Friday, May 7, 2010

Well, no wonder I'm confused!

Thanks, all, for your comments on the Reality Bites post. Blogging is so great because there are such great people out there like you guys for support. After reading your comments and thinking about the calorie needs some more, I decided to look at various calorie calculators online to see if I was on target with my daily intake. Well, no wonder I'm confused, look at the various results I got from the different websites for the number of calories that I should be eating per day to lose 2 pounds per week: 1873 2300

Loseit!: 1700 2184 1520-1870 1186 1561-2061 2047 (for fat loss) and 1912 (for extreme fat loss)

I wanted to try, but it's a paid website and I am pretty sure DH would flip if I added yet another weight loss related expense to our budget :)

So, according to the various calculators, I need to be eating anywhere from 1186 to 2300 calories per day. I'd almost certainly fail if I shot for 1186 because I'd be hungry all the time. Anything below about 1350 and I start feeling deprived which only leads to one result, and I don't want to go there. 2300 sounds outrageously high, that sounds like the type of number that got me where I am today.

The one cool thing I found was a "zig zag" plan from It offered different caloric intakes for each day of the week in order to "trick" the body into faster weight loss or in order to break plateaus. I've heard of calorie cycling before. Do any of you do this? I think I probably do this naturally, just not to the extreme that the website suggested. Anyone have any thoughts on the subject?

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  1. Oh, that's just wild. No wonder we're ALL confused.

    Re: calorie cycling. I'd say I do that naturally with little success. Uh-hmm. On my post I describe it as, "I broke down and binged last night." I like "calorie cycling to trick my body" much better! chuckle.

    Seriously, tho. When I started dieting at about the age of 16, the magic number was 1,000 calories. That's pretty much what everyone shot for--those who really meant business, ate 800.

    Times have changed. While confusion reigns, it is at least muddling about in a kinder swamp.

    My range is 1200 to 1400 a day. When I stick to that, I lose weight. Usually. (I hit a plateau when I was experimenting with gluten that was pretty rugged.)

    May you find the answer that's perfect for you. :D


  2. That is ridiculous with the calorie confusion! Wow!

    I am not an expert, but from what I learned in nutrition classes (my B.S. is in biochemistry) and from my own research, I understand that your body should have a consistent number of calories distributed throughout the day.

    Otherwise, it gets "shocked" - and not in a good way - your body starts hanging onto the various fats and calories not sure what is coming it's way next!

    To confuse your body in a good way is muscle confusion - vary your exercises so your body is forced to burn calories in a slightly different way every day. That will grow muscle and burn a greater number of calories.

    Consistency with calories AND distribution of calories throughout the day is the best way to manage the correct number of calories for your body goals :)

  3. If you figure it out, let me know. I usually try to stick with no more than 1700 calories a day, but I'm pretty sedentary. I think you just have to experiment to see what level works for you. I think I'd stick to one calorie level for a while, then alter it if it's not working. Best!