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Trouble actually maintaining/can't stop losing weight

umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
I need your advice maintainers... I recently started maintaining. Well, very recently, about 1 month ago. I have consistently been losing weight despite trying to stop. I know that up until 2 weeks ago, I was consuming too few calories. Not on purpose but out of ignorance. I think that I am still consuming too few calories and I honestly have no idea how much more to add.

I am a 29-year-old female, 5'6", 125.8 lbs, BMI of 20.3 with a medium-large frame. Up until 2 weeks ago I was consuming about 1500 calories with 5-6 days per week of calisthenics, 1-2 days per week of HIIT, and 5 days per week of 2 hours of hill walking. I was obviously but unintentionally in too large of a deficit. I recently increased my caloric intake to 2000-2100 and have cut the 2 hours of hill walking, yet still walk leisurely daily because I'm simply active. However, I'm still losing weight. I lost another lb this week and I'm starting to get worried. How much more should I realistically eat on training days? I do about 70 min of calisthenics 6 days per week, 1-2 days per week of HIIT as well, and am moderately active.

A standard tdee calculator has shown a daily maintenance intake of 2036 calories (moderate exercise 3-5 days per week) or 2265 calories with heavy exercise 6-7 days per week. Can someone please help me figure this thing out? I'm getting frustrated now. I must sound like an idiot but I'm having trouble here. I don't want to lose anymore weight. I honestly can't believe I would have to say this.
edited June 27

Replies

  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    Do you log your exercise and eat back all the calories? I walk daily and run 5 days a week, with a little sporadic other exercise. I eat back all my exercise calories, as given by MFP. When I started maintenance, I was losing more weight than I intended, so I added 200 to my daily base calories and continued to eat back exercise. I've been stable at 121-124 for a few years. I don't weigh what I eat and am lax at logging cooking oil and milk in my coffee, so reality is I am probably eating at least 300 more than MFP originally suggested. It takes experimentation to find the level that will work for you.

    No, I don't. 🤔 Am I supposed to eat them all back? I didn't because I don't know how accurate the calculations are. I only input my workouts through MFP and I'm skeptical that the amount of calories the app says I burn is accurate. Maybe I should try half of the exercise calories and go from there?

    Thank you for responding. I do have some more experimentation to do it seems. That's great that you have found your maintenance range and that you can be relaxed with it. I can't wait to get there.
  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    @Panini911 It has been only 2 weeks since I've increased my calories and each week I've lost just about a lb. I have always calculated my calories in by searching the MFP database, checking other sources to confirm calories, and looking at the packages of everything I consume. I insert every item into my food diary. If I'm under calculating my calories it definitely isn't intentional. Is there a more accurate way that you would suggest? I would prefer not to use a food scale.

    I'll probably try to start with 2300-2400 calories now on exercise days and see how that goes. 🤔 Hopefully that's enough. I already feel like I have so much food.
  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    You can always try to add 100-150 calories a day for 2 weeks at a time, see if that stops the loss and if it doesn't, add 100-150 more for the next few weeks.

    I'm going to try this. Thank you. It has only been 2 weeks since I've started increasing my calories but I'm getting a bit anxious now because I can't stop losing and I want to stop.
  • Panini911Panini911 Posts: 2,325Member Member Posts: 2,325Member Member
    it's not a big deal, just if you are used to being conservative you may be under estimated quantity (so you may have the correct entry just inputting more in quantity than you ate).

    if you lost 1lb in two weeks that's about 250 calorie deficit? so aim for 250 calories more a day for a few weeks?

    you don't need to eat a lot in VOLUME. try to opt for plenty of foods that are calorie dense. Here is a list/meal ideas. Avoid anything low calorie, eat nuts and seeds. use oils in your cooking/marinading. Cheese on everything. lots of nut butter. full fat yogurt and milk.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10142490/a-list-of-calorie-dense-foods/p1

    ETA: I will add that 2lbs is also within the range of natural day to day water fluctuations. especially if you don't weigh yourself daily to see the trend.
    edited June 27
  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    Panini911 wrote: »
    it's not a big deal, just if you are used to being conservative you may be under estimated quantity (so you may have the correct entry just inputting more in quantity than you ate).

    if you lost 1lb in two weeks that's about 250 calorie deficit? so aim for 250 calories more a day for a few weeks?

    you don't need to eat a lot in VOLUME. try to opt for plenty of foods that are calorie dense. Here is a list/meal ideas. Avoid anything low calorie, eat nuts and seeds. use oils in your cooking/marinading. Cheese on everything. lots of nut butter. full fat yogurt and milk.

    https://community.myfitnesspal.com/en/discussion/10142490/a-list-of-calorie-dense-foods/p1

    Oh, ok I'll keep this in mind. Yes, I am used to being conservative but I truly thought I was being accurate. Maybe I have to keep a closer eye.

    That's a good idea. 250 more would make sense. I could try it out and see what happens and then adjust again after a few weeks.

    Thanks for the list. 😊 I'll check it out for sure.

    @MikePTY Hmm, I see... time for some adjustments. Thanks for weighing in.
    edited June 27
  • Panini911Panini911 Posts: 2,325Member Member Posts: 2,325Member Member
    I will note that 2lb is also within normal water fluctuations day to day. not sure how often you weigh yourself but if only a few times a week that could just be a low and a peak not your actual average.
    http://physiqonomics.com/the-weird-and-highly-annoying-world-of-scale-weight-and-fluctuations/
  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    @Panini911 That's a good point also. I was weighing myself every day up until these past 2 weeks. I posted a thread not too long ago about restricting and binging cycles and was given the advice to substantially up my calories and step away from the scale for a bit, so I took it. I weighed once per week for these past 2 weeks instead of daily. I was thinking of getting back to daily weighing.

    Last Wednesday I was 126.6, yesterday 126.4, and then today 125.8. I don't usually see large fluctuations on the scale though unless I had a binge or ate something very salty or carb heavy the night before and even then I usually never see more than a lb increase.

    I have seen this article actually but thanks for adding it. 😊
  • Panini911Panini911 Posts: 2,325Member Member Posts: 2,325Member Member
    no need to weigh yourself more often than what is best for your mental health - once a week is often enough to catch major shifts over time :)

    i would still opt to eat a bit more daily though
    edited June 27
  • GaryRunsGaryRuns Posts: 227Member, Premium Member Posts: 227Member, Premium Member
    Unless you have something physically wrong with you, which is unlikely if you're feeling good and getting as much exercise as you're getting, then the solution is simple...eat more.

    All of the calorie counts for food and exercise are just estimates and should act as a starting point. The only real way to know is to watch the trend in your weight. Not your day-to-day weight, but something like an average over a week. Is that trend going up? Then you're eating too much. Is it going down, as in your case? Then you're eating too little.

    I love the website https://trendweight.com/. It gives me a running average of my weight, and includes things like an estimate of the calories over or under that I'm eating based on the trend of my weight. You really need a Withing or FitBit smart scale to get the most out of it though, and you need to be a little geeky (okay, a lot geeky) to really understand how it works.
    edited June 27
  • maureenseel1984maureenseel1984 Posts: 397Member Member Posts: 397Member Member
    Just remember that in the end it's just numbers. Our bodies know better. A calculator is just that and our bodies aren't EXACTLY like that. I'd eat back at least some of the calories from exercising.
  • SummerSkierSummerSkier Posts: 901Member, Premium Member Posts: 901Member, Premium Member
    I think when we glide into maintaining we see this "can't stop losing" question quite frequently. In my opinion I think it takes a while for your body to build back up the glycogen stores and level off after losing for months, so be careful adding WAY too much as you will end up tipping the boat in the other direction. Just keep adding a little every week or so - say 200 cals - and keep weighing and watching trend weight. You will end up with much better data and an easier transition.
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,059Member Member Posts: 17,059Member Member
    This also most likely shows how much your body was willing to slow down on the deficit you had been going by - which happens.

    So you are likely more active than before besides eating back the deficit you knew about.

    Workouts may have gotten better too - burning more - many find that happens.

    Merely shows the difference in effects between what the body finds a reasonable deficit and what is too much that it adapts.

    Besides seasonal changes of activity perhaps hitting at the same time.
  • umbramirrorumbramirror Posts: 178Member Member Posts: 178Member Member
    Thank you to everyone that responded, all responses were very insightful.

    What I've learned overall is to as always be patient most importantly, also, track my weight to analyze the trends (which I already do but will continue) and simply note what happens over time to get a more accurate assessment. Since I just started increasing calories, I will be careful as @SummerSkier mentioned. I won't increase too much more until I wait a few weeks and see how my body reacts. I appreciate all of your insight. Thanks so much! I only just started at 2000-2100, so I'll stop at 2200-2300 at most depending on how I feel.
  • PAV8888PAV8888 Posts: 5,844Member Member Posts: 5,844Member Member
    From your description try eating in the 2*BMR range and see if, after an initial increase, your trend stabilizes....

    You can use trendweight with a freely available without device Fitbit.com account to do the data entry.
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