thing with me and I cook a meal at night (if I didn’t I think I might have a mutiny on my hands). But yeah my daytime meals are pretty much the same every day. Bfast is yogurt and banana; sometimes a low carb tortilla w/tbs of natural pb and craisins. Then a midmorning snack of an apple or grapes. Lunch is a salad with romaine (or a lettuce mix), black beans, sunflower seeds, a boiled egg, cheddar rice shreds, beets, and shredded carrots.

  18. I do tend to make big batches of things for myself and then eat them all week. Right now I eat very differently than my husband -but I work nights so I make something for me and something for him (most nights) on the weekend I experiment and enjoy cooking.

    We are getting inexpensive asparagus right now and I love to wrap cooked asparagus up in chicken slices (I don’t eat ham and prefer chicken to turkey.) I also do a roll-up with herbed cream cheese with chopped walnuts and black olives mixed in.

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