Additional calories from exercise - opinions please

MR2Jay77
MR2Jay77 Posts: 32 Member
edited January 2015 in Getting Started
Here is a question for you and I would like a sensible, researched answer. Got a few ideas in mind to get some exercise in each day which is a plus (no matter how you look at it)

Now, when you exercise, you almost get rewarded with additional calories you can take in yes? I understand the logic, you have burnt more than you would usually so have additional calories you can take in.

What do people recommend? To take in additional calories to make up the deficit or class it as additional loss in the bank? The reason I ask is that my logical brain is saying that to replace them is kinda defeating the object with weight loss (I'm not ignoring the health benefits which are plentiful no questions asked)

What do people think?
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Replies

  • thegreatcanook
    thegreatcanook Posts: 2,419 Member
    I don't eat back my calories unless my deficit approaches 1000. You don't want too large of a deficit for too long as it can your metabolism, make you really tired, cause crazy food cravings and make you irritable. I learned the hard way! Add me if you need a friend!
  • yarwell
    yarwell Posts: 10,479 Member
    The MFP "eating back" thing is just to maintain a consistent loss rate & calorie deficit.

    I tend to bank any additional exercise calories, unless high levels of activity have made me eat more anyway. Generally speaking I don't do more than 500-600 cals of exercise. I certainly wouldn't go out to exercise and then eat to wipe out the benefit.
  • MR2Jay77
    MR2Jay77 Posts: 32 Member
    That's what I was thinking generally.... Exercise equals a bonus bit of weight loss.

    I think that's the attitude I'll take. It makes it easier to plan meals as well then if you are looking at a flat amount of calories a day.

    Thanks guys :)
  • Sued0nim
    Sued0nim Posts: 17,456 Member
    It depends

    whether you're starving and not fuelling your body properly

    if you're dropping below recommended levels regularly

    if you're happy to burn through your LBM at a higher rate than necessary knowing that it's much harder to put muscle on then maintain your existing muscle

    I say eat them back - if using MFP eat back 50 - 75%, I say never drop below the net calories in your goal across the week, IF your goal is set at 2lbs


    I say make sure you're not on a deprivation diet - eat everything you love within your defecit - wine, chocolate, bacon toasties whatver you want - you bloody well earned it
  • Capt_Apollo
    Capt_Apollo Posts: 9,028 Member
    you are already in a deficit if you have MFP set up to lose X amount of pounds per week. exercising will create more of a deficit, which can actually hurt you and negatively affect your weight loss by slowing it down or stopping it.

    however, most people overestimate how much they are exercising, and underestimate what they are eating. so yeah, it's all a guessing game.
  • NoelFigart1
    NoelFigart1 Posts: 1,276 Member
    I don't. If it effects my athletic performance, I bloody well will start doing so!
  • LizN63
    LizN63 Posts: 129 Member
    It also depends on what you've set your activity level on here. If you're sedentary then your calorie goal will not have allowed for much extra activity, if any. If you're active then your calorie goal will include a certain amount of extra calorie allowance.
  • Flab2fitfi
    Flab2fitfi Posts: 1,349 Member
    I don't. If it effects my athletic performance, I bloody well will start doing so!

    Now that is why I eat mine back - marathon training so the balance between cutting calories and fueling training is quite tricky. As the distances increase I'll also cut back my deficit and I always try and eat back at leat 75% of my exercise calories - I also use a HRM so the burn is more accurate.
  • cincysweetheart
    cincysweetheart Posts: 892 Member
    I really don't like the idea of exercising just so you can eat more. It promotes an unhealthy relationship to food in my opinion… something that will not serve us well when we are trying to maintain our weight.

    You'll want to make sure you are fueling your body properly. Make sure you have adequate energy for your workouts and daily activities (hunger is not always the best cue in this case). Pay attention to any signs of malnutrition. If you aren't feeling hungry, if you have adequate energy to get through your workouts and your daily activities and you are not showing signs of malnutrition… then I don't see any reason to eat back your exercise calories just because they are there.

    The major reason I got in this mess is because I ate just because food was there. Eating just because I can… is not conducive to me being able to keep this off for the long term.
  • NoelFigart1
    NoelFigart1 Posts: 1,276 Member
    I really don't like the idea of exercising just so you can eat more. It promotes an unhealthy relationship to food in my opinion… something that will not serve us well when we are trying to maintain our weight.

    That does make an interesting point, and a valid one. When diagnosing an eating disorder, you are often asked if you either make yourself vomit after eating or exercise excessively to burn off food you've eaten.

    (FWIW, I do think this is a different POV than fueling workouts when one is training for specific events. It is possible I am fooling myself, too)
  • MR2Jay77
    MR2Jay77 Posts: 32 Member
    Wow, kettle of worms here?

    It seems it is an interesting one that seems to have varying opinions.

    In my own personal situation, I have set myself as having a sedentary exercise regime as I am sat in front of a screen, on a train or in a meeting for most of my life. It's not ideal, granted but that can't be changed. I'm trying to increase my walking so I'm really not making many "extra" calories. That means that taking them as bonus losing weight points isn't going to actually make much difference ;)

    As mentioned above, I think there needs to be a balance. Working out to eat more isn't exactly a healthy way to be.....

    OK, I think I know what I'm doing now. I think that what I'll do is increase my calorie intake by half the extra I have earnt. That way, when I do start working out properly, I won't be starving myself in the process but still getting a little bit extra off :)

    Sound about right?
  • Snooozie
    Snooozie Posts: 3,290 Member
    here's one opinion from the MFP hello healthy blog on the subject..

    http://blog.myfitnesspal.com/ask-the-dietitian-should-i-eat-back-my-exercise-calories/
  • Patttience
    Patttience Posts: 1,016 Member
    Don't rely on exercise for weight loss becuase when you stop you will just regain it all. Exercise for fun, fitness nad health, not for weightloss.

    That said, when i exercise, i need to eat more but your body should tell you the right amount if you listen carefully.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,750 Member
    LizN63 wrote: »
    It also depends on what you've set your activity level on here. If you're sedentary then your calorie goal will not have allowed for much extra activity, if any. If you're active then your calorie goal will include a certain amount of extra calorie allowance.

    Sorry that's wrong or at least out of context of this thread which is about exercise.
    Whataver activity level you have chosen does not include any exercise.
    In MFP terms daily activity and exercise are separate entitles.

    In my view there is no point chosing a calorie deficit goal and then not trying to achieve that goal. Which means accounting for your exercise calories. Bigger deficits and faster weight loss are not always a good idea.

    If you do a minimal amount of exercise is not a big deal but if you are doing a significant amount then eat them back or if doing the TDEE method account for them in your calculation as you are supposed to do.
  • SingRunTing
    SingRunTing Posts: 2,605 Member
    rabbitjb wrote: »
    It depends

    whether you're starving and not fuelling your body properly

    if you're dropping below recommended levels regularly

    if you're happy to burn through your LBM at a higher rate than necessary knowing that it's much harder to put muscle on then maintain your existing muscle

    I say eat them back - if using MFP eat back 50 - 75%, I say never drop below the net calories in your goal across the week, IF your goal is set at 2lbs


    I say make sure you're not on a deprivation diet - eat everything you love within your defecit - wine, chocolate, bacon toasties whatver you want - you bloody well earned it

    This. I couldn't have said it better.
  • shadow2soul
    shadow2soul Posts: 7,693 Member
    I workout because I like the way it makes me feel.
    I workout because I think I look better when I do.
    I workout to improve my fitness.
    Simply put I workout to be the best version me I can be.

    That said. I experimented with eating around my MFP goal without exercise calories. The result had me taking a week off of exercise to get things straightened out. I was exhausted, dizzy and had frequent migraines. Never doing that again. My average intake on a normal basis is the same as if I were to do TDEE - 20 to 25% from a few TDEE calculators. So for me, I eat my exercise calories. Maybe not on the day I earn them, but I do eat them.
  • LizN63
    LizN63 Posts: 129 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    LizN63 wrote: »
    It also depends on what you've set your activity level on here. If you're sedentary then your calorie goal will not have allowed for much extra activity, if any. If you're active then your calorie goal will include a certain amount of extra calorie allowance.

    Sorry that's wrong or at least out of context of this thread which is about exercise.
    Whataver activity level you have chosen does not include any exercise.
    In MFP terms daily activity and exercise are separate entitles.

    In my view there is no point chosing a calorie deficit goal and then not trying to achieve that goal. Which means accounting for your exercise calories. Bigger deficits and faster weight loss are not always a good idea.

    If you do a minimal amount of exercise is not a big deal but if you are doing a significant amount then eat them back or if doing the TDEE method account for them in your calculation as you are supposed to do.

    Depends what you count as 'exercise' I guess. For instance, the exercise database includes 'light housework'. Personally I would count that in to my activity level and not log it. But perhaps some people say they are completely sedentary and log it separately, then eat it back.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,750 Member
    edited January 2015
    LizN63 wrote: »
    sijomial wrote: »
    LizN63 wrote: »
    It also depends on what you've set your activity level on here. If you're sedentary then your calorie goal will not have allowed for much extra activity, if any. If you're active then your calorie goal will include a certain amount of extra calorie allowance.

    Sorry that's wrong or at least out of context of this thread which is about exercise.
    Whataver activity level you have chosen does not include any exercise.
    In MFP terms daily activity and exercise are separate entitles.

    In my view there is no point chosing a calorie deficit goal and then not trying to achieve that goal. Which means accounting for your exercise calories. Bigger deficits and faster weight loss are not always a good idea.

    If you do a minimal amount of exercise is not a big deal but if you are doing a significant amount then eat them back or if doing the TDEE method account for them in your calculation as you are supposed to do.

    Depends what you count as 'exercise' I guess. For instance, the exercise database includes 'light housework'. Personally I would count that in to my activity level and not log it. But perhaps some people say they are completely sedentary and log it separately, then eat it back.

    Actually it still doesn't! It's whether it is an extra over and above your normal routine or if it's dedicated exercise.

    If someone's activity setting (lifestyle, day to day routine, work) includes no "light housework" but then does an exceptional 8 hours of "light housework" and thinks it's worth logging as exercise (spring clean perhaps - I'm no expert on housework!) then they can add it.
    Yes you would and should count it in your activity setting if it is part of your normal routine.

    Personally I avoid housework like the plague. :)


  • LizN63
    LizN63 Posts: 129 Member
    I think I am saying what you just said in a different way!