Why Can't I Lose Weight
Calories can add up much faster than you think and could be the reason why the scale won't budge. Although eating too many calories will stall weight loss efforts, not eating enough calories can have the same effect. If you aren't eating enough for your base metabolic needs, you may be causing your metabolism to slow down and conserve energy. This can make it extremely difficult to lose weight. Therefore, keeping track of your daily caloric intake is a key factor in helping you reach your weight loss goals.
Journaling can help you to gain a more accurate picture of your daily caloric intake. There is no magic in regards to weight loss; it all comes down to energy intake versus energy output. In other words, your daily food intake minus calories used during the day for daily activities. You may discover that you are less likely to make all those trips to the kitchen for snacks, if you have to write them in your journal. A journal can help make you more aware of what and how much you are eating.
You don't need anything elaborate to get started. All you need is a note pad and a pen or pencil. Journaling can be basic or very detailed. A basic journal would record your daily food intake and calories eaten throughout the day. However, you may prefer a more detailed journal that tracks calories, daily exercise, and records daily percentages of protein, carbohydrates, and fats.
Along with journaling, it is important to determine your basal metabolic rate typically referred to as BMR. Your BMR is the minimum number of calories you require to be alive. Once you determine your BMR, you would add calories back in to the BMR number based on your activity level.
Female: 655 + (4.3 X your weight in pounds) + (4.7 X your height in inches)– (4.7 X your age in years). This will be your basal metabolic rate.
Sedentary - BMR x 1.2
Moderately active - (exercise 1-3x per week) BMR x 1.375
Very active - (exercise 6-7x per week) BMR x 1.55
Extremely active (physical job or exercise 2x per day)BMR x 1.9
Your result is your daily caloric intake according to your activity level and to maintain your current weight. You would then adjust your daily caloric intake depending on your weight loss goals. Experts suggest a loss of no more than 1-2 pounds per week. There are 3500 calories in one pound. Therefore, you would subtract 500 calories from your daily caloric intake to lose a pound a week. Losing more than 2 pounds a week is not recommended as it could result in losing lean muscle.
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