Random Acts of Questioning

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  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    Firefly743 wrote: »
    @MuttiNM
    Honestly, I thought MFP readjusts calories when it is appropriate - I didn't really give it a second thought. But now reading your response above, I kinda freaked out...I went thru the goals and had it recalculate my calories and sure enough, it dropped them, just over 5 calories per pound I've lost.

    I had no idea I had to go in and do this myself!!! UGH!!! Not that I'm against having to do the work, I just didn't know, I thought the system did it. Anyway, so is every 10 pounds when you would recommend recalculating?

    (And now having this knowledge, I could just hug you!) :)

    You can recalculate it every day if you want to!...I change from wanting to lose 2 lbs a week to 1 1/2 occasionally if I am going out or something and I need a few more calories....

    Welcome to our group!...I hope you continue your journey with all of us Losers!
  • Firefly743
    Firefly743 Posts: 133 Member
    @conniewilkins56

    Thanks so much! I'm so glad to be here - clearly I'm learning new things already! ;)

    Today I just hit my first 25 pounds lost - so I'm pretty excited about that. I have lots more to go...so, hopefully you have room for another Loser at the table. ;)
  • MuttiNM
    MuttiNM Posts: 240 Member
    @Firefly743 I know some people say MFP recalculates your calories automatically but it never has for me...maybe there's a difference between the app and the website? I use the website on my laptop. I do it every 10 pounds because that is an easy number for me to remember. I think some people do it every 15 pounds. I would pick a number that makes it easy for you to remember to do it. :) Glad my post helped you out!
  • dcshima
    dcshima Posts: 529 Member
    @MuttiNM @Firefly743
    Suggest researching TDEE, including maintenance versus deficit, as it will help explain calorie changes as you change. 10-20 lbs is good baseline for review. It was my Oprah ah-ha moment once I understood it. Lots of online calculators.

    You don't lose fat cells themselves, you use their energy per say & just shrink. My understanding is you can only lose them if you have surgery to remove unfortunately.

  • papayahed
    papayahed Posts: 407 Member
    @rieraclaelin yes! I've noticed that too. In some spots I went from firm to squishy to gone. lol.
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 2,981 Member
    Weird question, but, as you lose weight, does the way your fat feels change?

    Like, for example, I have a lot of fat around my stomach, both upper and lower. Moreso upper, though. And it used to be kinda tight? Still squishy, but also pretty tight.

    But now that I've lost almost 42 pounds since June, I noticed today that it's very, uh, jelly like? Well, kinda like a waterbed, actually. I poke my stomach and it wobbles like water :p and it's not nearly as tight there

    Just an observation I made, and was curious!

    @rieraclaelin

    Unfortunately, yes, if you have a lot of it, you'll feel that. I compare my body to a deflated balloon :) I can't tell you the science behind it, but your skin was stretched tight across those full fat cells and had stretched as they filled up. Problem is, skin only has so much elasticity, especially the older you get. So while the skin has an amazing property to be able to stretch out, its not so great at springing back. If you are young and wasn't too badly overweight, it would tighten up better than if you are older with a long period of stretching. If you were obese and obese for a long time then, unfortunately, loose skin is going to be a problem. Over time, the skin will tighten up some, but people in the position I was in aren't going to see it all go away on its own. The best you can do is exercise to tone the muscles underneath and eat healthily to give the skin the nutrients it needs to repair itself and do the best it can do.

    I had a muffin top because of wearing my blue jeans tight in college because of the sizing that was available. And I've got big hips because of genetics and because of my weight. As I've lost weight, the bottom part under my waist still hangs but not nearly as bad as I thought it would - its tightened up there much more than I expected. The top part of hte muffin top, however, while it is shrinking, is really just deflating and is really hanging badly.

    My hips are tightening up better than I expected and my upper legs, while still huge, are much smaller and firmer than I ever dreamed they'd be, and I'm chalking that up to all the walking I'm doing.

    The funny thing is that the rolls on my back are completely gone now and my back is flat and smooth - the skin tightened up nicely there.
  • speyerj
    speyerj Posts: 1,369 Member
    @rieraclaelin - yes, squishy fat is a thing! And when your fat feels like that, it usually precedes a big whoosh. Sometimes when you burn fat, your empty fat cells fill with water and then whoosh, something makes the water release (a good night's sleep, and end to some physical or mental stress, drinking more water, etc.) and then whoosh - 2 pounds seem to drop over night and the fat feels less squishy again. There was an article posted about this on another thread that explains this:
    https://bodyrecomposition.com/fat-loss/of-whooshes-and-squishy-fat

    You will also notice plenty of subcutaneous fat sticking around for a while in certain areas as you drop weight, and this will get more loose and flabby over time as there is less of it. Kind of like a balloon that has been partially deflated. Relax, its a good thing, even if you don't like how it looks or feels. The hard visceral fat is the stuff that is really damaging health wise. The squishy subcutaneous fat isn't nearly so harmful, and it will go away when you lose enough fat.
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    What amount of steps takes you from sedentary to mildly active?....I know what MFP says but I have gone from less than 2000 steps a day to hitting 4500 regularly from moving around more...should I change to mildly active and if I do, will this effect my weight loss....I don’t think I am losing fast enough now but when should your weight loss slow down?
  • lauriekallis
    lauriekallis Posts: 4,608 Member
    What amount of steps takes you from sedentary to mildly active?....I know what MFP says but I have gone from less than 2000 steps a day to hitting 4500 regularly from moving around more...should I change to mildly active and if I do, will this effect my weight loss....I don’t think I am losing fast enough now but when should your weight loss slow down?

    I wasn't sure about the MFP activity levels so I have just stuck to sedentary and add in my steps. This feels much more connected to my actual life than having using a blanket descriptor like "mildy active," and keeps me in touch with how much I'm moving. I used to try to be as efficient as possible when doing random household activities - now I kind of aim to make more trips and walk in circles.

    Until recently I wasn't eating back the exercise calories because I thought I wouldn't be able to without completely stalling weight loss. But after hitting my original goal my focus has changed to trying to make this journey more sustainable. So I've set my calorie goal very low -1000 - and eat back my exercise calories which for me is quite a bit these days - between 600 and sometimes up to another 1000. This system seems to be working well - about a pound a week? Weight loss has of course been ridiculously up and down - because the big walk days seem to bring about a lot of water weight as the muscles recover - so my weight has always been up at least 2 or 3 pounds the day after no matter what I eat that day, now sometimes more because I eat more and have the food somewhere in my gut the morning after - but I can justify that gain now with the idea that "Yes - I worked hard yesterday!" and then celebrate the big whoosh a day or two later. :-)

    I honestly didn't expect to be losing any weight at this level...but wow...I am, and everyday feels like a celebration...and somehow this is helping with the urge to binge. I have more calories to play with - and if I am hungry at the end of the day, I can usually walk aroud the house a bit and eat a snack - not much is out of bounds - but I have to do some extra exercise first...lol...and that seems to quiet down the binging trigger.
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    I sort of figured I should stay at sedentary but I was hoping lol....I eat back about 25% of my exercise calories but my weight loss per week has really slowed down....I think my age has something to do with the slow speed I am losing....I also think MFP counts my calories burnt for swimming way too high...I average about 1350 calories a day...

    Thanks for the input....you are doing great!
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    1350 calories a day eating
  • lauriekallis
    lauriekallis Posts: 4,608 Member
    I sort of figured I should stay at sedentary but I was hoping lol....I eat back about 25% of my exercise calories but my weight loss per week has really slowed down....I think my age has something to do with the slow speed I am losing....I also think MFP counts my calories burnt for swimming way too high...I average about 1350 calories a day...

    That is about where I was when I switched things up and it felt like the weight loss has really slowed down. My resolve was starting to waver a bit! I took a break for a few weeks, at around maintenance and then started this new system. It seems to be working well - maybe I'm still losing at the slower rate - but it doesn't feel so torturous...lol...I'm 57...not too old...but not young either. I'm not sure how much of a difference that makes. I'm kinda wondering if you hit the point where there is a maximum weight loss rate? And you will lose the same even if you eat a bit more? Somethings just didn't make sense.


  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    I sort of figured I should stay at sedentary but I was hoping lol....I eat back about 25% of my exercise calories but my weight loss per week has really slowed down....I think my age has something to do with the slow speed I am losing....I also think MFP counts my calories burnt for swimming way too high...I average about 1350 calories a day...

    That is about where I was when I switched things up and it felt like the weight loss has really slowed down. My resolve was starting to waver a bit! I took a break for a few weeks, at around maintenance and then started this new system. It seems to be working well - maybe I'm still losing at the slower rate - but it doesn't feel so torturous...lol...I'm 57...not too old...but not young either. I'm not sure how much of a difference that makes. I'm kinda wondering if you hit the point where there is a maximum weight loss rate? And you will lose the same even if you eat a bit more? Somethings just didn't make sense.


    I am 69 and some days I think my metabolism is shot!....I want to lose about 55 to 60 more pounds before I am in a nursing home lol....

    Doing exercise has not speeded up my loss rate...it’s just getting more difficult to lose!...I am getting some muscles and I am much stronger so that is a win!
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 2,981 Member
    @conniewilkins56

    That is a huge win, Connie! You are doing so well - not only with the weight loss, but in the increased activity and vitality :)
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    I have a question but I think I already know the answer!

    What would happen if I ate 1380 calories a day and I burned that same amount of calories exercising?...
    Could I do this for a week or ten days and not have any ill effects from it?....I would stay hydrated and eat healthy....I would never do this on a long term basis....
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    edited June 2021
    I have a question but I think I already know the answer!

    What would happen if I ate 1380 calories a day and I burned that same amount of calories exercising?...
    Could I do this for a week or ten days and not have any ill effects from it?....I would stay hydrated and eat healthy....I would never do this on a long term basis....

    You would be effectively fasting. So what would happen if you ate no food and you were sedentary for a week or 10 days?

    There is no definition of eating healthy that includes providing zero energy for bodily function for a week or more.

    I wouldn't do it for a number of reasons but the one that stands out at the moment is putting my body through that stress. If I had taken better care of my body all these years maybe that would not be as big of a factor but my efforts to get to a healthier weight and lifestyle are still very new. I am in better shape now but I have not undone all the damage I did. I have undone some of it, I have arrested some of it, and some of it will just be things I will need to go through as a consequence of the years of poor care.

  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    I knew this would be the answer but I wanted to see it in writing lol....

    I will continue to stay the course....I feel good....I feel strong....and I feel healthy!....and I am losing weight!.....

    I have my six month check up in three weeks at the doctors and then I am going to do a SUCCESSFUL two week maintenance break....any advice is greatly appreciated....my last two or three attempts at a break have turned into a food fest...I know I need to get control of this or long term maintenance will be impossible....should you still eat some exercise calories back during a break?....I really want to get this break right!
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    I knew this would be the answer but I wanted to see it in writing lol....

    I will continue to stay the course....I feel good....I feel strong....and I feel healthy!....and I am losing weight!.....

    I have my six month check up in three weeks at the doctors and then I am going to do a SUCCESSFUL two week maintenance break....any advice is greatly appreciated....my last two or three attempts at a break have turned into a food fest...I know I need to get control of this or long term maintenance will be impossible....should you still eat some exercise calories back during a break?....I really want to get this break right!

    Whatever percentage you eat now is the percentage you eat during your break. It is only the base calorie amount that changes.

    Perhaps what you should think about is how to frame it in a way that doesn't make it seem like a break from weight loss. It is obviously a pause/break but it is part of your weight loss not an exception to it. It is like taking a 3 day trip and pausing each night for sleep. Even though you are not moving at night you would still consider yourself traveling, right? A food fest is not stopping at a hotel, it is turning around and driving in the wrong direction until you turn around again and head back in the right direction.

    I also would not put your hopes and dreams of maintenance on this 2 week period. That is pressure you don't need. No matter what the outcome is, it doesn't actually prove anything. How can 2 weeks predict how you will respond for 2 months, 2 years, or 2 decades? We just have to succeed more than we fail and you have been proving that already.
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,391 Member
    Ok, so you still eat back some of your exercise calories....I currently eat back 25% of the calories MFP and FitBit says I burned.....what if you lose weight on maintenance?...does this mean you aren’t doing it right?

    I am really going to plan this break out better than my last two or three....I want to allow for a few food items I might not usually eat but I mostly want the extra calories to come from protein and extra fruits and calcium which I do not get enough of....

    After this break, my plan is to continue losing weight at 1.5 lbs a week calorie goals until I get to 235 ( I am now at 241 )... at 235 I want to go to 1 lb a week loss until I reach 215 and then .5 until I am under 200..... eventually easing into maintenance....if I continue losing at that point I am happy and if I maintain at that point, that is ok, too!....anything under 200 is all good!

    Does this sound like a good plan or not?...all suggestions are appreciated!
  • PAV8888
    PAV8888 Posts: 13,576 Member
    Ok, so you still eat back some of your exercise calories....I currently eat back 25% of the calories MFP and FitBit says I burned.....what if you lose weight on maintenance?...does this mean you aren’t doing it right?

    I am really going to plan this break out better than my last two or three....I want to allow for a few food items I might not usually eat but I mostly want the extra calories to come from protein and extra fruits and calcium which I do not get enough of....

    After this break, my plan is to continue losing weight at 1.5 lbs a week calorie goals until I get to 235 ( I am now at 241 )... at 235 I want to go to 1 lb a week loss until I reach 215 and then .5 until I am under 200..... eventually easing into maintenance....if I continue losing at that point I am happy and if I maintain at that point, that is ok, too!....anything under 200 is all good!

    Does this sound like a good plan or not?...all suggestions are appreciated!

    the plan of easing into maintenance that you describe is **THE** way that I would suggest you go including planning to continue doing what you've been doing a good 2-5 years into maintenance (hey you can always adjust as time goes on!)

    For now I don't know why you would be putting so much pressure on yourself and trying to "nail" things. Close is good enough!

    How much have you been losing over the past, say, 3-4 weeks? How many calories did you eat? Add 500 Cal * lbs lost to what you have been eating and make that your first goal for your "maintenance" week(s).

    Whether you maintain on the dot, or lose a tiny bit, or gain a tiny bit... there is no magic formula that will yield the only correct number, especially since your energy level can change.

    What you probably shouldn't do is view the break as on opportunity to go wild! If you're thinking that you're looking for an opportunity to go wild... that becomes something to work on separately!

    But, if you eat normally with a few extra carbs (an extra potato or two), or a couple of indulgences... well, that should add a few calories and bring you close enough to maintenance to benefit from a bit of a break!