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Any 1200 calorie petite girls?



  • VegjoyP
    VegjoyP Posts: 2,744 Member
    I love this thread!!!!!!!!

    I am 5'2" and 53 yo. At the moment, I weigh 152.4. MFP has given my a calorie budget of 1320. I have lost about 9 pounds since March 27th.

    At first I was eating about 1400 calories, maybe more maybe less, each day. But as I picked up the intensity of my workouts and built muscle, it became too hard to eat that little. Right now I am eating about 1650 average calories each day. I am both loosing weight and building muscle.

    My goals are to age gracefully and get fit/trim. I don't care if my hair turns grey or my face ages. That's all normal part of aging that I can't control. I can control my weight.

    To all the women who feel stuck at 1200 calories, remember to keep active and build muscle. Strong muscles burn calories and increase your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (aka TDEE). For us short women (petite), all the little tips and tricks make a difference.


  • Bella_Figura
    Bella_Figura Posts: 4,265 Member
    edited April 2022
    This is an interesting thread...I'm glad @zilipah revived it.

    First off, @zilipah you look amazing! I can't believe you still have 10lbs to go.

    My experience seems slightly different from the rest of you.

    I will be considered petite once I reach my goal weight of 57 kg (BMI 23.7)

    Height: 155cm (just under 5'1")
    Age: 56
    Current weight: 84kg (BMI 35.0)

    My BMR is currently 1,373 and my TDEE is 2,293 (167% of BMR). I've been eating a calorie restricted diet (averages 1,400 cals/day) for the past 12 weeks. In that time I've lost 12kg (average of 2.2lbs per week).

    According to the scooby calculator, I need to be doing '5-6 hours/week of strenuous cardio' to achieve this TDEE. In reality, I walk the dog at a 3.2mph pace for 90 minutes a day, and I potter in the garden for a couple of hours a week (a bit of weeding here, the odd spot of digging there. Nothing major). Maybe once a week I'll go for a 30 minute cycle ride at a slow 12mph pace.

    So sometimes the calculators can get it wrong.

    If (it's a big 'if') my TDEE remains at 167% of BMR, once I reach goal my BMR should be around 1,100 and my maintenance TDEE should be around 1,837.

    If my calorie burn from NEAT/EAT drops sharply (say, by 50%) to lower my TDEE to 133% of BMR, I should be able to maintain on 1,463 calories/day. That's roughly what I'm eating at the moment, and I consider that sufficient calories for me to sustain long term.

    Though, of course, I'd prefer to maintain on 1,837 than 1,463.

    I can't understand why you much younger women have such a low TDEE - are you very sedentary? If so, could you consider ways to increase your calorie burn from NEAT/EAT so that you can allow yourselves a higher calorie budget?

    I thought I'd update my experience, in the hope that others might find it helpful.

    I've now been managing my weight for over a year (started late March 2021), and I'm now 139lbs/63kg (which is a 33kg loss to date from my start weight of 96kg). I will hit a 'normal' BMI at 132lbs/60kg, and my ultimate goal is still 125lbs/57kg.

    So...not too far to go now. I should be there when I turn 57 at the end of May.

    When I wrote my original post above I'd been managing my weight for 12 weeks and I was 84kg. Not long after I wrote that post, I actually INCREASED my calories from roughly 1400/day to 1600/day. It didn't tank my loss rate - it still hovered at a respectable 1.3lbs - 1.5lbs a week. By the end of March this year I'd lost 73lbs in 52 weeks.

    For the past month I've been on a deficit break, and I've discovered I can maintain 139lbs/63kg on 1900-2000 cals day. Which gives me confidence that I'll be able to maintain my ultimate weight of 125lbs/57kg on 1800 cals/day. I still walk the dog for 1-2 hours a day, but that's still my major form of exercise.

    I think my NEAT calorie burn has actually increased as I've lost weight, despite needing fewer calories to move my smaller body around. Because I'm smaller, fitter and healthier, I think I'm naturally more energetic and active - it's no longer an effort to do things, so its consequently more pleasurable to move around. When I was hauling around 96kg I never moved more than necessary.

    I hope that gives hope to some of you that you may not need to overly restrict your calories to maintain your goal may be pleasantly surprised!
  • WestCoastJanice
    WestCoastJanice Posts: 16 Member
    This is a great thread! I’m 5’3” (43 years old with a frozen shoulder) and generally MFP gives me a budget of 1200 plus exercise calories. As I’m just starting over again (starting weight 175) - I try to keep things “clean” - no booze and much lower carbs with an aim of having higher protein/fat in my diet.

    There are low cal bulk foods that make staying in the budget way easier. Choosing lower sugar fruits (ie. strawberries, blueberries, apples) helps. Choosing lower sugar veggies is also helpful (spinach, lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower). With respect to protein - recently discovered Skyr yogurt - a whole lot of protein, not a lot of calories. Have also gone back to chia puddings and hemp seeds in yogurt/fruit. Drinking a lot more water - and have found joy in high quality black coffee.

    Exercise wise - I find scheduled classes force me to make time for it, and given 2 kids (ages 9 & 11) and work, I fine the 5:30am HIIT class (2 times a week) the easiest to stick with.

    Historically a high weight for me was 155lbs…and generally I find around 135 is a good place. Not sure how long it’ll take this time for me to get there but I am looking forward to enjoying some of the things I enjoyed before (longer 10km runs). My guess - 6 months of consistent work.
  • NVintage
    NVintage Posts: 1,463 Member
    NVintage wrote: »
    I'm 5'1.5 and 132-135 pounds. I'm not wanting to lose any more weight, but I'm struggling to go over 1200 since I had to cut out gluten and alcoholic drinks!

    I have been able to slowly eat slightly more gluten this year, and put on a few pounds. I'm planning to do 1200 calories just for July, and then go back up to a normal 1600-1800 most days. Appreciate any petite friends with open food diaries!
  • ExistingFish
    ExistingFish Posts: 1,259 Member
    I'm 5'0", medium frame
    Starting weight 131
    Current weight 122
    Goal weight 113

    I'm at 1450 calories, not 1200 - because I exercise pretty heavily 4x a week. At 3x a week it was 1350, if I wasn't exercising it would bottom out at 1200.

    I find it hard to hit my protein goals and still get the occasional treat. I bought some dairy free ice cream last grocery run and I haven't been able to work my calories around it. I prelogged today and hope to have my ice cream this evening!
  • boy_in_blue
    boy_in_blue Posts: 3 Member
    edited June 2022
    Hi. I'm a trans guy (so a female at birth, I'm not sure if I count, but I still wanted to add to this thread) and I'm on the petite side, weight-wise. I also stand at a grand 5'0", yet weigh just under 180 lbs. I also just turned 19. I like to tell myself it's mostly my muscular legs, but I know that's not 100% true. I also have a more curvy figure, so that adds to it. Things like large breasts, hips, and obesity run on both sides of my family, too. Originally, MFP put me on 1,450 cals to start, but I'm impatient and stubborn, so I went down to 1,200. It's definitely tricky in all aspects. For one, sometimes I feel like I'm not trying nearly hard enough. I started at 182 and I'm at 177 now. It's been 2 months since I started tracking and exercising every other day (for 45 mins at a time: 30 for cardio, 15 for weights). No matter what, I feel like I'll never be my goal weight. My starting goal is 160, but I really wanna be closer to 120-130. Everyone says that that is unrealistic, so I kind of just keep it in the back of my mind as an end goal. On the other hand, it's really hard to stick with my diet. I work at a fast food place (kind of like Dairy Queen) where we sell burgers, fried foods, pizza, and ice cream. I have temptations at every corner. When I started this job, I was okay in the beginning. I was only eating when I was hungry, and always ate a burger or some other form of a sandwich (no fried food, pizza, or ice cream). After the first week, I started eating ice cream. Once I realized the number of calories in the ice cream, I resorted to one of the worst ways to try and get rid of those calories: purging. I am currently in at-home treatment for bulimia nervosa and am still trying to reach my dream weight of 120 lbs. There are some days that I will go over the calorie limit and some days that I will be severely under. At this point, I am just trying my best to healthily lose some weight. I definitely understand the struggle, and from what I've learned, it's okay to go over your limit. Just remember that you are at the bare minimum. If you're too strict with your diet, it is more likely to fail. You will be easily tempted by foods that you miss or are craving, which makes you more likely to give in to temptation. Lenience is okay. It's important to be able to enjoy the foods you love while still living a healthy life. Just make sure that either your proportions are small to regular-sized, or to balance out the bad calories with healthier foods or exercise. Always remember: If you are not happy with your diet and food, you will never be happy with your results.
    P.S.: I just wanted to let anyone who may be reading this, that you are strong, perfect, beautiful, and amazing. I hope you reach your goals, whether they're to lose, gain, or maintain weight. 😊😊