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TOPIC: 1,500 calories a day

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October 27, 2011 4:22 AM
1500 calories isnt that much. I eat 2600 calories and i still lose. Its really based on your basal metabolic rate and the amount of energy you expend throughout the day including exercise.
October 27, 2011 4:33 AM
This is very strange for me, I eat roughly 3 meals a day and I seem to average 1100 and have to make up the next 100 with snacks that I wouldn't normally eat?

And just to show that I'm not under-eating I'll write out yesterday which was pretty average:

Breakfast
2 slices wholemeal bread, toasted with butter
banana

Lunch
Jacket potato and cottage cheese with chives
1 slice of garlic bread

Dinner
Linda McCartney Vegetarian Lasagne

Snacks
Go ahead - fruit bakes - rasberry

That totalled 1,317 but only because I added in the go-ahead and garlic bread to up it... I do roughly 600 cals of exercise a day (I walk a LOT haha)....

I think you might be able to eat more if you eat totally healthy foods, I'm always full :)

Or it could be because I'm a 5ft2" female haha. 1500 would be a food-overdose for me I think. So far 2lbs lost in my first week so it's going well :)
  12244489
October 27, 2011 4:34 AM
I am 5ft 4 and MFP has set mine to 1200 before exercise. I am sticking to this fairly easily but if I fancy a little 100 cal treat at the end of the day I have it.

I lost 7 stone nearly 8 years ago and I am sure I stuck to 1500 cals a day and the weight dropped off. (but I put it all back on over time!)

I am losing approx 2 lbs per week now on 1200 (with some excercise and eating cals back when required). I do wonder though if I ate 1500 cals if I would still lose the same weight since it worked years ago. I am a little scared to try to be honest. Don't want to try it only to stay the same.
  10457481
October 27, 2011 4:37 AM
QUOTE:

Low calorie works however I question if any of us can sustain it for long term. Use it as a tool but eventually you'll need to find a better way to eat.


1200 cals... is a DIET. not a lifestyle change. You can make a lifestyle change, but eating 1200 a day shouldn't be it. The quality of your food should be. Cals NEED to go up to maint every couple of months to give your body a break.
October 27, 2011 4:43 AM
I was just thinking about this the other day. COuldn't imagine just eating 1200 (I am tall and active though)
My goal is a permanent change that I can sustain, so that means slower to me. I am practicing pretty close to what I will do at goal weight.

I am set just over 1500, + exercise calories. Set at a 500 calorie deficit or 1lb/wk loss. I do go over and do go under (meaning I occasionally don't eat all my exercise calories). On the weekend I don't worry about it much at all (I just try to stay under 2000+ex so I don't gain)
But, I am also just trying to lose another 5 to 10 lbs, and have never been more than 40 lbs overweight so have not needed to lose weight faster than 1 lb/wk. I probably average just under a 1 lb/wk loss. Any time I have lost faster than 1lb/wk I gained the extra I lost back.
October 27, 2011 4:46 AM
I'm in maintenance at 1400 calories, but I also work out and try to aim for 2000.
October 27, 2011 4:48 AM
QUOTE:

This is very strange for me, I eat roughly 3 meals a day and I seem to average 1100 and have to make up the next 100 with snacks that I wouldn't normally eat?

And just to show that I'm not under-eating I'll write out yesterday which was pretty average:

Breakfast
2 slices wholemeal bread, toasted with butter
banana

Lunch
Jacket potato and cottage cheese with chives
1 slice of garlic bread

Dinner
Linda McCartney Vegetarian Lasagne

Snacks
Go ahead - fruit bakes - rasberry

That totalled 1,317 but only because I added in the go-ahead and garlic bread to up it... I do roughly 600 cals of exercise a day (I walk a LOT haha)....

I think you might be able to eat more if you eat totally healthy foods, I'm always full :)

Or it could be because I'm a 5ft2" female haha. 1500 would be a food-overdose for me I think. So far 2lbs lost in my first week so it's going well :)


Well done for the weight loss!

Unfortunately I am not the type of person that can eat 3 meals a day and be satisfied. If I was, I'm sure I'd weigh less by now. I prefer to eat around 6 times a day, obviously smaller meals.

Also I see you dont have hot drinks - I like a couple of mocha coffees and a couple of white (sweet) tea a day plus often a glass of wine (I know, I know....it's my one vice in life!).

Plus, you're lucky that you find it a chore to have to eat 1500 cals a day. I am the opposite!

If it was healthy to do so (and viable for weight loss) I would eat 3,000 cals a day happily and easily....and then some laugh
  11250183
October 27, 2011 5:08 AM
QUOTE:

This is very strange for me, I eat roughly 3 meals a day and I seem to average 1100 and have to make up the next 100 with snacks that I wouldn't normally eat?

And just to show that I'm not under-eating I'll write out yesterday which was pretty average:

Breakfast
2 slices wholemeal bread, toasted with butter
banana

Lunch
Jacket potato and cottage cheese with chives
1 slice of garlic bread

Dinner
Linda McCartney Vegetarian Lasagne

Snacks
Go ahead - fruit bakes - rasberry

That totalled 1,317 but only because I added in the go-ahead and garlic bread to up it... I do roughly 600 cals of exercise a day (I walk a LOT haha)....

I think you might be able to eat more if you eat totally healthy foods, I'm always full :)

Or it could be because I'm a 5ft2" female haha. 1500 would be a food-overdose for me I think. So far 2lbs lost in my first week so it's going well :)

i would suggest looking into eating higher calories but healthy foods. if you eat 1200 calories and burn 600 calories, essentially, it's the equivilant of eating 600 calories and doing nothing.


The problem with low calorie is muscle sustainment (which in turn means maintaining your metabolism). On lower calorie diets and huge deficits, you tend to lose muscle mass as a part of your weight loss. Is this an issue, well maybe not at first, but as you age, you inevitably lose more muscle (natural progression of life). Less muscle means slower metabolism. Which means you are more susceptable to gain weight (this is one reason people cycle in weight loss).

Also, once people hit their weight goal, what is the next step? In many cases it's definition and tone. Well not you have to gain all the muscle back and do one of two things. 1. Turn fat into muscle (this can be difficult to do a one for one). 2.. Gain weight to gain muscle mass to form definition (makes a lot of people freak out).


The science is there. And really you need to look at what your true end state is. Is it definition or do you really only care about a number on the scale?



Some stuff to think about.
October 27, 2011 5:27 AM
Hello, I am so new to all of this. I am on 1420 calories a day and I am trying to come up with meals to eat. Its kind of hard for me right now, but hopefylly I can come up with some great mealssmile
October 27, 2011 5:37 AM
QUOTE:

Hello, I am so new to all of this. I am on 1420 calories a day and I am trying to come up with meals to eat. Its kind of hard for me right now, but hopefylly I can come up with some great mealssmile


I'll be more than happy to help - but 1420 a day is pretty good and you can more or less eat any healthy and filling meals you like, obviously not burger and fries and pizza and sausages etc every night, but you've got a decent amount of leeway.
  11250183
October 27, 2011 5:43 AM
Slow and steady wins the race. If you're starving, you're not gonna stick with it, right?
  8913649
October 27, 2011 5:47 AM
QUOTE:

Slow and steady wins the race. If you're starving, you're not gonna stick with it, right?


exactly, and then resent the whole idea of dieting or changing your eating habits permanently.
  11250183
October 27, 2011 6:01 AM
Since I am almost at my goal, I am at .5 loss per week and have a daily target of 1550. I normally exercise and eat those calories as well. The lowest I was ever set for was 1310 and that was to lose 1 pound a week. That was tough, luckily I ate all of my exercise calories then too. I cannot imagine ever doing 1200 calories a day. I would starve.
  6034351
October 27, 2011 6:03 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Low calorie works however I question if any of us can sustain it for long term. Use it as a tool but eventually you'll need to find a better way to eat.


1200 cals... is a DIET. not a lifestyle change. You can make a lifestyle change, but eating 1200 a day shouldn't be it. The quality of your food should be. Cals NEED to go up to maint every couple of months to give your body a break.


Diet is the sum of food consumed by a person

im on 1200 kcal also... its about losing weight, isnt it?

I need 2.500 kcal each day to be alive and do my normal stuff
I eat 1.200 kcal each day
=
Deficit: 1.300 kal/day

Since 1 Kg of fat = 7000kcal --> I am losing 1.3 kg each week


Once i'm done... ill have to eat the same thing i need to live: 2.500kcal No more no less!! (actually 2.400 because of the 5kg less i would have)

I call it a lifestyle change because i'm eating healthy and in a controlled manner :P
Edited by Uerzer On October 27, 2011 6:04 AM
  12196933
October 27, 2011 6:24 AM
I'm learning recently that calling it a lifestyle change is so much more effective than calling it a diet and it's much easier to stick to than dreading the ryvita and porridge and fruit/veg meals for the rest of next week etc.

Life without any treats would not be one worth living, to me.
  11250183
October 27, 2011 12:31 PM
My loss has slowed (and stalled a couple times).. One question i have is- how long do you stick with a increase to see if it is working? a week, 2 weeks, a month?
I did make the mistake of sticking with the 1200 for a while. I felt deprived and it no longer made sense once i realized my bmr was higher than that ( i felt deprived because i was! ) I'm currently aiming for 1400, but i've been thinking of increasing that.
  9269963
October 27, 2011 12:35 PM
Are you adding in your exercise calories?

MFP has set me at a little over 1300 calories. But, I am at the gym 6x per week of which 3 -4 workouts include a decent level of cardio.

After adding in my exercise calories I am hitting 1800 - 2000 calories consumed per day gross. Doing my best to keep the net at the recommended 1300.

Seem to be working as I am pretty consistent with the 1-2 lbs lost per week.
October 27, 2011 12:44 PM
QUOTE:

Are you adding in your exercise calories?

MFP has set me at a little over 1300 calories. But, I am at the gym 6x per week of which 3 -4 workouts include a decent level of cardio.

After adding in my exercise calories I am hitting 1800 - 2000 calories consumed per day gross. Doing my best to keep the net at the recommended 1300.

Seem to be working as I am pretty consistent with the 1-2 lbs lost per week.
When i can work out, yes i add them back in. It's pretty minimal though most the time ( starting slow with 20 minutes a day, since i was pretty much NOT active at all up to this point due to fibromyalgia. )
  9269963
October 27, 2011 12:52 PM
I too have a hard time with 1,200 calories. I usually get around 1400-1500 and like it there much better. I'm really maintaining. If I lost 5 more pounds I would love it, but I'm not killing myself to get there. When I see threads about people having problems getting to 1,200 calories per day I'm shocked.
  10713741
October 27, 2011 1:49 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

MFP gave me 1200 because I'm 5'2 and wanted to lose 1.5 lbs a week. I'm sure it would give me more if I were taller or male. My understanding is there is some customization based on age, height, starting weight, etc.


I'm only 5"3 and I thought about it long and hard and concluded that trying to stick to anything lower than 1,500 would mean miserable days ahead for me as food plays a huge part in my enjoyment in life.

So I opted for the slow, steady 1lb a week weight loss plan incorporating more exercise than originally intended meaning more food!

I very often go over my 1500 but the exercise makes me appear under. Which all in all works for me.


1200 is before exercise and I do eat back some of my exercise calories. I guess it doesn't bother me because I don't eat a lot of calorie dense foods on a regular basis. I love salads, fruits and vegetables. I eat lean meats like chicken, fish, shrimps, lean pork and lean beef. I do eggs, low fat cheeses, almond milk and skim milk. I don't deny myself anything so if I want cake, I eat cake but just a serving and not the whole thing. Sometimes, usually when TOM visits I want pasta, bread and cookies. I may be close to maintenance then but I usually drop 2-3 lbs the week following a kinda high day. If I really want something extra I will hop on the treadmill to "earn" it. Your body has to get used to a reduction in calories just like it previously got used to a surplus.
October 27, 2011 1:57 PM
I never went below 1750 net.
October 27, 2011 2:05 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Low calorie works however I question if any of us can sustain it for long term. Use it as a tool but eventually you'll need to find a better way to eat.


1200 cals... is a DIET. not a lifestyle change. You can make a lifestyle change, but eating 1200 a day shouldn't be it. The quality of your food should be. Cals NEED to go up to maint every couple of months to give your body a break.


Ah to be tall or male or young. I am none of those so I need less calories. My maintenance calories since I work a desk job will be 1500. To lose weight 1200 calories is a reasonable amount per day. Yes I exercise almost daily so can eat those calories and darn I am hungry when I exercise so need to. However on days I do not exercise I need to keep my calories low. This for me is a lifestyle change not a diet. I recently upped my calories to 1300 per day plus exercise calories to see if I can break through a plataue.

Don't pick on us short, female, old people because we can only have a limited amount of calories so we don't get fat! :)
  5356208
October 27, 2011 2:06 PM
MFP puts me at 1320 a day to lose 1 lb a week. If I didnt exercise and eat those calories I would feel very very hungry. The days I dont exercise and get No extra calories I feel bad all day because I stay hungry. Probably not good to exercise just to be able to eat a little more.
October 27, 2011 2:27 PM
QUOTE:

1500 calories isnt that much. I eat 2600 calories and i still lose. Its really based on your basal metabolic rate and the amount of energy you expend throughout the day including exercise.


Yes your BMR. How we all burn calories is dependent on individual factors. It is difficult to compare one's calorie needs to another's.

Age, gender, height, body size, and daily activity levels must all be accounted for in the math to determine your calorie needs. Then your deficit based upon your weight loss goals is factored into determining what your daily NET calorie target is.

You may start out wanting to lose 2 pounds per week. Over time you may find yourself wanting to lose 1/2 pound per week and continue to count calories indefinitely. This is where I'm at now. Hopefully I can meet my body fat % goals at some point and change my goal to 0 pounds per week.
October 27, 2011 2:43 PM
QUOTE:

Low calorie works however I question if any of us can sustain it for long term. Use it as a tool but eventually you'll need to find a better way to eat.


I've been on 1223 calories for 4 months now, losing steadily. I train heavy 5 days a week, plus cardio. My trainer has my macros currently set at 60/30/10, which is working a lot better for me. I don't "starve". And no, she does not have me eat my "exercise" calories. Yes, I am building muscle.
It is a matter of discipline. If you only have 1200 calories to spare, you don't spend them on Godiva chocolate squares, rice cakes, 2% milk, jams or any of the other foods people don't think they can live without. You select fresh greens like spinach, protein-dense sources such as egg whites, chicken and fish and an appropriate amount of fats.It's all about choices and making good decisions. You can do it if you want it.
Oh, and I'm 5'11.
Edited by Cathleenr On October 27, 2011 2:46 PM

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