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I recently started using MFP (one wk now to be precise) and it set me up at 1200 calories a day. I'm at the gym an hr a day 5x a wk. I didn't tell MFP about my fitness routines on a daily basis (which might be why it gave me 1,200 calories). Anyway, I weighted myself yesterday and I've actually gained one pound. I've read on the MFP community feed that some people mention to use the Scooby's Workshop calculator which is more accurate (I did). Now with 4 meals a day and 3-5 hrs of moderate exercise it put me at 2434 calories to maintain (TDEE). That sounds pretty hefty to me. Can someone please help me. Im not sure what to do.

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  • karenj_m
    karenj_m Posts: 215
    edited October 2014
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    Are you trying to maintain or lose?

    My (TDEE) numbers to "maintain" are around 2100-2200 (with doing "moderate exercise") for me to lose it was 1750-1800.... (with the same exercise)......

    I've since dropped it to 1650 to continue losing since I had already lost 15 pounds (and you have to readjust as you lose more body-weight)

    PS: that MFP 1200 calories per day is going to assume you will eat some of your exercise calories back....

    The TDEE method does NOT eat exercise calories back. The number you get...is what you eat total, period....

    Two different methods.
  • TheStephil
    TheStephil Posts: 858 Member
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    Welcome! First things first, if you are not used to exercise your body is probably retaining water. Keep up your routine and give it a few weeks. Are you eating back your exercise calories? That is the difference between what MFP tells you and the TDEE method.
    1. MFP: Sets your goal calories using just the activity level you selected and does not count any exercise you do. So if you select that you are sedentary and want to lose 2lbs it will most likely set you as 1,200 calories. MFP expects you to log your exercise and eat those calories on top of the goal they gave you. So if you burned 500 calories MFP expects you to eat 1,700 calories. MFP tends to overestimate your calories burned so most people at 50-75% of the exercise calories.
    2. TDEE: TDEE method takes into account all of the exercise you say you do and your daily lifestyle. In order to lose weight you would subtract calories from your overall TDEE. 500 calories to lose 1lb a week, 1000 calories to lose 2lbs a week. So you'd need about 1934 calories to lose 1lb a week and 1434 to lose 2lbs a week. You don't track your exercise calories or eat back your exercise calories with this method because its already counted. In order to track your exercise on MFP most people change the calories burned to 1 so you still keep track but you don't add extra calories to your diary.

    For me, both methods equal the same amount of calories when I set the goal the same for both and accurately track exercise. I find TDEE easier to manage since my calories stay the same every day even if I don't exercise vs. MFP I only eat extra calories when I exercise.
  • dodgerblue0709
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    @karenj_m- im trying to lose weight. So ur TDEE is 2,200 but to lose weight you can only consume 1,800 calories with the exercise?

    @TheStephill- I started exercising a wk ago when i downloaded the app. So my body like you said is probably retaining water. With the 1200 calorie count MFP gave me i was NOT eating back those exercise calories. When i registered for the app i did not say i was exercising so i was eating my 1200 calories ONLY while exercising 5x a wk. So if i want to stick to the TDEE method i would only have to consume 1434 to lose 2 lbs a wk. Right? Does it matter how many calories i burn during my workout?
  • karenj_m
    karenj_m Posts: 215
    edited October 2014
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    @dogerblue079 yes that's correct - when I first started that's what I was eating. This was for 1 pound a week. Using the TDEE method its usually around 500 calories off that TDEE total (that has exercise in it) to lose 1 pound per week. After you lose some significant weight, you have to lower your calories about 100 or so to get the scale moving again. I did this after losing the first 15 pounds.
    - I was using "moderately active" in the calculation as I work out 6 days a week...3 strength training days, 1 plyometrics day , 1 light cardio day, and 1 yoga day. All I track on MFP is the food total that's it, and try to do very good workouts.