Are you eating enough?

by Christine on July 28th, 2010

filed under Christine's Life Updates

Good morning, Revolutionists!  I hope that this hump-day is treating you all kindly!

This morning I wanted to talk about whether you can “take a day off” when you’re “dieting,” but first I wanted to address a few other things floating around my mind. Tune back in later today for a word about “taking a day off.”

  • SHOUT OUT TO MY FRIENDS! Thank you very much for the wonderful people that visit my blog and post comments. Your comments encourage me and give me hope that people are indeed reading and visiting me!  Thank you Maggie, Traci, Amanda, Freckle, Patrick, Clyde, and Allan!  It’s funny…I look at that list and see three guys on it! This surprises me, because I’ve always figured that the weight-loss realm (blogging and otherwise) were ruled predominantly by women. Boy was I wrong! I follow many men’s blogs, and I find them all to be extremely insightful and inspiring. I’m so glad that men blog about weight-loss!
  • BLOG ROLL UPDATES! I want to update my blog roll! If you want to be included (and aren’t currently), let me know by posting a comment on here. Similarly, if you could add my blog to your roll, I’d be appreciative.
  • I’M GUEST POSTING TOMORROW! If you don’t real Miz Fit’s blog already, you should. She’s brilliant and inspiring! But tomorrow yours truly will be guest posting there, so check it out!

I also wanted to address I comment I received in the mail the other day:

forgive me, i don’t mean to be nosy, but are you eating enough calories?  what you wrote about seems like so little… is it enough to keep your metabolism going and to keep your strength up?  off my soapbox. :)

First of all, thank you for taking the time to write me, and to be concerned about my well-being! Your email was touching, and I really appreciate it!  But to address your comment…it’s true that I don’t eat very many calories! I typically average 800-900 calories per day.  According to some sources, this may be considered “dangerously low” and even meet some criteria for anorexia! However, I have a very differing opinion of calories than many sources do. You see, I believe that every individual has a very unique “calorie setpoint,” or, rather, the amount of calories needed to maintain one’s weight. Doctors and the USDA offer very vague and general guidelines that make sweeping generalizations about an individual’s body composition, lifestyle, genetics, medical conditions, etc. For instance, all these doctors and charts and RMR/BMR calculators say that I should be eating 1500-1700 calories a day. However, I know this from experience — that’s far too many calories for me!  I believe my calorie setpoint is about 1000 calories, which is why I am aiming for 800-900 calories per day in order to lose weight.  I believe my calorie needs are much lower than what doctors and charts recommend because of many factors: my height (I’m short), my job (sedentary), my genetics (overweight, all of them), my medical conditions (hypothyroid, among others), etc. All these factors play into the fact that my metabolism just isn’t as spry as some other peoples’.

I honestly believe that every individual out there needs to carefully evaluate his/her calorie intake and tweak it for him/herself. You just can’t follow a doctor’s chart or following very vague guidelines that don’t take into your own, individual physiology!  If you’re going to try to lose weight, you need to figure out what your unique calorie setpoint is (generally done by trial and error). Otherwise it’s just not going to work.

But to answer your other question: Is it enough to keep my metabolism going and keep my strength up? Absolutely! I have never felt better, more energetic, or healthier. Too much food makes me feel sluggish. With this current lifestyle, I don’t eat much, but I eat all the freaking time — every 2 hours!  And, because I often choose to eat healthy foods, it’s easy to keep the calories within my low-range. After all, how many carrots and lettuce do you think you’d have to eat in order to eat 800 calories worth? A lot, my friends!

For more information about this, and seven other “tips” for how I’ve lost 90 pounds so far, then check this post out.

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  • jen

    Okay so i have said it before but I couldnt agree more with the whole calorie issue. My set point is lower than what is considered “normal” as well. From experience everything you said above is very true! Everyone is different and a lot of people just do not fit into what is considered to be the norm. So yeah just wanted to say that I am in the same boat and I can say that 800-900 is more than enough at least for me…

  • jen

    Okay so i have said it before but I couldnt agree more with the whole calorie issue. My set point is lower than what is considered “normal” as well. From experience everything you said above is very true! Everyone is different and a lot of people just do not fit into what is considered to be the norm. So yeah just wanted to say that I am in the same boat and I can say that 800-900 is more than enough at least for me…

  • http://almostgastricbypass.blogspot.com/ Allan

    You, Jen, a few others, my inspiration.. Thanks !!! Great stuff, and always the good and the bad about this stuff !!!!

  • http://almostgastricbypass.blogspot.com/ Allan

    You, Jen, a few others, my inspiration.. Thanks !!! Great stuff, and always the good and the bad about this stuff !!!!

  • http://sunshinesheart.blogspot.com Karen

    You look great, Jen and you seem to be holding steady on the same calorie amounts that work for me. My sweet spot to continue losing is around 750. To maintain, I can do up to 900. More than that and I will see a gain. It is hard for people to understand that we are all different and our bodies burn calories at a different rate. We have to pay attention to what works for us if we want to be successful.

    Good Luck. I enjoyed your blog

  • http://sunshinesheart.blogspot.com Karen

    You look great, Jen and you seem to be holding steady on the same calorie amounts that work for me. My sweet spot to continue losing is around 750. To maintain, I can do up to 900. More than that and I will see a gain. It is hard for people to understand that we are all different and our bodies burn calories at a different rate. We have to pay attention to what works for us if we want to be successful.

    Good Luck. I enjoyed your blog

  • http://sunshinesheart.blogspot.com Karen

    Christine, I’m sorry. The previous post was addressed to you, not Jen. I saw Allan’s post and saw the name Jen and made a slip. Sorry. :)

  • http://freckleonthenose.blogspot.com Freckle on the Nose of Life’s Complexion

    Woo, thanks for the shout out! Love your blog and look forward to watching you continue this journey!

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    Ha ha! Don’t worry about it, Karen! I figured that was the case, anyway! :-) I’m glad to hear that I’m not the only ‘crazy person” out there that marches to the beat of my own calorie-drummer. I’m super glad that you stopped by!!!

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    Thanks Allan!

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    You know I love you to pieces, right Jen? I’m glad that my words echoed true for you, too. May all people be fortunate to find their own “calorie setpoint!”

  • http://RonisWeigh.com Roni

    “how many carrots and lettuce do you think you’d have to eat in order to eat 800 calories worth? A lot, my friends!”

    LOL

    LOVE that. I actually think my cal count is lower then I think because I eat a lot but very low cal foods most of the time. But I don’t count anymore so I’m unsure. But you are right, everyone is different. I’m a big believer in everyone finding what works for them and you did! That’s awesome!

  • http://drfattyfindsfitness.blogspot.com Ann

    I’ve so appreciated the comments you’ve left on my site. You’re on my blog roll already!

  • http://www.superwomansequel.blogspot.com Dee

    I’m loving your blog! You look amazing and you are truly an inspiration. Miss Dee

  • http://www.wonderwomansequel.blogspot.com Dee

    Oops! Changed my blog address recently! Miss Dee

  • http://sunshinesheart.blogspot.com Karen

    Christine, I’m sorry. The previous post was addressed to you, not Jen. I saw Allan’s post and saw the name Jen and made a slip. Sorry. :)