A while back my brother decided he was going to work out and pack on some muscle. So I put together a spreadsheet where he could plan a diet high in protein and track his caloric intake. I got the details of his necessary dietary intakes, upped them for a high protein/active lifestyle and started planning foods that would help him get there. It was kind of fun actually. It’s analytical, which I like, and gave me some perspective to the composition of certain foods.
Well last month I dug up that spreadsheet and adjusted all the data to apply to me. I kept track of my meal consumption for 3 weeks and took a look at how all my decisions added up. Did I meet my daily recommended caloric intake? Did I go over? (haha yes, but cake is so delicious!) Was I meeting my protein, fat, and carb needs?
I wasn’t exact on my numbers because the effort would not have been worth the result, but I tried to get close to the actual based on what I know. Example – I might have had a ham sandwich one day with mayo and then a roast beef two days later with mustard, but on my chart they both have the same dietary properties.
If you’re looking to try this exercise out, I would highly recommend it. I found my recommended daily intake (RDI) values from the Mayo Clinic and my nutrition book. I got most of my food composition data from www.FitDay.com and nutrition labels. There are multiple websites that offer a calorie counter so you don’t have to create your own spreadsheet. I just did cause I’m a nerd. The government also has a website if you’re looking for dependable data (www.mypyramid.com).
Here are the results compared to my RDI represented by the red lines.
I did alright sticking to the recommended value for someone of my height, weight, age, and activity level. There were about 4 days out of 21 where it looks like I had an extra meal. And the days following were typically lower showing that I was conscientious of my previous day’s decisions. Alright, I’m not perfect but at least I’m hitting the mark 2 times out of 3.
Regarding carbohydrate intake, I was typically below the recommended value. Only on days where I ate too much did I manage to meet or exceed that value.
OUCHIES. There were only 3 days out of 21 where I was below and 11 days where I was over by more than 12 grams of fat. Although the downward trend towards the end looks promising…maybe?…=D.
I had trouble hitting my recommended protein values too. Probably not good for someone who needs to build the muscles to swim/bike/run.
Ok this is where I decide to eat more beans, less fatty meat, more fish, and more wheat bread.
I like being healthy anyway.