Should I eat the same amount of calories on my days off from the gym?

AshFace22
AshFace22 Posts: 25 Member
Okay, so here's the gist. I got told by my doctor that I should at least eat 2300 calories a day because of my lifestyle. i work out Mon-Thurs and I rest from Friday all the way to Sunday. I do 30 minutes of cardio on the elliptical and then strength train as well. It depends on what day it is, but I will work on shoulders, arms, legs and abs. But the thing is...Should I only eat 2300 calories the days I'm working out? Or should I eat a solid 2300 each and every day? (Even if I spend the day laying in bed for the majority of the day lol) I am scared and nervous to jump to such a high amount of calories. I spent a long time getting to where I'm at now, I don't want to screw up and start gaining again. But if I keep eating the way I am, I'm going to lose more weight and at this point I just want to maintain my weight. It's a daily battle that I fight with myself. Any help or input is greatly appreciated.

Replies

  • tinkerbellang83
    tinkerbellang83 Posts: 9,038 Member
    It depends how your doctor arrived to the figure of 2300 calories per day.

    If you put your stats into MFP and set your foal to maintain, it uses the NEAT method which doesn't include exercise, so it expects you to eat back the calories gained through exercise.

    If you use a TDEE calculator this includes exercise and is helpful for those who consistently do the same amount of exercise - you can check your TDEE using an online calculator https://tdeecalculator.net/

    Worst case, try it for a few weeks and monitor your weight, if you find you're losing outside of your maintenance range, increase your calories and if you're gaining decrease them.
  • AshFace22
    AshFace22 Posts: 25 Member
    edited May 2017


    I'm 5'10'' and trying to maintain, I end up freaking myself out because all these other websites about fitness and health or nutrition calculators say I should be eating at 1700-2000 to maintain, but I keep losing weight. And I'm very close to being UNDERweight and I don't want that. i'm trying to find a balance to where I can maintain my weight and I don't want to go up or down. My Dr just randomly picked 2300 off the top of her head and I figured might as well try, right?


  • AshFace22
    AshFace22 Posts: 25 Member
    I'm 135 last time I weighed myself. I was 147 a few months ago. I just can't stop losing weight. I don't overdo myself and I surely don't deprive myself. If I'm craving chocolate, I'll eat it! Or pizza or noodles or whatever really. I'm just having a bit of a hard time trying to find my balance...
  • allyphoe
    allyphoe Posts: 618 Member
    The solution to "I can't stop losing weight" is to eat more calories. Follow your doctor's advice. Eat your 2300 calories every single day, whether you want them or not. Ignore the results you get the first month, because eating more can produce a scale gain due to more food in your system / increased glycogen stores. Look at the second full month - are you heavier or lighter or the same at the end than at the beginning? Look at your eating log for the second full month - how many calories a day did you actually eat? From there, it's just math to figure out if you have to adjust and by how much.
  • allyphoe
    allyphoe Posts: 618 Member
    Also, if you have good records for the past couple of months, feel free to PM me the key to your diary and the dates you weighed at 147 and 135, and I'll calculate your maintenance calories based on them.
  • raquele3394
    raquele3394 Posts: 180 Member

    I'm 5'10'' and trying to maintain, I end up freaking myself out because all these other websites about fitness and health or nutrition calculators say I should be eating at 1700-2000 to maintain, but I keep losing weight. And I'm very close to being UNDERweight and I don't want that. i'm trying to find a balance to where I can maintain my weight and I don't want to go up or down. My Dr just randomly picked 2300 off the top of her head and I figured might as well try, right?


    I'm 5'10'' and trying to maintain, I end up freaking myself out because all these other websites about fitness and health or nutrition calculators say I should be eating at 1700-2000 to maintain, but I keep losing weight. And I'm very close to being UNDERweight and I don't want that. i'm trying to find a balance to where I can maintain my weight and I don't want to go up or down. My Dr just randomly picked 2300 off the top of her head and I figured might as well try, right?


    I'm 5'10'' and trying to maintain, I end up freaking myself out because all these other websites about fitness and health or nutrition calculators say I should be eating at 1700-2000 to maintain, but I keep losing weight. And I'm very close to being UNDERweight and I don't want that. i'm trying to find a balance to where I can maintain my weight and I don't want to go up or down. My Dr just randomly picked 2300 off the top of her head and I figured might as well try, right?


    I wish I would keep loosing!
  • AshFace22
    AshFace22 Posts: 25 Member
    allyphoe wrote: »
    The solution to "I can't stop losing weight" is to eat more calories. Follow your doctor's advice. Eat your 2300 calories every single day, whether you want them or not. Ignore the results you get the first month, because eating more can produce a scale gain due to more food in your system / increased glycogen stores. Look at the second full month - are you heavier or lighter or the same at the end than at the beginning? Look at your eating log for the second full month - how many calories a day did you actually eat? From there, it's just math to figure out if you have to adjust and by how much.

    Thank you! Your answer was definitely helpful. Ignore the first month, got it. Knowing me, i'd freak the heck out if I see a slight increase in weight and immediately go back to eating lightly, or at the low calories I've been eating. What are some good things to eat when you're not hungry? Like let's say at the end of the day I have 350 calories leftover but don't want to forcefeed myself something heavy. What do you suggest?
  • allyphoe
    allyphoe Posts: 618 Member
    AshFace22 wrote: »
    What are some good things to eat when you're not hungry? Like let's say at the end of the day I have 350 calories leftover but don't want to forcefeed myself something heavy. What do you suggest?

    Whatever's easily available to you, because the overriding goal at that point is to eat all of your calories, whether you want them or not. Your macros are fine - in the last 30 days, you've been averaging 100g of protein and 43g of fiber a day.

    Honestly, my suggestion would be to not let yourself get to the end of the day with 350 calories leftover. So instead of eating light yogurt, eat full-fat if you can get it, or full-sugar if that's the only available option. Whole milk cottage cheese instead of fat-free. Cow's milk instead of Almond Breeze. Regular ice cream instead of Halo Top.

    Looking past the macros to the details, you look a little low on veggies and on foods that are naturally high in protein and fiber, rather than supplemented. So once you can reliably eat all of your calories every single day, you might want to look at adding more vegetables and maybe some legumes, both spiked with some sort of fat, and cutting back on the protein cookies and fortified ice creams.
  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,878 Member
    AshFace22 wrote: »
    allyphoe wrote: »
    The solution to "I can't stop losing weight" is to eat more calories. Follow your doctor's advice. Eat your 2300 calories every single day, whether you want them or not. Ignore the results you get the first month, because eating more can produce a scale gain due to more food in your system / increased glycogen stores. Look at the second full month - are you heavier or lighter or the same at the end than at the beginning? Look at your eating log for the second full month - how many calories a day did you actually eat? From there, it's just math to figure out if you have to adjust and by how much.

    Thank you! Your answer was definitely helpful. Ignore the first month, got it. Knowing me, i'd freak the heck out if I see a slight increase in weight and immediately go back to eating lightly, or at the low calories I've been eating. What are some good things to eat when you're not hungry? Like let's say at the end of the day I have 350 calories leftover but don't want to forcefeed myself something heavy. What do you suggest?

    You could just eat your exercise calories the next day.

    Over time, you should get a pretty good feel for what you burn in an average day. I eat back my calories and after I monitored it for a while, they never snuck up on me.

    If you do find yourself with calories left at the end of the day, you can always add them to breakfast or lunch on a subsequent day. You don't have to eat them before midnight the same day.