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# BMR+Activity vs. MFP+Eating Burned Calories

Posted by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:40 PM
• 15 Replies

Ok, so this has been really confusing for me.  Some people do the whole BMR + your activity level (exercise included) to determine a range for how many calories you should eat per day.  Others use the MFP suggestion (based on BMR plus non-exercise daily activity) and eat back burned exercise calories.

I have been doing the MFP + eating burned calories method, mainly because I wear a heart rate monitor, so I actually know for sure what I am burning (rather than relying on some random MFP estimation to tell me).  Anyway, out of curiousity, I had Claire do my BMR for me to see what that would come out to...

Here is what she gave me:

"BMR: 1455,  Maintenance while working out 6 days per week ( I know you workout hard so I will use the 6 day formula for you): 1455*1.725=2509.  To lose 1 lb per week: 2509-500=2009 .  Your ideal calorie range is 1455-2009 calories per day to lose 1 lb per week."

Ok, so follow me now...  MFP tells me to eat 1440 per day (before exercise) to lose 1 lb per week.  Then I eat back burned calories which ends up being 650-900 calories per day in exercise.  Occasionally I go into the 1000s, but not regularly.  These are just averages.  Then I always have at least one day of rest.  So, I estimated my calories for a week, using my typical calories burned.  Here is what I got...  The 1440 represents what MFP tells me to eat, the other number in the parentheses is my burned calories for a typical day.

(1440 rest day) + (1440+650) + (1440+650) + (1440+800) + (1440+800) + (1440+800) + (1440+900) = 14,680 in one week with MFP + eating burned calories

Now, if I stick to Claire's suggested BMR range and eat on the higher end (2000 calories, let's day) every single day, my calorie count would be...

2009 x 7 = 14,063 in one week with BMR+Activity estimation

Now, a 617 calorie difference might sound high, but when you spread it out over a week, that's only a variation of less than 100 calories per day (about 88).  Not a big deal.  They essentially work out to be the same.

So why did I waste my time doing this?  LOL!  Well, I have found that on rest days (1440 days), I am always hungry.  My body is used to eating 2300 or 2400 calories.  So 1440 feels like starvation!  Then on bigger workout days, I am overly full and not wanting to make it all the way to 2400.

So... I think I am going to switch my method here and lower my calories to 2010 per day, even on big workout days, and STILL eat 2010 calories even on rest days.  It's not about what you eat just in ONE day... it's the big picture.  So as long as my calories are evening out over the week, it should not matter than I eat 2010 on my rest day when I am lowering my other days.  I am really interested to see how this goes.  I am crossing my fingers and hoping it will mean that I am more even with what I eat so my body gets used to ONE calorie intake level rather than jumping back and forth all the time...

We'll see how it goes! :)

Michelle, mom to Henry, Lucy and Charlie

by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:40 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:44 PM
That sounds like a wonderful idea let me know how it goes I have that jssue as well
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by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:49 PM
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I will let you know!  I just manually adjusted my goals in MFP.  I am still going to track my workouts, but I am going to ignore the "net" number and focus on just getting my consumed calories to 2000 per day.  I hope this will help me feel more normal with my food.  As I get close to maintenance mode, I think it will be helpful to get used to what a typical day of eating should look and feel like, rather than all this yo-yo calorie intake business.  It's too hard to keep up with when it's back and forth all the time.  I'll never be able to do it without MFP unless I get used to ONE calorie range.

Quoting mama2gg:

That sounds like a wonderful idea let me know how it goes I have that jssue as well

Michelle, mom to Henry, Lucy and Charlie

by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Sounds good to me too. I mostly care about my *weekly* deficit instead of my daily deficit.  and I net a lot more calories on rest days than on exercise days but i do eat a little more on exercise days usually.  lol.  ;)

by on May. 24, 2012 at 4:57 PM
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I have been looking at it from a daily view, but I think weekly is probably going to be easier to maintain!  :)

Quoting Stefanie83:

Sounds good to me too. I mostly care about my *weekly* deficit instead of my daily deficit.  and I net a lot more calories on rest days than on exercise days but i do eat a little more on exercise days usually.  lol.  ;)

Michelle, mom to Henry, Lucy and Charlie

by on May. 24, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Sounds good to me! I like eating.  Eating more on rest days is fun.

by on May. 24, 2012 at 5:07 PM
1 mom liked this

Quoting Stefanie83:

Sounds good to me too. I mostly care about my *weekly* deficit instead of my daily deficit.  and I net a lot more calories on rest days than on exercise days but i do eat a little more on exercise days usually.  lol.  ;)

This whole post screams Stefanie to me.  This is something you'd sit and do for fun, lol.  I say that endearingly.  I love how nerdy you are.

by Silver Member on May. 24, 2012 at 5:26 PM
1 mom liked this

I have found for me if I stay in the 1500-1800 range every day...I am losing. So far it's working and got me off of a plateau...on workout days I tend to eat closer to 1800 and on rest days closer to the 1500...average weekly is about 1700.

I have mine manually set to 1520..I log my exercise calories from my hrm..but I still stay in the range. I don't even worry about net.

by on May. 24, 2012 at 5:50 PM
I am looking forward to eating more on rest days, for sure!!

Quoting MamaKarrot:

Sounds good to me! I like eating.  Eating more on rest days is fun.

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
by on May. 24, 2012 at 6:57 PM

Quoting km1970:

I have found for me if I stay in the 1500-1800 range every day...I am losing. So far it's working and got me off of a plateau...on workout days I tend to eat closer to 1800 and on rest days closer to the 1500...average weekly is about 1700.

I have mine manually set to 1520..I log my exercise calories from my hrm..but I still stay in the range. I don't even worry about net.

I would like to lose another 5 lbs still, and it's been slow-going now that I am getting so close.  I am hoping that making this shift will help me push through this little plateau and get to where I want to be!  I am glad to hear it's been successful for you!  I hope I can get those final pounds gone so I can switch to maintenance!

Michelle, mom to Henry, Lucy and Charlie

by Silver Member on May. 24, 2012 at 7:01 PM

Quoting Threes.Company:

Quoting km1970:

I have found for me if I stay in the 1500-1800 range every day...I am losing. So far it's working and got me off of a plateau...on workout days I tend to eat closer to 1800 and on rest days closer to the 1500...average weekly is about 1700.

I have mine manually set to 1520..I log my exercise calories from my hrm..but I still stay in the range. I don't even worry about net.

I would like to lose another 5 lbs still, and it's been slow-going now that I am getting so close.  I am hoping that making this shift will help me push through this little plateau and get to where I want to be!  I am glad to hear it's been successful for you!  I hope I can get those final pounds gone so I can switch to maintenance!

I was stuck in the mid 150's...after having my bmr calculated I just started at my bmr and went up 100 calories until I found a range that worked. I was at 1200-1300 a day. Since mid March I have gone from 155-144...