# Will I eventually get there this way?

Posts: 41 Member
If I eat what MFP calculates to be my maintenance calories for my goal weight, will that get me to my goal weight? Right now I’m trying to lose about 7-8 lbs and I’m just wondering if this works. Has anyone tried it?

## Replies

• Posts: 289 Member
As long as you set your profile and goals properly, and then keep track of your calories and macros, you should be fine. What have set your goals to? 1lb / week?
• Posts: 19,268 Member
If the numbers are accurate, then yes, it should work. And it's a great way to approach things, psychologically speaking. If you successfully eat like the thinner you, then you know you can live on those calories. That said: it's REALLY hard to find the right number with so little to lose. You're going to need to be pretty careful.

• Posts: 35,731 Member
The maths says that this will work and it's a really great idea, but as it's a very small deficit it will happen very slowly so you would have to be very patient.
For example:
BMR for a 33 year old female at 148lbs is approx 1444 calories.
The same at 140lbs is approx 1409 calories, creating a daily deficit of just 35 calories (and this deficit will only reduce as you get closer to your goal). So it would take you 100 days to lose one pound (3500 / 35).

you want to look at TDEE not BMR
• Posts: 15,490 Member
edited February 2018
The maths says that this will work and it's a really great idea, but as it's a very small deficit it will happen very slowly so you would have to be very patient.
For example:
BMR for a 33 year old female at 148lbs is approx 1444 calories.
The same at 140lbs is approx 1409 calories, creating a daily deficit of just 35 calories (and this deficit will only reduce as you get closer to your goal). So it would take you 100 days to lose one pound (3500 / 35).

What did you plug in for her height?? I assume OP is female?

OP, the number that MFP is giving you is TDEE not BMR. This may or may not work you would have to experiment with this intake over a period of time, the numbers are just estimates, your real world results based off your intake, exercise and activity levels/how much you move in a day will tell you if this accurate.
• Posts: 1,305 Member
edited February 2018
With that small of a weight loss goal and such a small difference, you would have to be precise with your logging, measuring and adjustments.

But guess what? If you picked 1/2 pound per week as a goal, you would have to be precise with our logging, measuring and adjustments.

The other factor I would take into consideration is that NEAT (and TDEE for that matter) are generally done by calculation and represent the aggregate, meaning that if you are normal and within 1 standard deviation of the mean you could be plus a minus an amount that would be significant compared with your planned deficit. With that in mind, you would have to be precise with your logging and adjustments. See a theme here?

In theory, eating at your maintenance target would absolutely work. In practice, however, everybody is different, there are many variables, and you're going to have to make adjustments based on what you see. In your case, you probably can't make adjustments more often than every 4 weeks or so because you can't always see past regular fluctuations.

I like your idea, and that idea actually is more likely to work the further you are from your goal weight. If this picture thingy works (I've never inserted one into a post before), it shows what that scenario might have looked like for me when I dropped from 240 to 190. For the purposes of this chart, I recalculated my TDEE every 5 pounds lost and kept my maintenance TDEE (what I would have eaten). As you can see the slope is steeper the further away from my goal weight. By time I got to within 10 pounds of goal, it was a long time because the deficits got progressively smaller. The chart shape would be similar for anyone in this hypothetical scenario. But again, we work with calculations that in reality are only estimates based on aggregate numbers.

• Posts: 293 Member
I am doing that but I have a lot of weight to lose (at least 45 pounds) I wouldn't do it if it was just 8 pounds it would take forever.
• Posts: 41,181 Member
If I eat what MFP calculates to be my maintenance calories for my goal weight, will that get me to my goal weight? Right now I’m trying to lose about 7-8 lbs and I’m just wondering if this works. Has anyone tried it?

Theoretically this would work...but it will be incredibly slow and in my estimation very frustrating given that normal weight fluctuations are going to mask losses for weeks and months.

I'm dropping 8 Lbs of winter weight currently. My TDEE at moderately active is around 2850 calories give or take...at 180 my TDEE at the same activity level is around 2750 give or take...so basically I'd be looking at about 7 weeks just to lose 1 actual Lb of fat and over a year to lose 8 Lbs. I do this every spring with m winter weight, and there's no way I'm going to sit around for over a year trying to dump a little winter weight...I usually cut it in about 8-10 weeks or so as I aim for about 1 Lb per week give or take.

What you're proposing is a good method if one has a lot of weight to lose...not so much if you're just trying to lose a handful of pounds...unless you're an extremely patient person.
• Posts: 1,823 Member
edited February 2018
I set the top end of my calorie range at my "maintenance at goal weight" number.

This keeps me in a slight deficit all the time, but allows me to eat a bit more some days too.

It is not the fastest way to lose weight, but it works well for me. I generally eat below the upper end of my range, but I don't freak out if I'm at the top end, either, if I was that hungry.

I do have a bit more to lose (~20-25 pounds) but I don't plan on changing those settings at this point, either, unless I decide to cut for a few weeks at some point.
• Posts: 250 Member
It's going to take a very long time good luck!! I set my rate of loss to 0.5 pounds personally.
• Posts: 41 Member
Thanks everyone! All of your replies are incredibly helpful! I’m actually 5’ 9”/female currently about 158 lbs trying to get to 150. I have my activity set at sedentary right now because I work a desk job. I work out just about every day for 60-75 minutes. I estimate those calories conservatively I would say. In the last year I’ve lost about 40 lbs and am successfully maintaining though not at my goal weight. My problem is that I cannot seem to stick to the 1400 net calories to lose 1 lb a week. I do it for a few days, then end up overeating a few days (usually around maintenance, sometimes more). I figured if I can at least stop myself from going OVER the calories it takes to maintain my goal weight I’m still making some sort of progress. I’m going to try to up my activity to get in some more exercise calories and see how that works out. The painfully slow weight loss is difficult to tough out
• Posts: 35,731 Member
edited February 2018
Thanks everyone! All of your replies are incredibly helpful! I’m actually 5’ 9”/female currently about 158 lbs trying to get to 150. I have my activity set at sedentary right now because I work a desk job. I work out just about every day for 60-75 minutes. I estimate those calories conservatively I would say. In the last year I’ve lost about 40 lbs and am successfully maintaining though not at my goal weight. My problem is that I cannot seem to stick to the 1400 net calories to lose 1 lb a week. I do it for a few days, then end up overeating a few days (usually around maintenance, sometimes more). I figured if I can at least stop myself from going OVER the calories it takes to maintain my goal weight I’m still making some sort of progress. I’m going to try to up my activity to get in some more exercise calories and see how that works out. The painfully slow weight loss is difficult to tough out

With 8lbs to go you should be aiming for 0.5lb per week max.

It is slow going, you need to be patient, accurate and consistent.
• Posts: 13,345 Member
edited February 2018
Yes that will work but it will be slow. But when you don't have much to lose its best not to lose more than 0.5lb a week anyway.