Letter to the Editor: The Power of Calories

April 23, 2012 | By | Comments (1)

Here's another of the emails I've received since running my Editor's page about calories in the May issue. For Jennifer, below, calorie counting was the path to successful weight loss. She even posted before and after pictures on her blog (check them out at the link below)!

Divide-plate-mI am one of many new (or not-so-new) moms that finally decided to face the “get my pre-baby body back” music. Once I finally finished nursing when my daughter was about 14 months old, I decided to finally get to it. I gave myself a hard deadline: my 37th birthday, which was 3 months away. My goal was to lose 20 pounds and to fit back into my fave pair of old jeans in a matter of three months. Long story short, I did it. And I did it by counting calories.

I put myself on a 1,200 calories-a-day diet. I never counted calories before; it was too tedious and nerdy (I mean with all the math that was involved – not really). But I knew that’s what I needed to do. I counted calories religiously for the first 4 weeks and logged them into an online food journal. 

Then, like taking the training wheels off of a bike, I realized I didn’t need to be so fastidious about counting anymore. Since I had logged calories religiously for the first 4 weeks of my diet, I started almost knowing how many calories were in what. I also really got the concept of energy in, energy out.  Since I was on such a low-calorie diet, I knew that I couldn’t go heavy on cardio, so I kept my exercise light by just walking regularly. Now that I’m at my target weight, I will have to re-evaluate my calorie intake as I start to really begin toning my body through cardio and weights.  So there you have it, the calorie and I have a friendly working relationship now.


See her before and after pictures here.


  1. Lynn Hennessy, 604 Remington Drive, Greenville, NC 27858

    Have been a subscriber for years. I keep everyone of my issues because they are all great but one of my favorite issues is the July 2011. So many wonderful recipes, last night I made Page 144, The Summer Lemon-Risotto, it was fantastic, just tweeked it a little.
    Less shallots, used a 1/2 cup of wine, less pecorino cheese and no salt. It is a keeper. Unfortunately, I was supposed to be watching my calories but both my husband and I loved it so much there was hardly any left–need to re-read Scott’s letter about paring down and eating too much of a healthy diet. It was worth the calories! Thank you!

    September 11, 2012 at 12:41 pm

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