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Do any females eat over 2000 cals/day?


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I'm talking about females who exercise regularly and vigorously - how many calories do you eat?

I can't seem to find any posts that mention a woman eating more than 1800 cals per day for maintenance. Most seem to be sticking to the 1400-1600 range, which is unbelievably small to me.

I could really use a guideline for what an active (5 or more hours of exercise per week) female eats to maintain her weight. Hearing from someone who is similar height/weight to me would also be helpful.

Here are my stats:

Sex: Female

Height: 5' 3"

Build: medium frame, good muscle mass, esp. in thighs

Weight: 134 lbs

Body Fat: 24%? (measurement from body fat scale, so not very accurate)

Exercise: five 7-10 minute dog walks per day + 30 to 90 mins activity such as running, weight lifting, cross trainer, stair master, swimming, hiking, sports, calisthenics, pilates, or kickboxing. Occasionally 2+ hours of exercise if I do a lot of walking on the weekend.

I've been trying to lose 5 lbs for MONTHS but have been wholly unsuccessful, so I'm trying to figure out how many calories my body needs to maintain each day, so I can work from there to figure out a good deficit.

For the past several weeks I was trying to eat 1600 to 1900 calories during the week, going up to 2200 to 2700 on the weekend (when I'm also more active), but have been starving-hungry almost all the time, and missed my period last month.

Any experience and advice on what to eat for maintenance with an active lifestyle would be very much appreciated!

-Maddy

41 Replies (last)

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Umm I mean you can eat any amount of calories really if you burn them off. Sure if you are eating 2500 calories a day but you work out like 700-900 calories at the gym sure you will lose and of course you need to eat more when you burn that much.

 

Me personally at 5'8 I am 175, I lose doing absolutely nothing on about 1500 calories a day. I will go to the gym and work out for about an hour on the treadmill and maybe eat 1800 calories. But i cant eat 2000 plus calories  a day. That is what I used to eat to be 200 pounds.

Im not yet at maintenance, but I eat an average of 1950 for weight loss. I'm 5'7, 166.7lbs, fairly muscular build, and I do 20 min strength training sessions 4-5 x a wk and run/walk for fun, like once a week depending on the weather. I've been losing at a rate of 2 or so lbs a wk pretty consistently.

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Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

You can maintain on much more than 1,800. If you're maintaining on less, it's likely because you've chronically undereaten for too long. Edit: Your BMR is 1,600 calories, making your sedentary burn 1,920. Even if you don't workout, you should be able to maintain on roughly 2,000 calories per day.

I'm 5'3" (yes, I measured an inch taller than my post in 2011) and weigh roughly 125 pounds and I maintain on well over 2,000 calories. I lose weight eating 1,700-1,800. I don't work out 3 hours a day. Usually it's 30-60 minutes per day, with one day a week being more like 1.5-2 hours (long run).

Original Post by bierorama:

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

You can maintain on much more than 1,800. If you're maintaining on less, it's likely because you've chronically undereaten for too long. Edit: Your BMR is 1,600 calories, making your sedentary burn 1,920. Even if you don't workout, you should be able to maintain on roughly 2,000 calories per day.

I'm 5'3" (yes, I measured an inch taller than my post in 2011) and weigh roughly 125 pounds and I maintain on well over 2,000 calories. I lose weight eating 1,700-1,800. I don't work out 3 hours a day. Usually it's 30-60 minutes per day, with one day a week being more like 1.5-2 hours (long run).

I am not recovering form anything, never had an easting disorder. If I was to eat 2000 calories a day I would be about 200 pounds.  I dont really see how someone at 125 can eat 2000 plus calories a day and still lose weight.  Unless you are working out hard.

 

I saw that my bmr is around 1600 (on another site), what I burn from doing nothing all day. I cannot eat 2000 calories a day and lose with out working out.  Calorie counter says my burn is 1890-which like I said if I eat 1800 a day I stay the same weight.

Original Post by swanhilda:

Hey themcmaster, I eat well over 2000 calories every day, have since Feb 2008 when I ditched dieting.? I no longer count calories--it practically drove me insane counting, but I know i go over 2000 now because it is so much more food than when I used to weigh all my food on food scales, calculate calories daily with all kinds of calorie charts (I even had a chart for spices) and record it all in food journals.?? I found one of my old food journals recently and I'm happy to say I'm so glad I'm enjoying the freedom of not having to think about doing all of that anymore! It was so time & mind-consuming!!!? I don't weigh myself anymore either, but at a Dr. appointment in June I weighed 152, in full clothing, at mid-day.? I'm age 51, 5'7" and swim?10-12 miles a week. This may be a horrendously fat weight for some, but I'd rather look the way I do now and not have to worry about restricting calories, than to be always trying to maintain an unrealistic weight by near starvation.? (been there, done that, wasn't pretty).

You mentioned not finding any posts of women eating in excess of 1800 calories a day.? I hear you.? And you rarely see "diet plans" in the popular women's magazines that go over 1800 either.? They all want us believing we're fat pigs if we eat more than that.? But then I got to thinking, hey, we're having an obesity epidemic aren't we?? In 2011, women are advised to not go over 1800 calories, and it seems like they've been advised that for maybe 20 years now, as the obesity epidemic grows to epic proportions.? Maybe all these diet gurus need to regroup, cause what they've been espousing for years now ain't working.

?

Contrast all those "1800 calorie diets" and the people who are on them, with the way people ate in the 1950s--people ate more heartily, ate big breakfasts, whole milk, real butter on bread, I bet there were very few girls on diets back then, why would they be?? They were already thin! ? And "diet foods" didn't even exist.? And if you ever see pictures from the 1950s, like school classroom pictures, you will notice hardly anyone had a weight problem.?? Nothing like what we see today.

I found my mom's old Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook, copyright 1951, and here are the calorie recommendations given for women in the nutrition section:

girls age 13-15--2,800 calories??????????? girls age 16-20--2,400 calories

woman, 123 lbs, moderately active--2,500 calories

???? "?? "?????????? , very active--3,000 calories

???? "???? "???????? ,? sedentary--2,100 calories

?

I don't know about you, but I think the people in the 1950s were onto something.

?

Love, Swan

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Swan, you are an inspiration. :) Very well said. We should all think like this. :)

Dear mcmaster, I eat close to 2000 per day (more during winter !!) and have an active lifestyle... it's normal that you need more than 2000 cal per day if you are exercising a lot and have quite a bit of muscle...

I struggle with the same issue, wonder just how many cal are too many or not, etc... think it's safe to say that drinking a glass of water then taking your time as you eat, really appreciating each bite, for example, helps one to know if one needs more food.  As hormones participate in determining appetite levels, hunger sensations fluctuate throughout the month whether or not we exercise more or less..!! It's not easy... Keeping busy, keeping up exercise and eating a little when hungry without worrying too much seems healthy. 

If you reduce the amount of calories per day, just 50-100 less than usual, for example, you'll likely find a balance that's the best solution for your body... 

That has helped me in the past... You're not alone, Miss ! Thanks for writing... I appreciate your post !! : )))) 

@freesia thermic efficiency is not set in stone. Some people burn through energy at a faster rate than others without intense or even moderate exercise. That rate can increase or decrease depending lifestyle and weight, among other factors.
Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

I'm 5'9 and fluctuate between 165 and 170. I maintain on about 3000 a day. I work out about 30 minutes a day on average.

old thread, but since people are still discussing things in it, join in.

5'4, 121 lbs last time I checked, 2500 calories. Over the past six months, my weight has stayed between 120 and 125 on this level of calories. My activity level isn't always constant (on some days, I sit at my desk, and at other days, I go mountain climbing), but I would guess that my AVERAGE activity level is lightly to moderately active. 

Over 2000 isn't unreasonable at all.

5'2", 106 lbs, moderately active (5-6 hours a week of strength circuits, running but rest of the day is sedentary) 

On my clean days, I'll eat ~2500 cals. I've been eating worse and eating out a lot recently so my cals go close to 4000 recently...the scale is staying the same though so phew. 

Swan, I love your reply. We should all just accept ourselves and be happy with who we are. Not trying to achieve the perfect body, eat the things we love, enjoy life. I am working hard on this but am not there yet. I definitely need more than 2,000 calories a day and I am small. 4'10" but I struggle with restricting still. :(

Original Post by ambereva:

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

I'm 5'9 and fluctuate between 165 and 170. I maintain on about 3000 a day. I work out about 30 minutes a day on average.

This seems insane to me. If I ate 3000 calories a day I would be 250 pounds.

I eat over 2000 every day to maintain. Usually from 2300 to 2600. Im 19 5'3and 122 pounds and very muscular. Im an anorexic whose been in recovery for over 2 years now. I exercise 4 to 5 times a week and go to college and have a job where i walk around alot

I am currently eating about 3000-4000 calories per day and I'm 25, 5'5, and currently back down to about 105.  That said, my lifestyle is NOT typical.  

I'm a professional horse trainer/rider meaning I work horses, I don't instruct riders.  I typically ride 5+ horses a day about 6 days per week.  I also put in about 2-3 hours of manual labor daily keep up with the horses, jumps, feed, hay, stalls, etc.  And then I also work nights at a restaurant where I'm on my feet running around for another 6 hours or so.

I eat whatever I want whenever I have time which is more often than not 2000+ calories between the hours of midnight and 2am.  I load down everything with olive oil and cheese for extra calories with minimal bulk.  I indulge in a large blizzard about twice a week.  And I eat pizza like it's my job.

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by bierorama:

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

You can maintain on much more than 1,800. If you're maintaining on less, it's likely because you've chronically undereaten for too long. Edit: Your BMR is 1,600 calories, making your sedentary burn 1,920. Even if you don't workout, you should be able to maintain on roughly 2,000 calories per day.

I'm 5'3" (yes, I measured an inch taller than my post in 2011) and weigh roughly 125 pounds and I maintain on well over 2,000 calories. I lose weight eating 1,700-1,800. I don't work out 3 hours a day. Usually it's 30-60 minutes per day, with one day a week being more like 1.5-2 hours (long run).

I am not recovering form anything, never had an easting disorder. If I was to eat 2000 calories a day I would be about 200 pounds.  I dont really see how someone at 125 can eat 2000 plus calories a day and still lose weight.  Unless you are working out hard.

 

I saw that my bmr is around 1600 (on another site), what I burn from doing nothing all day. I cannot eat 2000 calories a day and lose with out working out.  Calorie counter says my burn is 1890-which like I said if I eat 1800 a day I stay the same weight.

I never mentioned an eating disorder, so I'm not sure where you're getting that. I also didn't say that you can lose weight eating 2,000 calories. Should you re-read my post? It sounds like you misread it.

I actually maintain on more than 2,000 calories. I run 4 days a week (about 25 miles per week), lift weights twice a week (45 minutes each session) and bike for 45 minutes one day a week.

If you maintain at 1,800 then you have either damaged your metabolism from undereating or you're completely sedentary. Or you could be logging your food incorrectly. You can either take steps to fix the issue, of continue to think that you maintain on only 1,800.

Original Post by bierorama:

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by bierorama:

Original Post by freesia420:

Original Post by vaylove:

Yes, sorry for the confusion.  Calorie deficit = weight loss... seems to be common knowledge, just challenging to keep the deficit alive when burning a lot of calories... and at the same time trying to feel the difference between actual hunger or simply an unnecessarily large appetite due to emotions or the body's attempt at storing more fat.

You'll have to excuse me as I missed the boat and thought we were discussing hunger and calorie consumption... must have been tired last night upon reading posts !

 

 

 

How is someone going to eat 2500-3000 calories a  day and have a deficit unless they are a larger person? If you are working out 3 hours a day just to be able to eat those 3000 calories a day it seems counter productive.

 

I am 5'8 and 175 and 1800 is maintenance at this weight

You can maintain on much more than 1,800. If you're maintaining on less, it's likely because you've chronically undereaten for too long. Edit: Your BMR is 1,600 calories, making your sedentary burn 1,920. Even if you don't workout, you should be able to maintain on roughly 2,000 calories per day.

I'm 5'3" (yes, I measured an inch taller than my post in 2011) and weigh roughly 125 pounds and I maintain on well over 2,000 calories. I lose weight eating 1,700-1,800. I don't work out 3 hours a day. Usually it's 30-60 minutes per day, with one day a week being more like 1.5-2 hours (long run).

I am not recovering form anything, never had an easting disorder. If I was to eat 2000 calories a day I would be about 200 pounds.  I dont really see how someone at 125 can eat 2000 plus calories a day and still lose weight.  Unless you are working out hard.

 

I saw that my bmr is around 1600 (on another site), what I burn from doing nothing all day. I cannot eat 2000 calories a day and lose with out working out.  Calorie counter says my burn is 1890-which like I said if I eat 1800 a day I stay the same weight.

I never mentioned an eating disorder, so I'm not sure where you're getting that. I also didn't say that you can lose weight eating 2,000 calories. Should you re-read my post? It sounds like you misread it.

I actually maintain on more than 2,000 calories. I run 4 days a week (about 25 miles per week), lift weights twice a week (45 minutes each session) and bike for 45 minutes one day a week.

If you maintain at 1,800 then you have either damaged your metabolism from undereating or you're completely sedentary. Or you could be logging your food incorrectly. You can either take steps to fix the issue, of continue to think that you maintain on only 1,800.

Well I was originally talking to someone else so that is what confused me.  1800 calories for a female seems like a lot to me.  When I go to the calorie estimator it tells me that in order to lose from 174-145 I would have to eat around 1300 until February 20th 2014.  If I was 135 pounds and sedentary my calories burned would be 1670 I wouldn't be able at that point to eat 1800 and maintain, I would gain weight. For a female 1500-1600 calories isn't undereating for someone who doesn't work out. I am sedentary at this point, so if I sit around eating 1700-2000 calories  a day I would gain weight....When I was 200 pounds I lost on 1800 but as the weight went off that number had to lower.

I could maintain easily on 2000 cal a day if I exercise at least 30 - 60 min a day.  Last year I lost 2 pant sizes on 2000+ cal a day only lifting weights 3 times a week and doing a little interval training and walking my dog 30 min a day.

I am 53 5'6" and was down to a size 4 @ 155lbs- this past winter I quit working out but kept eating and gained.  

 

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