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TOPIC: Eating 1500 calories a day, exercising and still not losing

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July 8, 2013 1:04 AM
I have been eating less than 1500 calories a day and exercising but I still dont appear to be losing.

Feel free to check my diary. I pretty much eat oatmeal and fruit maybe some toast with it for breakfast and then in the late afternoon or evening eat a cooked meal usually consisting of rice, vegetables and pulse.

I usually do 10 to 20 minutes of intensive interval type training in the park or go for 3 mile walk at a good pace. I do daily press ups too.

I started to lose in the first week but now after 3 weeks I seem to have gone up in weight by 5 pounds.

I tried tracking carbs by grams by find that hard to do and so now I track total calories.

Surely I should be losing eating less than 1500 calories as a man and I am just over 6 foot tall.

What am I doing wrong? Why am I gaining weight?
  11471293
July 8, 2013 1:14 AM
Eat closer to 2000 than the 1200 approximately that I see you are eating quite a lot of the time in the past couple of weeks. I didn't go back further than that but it's just not enough even for a short, older woman like me let alone a six foot man! Your body is holding onto the fat because it think you are trying to starve it.

You really should work out what you should be eating properly. See this:

http://www.fitnessfrog.com/calculators/tdee-calculator.html

or this:

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/975025-in-place-of-a-road-map-short-n-sweet
July 8, 2013 1:15 AM
First of all, for a 6ft+ guy you're eating too little.

I would up the calories to at least 1800

eat more often, not only twice a day

WATCH YOUR MACROS

every meal that you take in is super high in carbs and extremely low in protein,
how is your body going to recover from working out and improve?

You said you didn't like watching the grams of carbs you take in but that's a stupid idea.

Also with all the white rice and sugar your blood sugar levels must be way up there not having enough greens, fiber, protein and HEALTHY fats to balance it out.

I say.. take a new approach. eat regularly, more (1800 on days where you do nothing and on workout days a lot more!) and more often, fix the macros, set your goal percentages and stick to them, eat fresh, maybe trade in the white rice and the sugary marmelade and things like that?!

The energy you burn in your workouts are the carbloads you take in and not fat.

Hope this helped.
Good Luck
Edited by kju52 On July 8, 2013 1:17 AM
July 8, 2013 1:28 AM
weight loss is a simple equation.
(BMR + exercise) - calries consumed, if the result is positive you'll be gainimg weight, negative and you lose weight. Healthy weight loss is 1-2 lbs/week.
~3500 calories is 1 lb of fat. Running a calorie deficit of 500 calories/day is approx 1 lb/week. It is this simple, MFP provides you with a BMR. Best wishes with your weight loss.
james white
CNA/BS MBON/UMD
July 8, 2013 1:33 AM
Yep, try increasing your calories to whatever you calculated based on the road map linked in a post before me. If eating more is hard for you, you could increase gradually, for instance a 100 calories every few days.

I don't think that you have to worry too much about changing what you now regularly eat for breakfast and dinner, just add in lunch and make it mostly healthy fat, fiber, and protein. Maybe a nice avocado-chicken salad?

Oh, and the weight gain may be mostly water weight, from the exercise. Water and carbs (actually glycogen) like to hang out together too. I know not a lot of people advise this, because some people find this difficult mentally, but you may want to start weighing yourself every day. Then you will learn what normal (water) weight fluctuations look like for you. For instance, I tend to fluctuate approximately 0.5 kg (about 1 pound), and I gain waterweight especially when I was high on sodium or if I exercised hard the previous days. You are much taller than me and a guy, so your waterweight gains may be larger as well.
Edited by mimieon On July 8, 2013 1:43 AM
  37293863
July 8, 2013 1:37 AM
QUOTE:

I tried tracking carbs by grams by find that hard to do and so now I track total calories.

Surely I should be losing eating less than 1500 calories as a man and I am just over 6 foot tall.

What am I doing wrong? Why am I gaining weight?


Are you a vegetarian ? and how heavy are you.

You should try to eat at least 100g of protein a day, as evidence says this is better for weight loss and preservation of lean mass.

Also get your fat intake up - there are essential fats you have to eat. Eat some walnuts, for example, to get Omega-3 fats.

Currently you have a diet very high in carbohydrates. It's like you're on a glucose drip. It's likely you have high blood sugar levels - has this been tested ? High carb intake = high insulin levels = inhibited fat release from storage.

1500 should be fine for weight loss, but it's the composition of the 1500 that needs attention.
  18022302
July 8, 2013 1:48 AM
QUOTE:

First of all, for a 6ft+ guy you're eating too little.

I would up the calories to at least 1800

eat more often, not only twice a day

WATCH YOUR MACROS

every meal that you take in is super high in carbs and extremely low in protein,
how is your body going to recover from working out and improve?

You said you didn't like watching the grams of carbs you take in but that's a stupid idea.

Also with all the white rice and sugar your blood sugar levels must be way up there not having enough greens, fiber, protein and HEALTHY fats to balance it out.

I say.. take a new approach. eat regularly, more (1800 on days where you do nothing and on workout days a lot more!) and more often, fix the macros, set your goal percentages and stick to them, eat fresh, maybe trade in the white rice and the sugary marmelade and things like that?!

The energy you burn in your workouts are the carbloads you take in and not fat.

Hope this helped.
Good Luck


Some very good advise in her post.

I would also say to spread the calorie intake over the day, 1700 - 1800 is perfect for 6" tall.
make small meal 6 of 300 calories each for instance and make sure you eat loads of vegetables.
try to stick to 250g of carb, 50 fat and 100g of proteins.
~ Avoid all sugars except from fruits
July 8, 2013 1:53 AM
QUOTE:

I have been eating less than 1500 calories a day and exercising but I still dont appear to be losing.

Feel free to check my diary. I pretty much eat oatmeal and fruit maybe some toast with it for breakfast and then in the late afternoon or evening eat a cooked meal usually consisting of rice, vegetables and pulse.

I usually do 10 to 20 minutes of intensive interval type training in the park or go for 3 mile walk at a good pace. I do daily press ups too.

I started to lose in the first week but now after 3 weeks I seem to have gone up in weight by 5 pounds.

I tried tracking carbs by grams by find that hard to do and so now I track total calories.

Surely I should be losing eating less than 1500 calories as a man and I am just over 6 foot tall.

What am I doing wrong? Why am I gaining weight?


You should be hemorrhaging weight.
  24650817
July 8, 2013 2:04 AM
about 2 weeks ago i was wondering the same. I was eating 1,200 and excersising and just not loosing - since then i eat all my calories back (sometimes eating 2000 cals a day) and i've lost 4 pounds in 2 weeks. so for me it was eat more and loose the weight - it might work for you too!
July 8, 2013 2:07 AM
I will check the link thanks - but eat more? I think I eat a lot and I am trying to hold it down? I will have a think and reconsider this! thanks for checking my diary out.
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:08 AM
thanks for checking out my diary - I am still trying to wrap my head around having to eat more - its an unbelievable thought to me.
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:09 AM
agreed its a simple equation - I am eating less than 1500 calories are you suggesting I cut it back until I start losing?
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:11 AM
thanks that's good to hear because I have not mentioned this but I look better and feel like I am losing its just the scales are the not in line with what I believe is happening.
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:13 AM
Ok I am a vegan. I weigh now 197 pounds - I thought I my diet was healthy and balanced but I will consider your suggestions thanks
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:14 AM
LOADS more protein, more fat and just more food in general!
July 8, 2013 2:15 AM
thanks for this
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:22 AM
QUOTE:

Ok I am a vegan. I weigh now 197 pounds - I thought I my diet was healthy and balanced but I will consider your suggestions thanks


First overweight vegan I've encountered :-)

Go to http://www.myfitnesspal.com/account/change_goals_custom set your protein to 35%, fats to 30% and carbs to 35%. That's a lot more balanced then the 15 / 30 / 55 you are on now.

There's no need to eat more, that's not evidence based.
Edited by yarwell On July 8, 2013 2:23 AM
  18022302
July 8, 2013 2:23 AM
QUOTE:

thanks that's good to hear because I have not mentioned this but I look better and feel like I am losing its just the scales are the not in line with what I believe is happening.


If you feel like you're losing, you might be. When you start to work out, you retain water and glycogen in your muscles, which are very dense. This retention can offset any fat losses on the scale and keep the scale from moving, or push it in the wrong direction. Losses in inches will still show up, however, so a tape measure is the preferred tracking method. The scale can lie.

I know it seems counter-intuitive, but you want to eat more to maximize fat loss. Your body burns calories in the form of fat and muscles, but the ratio of the two can shift depending on whether you do resistance training and how close to your maintenance calories you eat. When you run a small deficit, your body tends to take mostly from fat cells since the muscle cells are being utilized and no long term shortage is anticipated. When you eat at a large deficit for extended periods, your body shifts the ratio to mostly muscle cells. Muscle requires more calories to maintain than fat, so if a long term shortage is expected by your body, you will hold on to fat cells as an inexpensive energy reserve. A small deficit combined with resistance training will maximize fat loss and minimize muscle loss.
  33268440
July 8, 2013 2:23 AM
2400 cals for you
July 8, 2013 2:30 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHHzie6XRGk
July 8, 2013 2:31 AM
I don't know but being 6 ft tall at 197 pound does not sound overweight to me. Everybody is different though. Pump weights and get hard :)
  44897650
July 8, 2013 2:33 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHHzie6XRGk
July 8, 2013 2:33 AM
yes surprise surprise an overweight veganlaugh

I think the water retention idea due to upping my exercise makes sense.

I am secretly loving the thought that I can up my calories to as much as 2400 but that seems like a feast and not a weight loss strategy.

You all must be wrong about this although I can clearly see you have all lost weight so you obviously know what your are talking about.

I will up my calories from today and see what happens.

Thanks.
  11471293
July 8, 2013 2:34 AM
I've just gone through the same pain.

5'11" and 223lb. I lost 14lb dead easy, but the second 14lb has been torture.

I tried to lose at 2lb-per-week and MFP set the target at 1460 cal-per-day. Add the exercise cals in and even after say a mile swim at speed (by chosen cadio exercise because running incurs too many injuries) and I was still at around 2000 cals-per-day limit.

Naturally I thought 'don't eat back the cals' and I would reguarly run a defit of 400-800 cals (after MFP had calculated -1000 cal-per-day to start off with). So the overall defect would be 1400-1800 cal-per-day.

I thought I'd be a dead certainty to lose the 2lb-per-week as I had before I ran into trouble. But instead my weight plateued and even some weeks increased (a physiological impossibility but plenty of others report it).

Pushing your body into thinking it is being backed into a corner and is on the cusp of going into starvation mode is the problem. There's a fine balancing act between being able to lose weight, and tripping the body into automatically preparing for a period of reduced calorie income, and when the calories do come along, the body stores them like mad as fat to alleviate the next anticipated period of starvation.

Now I've changed my profile to 1.5lb-per-week and my MFP target is much more reasonable. I eat back every calorie from exercise and it seems to be working. Avoiding starvation mode is the key element. Keeping the body pretty much 'in the dark' that you are actually aiming to lose weight seems to be the strategy, whereby your eating routine doesn't substantially change and it doesn't automatically start taking steps to batten-down-the-hatches.

Good luck!
  35026674
July 8, 2013 2:52 AM
Your BMI is 26 so you are about to be in the top of the normal range catagory very soon. You aren't very fat at all. Because you actually have very little to lose you have to eat much closer to your TDEE.

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