3 Takeaways from Counting Calories

by | Apr 9, 2023 | Nutrition

Did you know there’s only one way to lose weight? 

What is it? 

Through a calorie deficit! 

In today’s world, I don’t come across too many people who have NEVER tracked calories.  It’s really become all the rage over the last 10 to 15 years.  

Unfortunately, fitness and nutrition “gurus” or “influencers” have published some pretty generalized information about how many calories you need to lose weight or be healthy.   

That’s created 2 things in the nutrition space – 

1 – Confusion (What’s really right for you!?)

2 – Frustration (WHY DOESN’T THIS WORK!?) 

Counting calories isn’t a requirement for our Complete Performance clients, but it is a strategy we use to help our clients lose a lot of weight and build lean, sexy muscle.  

After surveying our #CPTeam, here are the 3 biggest takeaways from tracking calories – 

#1 You’re Not Eating What You Think 

If there’s one commonality amongst men and women seeking fat loss, it’s this – 

We LOVE to overestimate how much we move, but love even more to underestimate how much we eat.  

In our first 2 challenges of 2023, every #CPTeam member noted that tracking calories opened their eyes to how much they’re ACTUALLY eating. As a coach, I saw 2 common trends:  

You Eat Too Much 

As you know, fat loss requires a calories deficit; therefore, eating too much is a killer to your fat loss goals.  

Once you begin tracking your calories, you build awareness around what you’re eating to ensure you don’t fall out of your calorie deficit.  

You Eat Too Little 

It’s easy to see how eating too much can impact fat loss… 

But what about eating too little? 

In the pursuit of fat loss, the goal is to preserve as much muscle as possible while burning body fat; however, you cannot do that if you’re not eating enough.  

It is far more common than people believe to be eating too little. 
Let this go for too long, and you’ll find things like: 

  • Inconsistent or Non-Existent Hunger Signals 
  • Major Cravings 
  • Fatigue & Slowed Recovery 
  • Brain Fog 

#2 Portion Size Matters  

One of the first methods for change towards healthier living is through an adjustment to portion sizes.  


For 2 reasons: 

  1. It’s Easy to Do 
  2. Portion Sizes Are Nearly Everywhere 

In American culture, we supersize EVERYTHING! 

What starts as 1 tablespoon of peanut butter quickly turns into 3 or more.  

1 cup of rice is suddenly a large bowl. 

1 handful of nuts or chips ends up as half the bag.  

It’s no surprise that we have a hard time recognizing portion sizes on our own WITHOUT tracking calories.  

Counting calories helps to maintain awareness of your portion sizes and prevents you from eating too many calories.    

#3 Calories Matter, But Not That Much 

Calories are VERY important for fat loss (remember, a calorie deficit is the only way to lose weight!).  

Without tracking your calories, there’s no way to know if you’re A) in a calorie deficit at all and B) at the appropriate deficit for your success.  

But calories aren’t everything… 

Tracking calories does A LOT more than tell you how much you’re eating…

It gives you insight on WHAT you’re eating.  

When you track calories, you can identify your biggest sources of calories.  

You can see how many calories you’re getting from fruits and veggies.  

You can ensure you’re eating enough protein to support muscle maintenance or building during fat loss.  

And most importantly, you can see where you can work in some components of your current lifestyle with the newer, healthier one you’re trying to build.  

Oftentimes we lock in on the negatives of counting calories (time consuming, requiring lots of effort, confusing, etc.), but when you look for the positives and possibilities, you’ll find it to be a much more rewarding experience.  


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