Used a few calorie calculators and it's averaging that I should eat 1200 calories a day to lose 2lbs a week... Is that too little?
sounds just right to me. i'm trying lose about the same amount, and i've been taking in about 1200 a day as well. from what i've read, it burns 1500-2000ish calories a day to be alive. at this rate the weight lose will happen without killing yourself, starving yourself or depriving yourself of foods you enjoy. one thing that helps me is rewarding myself. like if i keep it to 1000 cals, at the end of the day i get 1oz of potato chip(160 cal) or one of those little 90 calorie Cokes. if i work out for an hour i get a roll of Smarties (30 cal). it's nice to see someone with a doable number. all the time you see post like "i'm 13 and weigh 110. i'm trying to get to 80 and take in 350 calories a day. is that too much?"
It sounds right to me, and remember that when you are eating healthy you eat lots of vegetables and foods that are lower calorie, but higher in nutrients and fiber. If you consume 1200 calories of those type items and eat 5-6 small meals a day, you will remain quite full. Just use the analyzer to keep yourself on track for the nutrients.
If you are low on a nutrient, visit the food list for that nutrient to find out what you should eat more of to get it to where it should be.
i just aim for 1200 and if i get 1100 - 1400 i'm very pleased. you'll probably find that it's hard to consistently hit a specific number on the nose. i have days i go under for whatever reason, and days i go over (holiday, birthday...) i just try to make sure my week averages as close as i can get.
You know, I have read this SO much on these forums too. It seems there is some debate and I have no formal education in this so I truly don't know. I think there is always room to create a deficit though because if you eat 1200 a day, then hit a plateau, you can up your exercise and create a larger calorie deficit. HOWEVER, I have found for myself personally, I shoot for anywhere between 1200-1400 calories. I do go over that on some days, and I do have days where I land somewhere in the 1100's. I notice that when I eat closer to 1200 calories I will consistently lose for a few days/weeks, then bam, stop. To jumpstart loss again, I bump up my calories for a day or two to 1500-1600 calories. It seems to start things up again and when I drop back down to 1200 I start losing again. So I usually just go ahead and give myself one or two high calorie days a week. But, if you think about it, by eating like that I average out to 1300 or 1400 a day anyway so I don't know if I'm really doing anything to my metabolism or if it's more psychological in the end.
Original Post by laurenmayjenkins:
Hello :) thanks for your reply! My BMR is 1582, and I think I'm gonna stick to 1350 calories a day for now, and see how I get on with that... Need to start getting back into going to the gym regularly too, so hopefully with regular exercise and a calorie controlled diet I'll lose! x
You should never eat LESS than your BMR. I know it seems weird, but there is a such thing as eating too little. Go google BMR and do some research as to why it's dangerous to eat less than that.
My advice is to eat 1600 calories a day. Seriously.
Here's the skinny (as it were) - when your calorie intake is too low, your body goes into starvation mode - it slows your metabolism waaay down in an attempt to keep you alive. So, you're not burning any off, you're not losing weight. That's why, when you eat more calories for a few days, you start to lose again. Your body realizes you're not going to starve to death. So, moderation - don't nosedive your calorie count. Really, the tools here are pretty good - you feed in your height/weight/age, and it will tell you how many calories per day to shoot for to reach your recommended weight. Try for that calorie goal. That's it! Every day is new day to work on getting it right. :) The site will tell you your calorie deficit, too - every 3500 calories = 1 pound, so...over the course of a week of deficits, you'll lose.
Well, it's the lowest that a small sedentary older woman should eat for weight loss. So given that it's the absolute minimum... yeah, it's pretty low.
Just because you can eat that little, doesn't mean you should.
Your BMR is 1582. You should eat at least this, especially if you are exercising. Frankly I would starve on 1200 cals :( Plus extreme cal cuts lead to more muscle loss and the point is to lose fat, not muscle. And they are hard to sustain, you are more likely to feel deprived and over eat down the road.
I've had lots of success recently with calorie cycling, so I admit that I'm rather biased towards that.
I just plugged your stats into this calculator(http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calc ulator.htm) and came up with 1797/day to maintain, 1438 for fat loss, and 1344 for extreme fat loss.
They've also got a link for calorie cycling (7-day calorie zig-zag), which gives the following values: 1438, 1344, 1726, 1438, 1344, 1582, 1438.
Just to emphasize coderdonna's point: "when your calorie intake is too low, your body goes into starvation mode" so eating too little can be a problem.
I started out in Jan at between 1300-1400cals/day. Within 3 weeks I was starving, cranky, and didn't have enough energy for my powerwalking/ellipticalling, etc. I searched the forums on here and found the "eat at least your BMR" ones and for me, that's been the key!
I LOVE calorie cycling...it's awesome to have a nice high day (1886 or 2058) - I make up some homemade pasta & sauce, have a waffle with syrup and butter with breakky, etc...I got bored always trying to shoot for 1341cals...I found I was only eating the same foods because I knew they would keep me at that level. It wasn't natural for me.
Personally I think how many calories a day should be a moving target to allow a little flexibilty keeping in mind that you need to be close to a certain amount over the course of the week. Doesn't work for everyone. I have days where I eat 900 cal and days where I eat 3500 cal. The only thing that's important to me is that I am aware of how the choices affect me and where to make adjustments.
I also suggest cal cycling in a 1200-1500 range and I am bias about it too :P
Yes, it's too little. And you're not going to lose 2 pounds per week, not 2 pounds of fat anyway.
I believe a maximum weight loss to aim for would be 1% a week, so 2 lbs a week is for someone at least 200 pounds.