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Good calorie goal/weight?

atinycupcakeatinycupcake Posts: 2Member Member Posts: 2Member Member
Hello! I have a calorie goal on here that seems a little high, 1650. If I wanted to lose weight should I restrict my calories to 1500? I am a 27 year old female who is 5'4" and 172 pounds. Also what would be a good goal weight? I am new to this so any tips would be helpful!
Thank you!


  • AnnPT77AnnPT77 Posts: 14,195Member Member Posts: 14,195Member Member
    I lost most of my 50 pound loss in well less than a year at 1400-1600 plus all exercise calories, at 5'5", starting from 183lbs, at age 59-60. You're much younger. I'd suggest giving the 1650 a try, for at least one full menstrual cycle so you can compare weights at the same time during the month. I suspect you'll lose fine on that. MFP is close, for most people. (It guessed too low for me; I seem to need more calories than average for my age, but that's unusual.)

    As far as goal weight: The goal weight you put in your MFP profile has absolutely no effect on the calorie goal it estimates for you, so you can put in a tentative/provisional goal weight now, and decide later if it's right, as you get closer. The only thing MFP uses the goal weight in your profile for, is some motivational/progress messages. Set it to a wild guess now, change it later, it'll be fine. The only time goal weight is important is in deciding when to stop losing. Worry about that point as it approaches. :)

    P.S. Ideal weight depends a lot on body configuration (stuff like broad vs. narrow shoulders & hips, breast size for women, etc.), as well as one's muscularity level. On top of that, people can reasonably have different personal preferences, and still be in a healthy range. No one else is going to be able to give you an ideal weight to shoot for. If you need advice, this might be a logcial thing to discuss with your doctor.

  • spiriteagle99spiriteagle99 Posts: 2,558Member Member Posts: 2,558Member Member
    If you were accurate in giving your height, weight, age and activity level before exercise, then MFP does a good job at giving calorie targets. As Ann said, after a few weeks, you'll see whether that goal needs to be adjusted.

    As to goal weight, many of us choose either a weight that we've been at before that we were happy with, or we go for a weight that is within the Healthy range in BMI charts. Some go for the high end, some for the middle, some for the low end. You may find that you would like to be at the low end, but the daily calorie goal feels too restrictive. Or you think the low weight is impossible, but after you've made some changes in your diet and exercise, it isn't that hard to maintain after all.

  • bmeadows380bmeadows380 Posts: 1,881Member Member Posts: 1,881Member Member
    What setting did you use - sedentary, lightly active? What are your daily activity levels? Also, understand that MFP uses the NEAT method when it calculates your calorie goals, meaning it takes into account your routine, daily living calorie burn, but does not include intentional exercise; it expects you to eat those back (most people start eating back about half and then adjust as necessary based on actual experience as the predicted burn by most machines and MFP are usually way over).

    If you have a desk job and are sitting most of the day, choose sedentary. If you are on your feet a lot of day as a teacher, a stocker, or something that has you up and moving around, then choose lightly active. I see about a 290 calorie difference between the two levels for me. I have a desk job so I picked sedentary and then add back for my purposeful exercise.

    Also, what is your expected loss rate setting? Using the stats you gave, it looks like you are in the overweight range, so you don't really have a great amount to lose and a lower weekly loss rate would be advised as the leaner you are when you start, the more stressful it can be on your body - there are a lot of good threads here that can explain the reasons on this. I've heard, I think that the maximum recommended is 1% of your weight (someone can verify this for sure?), so you probably shouldn't be trying for any more than 1 lb a week, which is a 500 calorie deficit. The key to sustainability is patience!

    I've checked a couple of different online calculators to compare to MFP, and MFP did seem to be a little higher than the others, though not so far as to be unusable. As Ann said, try it for a month or maybe even 2, and compare your weight on the same day around the same time. It takes time, especially since women have those monthly cycles that can throw weights off due to water retention issues, so we really do need to look at the broad picture and monthly values over weekly ones.

    For me personally, I've found that I need to be under the MFP stated value by about 50 calories or so, but I have PCOS and thyroid issues, so my metabolism may run a little slower than predicted (note that while metabolic differences do occur, they are within a narrow range - you can't break your metabolism to the point of hundreds of calories lower). These calculators are generic anyway and can't possibly take into account all the variances that come with individual human bodies, but they are a good place to start and should be fairly close if you put the starting information in accurately. Then be patient, and adjust as needed based on actual results.
  • NovusDiesNovusDies Posts: 7,073Member, Premium Member Posts: 7,073Member, Premium Member
    Hello! I have a calorie goal on here that seems a little high, 1650. If I wanted to lose weight should I restrict my calories to 1500? I am a 27 year old female who is 5'4" and 172 pounds. Also what would be a good goal weight? I am new to this so any tips would be helpful!
    Thank you!

    If you are new you should not be starting with preconceived notions about calories. What you need is what you need. Less calories may help with a little additional weight loss but it may also help you fail. The important thing is how easy it is to lose weight not how fast.

    You do not really need a goal weight. You just need to start heading in that direction. Assuming you do not have any issues properly judging yourself you will know when you get close.
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