In Desperate Need of Establishing Caloric Intake

Discuss tips and advice for losing body fat.

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In Desperate Need of Establishing Caloric Intake

Postby shayl32 » Sun Feb 12, 2012 4:38 pm

please, please, please, please help me... please

130 lbs

I've been on a "weight loss journey", if you will, since October 2011. After having frequent binges and out of control portions causing me to overeat, I decided to change my eating/exercise habits to become healthier, fitter, and -well- slimmer.

So I logged my calories on an Excel worksheet, drastically cut my calories, and frequented the gym. I went from 138 to 130lbs in a relatively short amount of time. But that was eating a net of - say- 800-1200 or even less ( even on days that I worked out.)

No bueno.

So I stopped trying all together, still eating mindfully, but no longer went to the gym.

Now, I'm back with a clear head and a firm goal. I take it that if I had continued from last year, I would have met my goal by now. I no longer binge or overeat. In fact, it seems like I am only able to eat a lot less that I used to.

My goal weight is ~120, which is only about 10 pounds to where I am now.

But my biggest concern is trusting figures that I find online telling me how much I should be eating to lose weight. My BMR is around 1400, and MFP has set me at 1200 net calories per day (generic right?) One source suggested that I could eat around 1600 calories a day (active lifestyle) and lose about a pound a week. To me that seems like a lot, especially seeing that they have to be "clean food", which I'm totally down for, granted that I would ACTUALLY be able to shed pounds this way.

I workout 6 days a week (1 hr+, 300-600cals burn per) and walk for 30 minutes two times a week.

I know I should be eating back those calories, thanks to (http://www.shouldieatmyexercisecalories.… but I still have to do more research on the best and healthiest way to go about this.

Right now, I eat between around 1200-1400 per day, regardless if I exercise or not. I understand that eating too few calories, can be just as bad as eating excessive calories, but I just don't know what those numbers are! I've gotten so many results from online calculators that it's making my head spin. I don't want to swoop too low in my caloric intake to plateau.

I [think I] know I should be eating more calories but I'm not sure how much.

here is my Myfitnesspal food diary:
so you can see exactly what I've been eating since I've created the account on MFP

thanks in advance!

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Boss Man
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Re: In Desperate Need of Establishing Caloric Intake

Postby Boss Man » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:16 pm

Hi there :).

Firstly I would like to say that I'm proud of you, for admitting to past issues with weight and fluctuating correction habits, as it can never be easy for people to admit to things, they felt were wrong and also I think your weight loss targets are not excessive, because aiming for around 120lbs is perfectly fine.

As for the diet schedule itself, there are a few discrepencies that could be ironed out.

Firstly you're consuming 64g of Carbs with breakfast, which bearing in mind bloodsugar is low first things, is still potentially a little too much, unless I'm reading things wrongly, as it looks like you're eating 3 different kinds of cereal at once.

I'll elaborate more on the diet later in this message.

I'd also hang fire on the levels of exercise too. 6 days is probably a bit too much.

I'd be tempted to work off a system a bit like this.

Day 1. Weights

Day 2. Cardio

Day 3. Weights

Day 4. Day off

Day 5. Cardio

Day 6. Weights

Day 7. Day off

This gives you a bit more recovery in the week, but stops you doing 5 days straight and 2 days of nothing back to back, as your body might start adjusting to the sedentary lifestyle after 2 days, meaning it might have to work its way back to the point where it started tailing off, before you could get more of the positive effects you were getting up to that point.

As for calories, a sedentary female needs around 1,800 a day and you could add another 300 a day approximately in there for exercise. You could then have 1,800 a day on the off days, so you don't eat calories you won't burn.

There is no magic bullet answer, or a one size fits all scenario, but I generally use these numbers in regard to female calorie intake, as I feel that's a good ballpark way of looking at it.

In your first meal your Protein is low and I'd suggest substituting some of the Carbs for protein. If you take 24g out and swapping thme for Protein, you'll get 40g Carbs and 30g Protein, which is fine. Your body will have been scaveninging bits of muscle in the night for fuel, because it had nothing left to use from previous nutrition intake, so some fat and muscle would be fuel, to help keep the body functioning overnight, so a good amount of Protein first thing will stop this happening, because a bit of protein, would not necessarily make you feel fully satisfied until the next meal and not completely prevent the catabolism process.

You could add in things there like scrambled Egg Whites, or maybe a bit of Chicken or Ham as examples.

As for the Cheese options in your diet, go low Fat, to cut a bit of saturate out.

In the dinner option, go low fat on the cheese, but double the portion, for more Protein. You look as if you're having 2 types of noodles, so I'd reduce that by around 1/2 so your Carbs are around 25g not 50g, as you'll be getting more Carbs in from he higher Cheese amount, if you did that.

Your other issue is snacks. You seem to be having one, but it's not very high calorie. A lot of snack options are poor and don't provide many calories, so they are very unfulfilling.

So look to be having a snack between meals 1-2, 2-3 and after 3, so you eat around 6 times a day.

These could include a portion of Peanuts, Microwaveable beans or soup, some kind of Sandwich I.E. Ham, Chicken, Turkey, Beef, some kind of flesh based option with things like Tomato, Lettuce, Cucumber etc, those Chip things you eat but 2x the amount, a pot of Nut Yoghurt, as part of a snack, not a whole one, so maybe with some Chicken or packet Turkey for more protein and a Tangerine, some Berries or half an Apple as examples, to boost the Carbs a bit more.

These options and changes should help you get more calories, so you can shift that last little bit.

Be aware that initially your body may view what extra you eat as possible excess and may store some of the calories, but in time, with luck, it should learn to acept them and then do the reverse with them and use them or burn them off along with any bit of fat you stored.

The weights are a good idea, as 1 added pound of muscle, burns an extra 45-50 calories a day and is a good thing.

Female muscle can be incredibly beautiful, not to mention healthy as well, so forget all the rubbish you might hear about looking manly, weird, wrong, because most people who say that, are often inactive people, with no idea of what it takes to be a female with 5+lbs of muscle and many don't take anabolic substances anyway, as they're not a magic bullet to muscle gain either.

It becomes a question of whether you want to be strong and healthy when you're old, or pained and struggling to get up out of bed and get up and down stairs, without feeling it badly, because there's no knowing what we as people will end up like when we're over 65, so good physical foundation is a key cornerstone, to a potentially long and well life :).

Hopefully I've made some kind of sense :wink:, but if you need any more advice, help, support, suggestions, or explanations of anything you don't understand, come and see us anytime at all, even if it's just to comment on other people, because one little word can mean so much to someone else :).

I want to finally wish you GOOD LUCK. Many people your age don't bother with their health and many get into bad things that can ruin their health, life or get them into prison, from mixing with the wrong people, so you should be extremely proud of wanting to give your life more meaning and for trying to look after yourself properly :).

You seem like a really lovely young Lady and I hope things work out for you.

Chin up, be strong and keep pushing and know that we as a community will try what we think is our best, to support you as much as you want us too okay :).

You have the potential to be AMAZING and I hope you reach that potential, I really do :).

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