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TOPIC: Should I eat my exercise calories?

 
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January 17, 2011 8:29 AM
I see that when I exercise, the board tells me I have more calories that I can consume that day. Should I eat those calories each day? I am looking to lose weight not maintain at this time. My thought process is that if I were to eat all of the my exercise calories as well as my daily calorie allowance I will not lose any weight. And I am thinking that once I want to maintain my weight I should eat all my allowed calories and exercise calories. Am I thinking correctly? Thanks for your help.
January 17, 2011 8:32 AM
In a perfect world, you would be able to eat your exercise calories and still lose weight since, when you joined mfp and chose your calorie goals, you chose to lose 1 or 2 lbs a week already. You're still in that deficit if you eat the extra calories earned from exercise.
January 17, 2011 8:34 AM
http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/10589-for-those-confused-or-questioning-eating-your-exercise-calo


read this post and it will explain.
  18107
January 17, 2011 8:35 AM
I wonder the same thing myself but I think the point behind it is if you are only eating 1200 calories a day, then you burn 600 in a workout, you are in theory only giving your body 600 calories to live off. I find it hard sometimes too, and confusing, but I think you just have to go with what is best for you and how you feel at the end of the day. I dont always consume all the calories that I am allowed to eat.
  3890239
January 17, 2011 8:36 AM
I eat mine. The plan allows you too. I dont eat for the sake of it just to reach the cal target but if i'm hungry and i have cals left i eat.

Paul
:-)
January 17, 2011 8:37 AM
The way I looked at it is.....my goal is to lose weight and I'll lose it faster if I do not eat my exercise cals. I've been eating close to the 1200 cal mark and haven't and will not eat more just based on my exercise.
  3814647
January 17, 2011 8:37 AM
there are pretty much two schools on this. i say eat SOME of your exercise calories so it doesnt freak out your body that you have way too few calories for all the burning you're doing. but some people will tell you "EAT THEM ALL! RAWR! explode" and some other people will tell you "DONT EAT ANY OF THEM! RAWR! explode " but i'm one for moderation (besides either way the people are exploding laugh ) so i subscribe to the "go ahead and eat in to your exercise calories if you feel like it, but you dont have to if you dont" school of thought. so i guess there may be three schools afterall. good luck smile
  1530433
January 17, 2011 8:41 AM
QUOTE:

The way I looked at it is.....my goal is to lose weight and I'll lose it faster if I do not eat my exercise cals. I've been eating close to the 1200 cal mark and haven't and will not eat more just based on my exercise.


you will most definitely crash, burn, and fail, if you are eating ONLY 1200 and NOT eating your exercise calories.

That number is a loose estimate based on "most" women. NO MAN should ever eat 1200 for any length of time. And not eating your exercise calories? Pretty soon you'll be posting from your laptop in your hospital bed.

Not saying this to be mean at all, more in concern for your life.

Please read and do some research, read the sticky topics in the forum. Really think about what you are doing to your body.
January 17, 2011 8:41 AM
To tell you from experience, I try not to eat my exercise calories myself. In my journey of my 70 lb. weight loss, I made it a point not to do so. I was very strict with this and it worked. It may be different for you but this is what I did.

I can say, however, that since I did hit the 70 lb. mark that I have been eating my exercise calories and have not lost any more weight. For me, this is a sign that points to - if you want to continue to lose the weight, don't eat your exercise calories and then when you get to the point where you are ready to maintain then you can do so.

This is just my opinion so you can take it for what it's worth.

Great job and keep up the good work!
  1161064
January 17, 2011 8:42 AM
I eat mine because I look at my net cals for the day. According to the way MFP works the amount my body needs is 1540 to lose 1 lb a week so I make sure my net cals are at or around 1540. That way I don't end up eating too little. But as long as your net cals are 1200 or more you're not in danger of starving, so you wouldn't have to eat ALL your exercise cals. Personally I'd make an effort to maintain at least 1200 net cals.
  3686131
January 17, 2011 8:43 AM
I read some research about it here and some info, and the conclusion is that you should eat them back...good luck!
  3264490
January 17, 2011 8:44 AM
Eat them. If you consume too few calories your body will start burning muscle for fuel. By not eating them, you would see the loss on the scale, but it would be muscle. You want to keep the muscle, because it will burn more calories in the long run. Slow and steady wins the race. Good luck!
January 17, 2011 9:17 AM
It's not hard to stay in 1200 calories if you eat right. If you eat junk...yes. But eating with good choices, healthy choices, 1200 calories is doable....I did it once before (years ago) and it's day 6 for me this time around and I haven't had trouble at all. Rarely am i hungry. And will not starve by any means.

Eating your exercise calories has been a hot topic for me too...struggling with that. I haven't done my first weight in...I did eat them (only 200cal) the three days I did exercise. I'm anxiously nervous to see if that was a good decision on my part or not. It's interesting to read everyones posts on the topic.
  3804359
January 17, 2011 9:18 AM
"Eat them. If you consume too few calories your body will start burning muscle for fuel. By not eating them, you would see the loss on the scale, but it would be muscle. You want to keep the muscle, because it will burn more calories in the long run. Slow and steady wins the race. Good luck "

this answer makes the most sense to me.
Edited by MrsKelly73 On January 17, 2011 9:20 AM
  3804359
March 29, 2011 10:27 AM
I'm working through the same dilemma...however, I am with the previous poster, I am trying to stay steady at 1500 calories a day. I'm not at my maintenance phase yet, and I have about 8 more pounds to go for my mini goal. Once I do reach my goal weight, I do plan on eating my exercise calories...Plus, I only burn about 330 calories at the most each day exercising. I'm not at a level where I'm burning huge amounts of calories yet. good luck! I hope all these comments help....
  4046774

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