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Old 01-17-2011, 10:55 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Understanding "Calorie Deficit"

Originally Posted by SuzayLogan View Post
Okay.. I've heard that you need to burn more calories than you eat to lose weight. So say I have a 1200 calories a day diet. How do I burn more than 1200 in a day? At the gym I burn 240 or just under or just above. That's in 30 minutes, I don't really know how to burn even 1000.. I'm so stuck. Will I still lose weight if I only burn that much?

I usually don't have 1200 calories, I have below. If I decide "Oh I need to add a few more calories" I end up snacking on something fattening because they have the most..

Just, some help please? I can't burn more calories than I intake but can I still lose weight quickly and healthily?

I'm not going to say my weight, but I'm not overweight or anything. I'm a healthy weight, I just want to lose belly/thigh fat.

I'm 18 and 5'1.

Suzay, you first need to figure out your basal metabolism. This is how many calories you body burns daily just to survive, given your height, current weight, age and "lifestyle".

Once you have this number, and it is an estimate, you can then decide how many calories per day you can eat to meet your weekly weight loss goal. Any exercise, in addition to your basal metabolism number will either increase the amount of weight you lose or allow you to eat more.

This is called the "Calorie Deficit". Since we know it takes about 3500 calories to burn one pound of fat one can easily estimate the amount of weight one will lose in a given time period.

Example (me):

Basal metabolism w/1 mile walk per day: 3,100 calorie burn
Amount I eat per day: 1,500
Average daily calorie deficit: 1,600

Now to figure estimated weekly weight loss:
Weekly calorie burn: 3,100 x 7 = 21,700
Weekly calorie intake: 1,500 x 7 = 10,500
Weekly calorie deficit: 1,600 x 7 = 11,200
Calculated weekly weight loss: 11,200 / 3,500 = 3.2 pounds

Now, if you overestimate your burn, and/or underestimate your intake, your calculations won't be accurate and could result in no loss, or even a gain.

Do you weigh/measure your portions? From your list, I estimate that is more than 1200 calories. Also, there seems to be some processed items there, as well as simple carbs. You might consider trying to get some more protein in there, as well as fresh fruits and veggies and reducing the white bread and pasta.

What you ideally want to do is find a calorie level at which you can stay comfortable and that provides you with enough of a calorie deficit to lose weight.

If you have questions, don't hesitate to ask!


PS My daughter is your height and is 17. She, too, struggles with weight issues--it is a challenge but I know you can meet your goal if you put your mind to it!

PPS Other than by physically removing body parts (liposuction), it is biologically impossible to lose weight if you take in more calories than you burn--sorry.
47 M 5'8"

May 4, 2010...... 440? lbs. (Start FitDay Size 60 Jeans)
June 19, 2010.... 393 lbs. (First Weigh-in)
June 19, 2011.... 229 lbs. (164 lbs. gone in one year :-)
Current Weight... 185 lbs. (Size 36 Jeans)

Next Goal 169 lbs. (07/04/12)
Ultimate Goal 165 lbs. (12/31/12)

The best exercises for weight loss are Fork Putdowns and Table Pushaways.

Last edited by VitoVino; 02-08-2012 at 08:59 PM. Reason: included condensed quote, title
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