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TOPIC: 1200 Calorie a day diet-- Need some insight :)

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May 2, 2012 9:41 AM
Hi! I'm new to this and was wondering if you could give me some insight. My goal is to lose 40lbs. I'm on a 1200 calorie a day diet, cutting out bad Carbs and only drinking water. I'm hoping to lose 3-4lbs a week. I was wondering how long it took some of you to lose the weight you have lost and on average how much you lost each week? Did you include anything else in your diet or did you just stick to 1200 calories a day? Any information would be really helpful! I'm trying to stay motivated ;)
May 2, 2012 9:45 AM

I'm on a 1200 calorie diet now. I've read that if you weight less than 200 pounds, it's safe to lose at most 2 pounds a week. My goal is to lose about one pound a week, and usually it's a little less than that. I would of course recommend exercising too, simply because then you can eat more to make up for the calories that you use. I'm not a nutritionist or expert here, but I would recommend setting your goals to lost 5 pounds at a time, and to plan on losing only 1-2 pounds a week. It can be daunting wanting to lose a lot of weight quickly.
May 2, 2012 9:51 AM
Thanks! I tried WW a few years ago and it worked great! This is similiar so I'm hoping to get close to the same results. I do plan to include some exercise during the week. I love walking and riding my bike! Are you just sticking to the 1200 calorie diet or have you cut other things out as well?
May 2, 2012 9:57 AM
I have cut out junk food. And during the week I don't eat fruit or starchy carbs. I eat veggies, beans/lentils, and protein for every meal. Have a 'cheat' day once a week. I work out 6-7 days a week. I eat back some if not all of my exercise calories. I started on 1/1/11 at 303.4lbs. I am currently at 192.2lbs (down 111.2lbs). I'm 30 years old, 5'6''.
May 2, 2012 10:00 AM
Hey there...I've got 38 lbs to go and am on the 1200 calorie plan also. When I'm doing what I'm supposed to, I typically lose 1-2 pounds per week. I'm going for the lifestyle change as opposed to rapid weight loss - small weekly changes to diet and increasing exercise.
May 2, 2012 10:05 AM
I was on 1200-1400 calories for the past 6-7 months (1200 on the days I didn't work out, 1400 on the days I worked out).... I lost 33 lbs during that time. I was REALLY determined and REALLY strict in the first few months, then I eased up sometimes (not always) on the weekends and/or Holidays (having a few glasses of wine, eating a bit more calories)... but I made sure not to go too overboard and I always, ALWAYS went right back to 1200-1400 calories on Monday. I worked out 3 times per week, one hour of cardio per workout. I am now about 2 lbs away from my goal and I also now work out 5 days per week, so, I have increased my calories to about 1400 per day. Add me as a friend if you want for support :) Good luck to you....
May 2, 2012 10:07 AM
I'm around a 1200-1400 diet. If I work out, I eat back my calories so my net is at least 1200.

It's been working for me so far. I eat alot too (diary is open).
May 2, 2012 10:08 AM
Congrats!! Good for you!! I'm currently at 194lbs and would like to get down to 150lbs. I really want to do this! I'm so motivated. I'm tired of feeling bad about myself. I don't even like to go out places, I'm so insecure. Thanks for your reply!
May 2, 2012 10:09 AM
3-4lbs a week might not be realistic! If you look at your goals section on mfp it will tell you how much of a deficit you're creating and how much you should be able to lose each week. For me, 1200 calories a day results in a deficit large enough for a 1.8lb loss/week. If you except to lose double that, you'll end up disappointed!
May 2, 2012 10:11 AM
Oh, and I don't cut out all! I eat whatever I want as long as I can work it in my 1200 calorie limit! And if you exercise, you can eat a little more! pay attention to your net calories (which mfp will set up after you add in your exercise calories)!

If cutting out certain types of food makes it easier for you, then do it, just know that you don't have to!
May 2, 2012 10:11 AM

I have cut out junk food. And during the week I don't eat fruit or starchy carbs. I eat veggies, beans/lentils, and protein for every meal. Have a 'cheat' day once a week. I work out 6-7 days a week. I eat back some if not all of my exercise calories. I started on 1/1/11 at 303.4lbs. I am currently at 192.2lbs (down 111.2lbs). I'm 30 years old, 5'6''.

Wow!!! Awesome accomplishment!!!
May 2, 2012 10:11 AM
Edited by HYBRIDXXX On May 2, 2012 10:13 AM
May 2, 2012 10:14 AM

Before I had baby I lost about 2lb per week on the 1200 cal per day diet. It was steady weight loss and while I stuck to it the weight stayed off so I am now doing this again now baby is here. I have a treat day though which is Mondays. I don't overeat but I eat what I want and don't count calories (its mainly a carb fest for example toast for breakkie, a baguette for lunch, chips for tea and choc for snack). This does not seem to affect the rest of the week and I still lost weight doing this.

I think if you don't treat yourself you end up cheating.

May 2, 2012 10:15 AM
1200 calories B.E. (before exercise) here, too. I average a 1-2 pound a week loss. But I also eat back my exercise calories...and I run A LOT! It sounds like you are well versed in the healthy eating aspect so my only advice is that exercise and movement on a regular basis will get you where you really want to be for your LIFE (not just for the short term).

Good luck to you! Feel free to add me.

I'm 5'4"

HW: 252
SW: 178 (January 2012)
CW: 160
GW: 140 (but maybe lower once I get there!)
Edited by phillieschic On May 2, 2012 10:16 AM
May 2, 2012 10:15 AM
I am on 1200 cal a day I dont typically eat back my exercise cals, though if I really want something and can work it into my 1200 cals I go for it. I dont cut out anything all together but pay careful attention to portions. I have lost 100 lbs but it has taken me 21 mths. some weeks I have lost 4 lbs and some weeks I havent lost any , there are many weeks I have only lost a few oz but it all adds up. The important thing is to just stick with it and dont give up
May 2, 2012 10:16 AM
I tried the 1200 a day as MFP recommended and it just wasn't feasible. Everyone is different and you will find what works for you, but I've been consistenly eating 1500 cals a day along with working out 5 days a week. I cut out fast food and fried food and while it was a bumpy road, I am down 29.5 lbs since July last year. Started out at 5'3" 155 lbs and now I'm 125.5.

My only recommendation is don't get discouraged by the scale!
May 2, 2012 10:17 AM
Hello! Im pretty new too and doing 1200 calories a day..I lost 4 lbs so far. I started the gym on Monday Im sore but Im determined! Add me if you like and good luck to you!

May 2, 2012 10:18 AM

Congrats!! Good for you!! I'm currently at 194lbs and would like to get down to 150lbs. I really want to do this! I'm so motivated. I'm tired of feeling bad about myself. I don't even like to go out places, I'm so insecure. Thanks for your reply!

Sounds just like me. I was so self conscious about my weight, whenever someone said the word fat, i assumed they were talking about me. I started at 223lbs now I am at 197. My original goal was 150, but now i am chaning that to 130. I am 5'2. I figured if I am going to work this hard why not get the results I want, instead of settling.

I have tried everything in the past. This time around if different for some reason, but i am not going to complain. I started out using this site just to count calories but not changing my eating habits except for portion control. I quickly learned that changing what I ate allowed me to eat more during the day. I started slowly with the exercise and moved it up a notch little by little.

Some days are easy , more days are hard. I lost that 18 lbs quickly at first. Now it is more slow, but I am also learning the the scale can be my enemy (check out recent post). It is more about how clothes are fitting because of inches lost.

Keep at it. We can do this.

Add me if you like. I would be happy to have another person to compare with.
May 2, 2012 10:18 AM
May 2, 2012 10:19 AM
I started a month ago and was at 1200 calories.. I was gettin really bad migraines tho so upped it to 1400 and the weight seems to be coming off.
May 2, 2012 10:22 AM
i lost about 50lbs in six months by cutting rubbish out, and walking 6 miles a day 5 days a week, after the first month or so i added in wii fit, i didn't stick to a calorie restricted diet, but i was a lot heavier than you are. this was last year, i didn't discover mfp until January this year, i have followed a 1200 calorie diet since then as i had come to a standstill with weight loss, i have managed to lose another 31 lbs but i have started exercising more, i didn't restrict anything because if i cut something out, i end up thinking of nothing else and eventually binging on it, so for me its better to have anything i want but in moderation.
good luck xx
May 2, 2012 10:29 AM
I'm also on a 1200cal per week. My strategy was to become mostly vegetarian, sometimes I cheat with tuna and I haven't stopped eating eggs or milk but as for meats I've set them aside for a while... It's been great for me, I'd done this before 8 my friends played a bet on me once that I couldnt stay vegetarian for three months and I did), i also lost like ten pounds and obviously I love veggies so its easier.
May 2, 2012 11:08 AM
I am also on a 1200 calorie diet. I limit myself to 90g protein /day, 50g carbs /day and 30g sugars /day. I eat protein every 3 hours that I am up and snack on low glycemic fruits and veggies. I have lost 7lbs so far and my belly fat has reduced dramatically. I used to have insomnia very bad, and since I started eating this way I've been sleeping soundly. The first week was the most difficult with not eating refined carbs and starches, but now I dont miss them at all. I do have a cheat day where I will eat a small bowl of ice cream or a piece of garlic bread. I wish everyone in here good luck and love watching everones progress
May 2, 2012 11:20 AM
Hi, I am fairly new too. Started @ 189.5 lbs & want to get down to 135!
I am currently following the 1200 calorie diet. I try to get at minimum, 30 minutes of exercise per day & 5 days a week. I do add some of my burned calories back in on some days but not always. I try to stay away from saturated fat & sugar. But I don't really limit myself to much as long as I stay within my calorie count. It is working out well for me, loosing about 3lbs per week.

Good luck & friend me if you like. We can all use extra tips & motivation. flowerforyou
May 2, 2012 1:37 PM
Hi there!

I'm currently on a 1200 calorie/day diet too! 2 years ago, I was really determined to lose weight after I got back from a trip to Paris. I was 162 lbs then. I worked out 5 times a week (30-35 min) treadmill-running on the weekdays before work (no weight training) and eating salads for lunch and dinner. If I were to eat starches, I would eat a small portion of rice of not more than my cupped palm. I would give myself some cheat opportunities on the weekend but I would go right back on Monday. I found that doing these 2 simple things really made a difference:

1. Weighing myself Monday AND Friday mornings after doing bathroom things and before I changed into my gym clothes. This made me motivated to stay accountable and if I messed up on say, Tues, I could adjust my intake to still do well on my Friday weigh-in!

I was able to lose 2 lbs between my Monday and Friday weigh-ins and if I was absolutely disciplined on the weekend, I would lose 1 pound as well. So 3 pounds by the next Monday.

2. Drinking at least 8 cups of water per day. It is highly important to drink ICE COLD to COLD water as your body take more energy, therefore burns more calories heating it up to your body temperature. You may think that it doesn't count for much but in a week, you lose 70 calories doing just this. EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS!

When I got used to running on the treadmill, I started including a little incline of about 1-2%. Good training to challenge your body and I was doing this to improve my stamina for the Grouse Grind in the summer.

I noticed that the pounds came off slowly but steadily, 2-3 lbs per week (not crazy amounts like what you see on the Biggest Loser ie. 10lbs/week). Slowly but surely the scale reflected a smaller number and I weighed in at 142 lbs after the summer doing the Grouse Grind. My ultimate goal has always been to be 120lbs. Sadly, I went through some family financial issues that really got to me and I threw my plan aside and gained all the weight back in time.

Now, I just have to follow what I did before and not let anything stop me. Just sick and tired of this downward spiral in life and I'm turning 30 next year.

Good luck girl! We can do it!! I know it can be done!


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