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PIXI_ELF SparkPoints: (5,018)
Fitness Minutes: (7,324)
Posts: 58
11/14/12 10:59 P

Thanks everyone. I did like the idea of actually using the calories I know I burn instead of letting the website guess it so I will try that. As I said, I'm not worried about the low calorie intake, I just don't want to deprive my body of any nutritional needs especially now that I am actually exercising more than ever!

Thanks for all the answer and best of luck to you all emoticon emoticon

BIGGUYMD Posts: 31
11/14/12 10:38 P

One of the latest findings in the study of obesity is the relationship neurochemistry has with body weight. The most unsettling finding that I have been reading about is the "set point theory" of weight and how it relates to chemicals such as Leptin- a funny little hormone that acts to reduce things such as craving / feeding / appetite etc.

As people approach a normal weight, it is hoped that their body chemistry normalizes as well to that of a person who has always been of a normal weight. This is sadly not the case- current studies suggest that if you take two people, both weighing 130 lbs, person A has never been overweight, but person B has lost 100lbs - Leptin activity, metabolic rate, and other uncertain factors make it so that person B will ALWAYS have to work harder than person A to maintain their weight.

Moral of the story: overweight individuals MAY have a biological set point that tends to direct their weight to be higher, and thus even at a normal weight, you will have to work harder to burn more calories and take in less to counteract your body's rather remarkable tricks to salvage (and attempt to add to) your remaining body weight.

There will be changes in the near future with regard to calculating daily caloric needs based on specific metabolic factors (many of which may depend on weight history, not just current weight). The ray of sunshine is that future medical science may also produce means of increasing your natural production of hormones such as Leptin, which will completely revolutionize the treatment of obesity. Hopefully not too far off :)

Great job on your progress!

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
11/14/12 1:43 P

Read the calculation link Nirerin provided. It'll tell all.

But yeah, sorry, it's just that you're not a big person. You weigh very little. So your body doesn't need many calories day to day normally, and while you are doing some exercise you aren't lugging around a big fat overweight body while doing it so you burn very little compared to someone obese doing the same thing.

Using your stats I get something like 1300 BMR and 1600 with daily activity modifier. So a little on the low side of your range before exercise, and it'll be exercise that bumps it up.

If you're concerned whether the exercise values are right don't set the time you exercise for. Doing 45 mins 5x a week is great, but it makes the site guess at your calorie burn. Since you've been doing it and tracking it for 8 weeks you know how many calories it actually is tracking, so set that many calories as your goal per week. Don't let the site guess your calorie burn - tell it.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
11/14/12 12:32 P

BTW, I'm 5'3" and they gave me a similar range for maintaining (1490-1840). I've been eating at 1700-1750 and still lost 3.5 more lbs, so I wonder how much the spark range really works for maintaining. I'm working on eating more (like up to 1900) but it's hard to eat that much for me, but I'm going to see what it does. It's just kind of like a big science experiment... messing around with it until you find what works. Also though, you do have to give it some time to make sure it's working.... results likely won't show up after a week or even two since we're dealing with such small deficits.

NIRERIN Posts: 11,904
11/14/12 7:12 A

there is a nutrient floor at work here. 1200 cals is the least you can eat and still get in all the vitamins and minerals and such that your body needs. so that is why your loss ranges were there.
now for exercise, you've basically added burning 100-150 cals 5 or 6 times a week, correct? which is more than before, but it's still not a ton of calories.
so your ranges are calculated by your height, weight and sex determining your average burn, adding daily activities to that and then 1/7 of the total cals you burn during exercise in a week. www.sparkpeople.com/resource/calorie_calcu
lation101.asp
this article explains more fully if you'd like to do the math by hand.
when you're not very tall to begin with and you're not very overweight to begin with, you're not burning all sorts of excess calories by having to haul around an extra 56k of weight. when you're only a little overweight, you only burn a little more. so your losses have to be smaller and you eat closer to where you will maintain than someone with a lot of weight to lose. which means that when it comes time to maintain, you're eating close to where you were losing.

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (131,717)
Fitness Minutes: (32,816)
Posts: 21,641
11/14/12 5:17 A

I am 5' 6" and at my goal. I keep a spreadsheet of daily calories, so have been able to easily find what calories I need to maintain, what to loose and what to gain. 1600 calories is my maintain level. I mostly eat around the 1550 cal's so that every once in a while I can have a bit of a 'blow-out!" It works well. Your calorie range has shifted quite a bit. It is almost the amount of one of my main meals!

Kris

Edited by: SLIMMERKIWI at: 11/14/2012 (05:19)
BUBBLEJ1 Posts: 2,872
11/14/12 2:45 A

When you're smaller you need less calories. How tall are you? Your maintenance is my weight loss calories, but I am 5'7". Otherwise, I would question the calories, it sounds low to me too.

PIXI_ELF SparkPoints: (5,018)
Fitness Minutes: (7,324)
Posts: 58
11/14/12 1:07 A

I have finally gotten my head around moving into a maintenance mode now as I feel the last 3kgs are not really necessary. Instead I am now focussing on toning up my body instead of losing physical weight.

Anyway, I went into my sparkpage and changed my goal weight to my current weight (56kgs) and then went and added 45minutes of cardio 5X per week as per my new exercise routine which I have been doing for 8 weeks now.

However, my calorie intake hasn't really moved much??? During my weightloss plan, I had a limit of 1200-1550 and now with the new stuff added my calorie intake has only increased to 1540-1890. I was very sedentary when I started (like zero exercise ever) and now I run 3 to 4 times a week (6km per run) and walk 3km 4 to 5 times a week.

Can anyone explain why my calorie intake is still so low??? Other websites told me that my maintenance calories was over 2000 when I wasn't even doing any exercise! I am not scared of the low calories (been eating like this for about 10 months now anyway) but just don't want to deprive my body of nutrition if it is needed.

In reply to below: I'm 5'5 (or 168cm).

Edited by: PIXI_ELF at: 11/14/2012 (04:04)
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