Monday, April 8, 2013

Are You Eating Enough? 

As many already know, I use My Fitness Pal to keep track of my daily calorie intake.  I have my journal open for accountability. With my journal open, I have some that take the time to encourage and give helpful tips that they have learned along their weight loss journey.  One thing that has been brought to my attention is how many calories that you eat, especially when you are exercising.  1200 calories is not enough when exercising! It has been proven that it will put you into starvation mode and actually takes longer for you to lose weight.  Some will argue that point, but more than anything, my desire is to be more healthy.  I want to lose weight the healthy way.  And if that means I have to make myself step back and not try to lose weight too fast, I will.

A few months ago I found a blog called, Health Fit n Free.  She is a fitness coach who has traveled this weight loss journey.  When I read her blog post this morning, "Stop Starving Yourself", I was excited! It was the very topic I had been researching.   Carrie explains that it is simple science.
 ( Sometimes I feel like it is rocket confusing!)  But she takes the time to break it all down and if you follow her directions, it is simple!

The key is to find your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) using this calculator.

What is BMR:
Your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) is an estimate of how many calories you'd burn if you were to do nothing but rest for 24 hours. It represents the minimum amount of energy needed to keep your body functioning, including breathing and keeping your heart beating.
Your BMR does not include the calories you burn from normal daily activities or exercise.
Our calculator uses the Mifflin-St. Jeor equations to estimate your BMR which is believed to be more accurate than the more commonly used Harris-Benedict equation.
Then you will use this equation.....

BMR X Activity Level = Maintenance Calories(maintaining your current weight)

Maintence Calories X 30% = Calorie Deficit

Maintenance Calories – Calorie Deficit = Total Number of Calories for Weight Loss

Activity factor Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)
Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)
Moderately active= BMR X 1.55 =(moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)
Very Active BMR X 1.725= (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)
Extra Active= BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp, contest, etc.)

So, for example my BMR is 1596.9and my activity level is about moderately active 1596.9 X 1.55 = 2475.19.   This would be how many calories that I would need to consume for maintenance. 
As Carrie reminds us.....Keep in mind this is with eating healthy food and not 500 calories of Oreos everyday.

Next you will take the 2475.9 X 30% = 742.5 This is the amount that I will need to decrease from my maintenance calories that I need: 2475.9 – 742.5 =1732.64 ( Total amount of calories to lose)
Now keep in mind, as you lose, you will have to recalculate.  You will not need as much calories as you get closer to your goal.

Now if you are a spreadsheet kind of person, a friend from MFP shared this spreadsheet with me.  She calculated her calories this way:  Google Docs Weight Loss Calculator  It works about the same, but you plug in your numbers.

I am excited to try this out.  After researching this, I have learned that the heavier you are, the more calories that you need to lose weight.  That is why we can't just plug in 1200 calories.  As I lose I will eventually have to decrease my calories more and more, but I am not there yet.  I cannot expect my body to respond as if it is skinny.  So I actually increased my calories last Friday and will weigh in this Friday.  After a few weeks, we will see if this method works!

Hope you all have a blessed week!

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  1. Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by. Good for you losing weight!! I am not sure if you read on my blog what woke me up as far as finally starting my weight loss journey. I need a total knee replacement and the thought of yet another surgery( I have had 3 other surgeries in the past) made me finally take control of my life and my health. My problem was no metabolism caused by eating only one meal a day for most of my life and over the past 12-15 years, no exercise and very little physical activity.
    I needed to speed up my metabolism and when my orthopedic Surgeon suggested an exercise bike to maintain functionality of my knee joints, I bought one the next day!! I am now up to 25 minutes a day, 5.5 miles and buring about 115-120 calories. So far in my first 3 weeks, I have lost 8.6 pounds . I am doing calorie counting and taking in about 1000- 1200 calories a day. My goal was 5 pounds a month for a total of 20 pounds lost when I return to see the orthopedic surgeon in 4 weeks. Then I will set another goal based on when my next visit to see him is. I do want to lose about 50-60 pounds. That will take 200 pounds of pressure off my knee joints according to the orthopedic surgeon. I am giving myself 1 year to do that. I am setting realistic goals.
    I will be following you and thanks for the invite!!


    1. Your very welcome! I look forward to following you on your journey!

  2. This was just what I needed to read today. I have gotten slack in the last week and I am certain I am not eating enough. I'm big on that, too. I am definitely going to read more about exercise and eating those calories. I find when I do eat them, I remain stuck at the same weight. I guess that would be me wanting FAST results. Thanks for the great post today!
    Lulu and Daisy

  3. This was an awesome post! You explained it so well. I have actually been researching the same thing because I found the weeks that I did not work out but counting calories..I would lose weight. However, some weeks I would work out every day and not lose anything...It was because I was eating the same amount of calories! Sometimes I was in the of course my body thought I was starving. Let me know if this works! Great job!

    1. I sure will!!
      Thanks for stopping by Brandy!

  4. I've already told you how much I agree with this ;) You know that I'm all for eating what you need to to lose weight! It just worked for me, truly...I'm praying you see results so that it will encourage you! Good luck and can't wait to hear!!

    1. Oh and I'm SOO checking out her blog post to be sure I'm doing it right, too! Thanks for sharing it!

    2. Yes Jen, You have been a BIG help!! I hope this works also!!

      Take care!


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