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My mind has been blown and I need some advice.

Friday, September 12, 2014

So because I can sometimes become obsessive with numbers, I did a little research on the SP website about my BMR in the hopes of figuring out how many calories I need to just maintain (just out of curiosity). I remember that I had read an article on SP that outlined how the calorie ranges were calculated, based on your BMR, your activity level and on how many pounds you would like to lose. So I searched for this article. Here is what I found: https://sparkpeo.hs.llnwd.net/e1/res

While the calculations used are not much different, I was actually BLOWN AWAY to realize that if you joined the SP website after some date in 2013, then your calories that you burn during exercise for the day that have been tracked get ADDED TO YOUR CALORIC RANGE for the day. WHAT?! I am actually sitting here in complete shock trying to absorb this fact, not knowing if I should be happy that I could possibly be eating more food or scared because that could mean that if I make the change to the new system then I won’t lose weight.

Let me just say that since I have joined this site (honestly can’t remember the date, but around 2008), I have been looking at a 1200-1550 caloric range every day, regardless of exercise (unless I physically changed the calorie range) and that the thought of adding my 600+ calories that I just burned to the food that I get to eat for the day leaves a knot in my stomach but also makes me want to jump for joy. THIS HAS BEEN MY WAY OF THINKING FOR 6+ YEARS. This changes the game, it changes everything. I’ve been wondering for a long time if I was eating enough calories every day. Especially on days when I work out to the extreme. But honestly, I don’t know if I can make the change. I’ve used the good ole’ 1200-1550 calorie method in the past and it has worked (went down to 135 from 162 the first time around), so it really does scare me to try anything other than what I’ve come to know as my foundation of knowledge on weight loss and lifestyle changes. But now I’m back up to 165 and its been a couple years since I have been ‘smaller’ and more fit. I have tried between then and now to lose the weight and have not been successful. Is this the change that I need to get the pounds off again? Should I take the leap or give it another month on my regular program? I am feeling really, really lost.

And so I turn to you sparkies for some help and advice. Did you guys know about the ability to switch between methods? Which method do you use and can you list any pros/cons? Do you think I should give my current, old school method more of a go or should I switch to the new method?

BTW, you can determine which setting you have on your SP account by clicking this link: https://sparkpeo.hs.llnwd.net/e1/mys
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • no profile photo CD11679180
    I think that 1200-1500 is right for weigh loss, but if you exercise a lot, then you can add some more, but not everything you burn. Once you are at your goal, and you keep exercising, you can probably eat a bit more to stay the same.

    You probably have to just test it out on your own body and see what works for you. These are just formulas, but everyone is different.
    2302 days ago
  • SUMMER2203
    i just stumbled upon your blog and thought that i'd add my two cents -- i tried the new method for a couple of days, and immediately gained 4 lbs!!! sticking to the original way definitely works better for me. try it for a day or two, though, and see what works for you!
    2426 days ago
    So far I have stayed "old school" method. I think I have taken maybe a small part of the new way of thinking as in, if I worked out really really hard and I'm really hungry still I will allow an extra healthy snack. I am trying to incorporate a bit of listening to my body, but if I'm not hungry I'm not going to eat the extra calories just to eat them. Also not going to reward my exercise with a cookie or chips or anything like that on a regular basis! But I think if you're working out really hard and your body is asking for more food give it something nutritious!! :) Snacks and treats still exist, but in moderation and not as a treat for exercising!!

    Just my two cents :)
    2426 days ago
  • SUE5007
    I knew about it but haven't switched. I don't want to start thinking that I can "reward" myself with food if I workout that day. But I guess it depends on how many calories you are burning. If it's a lot then perhaps this is the way to go?
    2429 days ago
    You need to make sure you always eat enough to sustain you through your exercise. I have a fitbit and have it set to sync automatically with SP. Unfortunately, SP severely overestimates how much I'm burning, so I use the fitbit calorie goal (which is automatically adjusted based on my movement) and just track my food on SP. If you burn more than you replace you risk your body thinking that it's not getting enough nutrients/calories to sustain itself for the long haul and holding onto extra calories (stored as fat) for future use.

    I believe you can now switch back and forth between the two settings - try it and see how it goes for you. Just be sure that you never have more than a 1000 calorie deficit per day.
    2429 days ago
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