Author: Sorting Last Post on Top Message:
SEPTLEFTY Posts: 426
2/7/12 4:47 P

That sounds really good.

NIMITTA SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,465)
Posts: 49
2/6/12 2:11 P

I do not know about casseroles, but I once cooked lasagna using spinach, low-calories greek salad cheese and paneer. I am not sure how much calories are there, it should not be too much. Make one layer of cheese mix after two layers of spinach.

SEPTLEFTY Posts: 426
2/6/12 12:41 P

Its funnyim still doing well with the math of it all.

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/5/12 8:32 P

We all want it gone as soon as possible, but it didn't go on that fast. At your weight, 2lb/week is pretty unreasonable. Not impossible, but very ambitious. A pound a week is much more realistic.

If you set realistic goals you're more encouraged when you achieve them than setting unrealistic ones, failing, and trying to 'catch up' somehow when they don't work out.

I would suggest doing whatever is a reasonable lifetime-level of exercise for you personally, and eating about 500 calories per day less than would be needed to maintain your weight at that exercise level.

For example, I lost a lot of weight and due to poor choices I've been regaining it. I want it gone quick, like you (like everyone). But if I were to aim to lose it at the rate that it went on ... that would be about one third of a pound a week! It's far more sensible and realistic to get that third than to aim for a 2lb loss that might not be realistic.

200LBSTOOHEAVY SparkPoints: (2,296)
Fitness Minutes: (3,347)
Posts: 59
2/5/12 8:19 P

I WAS over 200 lbs at one point, but now I'm hovering around 196 (more like 197) lbs. However, couldn't I just increase my exercise to meet my goals? At my current weight of 197, would I put on more weight burning 2,808 calories a week, consuming 1,500 calories daily? If not, I'll gladly consume more calories if it means I can lose 2 lbs a week. I've put on a LOT of extra weight over the past three years, and really want it gone as fast as possible!

Edited by: 200LBSTOOHEAVY at: 2/5/2012 (20:21)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/5/12 7:36 P

Well basically, not everybody can safely lose 2lb/week. If your maths put your total at or below 1200 a day, then you're probably not someone who should be deducting 1,000 to lose weight. Maybe the 500 a day to lose a pound a week is more realistic (half way? Lose 3 pounds every 2 weeks?)

For example, if a slight person has a BMR of only 1300 and does no exercise then she has a grand total of 1560 per day in burn. If she wanted to lose a pound a week she'd mathematically have to eat 1,060 calories a day - below a safe daily minimum. This means that a pound a week is not a reasonable goal for this person. She should attempt to lose a bit more slowly - half a pound a week would be an intake of 1,310 daily.

If you're afraid you'll gain weight on 1550, why not do the maths on that? You followed all those steps, do you mind if I ask what was the figure at the "calories your body needs every day to maintain your current weight" step? I will guarantee you it was more than 1500 - probably way more. So you don't need to be afraid that even that much (let alone being afraid of 1200 - that's just unrealistic!) would cause any sort of weight gain in you.

BTW, does your username indicate you're currently 200lbs overweight? If so, you do not need to worry about weight gain until you get up to or near 2,500 or so daily. Larger bodies take more calories to heave around all day. It's likely that 1,500 would be almost starving if you are that large, and that 1,160 would definitely be unhealthily low.

Edited by: UNIDENT at: 2/5/2012 (19:38)
200LBSTOOHEAVY SparkPoints: (2,296)
Fitness Minutes: (3,347)
Posts: 59
2/5/12 7:10 P


Thank you for the clarification! I followed all the steps in the link, and I figured my daily caloric intake to be between 1,160 to 1,500 calories. I want to eat 1,160 calories just because I'm still concerned I'll gain weight eating 1,500 calories. (AND because that's just WAY too many calories!) However, SparkPeople doesn't allow you to consume less than 1,200 calories daily.

How do I lose weight if I consume 1,160 calories (the amount recommended in the formula) if I can't consume less than 1,200 calories? How can you deduct 1,000 calories from your diet, if your total daily calorie range falls below the minimum daily caloric intake of 1,200 calories? If anyone can elaborate on this questions, please feel free to leave feedback!

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/5/12 4:16 P

Ignore the 1500-1850. It's already set up for weight loss so if you want a new range you really need to start with your BMR, not the previous weight loss range given.

If you do 2,808 calories per week exercise then calculate your BMR, add 20% for "everyday activity" and add the 401 calories per day that is your exercise. Subtract 1,000 from *that* figure and that's where you should eat to lose around 2lb/week.

Here's where BMR is explained so you can calculate it. It's spark's article on how they calculate your range and I think you might find it useful. If the maths puts you off just google "BMR calculator" and you'll find sites where you just enter your age, weight, height and gender and they do the calculation for you.

200LBSTOOHEAVY SparkPoints: (2,296)
Fitness Minutes: (3,347)
Posts: 59
2/5/12 4:00 P

NIMITTA, Thanks for the recipe site! I'd have to try it out. Do they have low-cal substitutes for vegetable lasagna and casseroles?

LUCKYNUMBER23, Wow! 85% of losing weight comes from food? The food tracker says I need to consume 1,500-1,850 calories per day in order to lose a lb a week. So, if I were to burn 2,808 calories exercising 3-4 days a week, and reduce my food intake by 599 calories a day (in order to lose two pounds a week), then I will be eating 1,251 calories a day. (1,850 - 599 = 1,251.) Does that figure seem correct to you? Let me know.


NIMITTA SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,465)
Posts: 49
2/5/12 6:42 A

My appetite fluctuates greatly. But I noticed that soups help when I am especially hungry.

Soups are great! They are warming (which is great in the winter season), vegs have lots of fiber (I am a vegetarian, so all my soups are just vegs), and they are generally low-calories (if you do not add cheese or cream which I do not). So, a bowl of soup could be 80-100Kcal. I discovered a lot of great recipes on the BBC Goodfood, including several nice soups. Even high-calories recipes can be altered by removing coconut milk or cream (usual culprits when it comes to high calories in soups).

SEPTLEFTY Posts: 426
2/5/12 1:34 A

Its weird im eating half of that and not at all hungry,

LUCKYNUMBER23 SparkPoints: (12,425)
Fitness Minutes: (15,322)
Posts: 449
2/5/12 1:16 A

Losing weight is 85% about your diet. It is very hard to burn 3,500 calories in a week. It is very easy to eat 3,500 calories. You want to exercise for your heart and because it will give you energy.

EMMANYC Posts: 1,702
2/4/12 6:45 P

Great answer, Unident!

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/4/12 1:57 P

200LTH you're looking at exercise all wrong.

Exercise doesn't lose weight. It isn't for that. Exercise can help, but it's primarily to have a healhy strong body that is capable of many types of movement and endurance.

Food loses weight.

Rather than asking "how much should I burn to lose the weight I want?" instead ask "if I burn xxx, then how much should I eat to lose the weight I want?"

Losing weight isn't about how much exercise you do. You do what you can do. Whatever is a healthy and yet challenging personal level for you at your current level of fitness and ability. It doesn't matter one little bit if that's 1,000 calories a week, 3,000 calories a week or 500 calories a week. Once you've worked out what fitness is comfortable (yet challenging) you eat appropriately to create the right deficit. Eg if you did 500 calories a week exercise you'd eat less food than if you did 1,000 calories a week exercise or even 3,000 calories a week exercise.

Try to think of food as your "how will I lose weight" factor, not exercise. You should always do as much exercise as you can safely and comfortably manage without burning out, and then calculate food based on that.

Here is how Spark calculates your range, and you can see how exercise factors into the equation - it is not the end result of the equation:

Edited by: UNIDENT at: 2/4/2012 (13:58)
NIMITTA SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,465)
Posts: 49
2/4/12 3:13 A

"""""How often should I exercise if I have 50+ calories to lose? How many calories is that per day? How many lbs is that per week? Please let me know.""""

Why would not you enter your goal (how many pounds you want to loose) and how many months you agree to wait? It is really very simple and straightforward. You enter known variables:

1) How many pounds you want to loose
2) How many calories you will burn per week

SP will do the math for you. It will give you the number of calories you are allowed to eat in order to achieve your goal provided you keep burning weekly the chosen amount of calories. Then you can fiddle with "2" by changing the number of calories per week depending on your ability to endure. No one can tell you how much it should be. People are different. You have to try. Neither anyone can tell you "How often should I exercise if I have 50+ calories to lose". It depends on type of exercise.

The algorithm is as follows:

1. You loose weight because you create "calories differential", i.e. burn more than eat.
2. How do you create it? In two ways: by decreasing the amount of calories eaten and by increasing the amount of calories burned.

How you prefer to create the "calories differential" - by eating less or by exercising more, depends entirely on you. I believe there is a sort of optimal ratio for each person, but one cannot define it by talking about it or fiddling with numbers on SP. One has to try and feel which way is better. It took four weeks for me to find it the ratio. On the fifth week I finally nailed it. Now I burn 2000 calories per week by exercising and follow the orders of SP as for amount of calories I can eat (it gives an estimate number of calories you can eat per day). For me it is 1300-1600. That means, that if I exercise as much as I stated (2000 a week) and eat as much as SP says (1300-1600Kc a day) I will loose 40 pounds by November.

In the beginning I started with burning 600 calories a day 5 days a week, and that proved to be too much exercises. I could eat more, but it did not feel right. I decreased exercises to 200Kcal burned per day (800Kcal per week) and could eat much less, and again, it did not feel right. Too much exercises is as bad as too little. Now I am burning 2000kcal per week by exercising, and I feel that this is the right one for me. Is it going to be right for you? Only God knows. You have to try and get to know all those things SP offers you. Look inside "Reports" after 2-3 weeks of doing it, and appreciate the graphs of calories differential and loosing weight it draws for you.

200LBSTOOHEAVY SparkPoints: (2,296)
Fitness Minutes: (3,347)
Posts: 59
2/4/12 1:00 A

Hi Coach Nancy,

WOW!! I didn't realize I would be burning THAT many calories! After reading your advice, I recognized the sense in it.

How often should I exercise if I have 50+ calories to lose? How many calories is that per day? How many lbs is that per week? Please let me know.


SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (112,042)
Posts: 46,222
2/4/12 12:16 A


If you go to your start page and under the My Goals and Progress section on the left hand side of the page under your Calories burn goal ....change. Click the change link. This will allow you to plug in the number of calories that you know you can expend each week. Your calorie range will then be computed to match this figure as well as your current weight, your target weight and the time you chose to reach your target weight.

While expending 1167 calories a day via exercise doesn't seem like a lot, for me that is running a half marathon 3 times a week. Remember exercise is just a small part of where we expend our calories.

Your body expends calories via three ways.

1. Basal or resting metabolic rate (This is the largest percentage of caloric expenditure for most people). These are the calories you burn if all you did was stay and bed and do nothing. Your body requires calories to keep your heart pumping, the brain thinking, your eyes blinking, your cells growing, your temperature regulated, etc, etc.

2. Active daily living activities-These are the calories expended by doing such things as sitting at the computer, shopping, working, cleaning, yard work, etc. (if you are quite active this, for many, is the second area that people expend calories).

3. Exercise (cardio, strength training and flexibility workouts).

The body needs calories to do all three, therefore your goal is not to expend every calorie you consumed via exercise because it would put you in a severe deficit.

The goal is in order to lose 1 pound a week is to cut back your calories on your pre-diet meal plan by 250 calories and expend 250 calories via exercise. This leads to a daily deficit of 500 calories. Since it take 3500 calories to lose one pound of fat this should put you on the right track.

I will say this looks good on paper, but it doesn't always work that way in the real-world. Because our body is mostly water, we can see a shift on the scale just be eating more fiber, higher sodium foods, etc. This is why following a healthy diet and getting in some sound exercise will allow you to move in the direction of healthy living.

Know too that it can take the body as long as 4-6 weeks for changes to start showing up. We should always give ourselves at least 4-6 weeks of consistency before deciding if something works or doesn't.

I hope this helps!
Coach Nancy

200LBSTOOHEAVY SparkPoints: (2,296)
Fitness Minutes: (3,347)
Posts: 59
2/3/12 11:29 P

Hi Everyone,

I'm new to Spark People, fitness, and healthy living in general. I've been trying to figure out how many calories I need to burn exercising 3 days a week, if I want to lose 1 lb a week from exercise. This is what I've come up with.

Cardio: 1,166.66 calories x 3 days week = 3,500 calories.
Strengthening: No calorie expenditures can be assessed.

Is that estimation correct? How many calories are most Spark People members burning per exercise session? Please let me know!


Page: 1 of (1)  

Other Fitness and Exercise Topics:

Topics: Last Post:
Calculating calories burned? 3/17/2016 9:31:49 AM
Self-Guided Step Challenge: Just Check In team 9/2/2016 2:37:47 PM
Can I lose weight without exercise 4/19/2016 8:54:47 PM
Workout buddies: Please share your experiences! 7/11/2016 8:28:57 PM
Help with excercise and calorie burn 2/26/2016 9:55:45 AM