By keeping track of your behavior, you become more accountable.

EatingWell Editors
August 31, 2009
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By keeping track of your behavior, you become more accountable. Excerpted from The EatingWell Diet Book. Self-awareness is self-motivation; by keeping track of your behavior,you motivate yourself to change by becoming more accountable. Create a weight tracker to stay on top of your progress and keepyourself motivated. Our Weight TrackerChart (click to download pdf) will help you put your progress in perspective. Keep a food diary to record the foods you eateach day-this self-awareness will help you eat less. Our Food Diary (click to download pdf) will help youtrack your daily intake to see if you are achieving your goals. Start an Activity Log (click to download pdf) to helpyou make a conscious effort to build more activity into your days. Give yourself credit for being active, and each activityadds up!

Weigh yourself rightSince your weight can fluctuate greatly from day to day, it's not important to weigh yourself daily-but some people findit easier to remember that way. Try to do it at the same time of day, with the same amount of clothing. Make sure your scale iscalibrated (reads "0" when no one stands on it) and is on a completely flat surface.

Do I have to write everything down?Yes, keeping a food diary takes time, especially when you're learning the ropes. But it really works: studies show thatpeople who keep food diaries tend to lose more weight and keep it off longer than those who don't. We consider a food diaryessential to the EatingWell Diet. If you're balking, you're probably someone who will benefit most from this kind of approach.It might be the first time you've stepped back to look at your daily eating behavior. You might be amazed at what it shows youabout yourself! Diary keeping gets easier over time as it becomes instinctive.

Keep a diaryList what you eat and how much. Be specific. Write it right after you eat (or you will forget). Record calories and keep arunning tally.

The EatingWell Diet (2007)