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UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
11/4/12 11:10 P

"tracking" your hour-long workouts every day won't do a thing to your nutritional range. It is not based on what you track.

It is based on the goal. Have you ensured the goal is about similar to the actual calories being reported weekly?

If so and it's still that, maybe you're just pretty slight or something. Seems pretty low to me, especially if getting any exercise, but I could be wrong. :)

MMEEAAGGX3 SparkPoints: (0)
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11/4/12 7:45 P

Thanks YoJulez :)

MMEEAAGGX3 SparkPoints: (0)
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11/4/12 7:36 P

@Unident, I actually do have my goal set on maintenance and I also track my hour long workouts everyday, and they still have me at only 1650-1850. I had to change it myself to 1850-2500.

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (244,274)
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11/4/12 4:29 P

It was my metabolism out of what (what's new - LOL!) SP had me on 1600-1850 cal's daily but I was still slowly gaining, and it is what I had always eaten anyway. The Dietitian dropped it to 1400 cal's - no range. She also told me that in NZ they class that as a VLDC (Very Low Calorie Diet) and she said that they don't recommend it unless supervised by a registered Dietitian or a Dr who has an added certification in Dietetics. You can see from my ticker below what my starting weight was. I am just on 5' 6". Calorie consumption choice with weight-loss should take into account a person's weight at the time - a heavier person needs more calories for normal daily function than a light person.

To maintain, I need to eat 1600 calories. I keep a daily spreadsheet which makes it easier. I have a column for the date; one for my weight (don't do it very often); one for calories; two for exercise (one for walks and the other if I do Gym Ball or Pilates but that isn't very often) and the other for comments, like if I was out all day; on my feet a lot, etc. etc. Every now-and-again I average my calories and that is how I found more than 1600 I gain very slowly, and less I will lose a wee bit. Because I practice a one day in a week or so eating whatever I want (and generally as much without going tooooo overboard), I tend to eat mostly in the 1500-1570 range and that is how it averages to 1600. I am well past menopause too.

I hope that gives you some idea to help you, but remember, what works for me, may not work for you ........ but then, it just might :-)


Edited by: SLIMMERKIWI at: 11/4/2012 (16:30)
BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/4/12 8:09 A

thanks so much, Slimmer. What did your dietician do to help if you were already eating within appropriate limits? I ask because that is a frustration at this point in my life... (post menopause). I'm assuming that I need to drop lower than I'm at now (1550), but want to wait a few weeks to see. Have tried various "eliminations" to see if I do better without X, Y, or Z food -- but so far, nothing has popped as problemmatic!

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (244,274)
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11/3/12 10:21 P

I lost a fair bit of weight, but didn't do half the amount of exercise that is normally recommended, because of skeletal issues (arthritis of the spine and hips, and scoliosis) and fatigue. At one stage I had a Treadmill here - long before my days on SP - and that was thanks to our Accident Compensation Corporation paying for it for 4 months for rehab. I used it daily. I continued to walk and go to a 1hr Pilates Mat Class per week, but because the pain was increasing I had to reduce the walking. I get the bulk of my exercise from putting my groceries and laundry away one at a time. Some days it might be 15-20 minutes - other times it might be 1/2 hr. Generally I get about 3 walks per week. The other factor in my weight-loss journey was my Dr referring me to a Dietitian to help. I had always been eating within the range that SP set (from long before I joined SP) so my Dietitian was able to help with that, too. The result was that after being over weight for about 30 years, and gradually increasing, even ON the SP range, my weight started to change direction. It was slow, but that is the way to go anyway. It took a few weeks to show the effects properly on the scales, other than just the usual couple lb fluctuations, and it dropped steadily. It took 16 months to lose just over 50lb, then I happily decided to stay there for a while, and just enjoyed the moment (a year long moment) before moving on down again. I am now at goal and have been there for a long time. The only thing that I need now is my Pilates back again because my tummy and back muscles need toning, which will help to take care of looks.

The thing is, weigh-loss CAN happen without tons of exercise, but it doesn't tone muscle.

Where it comes to your time, I used to work 7 days per week, while raising children. I was also a First Responder for our St John, so any day off work I usually spent doing First Aid at various events. Regardless of how old your children are, they are old enough to help with at least some of the chores. If they are really young they can pick up after themselves, set the table, even a 5yr old can make their bed. If they are a bit older, they can help with dishes, meals, laundry, vacuuming, beds etc. etc. Mind you, I'm not suggesting that they take over ALL the housework, altho' sometimes that would be nice - LOL!

I hope that you find what works best for you :-)


BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/3/12 9:53 P

Wow, HFIT, you're pretty judgmental!

Let me just say that I am not new to exercise or weight control. Over the years, I've done it all.

Many years ago, when I had no kids and was not involved with much outside of work, I hit the gyms three or four times a week, did the whole nautilus route, used the rowing machine... and to be honest, while I may have had a bit more muscle, I didn't see it. I weighed less because I ate less -- but the exercise simply made me feel better about myself.

Today, I'm married with kids, working full time, involved in the community, and my priorities are different. And may I say, I am happy about that!

Yes, I used the 8 pound weights, and I can use them again -- I was just asking whether there was a better way to use weights. But even when I used them three times a week I saw very little change in the appearance of my arms or in my ability to lift heavy objects. It seems to me that I'd need to be spending hours a day to see a significant difference in my physique (outside of weight, which can be changed based on eating habits).

If I wanted to change my body in a big way through exercise, I'd need to give up almost everything I care about: time with my family, my interest in singing and theater, reading, visiting friends... in order to find what would probably be 15 hours a week for workouts.

COULD I do that? Sure, if that were my one and only priority. But it isn't and I don't want it to be!! Life is too short to spend most of it worrying about my biceps!

Yes, I want to exercise, and sure, I can work with tin cans or 8 pounds weights, or walk in or outdoors, In fact, I do and will. Which, I believe, is what I've already told you. But there is a limit to the amount of time or energy I intend to give to "workouts," and quite honestly I don't feel a sense of moral obligation to build my self a "sixpack."

Thanks, Yojoulez, for your comments. Clearly, moderation is not a popular approach to ANYTHING these days -- even exercise or weight loss. While there are some people for whom the "all or nothing" approach works well, it's not a good option for me.

YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,981)
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11/3/12 9:13 P

1650-1850 is pretty close to a maintenance range... I'm guessing MMEEAAGGX3 was remembering off the top of her head. They have my maintenance range as 1510-1860. I was eating an average of 1740 a day and still lost 2 more pounds so now I'm eating at an average of 1800ish and seeing what that does. I will say it does take a few weeks at a time to see how it works out.

In the end, it's one big science "experiment" to figure out where you should be. The SP recommendations are just that, recommendations. They don't account for an individuals own body chemistry. I ate 1200-1300 for the first part of my weight loss (before I joined SP), and lost approximately 25lbs that way. But then I stopped losing, so I upped to 1400-1500 a day and lost another 15 or so lbs. Then I hit another plateau so I upped to 1500-1600 and the last bit of weight came off and I hit my goal weight of 150.

Also, I would like to say that I lost ALL of my weight doing no regular exercise at all due to part laziness and due to part not having the time. I could have done a good exercise routine after work but I would have had to sacrifice cooking good healthy meals at home every night (and using the leftovers for lunches) in order to fit it in. I wouldn't have succeeded with my weight loss if I didn't have those good healthy meals to look forward to. As a "reformed foodie", if all I ate was chicken and veggies every night (which a lot of people here on SP do), I would have given up. In fact the only fitness points I have are for when I tracked moving boxes and vigorous cleaning once because I was curious. I'm not saying it's the best route to go, but a lot of people act like it's impossible. It is not. You just have to be extra diligent with your eating to make it work.

THOMASINA57 SparkPoints: (244,192)
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11/3/12 9:09 P

I aim for the low end of my calorie range no matter how much exercise I do in a given day. I figure this allows for mistakes in tracking my nutrition. It is working for me as I've lost 6.5 lbs in 4 weeks.
Keep at it and you'll see results.

LAWMOMSPLACE SparkPoints: (0)
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11/3/12 9:00 P

mine is always a guess!

HFITSPIRATION SparkPoints: (102)
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11/3/12 4:02 P

I never said to run.
I said you could either jog.. OR if you don't like jogging you could do this. Walk very fast for 30 seconds, walk moderate for 1 min, walk very fast for 30 seconds, .. You get the idea. That method gets your heart rate up and burns fat.

Who cares about what anyone else told you about 8 pounds not being worth it. In my opinion 8 lbs is better than nothing.. and you can get a sufficient workout from just 8 lbs. If you do 4 sets of 10 reps on different muscle groups I know without a doubt 8 lbs is plenty of weight on certain exercises.

Don't knock something before you try it. You can't ask people for advice and then come up with a million excuses as to why you can't do it.

In all honesty.. If you truly wanted to lose weight you would be making an effort instead of saying I cant this I cant that.

Let me ask you something. Has what you are currently doing at this very moment given you any results? If not.. How about change that.

You have to be willing to make an effort in order to see change. If you keep making excuses you are going to remain where you are at.
My Motto is this : Don't be upset by the results you didn't get, by the work you didn't do.


Edited by: HFITSPIRATION at: 11/3/2012 (16:03)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
11/3/12 2:52 P

1650 to 1850 is not a maintenance range. I would check your settings. You maybe haven't got your exercise set right or haven't got your weight goal set to maintain but still on losing.

MMEEAAGGX3 SparkPoints: (0)
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11/3/12 2:41 P

I lost on 1650 with very minimum exercise. It all depends on who you are. Metabolism, activity, age, weight, etc all plays such a huge part. Now I eat 1850 on days I do not work out to maintain, and 2500 on days I work out hard. I love SP and all but...Their caloric limits aren't always reasonable. They have me at my HIGH to eat 1850 per day...The low is like 1650...I'd be losing!

Edited by: MMEEAAGGX3 at: 11/3/2012 (14:41)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
11/3/12 2:33 P

You don't have to run. The response was basically "So your treadmill is busted - go outside". You can still "walk" for exercise.

If your current walking isn't challenging you, you can still do things that DO challenge you, while still "walking" and not taking up the running that you hate to do.

Including hills, steps, and intervals will all help you to get more challenged and get some quality "exercise". You live on a hill, so stop walking "slowly up the hill". Go for a nice short stroll down the hill and then turn around and POWER up it. If it doesn't take long do it twice. It's close to home and it's "challenging". :)

Though ... I'm not sure why you're asking since you're apparently so easily swayed by internet responses. Someone mentioned 8lb dumbbells were a waste of time so now you never use them at all, when you used to be religious about it. Talk about easily swayed!! What if someone told you it would be useless to do any working out, or watch what you eat? Would you give up entirely?

So let me ask you - did you notice any difference when you used your 8lbs dumbbells? Were you able to lift more reps week to week? If you were actually making improvements, then don't listen to anyone who tells you they're useless.

This is the 'tough love' part and it might seem a little harsh ... What I'm getting here is a sense of someone who looks for excuses. Not someone who looks for solutions. Stop stating why you "can't" do something. Start finding ways you CAN do it. Because you can. There are no excuses.

Edited by: UNIDENT at: 11/3/2012 (14:34)
NAUSIKAA Posts: 4,848
11/3/12 2:16 P

I'm not going to address all the other stuff but your abs vertigo issue jumped out at me as something I might be able to help with. I suffer from extremely sensitive motion sickness and can't move through planes easily, so most abs exercises that involve my upper body moving around like crunches, bicycle crunches, and so on are impossible for me. However, I put a lot of emphasis on core strength because of a sport I am involved in. To deal with this, I use a pullup bar (you can usually find these for around $10 or use any sturdy bar at a playground in your neighborhood) and do many different challenging abs and obliques exercises on the pullup bar. During these exercises, my upper body remains completely or almost completely motionless.

If you think this is something that could help you, just reply to this thread and I can describe in detail the exercises that I do. I hope I can be of help. You will need to be willing to buy a pullup bar (these can be installed over a door or in a hallway) to do these exercises.

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/3/12 1:11 P

Holistic: those really are accurate tracks. I measure 1/2 cup of orange juice in the morning, and while I don't precisely measure every serving of chicken, I do go by the "pack of cards" visual.

As regards the missed meals, yes, those are accurate. This is the difficulty of being a theater person! I am in rehearsal MANY evenings, right in the middle of the dinner hour. Because of that, I have a snack before I go, and another snack after I come back. I find that if I attempt to eat a full dinner before a 5:30 rehearsal, I'm hungry again at 8:30 or so when I get back home, and I wind up eating too many calories. I've tried a few different techniques for managing hunger, calories, and rehearsals -- and so far, this seems to be the best for me.

HFIT: I am sure you're right, but the truth is that I absolutely, absolutely HATE running. I have tried over and over again to get up to even a slow jog for a 5K run, and it's like forcing myself to sit on an anthill! I'm also on the top of a tall hill, so while I can walk briskly DOWN the hill, I walk relatively slowly UP the hill -- so I figure the average is pretty slow. That's part of why I prefer the treadmill: I can ramp to a brisk walk without having to go a long way from home, and can also do, for example, two 15 minute sets that include intervals (SHORT jogs I can handle!).

I do have 8 pound weights, and used them religiously -- but was told by other sparkpeople that 8 pounds is not worth bothering with... not at all sure why... maybe they are wrong??

Abs are tough for me because of a vertigo issue, so I tend to use a big ball to do those... even so, though, I feel sick to my stomach very quickly. What I REALLY need for abs is an exercise I can do while vertical and/or sitting. I sometimes do planks (ok because no up/down stuff), but more suggestions are very welcome. I've tried taking dance classes, and ballet is great -- but it's hard to be consistent, due to my changable schedule and the costs involved.

HFITSPIRATION SparkPoints: (102)
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11/3/12 11:33 A

The why not is because your treadmill is busted?
Well how about go outside and Jog?
Can't Jog well how about walk as fast as you can in intervals and turn the "brisk walk" into a HITT workout for maximum fat burn?

Don't own weights? You don't need them. You can still do squats, wall squat holds, jump squats, walking pushups, burpees, lunges, walking lunges, pushups, wall pushups, triceps dips, and get a gallon of milk or use soup cans for bicep curls, overhead shoulder press, chest fly, chest press, tricep kickbacks.

And you can do core work-- Planks, plank rotations, crunches, bicycle crunches

You can even do YOGA!

So my point is.. Even though you don't have a working treadmill or a gym membership.. or weights..

You can still do hundreds of exercises at home in your living room and get a great fat burning workout.

Try not to make excuses, because when you do.. you are only setting yourself up for failure by allowing yourself to "not" do what it takes to make the weight loss happen.


Fitness Minutes: (20,400)
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11/3/12 11:19 A

Are you weighing and measuring your food? I am always a little suspicious of trackers that show a lot of exact figures, like a half serving of OJ (125 ml, really?), exactly 100 grams of chicken, half an ounce of cheese, etc. You're also missing a number of meals in your tracker. I would like to see you give it six weeks as well- but six weeks of tracking everything as accurately as possible, as well as tracking your exercise.

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/1/12 3:27 P

By the way -- I also walk each day because I KNOW I will keep it up. No need to change, get prepped, or cool down... so I can easily walk as a break from my freelance writing without losing a whole lot of time. Plus, I like it!

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/1/12 3:25 P

The "why not" is simply because my treadmill is busted and I have not received the check I'm planning to spend to fix it and purchase some weights ... all of which should be remedied by end of next week. So meanwhile I'm "treading water" by being sure that, at the very least, I get SOME exercise each day!

To be honest, though, even when I have exercised MUCH more (45 minutes including more intensive cardio, weights, stretching, about 4x/week) it doesn't make much difference to my weight. It IS helpful, though, in many other ways.

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
11/1/12 2:21 P

So why not? If you want to lose weight why aren't you doing any "working out"? It's not the magical solution, but it's definitely helpful.

If your routine is pretty "same most days" then you can also just variate your intake within the range anyway, randomly. High end one day, low end another. This still keeps you in the middle of the range.

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/1/12 1:48 P

How do you define "working out?" Most days I take a brisk 20 minute walk up and down our hills, and spend 5 minutes stretching... but I hardly call that a "workout!"

TONKA14 Posts: 4,947
11/1/12 10:00 A

I will also add that many people have found success with a varying eating approach. On days you work out, aim for the top end of your range and on the days you do not, aim for the lower end of your range. That keeps you average about in the middle but keeps your metabolism adjusting to your needs a bit more.

Coach Tanya

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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11/1/12 8:54 A

Thanks, Jen. That's very helpful!

JENMC14 Posts: 2,786
11/1/12 8:51 A

You have to give it at least 6 weeks before deciding it's not working. It can take a month or so for the scale to reflect any changes.

Make sure your calories burned weekly is accuraltey input into your fitness tracker. Set your current weight and height, then your goal weight and date and stay in the calorie range SP sets. Give it time. WIth SP's plan, you do not 'earn" extra food through exercise. The exercise you do is taken into consideration when the dietary ranges are suggested. If you are exercising, be mindful of how much you're eating. Too little can actual backfire. Your body is a machine, it needs fuel to function properly.

Edited by: JENMC14 at: 11/1/2012 (09:26)
BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,355)
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10/31/12 8:11 P

Sparkpeople gave me a "high" of 1690 calories to lose weight, but I didn't lose... so went down to 1550... so far, I'm not seeing any significant change in weight. How long do I stick with this number before determining that I need to take in even fewer calories?

And... how does exercise fit into the equation? Some systems start with a low calorie intake and allow you to "earn" calories through exercise, but Sparkpeople doesn't seem to do that?


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