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  1. #1
    cjshirley's Avatar
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    Question Calorie counting... HELP new and overwhelmed!!!

    Ok, so my trainer suggested I try the paleo lifestyle but also watch my calories & try to keep them at around 1500 calories a day. I have my macros set at 50% fat 30% protein & 20% carbs. My problem is I'm finding it SOO hard to keep my calorie limit in check while getting enough fat. WHAT DO I DO?!?! My ultimate goal doing this is to lose weight. So do I just lower my fat intake so I can keep my calories in check or do I forget the calories and keep my fat intake up.
    Also I do work out, but I hate the idea of eating back my exercise calories...makes me feel like all those calories burned were pointless.

    I'm so confused and am getting overwhelmed. So far I'm loving the eating aspect...the numbers are whats messing me up!!!

    I'm only eating when I'm hungry and not feeling like I am having any cravings. When I do eat, I feel very satisfied. My calorie burn is imported from my body media core armband & I trust it is fairly accurate. And I still wanna track my calories for the sake of knowing my deficit each day...I'm just not sure 50% daily fat is doable on only a 1500 calorie a day limit... At this rate over 950 of my calories would need to come from fat... that doesn't leave room for much else

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    I am by no means a expert on paleo/primal. I used to count calories and what not the I went primal and now and then I check how many calories I eat a day, but I don't really worry about it.
    Eat quality foods that are primal and keep doing like your doing eat when your hungry. I wouldn't stress on a calorie deficit so much just cause your media core says you are burning x-calories when working out or whatever you are constantly burning calories and the fact that you work out is boosting the amount of calories your body uses.

    My wife since going primal/paleo has lost a good bit of weight and she doesn't even work out at all and considering she has a desk job with minimal amount of physical work there the lifestyle change works especially if you don't stress about calories in and out.
    She actually complains daily that all her work pants fall off and look to large lol....

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    I just count how many grams of carbs I eat a day. As long as I am less than 100g of carbs, I will be losing weight. I eat a lot of fat like butter, and coconut oil. Bulletproof coffee is a easy way to eat fat. I use Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal | MyFitnessPal.com to keep track of what I am eating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cjshirley View Post
    I'm just not sure 50% daily fat is doable on only a 1500 calorie a day limit... At this rate over 950 of my calories would need to come from fat...
    Are you confusing energy(kcal) with mass(g)? 50% of 1500 = 750.
    In any case fat is always the most flexible macro. Every molecule goes somewhere but we can increase or decrease it without disrupting the other moving parts. Given your targets, I would familiarize myself with what 125g protein and 75g carbohydrate looks like, then add as much or as little fat as needed to make a palatable, digestible, civilized meal out of it. You don't need to hit the same target daily--instead aim for a 7-day average to accommodate fluctuations in appetite and schedule.

    Viewing exercise a lifelong tug of war against calories is no way to live! Good exercise should be either (a) pleasant/invigorating or (b) conditioning, i.e. doing something at least one notch faster/longer/heavier than last time. The middle un-sweet spot of routine exertion is discouraged by PB.
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    There is no requirement to eat lots of fat. Fill those fat calories with protein or carbs if you find it more practical.

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    I don't count calories, carbs or fat but the weight has dropped off to the point where I will need to eat more fat. Don't worry over much, it will work.

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    Wildrose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjshirley View Post
    Ok, so my trainer suggested I try the paleo lifestyle but also watch my calories & try to keep them at around 1500 calories a day. I have my macros set at 50% fat 30% protein & 20% carbs. My problem is I'm finding it SOO hard to keep my calorie limit in check while getting enough fat. WHAT DO I DO?!?! My ultimate goal doing this is to lose weight. So do I just lower my fat intake so I can keep my calories in check or do I forget the calories and keep my fat intake up.
    Also I do work out, but I hate the idea of eating back my exercise calories...makes me feel like all those calories burned were pointless.

    I'm so confused and am getting overwhelmed. So far I'm loving the eating aspect...the numbers are whats messing me up!!!

    I'm only eating when I'm hungry and not feeling like I am having any cravings. When I do eat, I feel very satisfied. My calorie burn is imported from my body media core armband & I trust it is fairly accurate. And I still wanna track my calories for the sake of knowing my deficit each day...I'm just not sure 50% daily fat is doable on only a 1500 calorie a day limit... At this rate over 950 of my calories would need to come from fat... that doesn't leave room for much else
    1,500 might just not be enough calories. I track my calories but it's mostly for portion control... I don't sweat it when I occasionally go past 2,000 calories, which is about what I'm aiming at. As for how many calories you're burning a day through exercise, that's fairly meaningless for weight loss. The majority of the calories we burn is actually from our base metabolism, not exercise.

    The thing about primal/paleo living is that we're not supposed to count calories, really. The weight is supposed to come off naturally when we adopt this way of eating. If you want to count, that's fine, but I would suggest not putting too much weight into it.

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    The Rebooted Body's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjshirley View Post
    Ok, so my trainer suggested I try the paleo lifestyle but also watch my calories & try to keep them at around 1500 calories a day. I have my macros set at 50% fat 30% protein & 20% carbs. My problem is I'm finding it SOO hard to keep my calorie limit in check while getting enough fat. WHAT DO I DO?!?! My ultimate goal doing this is to lose weight. So do I just lower my fat intake so I can keep my calories in check or do I forget the calories and keep my fat intake up.
    Also I do work out, but I hate the idea of eating back my exercise calories...makes me feel like all those calories burned were pointless.

    I'm so confused and am getting overwhelmed. So far I'm loving the eating aspect...the numbers are whats messing me up!!!

    I'm only eating when I'm hungry and not feeling like I am having any cravings. When I do eat, I feel very satisfied. My calorie burn is imported from my body media core armband & I trust it is fairly accurate. And I still wanna track my calories for the sake of knowing my deficit each day...I'm just not sure 50% daily fat is doable on only a 1500 calorie a day limit... At this rate over 950 of my calories would need to come from fat... that doesn't leave room for much else
    What do you do? You stop counting calories. It's not important to reaching your goals.

    What your trainer is doing is disordering your relationship with food. It's not a healthy, long-term approach.

    Can you see how it's making you somewhat hyperfocused on the wrong things, when you could be busy getting stress OUT of your life?

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    Did your trainer suggest those ratios? If he did, ask him what he suggests for keeping your calories within range. If he didn't, ask him what he recommends for macro ratios.

    You did not say what kind of exercise you are doing. You're probably doing cardio since that is easiest to measure the calories burned with a device. The thing is, if you do resistance training and interval training instead (or in addition to), you will change your body in such a way that you are burning more calories when resting than you did for the minutes measured on the device. In other words, 15 minutes of intervals will have you burning calories long after the 15 minutes are over. Intervals and resistance training will also tell your body to build more muscle and mitochondria which will help you burn more calories at rest. You'll probably have to eat more carbs and less fat to support this type of activity, but it will be helpful in the long run.
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