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March 24th, 2020

Journaling During Quarantine: How to Stay on Track at Home

You asked, we listened. Follower question of the week.

Q: I’m all out of sorts. This quarantine is throwing me off. How can I stay on track with my goals during this challenging time?  

A. Whether you’re self-isolating, social distancing, or simply WFH, the thought of a two week or longer quarantine can be a bit overwhelming, especially in terms of the disruption to your daily routine. If you’re worried about getting off track with your nutrition and goals, journaling is the answer you’ve been looking for.

THE POWER OF JOURNALING

While there are so many things going on that are out of our control, what we can control is the foods we choose to nourish our bodies with. Journaling, either with an F-Factor Journal or using the F-Factor App, allows you to create a personal map for your day, filling it with nutrient dense, fiber, and protein packed meals. Most importantly, it gives you a structured plan that you can stick to. During uncertain times, creating structure is an important coping mechanism for keeping anxiety at bay and maintaining a sense of normalcy and well-being.

When you map out your day on F-Factor, you’re not only creating structure, but you’re also creating a personal contract with yourself. Just like a contract, journaling ahead of time is a pragmatic and logical written agreement. When you put pen to paper (or use the app), you will write out a successful day for yourself—you won’t write down foods that will undermine your progress. Logically, you know what to do to achieve your goals. What can undermine your success, especially right now, is impulsivity, stress, and emotions. After all, it’s called “stress eating” for a reason. Several studies show that emotional or physical distress increases the amount of food we eat, particularly meals higher in fat, sugar or both[i]. By journaling, you’ll be less inclined to stress eat when you think of it as “breaking a contract”. And if you successfully followed your own contract, then self-validate! You earned it. The F-Factor Journal is a great tool to feel empowered and in control.

PRO TIPS

So, ready to get journaling? In case you need them, here are a few tips and refreshers on how to journal out your day on F-Factor:

∙ Log all your meals. On F-Factor you’re eating 4 meals per day—breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner

∙ Meet your daily fiber goals. Aim for a minimum of 35 grams of fiber per day.

∙ Do not exceed your daily net carb allowance. If you’re on Step 1, stay below 35g net carbs per day. If you’re on Step 2, stay below 75g net carbs per day. Track your carbs on the left-hand side of the journal, and your fiber on the right-hand side. At the bottom of your journal page, calculate your net carbs by subtracting your total fiber from your total carbs. Or, let the app do it for you.

∙ Don’t forget to journal your water intake: aim for 3 liters of water per day. Not only is water essential for nearly every bodily function, but fiber needs water to work its magic. To help you get in those 3L, have 1L before noon, 1L before 3pm, and 1L before 6pm.

∙ Log your workouts: On F-Factor we recommend doing a weight resistant activity 2-3 times per week

∙ Proteins? Journal animal proteins as 0,0 (for vegetarian/vegan proteins, journal them according to their label). Women need 3-4oz of protein per meal, and men need 6-8oz

∙ Non-starchy vegetables? Only journal the fiber in non-starchy vegetables, not the carbs. Non-starchy vegetables are a free food on F-Factor, and we encourage you to eat plenty of them to bulk up your meals and keep you full!

∙ Cheers! Journal wine as 2,0 and spirits as 0,0—and no, we won’t judge you for having more than one glass

At the end of the day, if you stuck to your plan, give yourself a gold star to honor and validate yourself.

IN SUMMATION

To sum it up, although things are precarious right now, find comfort and security in controlling what you put into your body, knowing that you’re honoring your intentions to look and feel your best. By nurturing yourself with healthy and nutritious foods, you’ll come out of this a better version of yourself.


[i] Harvard Health Publishing. “Why Stress Causes People to Overeat.” Harvard Health, www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/why-stress-causes-people-to-overeat.