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calorie intake question

Discussion in 'Female Health & Fitness' started by screamonerd, Aug 12, 2007.

  1. screamonerd

    screamonerd Active Member

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    alright so im 5 feet exact
    115 lbs
    trying to lose fat but keep my lean muscle
    my goal each week is to burn 3500 calories from cardio alone and so far im at 2903 and i have till tomorrow
    i strength train and lift weights (5-10lbs) 4 times a week

    how many calories should i be taking in a day?
     
  2. virtualadrian

    virtualadrian Active Member

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    1) Read the stickies on the intro forum
    2) Here is a BMR Calculator http://www.bmi-calculator.net/bmr-calculator/
    3) I just guessed you were 25 and it spat 1319 back at me. At your level of activity you need 2044 calories / day to maintain, 1544 to cut 1lb a week, and 1044 to cut 2/week ( although that seems super low to me ). If you want to bulk ( just throwing this out ), you need 2544.. How do I know this? I read the stickies :)
    4) How are you measuring calories burned / week ?
     
    #2 virtualadrian, Aug 13, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2007
  3. screamonerd

    screamonerd Active Member

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    well im 19
    and i add them all up from my treadmill/elliptical
     
  4. goonie

    goonie Active Member

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    This should read "how did I estimate this?" Required calorie ranges from formulas aren't statements of fact, they're a best effort guess with a potential wide margin of error for a single individual. I'm sure you meant the same thing, but since it sounds like the OP might just be starting out, it's worth mentioning. And yes, the stickies do cover this point.

    Don't accept an estimate as what will work for you. You can't will numbers on paper that reasonably should be producing the results you want if they're simply not getting the job done. Many have tried this, and their frustration is evident when they realize the mistake they've made. It usually starts with something like "I should be losing/gaining weight with these numbers, but I can't seem to drop/gain a single pound despite eating totally healthy". This goes for either trying to lose weight/fat or gain weight/muscle.

    Where I feel online calculators are really valuable is for catching people that would otherwise crash diet because they think they have to starve themselves to lose weight without trying anything different first.

    Find a starting point that seems reasonable taking your own personal requirements into account, and move towards a system based on your results as quickly as possible. If you're trying to lose weight, there's nothing wrong with starting on the high side. After 3-4 weeks of following your diet plan, you'll have more valueable information than a simple formula intended for the masses will ever be able to give you. And if you don't drop/gain a single pound, you'll know right where your maintenance point is with the level of activity you're getting. Adjustments from here are rather easy.

    You can play with some additional estimates by using the tools from this site, but remember what your results are and how you feel are more important. Use the nutritional stickies to read up on not just calorie totals, but how to divide your calories into sensible macronutrients.
     
    #4 goonie, Aug 13, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2007
  5. virtualadrian

    virtualadrian Active Member

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    That is an estimate, I'll give you that, but a darn close one for me. To elaborate... the way I started out is that I tracked my days intake on a normal day. Compared that with my BMR estimates ( with my activity level ) and tried to cut out 500 calories. At first I could only slice out like 200 to 300, so I was still eating like 2500 calories/day, and I was soooo hungry because my body was not used to eating 5 or 6 times a day and having small meals. Eventually I cut that to 1900 to 2000 calories / day and that is where I got my fastest weight loss. Going below that BMR estimate is a no no, the moment I went below that I plateaued. I don't know how some of these diets can put people my size on a 1000 calorie / day intake... I'd keel over, or not function.

    Anyway point is that those estimates give you an idea of where to start, your body may feel discomfort because it's not used to a deficit. Sometimes you can't listen to your body because it may tell you to eat eat eat, since it's hooked on sodium, sugar, and fat. While I agree that estimates will not work for everyone, I think they're a good start. And yes don't think that just because you managed to cut out 1000 calories out of your diet daily for a week ( and ate clean )you will lose 2 pounds. You may lose 1.5 or you may lose 3, you may lose no weight. I think I posted some of my frustrations with my weight scale in my journal.

    On a parting note losing weight isn't always good. If you lose muscle that is bad. So try to track BF % rather than weight loss. I lost weight during my first cut, but I also got stronger... so I probably lost more fat than I thought.
     

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