Confused, frustrated and discouraged?

Hi! I'm feeling unmotivated since my weight-loss plateaued about a month or so ago and I've recently begun to gain weight, my weight usually fluctuates between 57-58 kg on the scales however my measurements have not gone down and clothing is starting to feel tighter.
I was eating around 1200 (not NET, bad bad bad!) calories a day using MFP calculations but increased to 1700 (again not NET) using the Harris-Benedict Equation (20% deficit of 2100 maintenance calories). I'm feeling very frustrated and confused because increasing to 1700 hasn't seemed to affect my plateau and now I'm gaining. Is my deficit still too large or...?
I'm doing Insanity and Ripped in 30 5 days per week.
Thank-you in advance for your help! :smile:


  • WBB55
    WBB55 Posts: 4,131 Member
    Just a clarification question here. Is 2100 the maintenance for sedentary? or the maintenance when you include your exercise?
  • It includes exercise
  • WBB55
    WBB55 Posts: 4,131 Member
    Were you losing at 1200? Have you been at 1700 for that whole month? I'm not one of the experts here. But my suggestion if you were losing at 1200 is to bump it down a couple hundred to 1500. That's what _I_ would do. But I'm not one of the experts here. I hope they have advice for you. Keep it up, you can do it!
  • I initially lost at 1200 then I plateaued and that's why I increased to 1700. I've been eating at 1700 close to a month now (about 3 weeks). Do you mean a NET of 1500 calories? Thank-you very much WBB55! :)
  • WBB55
    WBB55 Posts: 4,131 Member
    ME PERSONALLY? I don't know how tall you are, but you are probably already at a healthy weight, in my opinion. If you're not happy with the SHAPE of your body at your current weight, I might suggest lifting weights. I see you're shooting to run a 5k. I would eat, if I were you, enough calories to do that. Could you have put on muscle in the past couple months? Gaining muscle definitely feels like a plateau sometimes. And depending on where you put the muscle on, can make your clothes fit different/feel tight in different spots. My booty gained a ton of muscle and I had to buy larger pants to accommodate all my new gluteus muscle. But it was worth it because even though my tush is bigger, it's also higher and firmer.

    I personally try to stay anywhere between my current weight TDEE (1700 when sedentary, 2100-2700+ on workout days when I'm not injured!) and my "goal weight" BMR (1350). I don't really care how fast I lose weight, if at all, personally.
  • neandermagnon
    neandermagnon Posts: 7,436 Member
    I agree with WBB55

    also, don't eat back exercise calories if your exercise calories are already included in your TDEE, if you have been eating back your exercise calories, then this is why it's not working, keep your calorie total the same (2100) and stop eating back the exercise calories. If you've been eating 2100 and not eating back exercise calories, then the following paragraphs may help:

    the IPOARM meethod works, but if you don't calculate your calories right, it won't. the usual mistakes are either a) the wrong activity factor, or b) not counting calories accurately (e.g. guessing your calories, using volume measurements and accidentally overfilling them). It's also possible to get BMR wrong if your body composition is very different to average or you have an underlying metabolic issue (e.g. hypothyroid) - the calculators are all based on averages.

    If you're gaining after trying this for 3 weeks, then it's likely that one of these is happening. the FIRST thing to be sure about is the accuracy of your logging of what you eat. If you're not weighing your food, switch to that. If you're using user entered foods in your database, check the calories are correct, sometimes they could be wrong. If/when you're sure about logging your foods right, then subtract 200 or so calories from your previous number. One of the most common mistakes re calculating an activity factor, is that people only go by how many times a week you work out. You also have to consider what you do for most of the time (e.g. your job, what you do around the house if you're a stay at home mum). If someone spends most of their day sitting (e.g. desk job) and then exercises 3-4 times a week, that would make them lightly active, not moderately active, because they are sedentary for many hours a week, then very active for 3-4 hours in the week. Moderately active would be a job where you're on your feet all day, plus exercising 3-4 times a week. Some TDEE calculators ask you to factor in your job/normal daily activity, not just how many times you work out. These ones are generally better. If it is the case that you miscalculated your activity factor, you can either recalculate it or just bump off 200 or so calories from your daily calories and try eating that for a couple of weeks. The end result is the same either way.
  • Just to clarify, do I increase my intake to my TDEE of 2100 (well actually 1900, you were right about activity level!)?
  • Mcgrawhaha
    Mcgrawhaha Posts: 1,596 Member
    Just to clarify, do I increase my intake to my TDEE of 2100 (well actually 1900, you were right about activity level!)?

    just message helloitsdan, he should be able to clarity it for you.
  • Sambo004
    Sambo004 Posts: 572 Member
    Hi. I'm feeling exactly the same. I maintained my weight for 9 months sticking to 1200 cals, but I wasn't toning up enough. I also did Insanity and various other Jillian Michael's workouts and then about 4 months ago decided to try and up my calories, as many people do recommend, and keep working out as hard as I can for at least 5 - 6 days a week.

    4 Months down the line and I've gained 2 kgs and my cm's have gone up (as much as 3 cms in specific areas - like my thighs / belly) and my clothes are getting tighter. I decided this weekend that I've had enough. I'm currently almost finished with month 1 of Chalean Extreme (loving it), and I'm going to drop back down to 1200 cals a day.

    I am very interested to hear about what others recommend or respond to your query.

    I know how horrible it is to feel like you're going backwards.
  • jesz124
    jesz124 Posts: 1,004 Member
    I don't think you should be eating back your exercise cals. When I worked out my TDEE, I like you, included my exercise in the equation. Therefore the calories burnt during exercise are reflected in the TDEE amount, by eating them back again you are over eating.

    That's the way I understood it anyway, if I'm wrong I'm sure someone will correct me. I worked out my TDEE (with 3 hours of exercise) and deduct 20% I come to 1744. Sometimes I do eat slightly more though if I've lifted that day and I'm hungry.