BMR+Activity vs. MFP+Eating Burned Calories
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