No willpower at all! :(

I'm typing this after another failed day of counting calories. How do people do it? I have no willpower whatsoever, it's quite pathetic really. Does anyone have any tips? I need to get my calories per day down and fast. Am I better eating breakfast and staggering food through the day or saving calories for evenings when I know I'm gonna be tempted? Any advice would be great. Thanks :)

23 Replies

  • That's great, thanks! I'll take a look now :)

  • Hi Have you ever tried Slimming World ? you don't count calories just eat normal healthy foods, you can still have treats, you just have to watch how many, :) I have lost 3 stone recently in (6/7 months), I feel if I can do it anybody can. Good Luck keep trying :)

  • You are not pathetic! Counting calories can be a hard habit to learn. I find putting my calories in before i cook and eat them helps as it makes me more aware of what im eating, and i pre plan snacks that way too. Counting calories isnt for everyone, but it does take getting used to. Start slow cutting out things and changing to healthier options like full fat milk to semi skimmed, white bread to wholemeal etc.. if you still cant get on with it try a different tactic. Find what works for you hun

  • It is hard but not impossible but does take time to get used to a new way of thinking about food. I try to eat my breakfast as late as possible as I find once I start eating then I tend to want more and more. If I feel weak in the evenings I log on to the forum as I am doing now. It's good to know other people are suffering too! Ha Ha. Only joking! :)

  • Hi I find it helps to start the day with breakfast and then plan meals for the rest of the day so I know what I am doing. I always leave some calories for the evening as chocolate biscuits are my downfall. It's my reward if I have been good the rest of the day.

  • Please don't beat yourself up - the hardest bit is done ie taking that first step and knowing you want to do it. It is hard and you will master it same as you mastered walking, chewing and breathing. But you need to be honest and count everything - you bite - you write 😉 using foods like egg whites on brown bread for brekkie ( yes folks egg whites come in a Petra pack available from big stores) - fills you up, and not much calories add onions chilli & ginger for padding. Weetabix and skimmed milk, diced chicken cooked in home made sauce ( red pepper, red tomatoe, garlic, rosemary salt n pepper) and a brown pitta bread. OR weight watcher dinners and a salad.

    My fitness pal saved me and made a big difference to my ability to count - you can easily add your own recipes or download from web and its free!

    Strawberries low fat yoghurt (m&s do a great low calorie range)

    And when you have a bad day - document it and learn from it and start again tomorrow .

    You can do this


  • Hi there if you are struggling to count your calories don't do it. Just have the willpower to control what you eat. And do your exercise. I have tried in the past and I have failed so many times. Now I just eat 3 meals a day. And nothing in between.

    Porridge or cereal for breakfast.

    Toasted cheese sandwich for lunch with a cuppa soup.

    For dinner is either meat or fish with vegetables. No puddings. .

    And I go to the gym 3 times a week.

    Hope this will help.

  • Edithharrison

    Sound advice....sometimes we can get hooked up on Apps and counting calories!!! I know I do , may take your advice.... 😋

  • I would love to say it is easy but its not!! And yet I've had the will power to do dry January and a month trial last year of slimming product-succeeded at both and yet can't get my act together to shift over 6 stone in weight [including 21lb I lost in trial last year] It is very frustrating !!! All I can say is keep trying, if you really want to achieve then you will do it. Try My fitness Pal app, its works all the calories out for you, all you have to do is stick to within allowance every day!!! I wish!

  • The official advice on this site "Always eat breakfast so you wont keep snacking during the morning." is complete nonsense for many of us. Our experience is that Not Eating Before Noon is the way to avoid snacking.

    The only exception to this that I have found is a couple of hardboiled eggs prepared the previous day.

    Did you know that sugar depletes your bodies vitamins? Leaving you hungrier than before you ate? So no sweet desserts and no sweets in unlocked cupboards after Noon.

    Hope that helps. Search "effects of sugar" for more info.

  • Hi

    As the others say, don't beat yourself up about it. Secondly, we all have to find our own way, there is no one recipe for success.

    I don't have breakfast because I find that I'm not hungry until I start to eat, then I want to keep on eating. It has now been proved that going without breakfast isn't a bad thing at all. As I said you have to find YOUR way.

    I also went through a calorie counter book and marked all the foods I LIKE which are below 100 calories, and double mark those below 50 calories. I also try to think of it less as a diet, and more about healthy eating, so I eat loads of fruit and veg, plus lean protein such as cottage cheese, chicken breast without skin, baked fish, tinned fish in brine. I don't eat bread because it upsets my IBS, and I find I don't really like potatoes any more, although I love rice and pasta. This is my way, it probably isn't yours

    Find healthy food that YOU LIKE, and DON'T BEAT YOURSELF UP - we are all the same, it isn't easy.

  • Losing weight isn't just about counting calories. It's about eating the right foods together and also keeping as active as possible. Avocados although high in fat are an excellent fruit to eat as they are full of healthy fats and help you keep full longer. Sweet potato is very good for you as high in fibre. They are delicious either mashed or as a jacket filled with Tuna, beans or low fat cottage cheese. Live fat free yogurt is excellent with strawberries or a banana to satisfy the sweet cravings. I have put the Pacer app on my phone which keeps me motivated to get up and walk and I also have the Human app on my phone which is excellent as it also records all the activities I do throughout my day. I have lost 13lb in 6 weeks but need to lose just over 3 st altogether but I will do it :) Good luck and keep us posted x

  • I'm the very same. Tried having a really filling breakfast (300 cals) and by 10am I was ready to eat my own fingers. I struggle to eat first thing in the morning so I'm now taking my breakfast to work to try and re-jig things I'm also only taking exactly what I need for lunch etc and leaving my purse at home. Drastic maybe but hoping it works for me. Good luck

  • I am with you all the way on this one, i hate calorie counting, it is so time consuming, some people can tell you the calorie/fat/sugar breakdown of any given food item, life is too short to be so obsessed, eat breakfast if nothing else, you are not a silly person, like most of us you know your own down falls and triggers, when i ran out of chocolate i ate my will power, it is so hard to lose weight and still baffles me totally WHY it doesnt go in the same manner, never mind one day it will happen for us all

  • I've given myself an ultimatum-no food after 6 pm. I stopped counting calories, as I always felt ''that's it? I'm still hungry, I fancy this more now!''. So I've stopped myself from all that. I am using smaller plates, having smaller portions and try to leave 1/3 on the plate.

    Evenings are the worst for me, too. I drink lots of water then, try to occupy my mind with other things.


  • Just don't give up, that is the best advice. Don't be too hard on yourself, every day is a new day. Keep a food diary over a couple of weeks and see for yourself when you are taking in the most calories and then think about which meals you enjoy the most, and try to cut down on the ones you don't. Keep going, the first step is the hardest.

  • How about snacking on stuff like carrots, celery, beetroot, radishes? They are really low calorie and filling. You can basically eat as many of those as you like. That's what I do when I get really hungry but it's not a meal time. Also slices of apples and small cubes of cheese. Good luck. You can do it! It will get easier and your appetite will shrink gradually.

  • Awww thanks so much guys! Some great tips and ideas there but more importantly, I'm not alone! My husband can eat what he likes, when he likes and hardly ever gains weight. It's great to be able to speak to people in the same boat as me. Thank you all. I got excited when I saw my post had replies! :)

    I've tried most 'diets' in the past, with some success with all, but with no willpower, I don't stick at it long enough to make a difference :( We go on holiday in 10 weeks. I'd love to lose a stone before then, I've got some lovely clothes in my wardrobe that are just too tight. I started a keep fit class last week. I went 3 times. I was so chuffed that I'd started exercising! But on the 3rd visit, I pulled a back muscle and was advised to rest for a week! I can become quite obsessed with logging/tracking. I must be a nightmare to live with. So I think I'm gonna take notes from the above replies and trust myself and not track! Eeekkk! I can always log onto here if I feel a moment of weakness now!! I'm off work until Monday, it's my sons birthday this weekend, so I'm not gonna kid myself and pretend I'm gonna be an angel. I'm sure there'll be a meal out at some point. But I'm gonna try my best to make better choices for sure! Thanks again everyone xx

  • There really is no one true way of losing weight and how people should go about it. There's a lot of trial and error to find what works for you.

    Last year I tried Slimming Club which just wasn't for me - I got fed up with the happiness of the leader xD. Then I tried MFP and realised that I got totally obsessive with food, ended up eating the wrong things while keeping within the calories recommended which was too much anyway.

    So I started again this week, no calorie counting, no obsessing over food, I have muesli or home made granola and a coffee for breakfast, whatever takes my fancy from the fridge for lunch as its just me and the dogs at home in the daytime - could be salad, or soup, yesterday I had natural yogurt with a drizzle of maple syrup and a banana, and then a proper meal in the evening. I know whats sensible and what isn't and although I'm (vaguely) on no added sugar, if I know that I'm going out and there's cake involved then I'll probably have a small piece - for me denial ends up as a binge, I'd rather have something special occasionally thank blow a week's effort in a couple of hours.

    I walk the dogs every day and am pushing up the length of walk bit by bit.

    Its all about finding what fits you and your lifestyle - sure I have breakfast, but its AFTER I've been out with the dogs, I enjoy it so much more then as I'm hungry than trying to force in something before I go out with stir crazy dogs milling round.

    Enjoy it - its not supposed to be a chore where you can only eat this or that, its a lifestyle change and if you don't enjoy the food you put in your mouth then (to my mind) you're not going to be able to sustain it in the long run.

  • This really struck a chord with me. Thank you walking_it_off x

  • Hi I know how you feel,I have no willpower at all and 1400 cals seems so little.This is my first week AGAIN after failing many times and I am sticking to the meal calories the 12 week plan suggested and if go over I am not beating myself and starting again the next day(but trying not to go over by too much) and I am writing in the evening my next day plan.Hope you get on well and look forward to hearing that you have reached your goal

  • Even people that have masses of willpower tend to succumb to hunger, which is a primal drive to safeguard our lives.

    The answer is to eat real foods, high in the nutrients that we need, to satisfy our appetite, then we won't need to eat as much.

    Here is a sample meal plan:


    Soft Cheese

    2 Eggs any style

    2 Serving spoons vegetable casserole.


    Cheese or nuts

    1 small barely-ripe banana or 5 (preservative-free) dried-apricots

    3 oatcakes or quinoa (90g cooked weight).


    1 medium sweet potato or 1 cob sweetcorn or chickpeas (100g cooked weight).

    non-starchy roast vegetables or stir-fry greens

    palm-size meat or fish or seafood or poultry or game

    whipped double-cream and/or coconut.

    Adjust unspecified portion sizes to facilitate individual weight-management requirements.

    If you enjoy your new habits and they are effective, your willpower will be sorted.

    All the best.

  • I applaud all you guys here who are on a diet and exercising and losing weight. Well done! I have been there too! It's hard work.

    Sam I am like you I have no will power to diet and to count calories.

    Over the past year I have lost weight though. I think mostly by increased excersise.

    I don't get weighed.

    My overall plan is to make changes I can live with for the rest of my life. IE if it's sandwiches for lunch I never eat more than two slices of bread. I could! But I know this is enough for me. If there's salad in the fridge I eat the filling and can manage with one slice or a crisp brea.d.

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