Keeping a food and exercise diary could mean the difference between achieving your health and fitness goals or maintaining the status quo. According to "USA Today," a weight loss study found those who kept a food diary were able to lose twice as much weight as those who did not keep a food diary. It can make you accountable for your actions. Printing out your journal means you can take it with you to keep track of what you eat and do throughout the day.
Your-Personal-Nutrition-Guide.com was created by a registered dietitian. It provides various printable food journals, as well as food journal software, an online food journal and an exercise log. Daily food diary categories include time, food/beverage, amount and calories. A journal to track food groups is also available. Use the "plan meals in advance" food journal to record what you plan to eat as well as what you actually ate. Use the "food and mood" journal to record what you eat and your mood before and after.
MyPyramid.gov is a website from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It provides Food Tracking Worksheets, set up by calorie level. Choose the appropriate calorie level, which you can calculate on the website, and the worksheet will show your goal intake by food group. The site also gives general physical activity recommendations. The worksheet has a column to record your actual intake as well as physical activity for the day. MyPyramid.gov contains nutrition and physical activity information for the entire family.
Health-and-Fitness-Source.com has a simple weekly food and exercise log. Record what you eat at each meal, including snacks, then calculate the total calories. At the end of the week, you can compare the number of calories consumed each day. You can also record a week's worth of exercise on the same chart. Record your activity and duration/distance as well as total calories burned while exercising.
Create Your Own
Grab a notebook or binder and create your own food and exercise journal. It requires no computer or printer ink. At minimum, record type and amount of food and beverages consumed. Add as many columns as you like for additional information, such as time of day, mood, place or stress level. Record your activity performed throughout the day as well. Use a small pocket-sized notebook to take it with you and record food and beverages right away.