There always comes a time when you're following your meal plan, or at least think you're following your meal plan, and for some reason you are NOT losing weight.
Today we're going to talk about a common reason why this may be happening: sneaky calories.
These are the calories that show up in a lot of different places: the peanut butter on the knife that you didn't weigh and you lick it.
Let's say that peanut butter, about a quarter tablespoon, is going to have about 2 grams of protein, 2 grams of carbs, and 4 grams of fat totaling to 48 calories.
And let's say you have that peanut butter on some oatmeal pancakes for breakfast and the then you decide do just a light drizzle of maple syrup, not enough to really track at all.
That maple syrup has about 0 grams of protein, 13.5 grams of carbs, and 0 grams of fat totaling to 53 calories.
And then you weighed some butter but there was a little left on the knife so you spread it on. That's 0 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs, and 4 grams of fat totaling in 36 calories.
Now, it's been a few hours and you want to have a snack so you go for some wheat thins. You count how many you should be having and then before you close the back you have a small handful more, let's just say 4 wheat-thins. These wheat thins have about 1 g of protein, 3 grams of carbs, and 1 gram of fat...about 35 calories.
With your wheat thins you know you need some fat to go with it so you grab a handful of nuts, weight it out and then you grab just a few more to hold you over as you prepare your snack. Those little bits of nuts equate to about 90 calories.
How about cheese? You know that when you're making something with shredded cheese you grab a pinch before you close the container. The cheese is probably going to give you around 2 grams of protein, 1 gram of carbs, and 2 grams of fat...about 28 calories.
It doesn't seem like that's a whole lot of extra...but that's why they call them sneaky calories because they sure add up fast!
In order for people to lose weight steadily, they really don't need that much of a deficit. Maybe 150 to 200 calories. But on the inverse...it also doesn't take that much to start gaining weight steadily.
Let's look at an example. If someone's maintenance calories (the calories they need to stay the same) is about 1800 calories, and you eat about 1650 calories than you're going to start seeing some change if you are consistent. But if your plan is 1650 calories and you had a day like what we outlined above, and you're eating 290 calories without even realizing it, you bring yourself right above your maintenance calories...and then wonder why you aren't losing weight like you want.
Even if you don't count the little things, your body does and it will show if you are consistent with these sneaky calories.
Step number 1 for anyone who is working with a coach or on a meal plan and trying to lose weight is measuring and weighing consistently. That means no more sneaky calories! We measure what we eat that way we know that if we are losing weight (or not) that it has something to do with the plan or other factors and not necessarily with our inaccuracy.