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TOPIC: Is 1200 calories enough?

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November 22, 2011 5:14 AM
Hi there,

I'm kinda new for the 2nd time around but I have been following MFP originally for around 9 months.

After reading MANY a topic and blog I am thinking.. is 1200 calories enough for me?

I do light exercise (40 mins of walking a day) I am 5'1 and weigh around 12 stone and a dress size 14

HELP!

Nikki xxx
November 22, 2011 5:19 AM
I'm 1 inch taller than you and weigh about 3.7 stone less, if my pound-to-stone calculations are correct. My activity level is about the same and I've been aiming for 1200 calories a day. So yes, it's definitely enough calories, assuming you have a sedentary lifestyle. Of course, if you don't feel like it's enough you can always bump it up a little and still lose weight-- it will just happen at a slower rate.
Edited by Sweet_Potato On November 22, 2011 5:20 AM
November 22, 2011 5:20 AM
i think 1200 is the minimum for women
  8602008
November 22, 2011 5:21 AM
You don't have to eat only 1200 cals. When you exercise you get to eat those back, so if you burn 300 cals working out you get to eat 1500 (1200+300).

Another option you could do is change your weekly weight loss goal to 1lb or 0.5lbs/week. This will give you more cals, but you are still supposed to eat the extra cals doing it this way too.
November 22, 2011 5:22 AM
I'm thinking the opposite - it seems quite a lot for me, being short (im 5 3') means I'll loose weight much slower than someone who eats 1200 and is 5 inches taller than me.
  12062728
November 22, 2011 5:22 AM
I am 5'0" and I weigh the same as you. I personally make my minimum goal at 1400 calories. I workout everyday so 1200 is definitely not enough for me. Good luck on your journey and feel free to add me if you'd like. Support is always motivating!

Laura
  2035557
November 22, 2011 5:22 AM
what is a stone?
November 22, 2011 5:23 AM
i wouldn't aim for anything under 1200 calories.....that would be a bare minimum.
  12550768
November 22, 2011 5:25 AM
When i started on MFP (about 2 months ago) it recommended 1200 calories (i am 5'5" tall and weighed 15 stone 4lb)

I found it very difficult so put it up to 1400 myself - i lost steadily at about 2lb a week

Abuot 3 weeks ago i dropped it to 1300 calories and i am sill loosing at a steady pace

In a few weeks i may drop to 1200 calories again - but if its too dificult to start with then up it and see what happens

Diane
  11248859
November 22, 2011 5:25 AM
QUOTE:

what is a stone?


a stone is 14lb
November 22, 2011 5:25 AM
I do eat 1200 calories but never for more than 2 weeks and I eat 50% of my cals as protein because I do not want to lose muscle mass(then I bump it up to 1500 cals) . If you do not have alot to lose, your deficit has to be really small.
  11614737
November 22, 2011 5:26 AM
QUOTE:

what is a stone?


1 stone=14 lbs. I finally looked it up after seeing it used so many times by our friends on the other side of the pond. :)
November 22, 2011 5:27 AM
I'm 5'1" too and I simply can't exist on 1200 calories and won't even try. In fact, my BMR is 1279 --- that's what I need just to live even if I stayed in bed all the time. MFP set mine on 1238. I went to healthstrategy.com and used their calculators. They gave me a number of choices. Mine is set on a bit over 1400. Now, I seldom eat that much. I simply don't want to. For example, yesterday I only ate a bit over 1200. But, that's rare. I usually eat around 1300 or a bit more. I lose weight but slowly. Much slower than some people here. But, I feel a slow weight loss is healthier and will remain with me. You have to go with a plan you can stay with the rest of your life. Few people can or will live on 1200 calories their entire lifetime.

They'll stay on it long enough to lose their weight, perhaps. Then, once lost, they'll revert to their normal eating and put it all back plus some.

Short answer, in my opinion it's not enough. But it is your call no matter what any of us say.
  12535297
November 22, 2011 5:28 AM
Hi,

I'm 5'6", 9 1/2 stone (134lbs) and I'm eating 1,350-1,500 NET calories (i.e. if I burn 300 cals, I eat 1,650-1,850 cals).
I was eating 1,200 to begin with, and I lost 10 lbs really quickly, but my body entered starvation mode, I was cold a lot of the time and I found it extremely hard to lose any more weight. I'd start and aim for around 1,350 NET calories and then bump it up by 100 calories whenever you feel comfy. But it's a personal choice!

Hope this helps
November 22, 2011 5:29 AM
QUOTE:

I do eat 1200 calories but never for more than 2 weeks and I eat 50% of my cals as protein because I do not want to lose muscle mass(then I bump it up to 1500 cals) . If you do not have alot to lose, your deficit has to be really small.



Are you eating enough? Are you eating your exersise calories?

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/10589-for-those-confused-or-questioning-eating-your-exercise-calo

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/61706-guide-to-calorie-deficit

Go to the tools section and figure out your BMI:

Generally someone with a BMI over 32 can do a 1000 calorie a day (2 lbs a week) deficit
With a BMI of 30 to 32 a deficit of 750 calories is generally correct (about 1.5 lbs a week)
With a BMI of 28 to 30 a deficit of 500 calories is about right (about 1 lb a week)
With a BMI of 26 to 28 a deficit of about 300 calories is perfect (about 1/2 lb a week)
and below 26... well this is where we get fuzzy. See now you're no longer talking about being overweight, so while it's still ok to have a small deficit, you really should shift your focus more towards muscle building, and reducing fat. This means it is EXTRA important to eat your exercise calories as your body needs to KNOW it's ok to burn fat stores, and the only way it will know is if you keep giving it the calories it needs to not enter the famine response (starvation mode).

This is just a part of it! please read the link above
November 22, 2011 5:29 AM
I HAVMFP FOR ABOUT 2 E BEEN TRYING TO LOOSE WEIGHT FOR 4 WEEKS NOW. I HAVE BEEN SINGED UP FOR ABOUT 2 WEEKS. I LOST 2 LBS BEFORE I STARTED. I HAVE LOST 4 LBS SINCE I STARTED. I AM 1200 CAL. SOME DAYS I DO A LITTLE OVER, SOME DAYS A LITTLE UNDER. I WALK 2 MILES ON TREADMILL AT 4 MPH OR WALK BRISK 3.5 MPH A DAY, WHICH I MISSED THE LAST 2 DAYS. I WEIGH EVERY DAY, WHICH I KNOW IS NOT RECOMMENDED. ACCATIONALLY I SHOW A GAIN WHICH I DO NOT LET IT GET ME DOWN. 1200 IS GENERALLY ENOUGH. IF I STILL FEEL HUNGRY , I DRINK MORE WATER. EXERCISE ALSO ALLOWS ME TO GAIN MORE CALORIES. I NEED SOME SUPPORT TO KEEP ME ON TRACK.
Edited by tdfarmer On November 22, 2011 5:34 AM
  12740729
November 22, 2011 5:36 AM
I started on 1200 calories.. and have 35 pounds to lose. Is 1200 enough? Yes, if you don't excercise that day.. 1200 is enough. Remember, 1200 calories is a "goal" during the weight loss phase. IF you excercise, log your excercise calories.. and EAT them :) It is motivating to say.. "I really want to have an apple for snack.. and if I walk around the block a few times, I will have burned enough calories and will stay under/at my goal."

I don't intend to be at 1200 calories forever, and actually I don't think that MFP will keep me there ( I have elected, for now, to stay there). I have many days that I can't get the excercise in-- and I stay at 1200 calories, or pretty durn close. Again-- that's the goal... to watch your intake. Watch your exertion. Make sure that they are balancing out. We haven't been "balancing"-- that's usually the issue (pointing at myself). That is the lifestyle change that MFP is trying to promote. Have a great day!
  10671636
November 22, 2011 5:42 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

I do eat 1200 calories but never for more than 2 weeks and I eat 50% of my cals as protein because I do not want to lose muscle mass(then I bump it up to 1500 cals) . If you do not have alot to lose, your deficit has to be really small.



Are you eating enough? Are you eating your exersise calories?

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/10589-for-those-confused-or-questioning-eating-your-exercise-calo

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/61706-guide-to-calorie-deficit

Go to the tools section and figure out your BMI:

Generally someone with a BMI over 32 can do a 1000 calorie a day (2 lbs a week) deficit
With a BMI of 30 to 32 a deficit of 750 calories is generally correct (about 1.5 lbs a week)
With a BMI of 28 to 30 a deficit of 500 calories is about right (about 1 lb a week)
With a BMI of 26 to 28 a deficit of about 300 calories is perfect (about 1/2 lb a week)
and below 26... well this is where we get fuzzy. See now you're no longer talking about being overweight, so while it's still ok to have a small deficit, you really should shift your focus more towards muscle building, and reducing fat. This means it is EXTRA important to eat your exercise calories as your body needs to KNOW it's ok to burn fat stores, and the only way it will know is if you keep giving it the calories it needs to not enter the famine response (starvation mode).

This is just a part of it! please read the link above


Me? I sure do LOL. I am doing strenght training (very heavy strenght training) and I am in a fat cutting phase. High protein and low carbs but never for more than 2 weeks. First, my muscle mass is very important for me and I can only deal with 1200 calories if I know it is for a short time. I am 4'11''
  11614737
November 22, 2011 6:11 AM
In all honesty I find around 1200 calories enough for the day. I may sometimes eat 1300 if I've done exercise, but I never go to bed starving.
I could definitely eat more, not because of hunger but because of boredom/ something to do with my hands/ comfort/ cravings, and sometimes I will. If I fancy a pizza I'll go buy one, but I'll spend the rest of the week being good and sticking at 1200.
I'm 5'3 and weigh 136lbs so we're not that much different.

If you're struggling then eat more, just ensure what you're eating isn't sat.fat and sugar. Losing weight shouldn't be depressing and depriving your fave foods. It's taken me almost a year but I've lost 17lbs and I don't exercise much (walking everyday, and maybe a Zumba class once a week), it's just a slow process!
November 22, 2011 6:11 AM
....
Edited by marianne_s On November 22, 2011 6:11 AM
  4263050
November 22, 2011 6:11 AM
This is also being discussed here - http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/395881-people-who-lost-weight-eating-more
  4263050
November 22, 2011 6:11 AM
1200 calories is low in my eyes, If I could offer any advice to a fellow brit it would be to defo eat any calories back burnt through exercise. I think you will find what the right balance is for you through trial and error, as everybody is different, good luck with your goals tho!
  9954650
November 22, 2011 6:17 AM
Wow thank you for all the responses!

I just want to clarify that I'm OK with it being 1200 I have just read on a few other forums that more is better... within reason of course!!

I'm going to still with 1200 for 4 weeks and include a bit more exercise (I'm such a lazy bones!!) and see what happens.

I think I'm going to do the whole 'before and after' pics too so watch this space :D

P.S feel free to add me :D

xxx
November 22, 2011 6:48 AM
Calculate your BMR, then you'll know what you need exactly to get to where you want to be, and maintain it.
November 22, 2011 6:50 AM
QUOTE:

Calculate your BMR, then you'll know what you need exactly to get to where you want to be, and maintain it.


This.
  9905396

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