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to think eat less, move more isn't as simple as it sounds

(223 Posts)
starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 13:53:45

People say to lose weight you need to use more calories than you eat. This is obvious. However metabolism plays a big part too. How do you know how much calories you actually burn so you can work out how many to eat? Ive never been slim and yes, i probably need to exercise more but i have so much other stuff going on that getting the chance to isnt that simple.

So AIBU in thinking that its not as simple as what people say

InNeedOfBrandy Sun 13-Jan-13 13:58:10

Of course it's not that simple, eat less for one isn't good advice unless it's eat less crap.

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 14:00:12

Starshaker It is though, You eat enough to not be starving, but to continue to be a little hungry. And then once you're at your healthy weight, you just eat to hunger.

And you exercise as much as you can, and build as much activity into your life as you can. The exercise is much more important than the weight in any case. For the vast majority of people (all but a tiny percentage with various disorders) can just eat to hunger if they are fit. It's when various metabolic syndromes kick in that disrupt that, and they are typically reversed through exercise.

You don't need to know how many calories you burn, your body already has that sorted. Eat to hunger, and know the calories you get when you aren't eating to hunger (e.g. the calories that come with the caffeine you're demanding in the coke/cappucino, the calories that come with alcohol, the calories that come with the chocolate - caffeine again. Generally those that come along with a drug, although also just eating for pleasure or habit.

Purple2012 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:02:15

It's very easy to say you are too busy to exercise. I used to do that and was very overweight.I now make time to exercise. I work full time shift work, and have a family but I calorie count so I don't eat too much and make sure I exercise. On my days off I do quite a lot of exercise, on the days I am working I do a smaller amount before or after work. It's not always easy but I have a schedule and I stick to it.

The results are worth it in the long run.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 13-Jan-13 14:04:01

Not at all unreasonable. If it were simple (I'm not even saying easy. I'm saying SIMPLE, which is different) then it wouldn't be a fact that the vast majority of people who are overweight struggle to lose weight and fail to keep it off when they do.

I don't think nearly enough is known about weight gain and loss. Few people study why some people are skinny, but I saw a show about it. I think it was BBC... you can find it on Youtube. They encouraged a dozen naturally thin people to pig out for a few weeks. Most of them gained some weight. One guy simply did not gain weight. Period. All of them lost the weight effortlessly once they stopped purposely over feeding.

SaraBellumHertz Sun 13-Jan-13 14:05:42

I disagree - it is that simple, if not easy.

Unless you are getting significantly fatter week on week doing more exercise and eating less will result in weight loss

It really is. Let yourself be hungry.... It's amazing how quickly your stomachs starts to shrink abd you feel comfortable with smaller portions. I ate like a pig after having the kids and the more I ate, the more I wanted.

Two weeks of being hungry abd suddenly I couldn't fit the massive portions I'd gotten used to and the weight was falling off me.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:10:46

I dont have time to exercise any more than i do. We walk to school, we walk the dog again then do the walk to school. After we get back from school that me confined to the house till the next day.

Tee2072 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:10

It is that simple. It's not easy, but it is simple. Lower calories in + more calories burned = weight loss. Always.

And it doesn't work because people don't actually do it. They say they are 'on a diet' and so think they are eating less but they aren't. Or think they are burning more but they aren't.

And it's easy to calculate how many calories you need and how many you burn and how many you eat. There are 1,000s of sites on the internet to help you do it.

My Fitness Pal is the one I use.

insancerre Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:37

It is very simple to eat less and move more.
What's hard about that?

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:56

YABU. A naturally slow metabolism compared to a naturally fast one is not hugely different. Naturally fast, I'm not talking about olympic-ly fast.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:07

But, some people eat very little and don't lose weight. Some people are very active and don't lose weight. Some people sit around on the couch stuffing their faces and are skinny as a rail. (I was one of those for many years.)

The fact is, your body - your metabolism - will often compensate for whatever you do in order to maintain the weight that your body is "set" to.

Very, very strict calorie counting - particularly if it imposed upon you externally by someone controlling what you do and eat - will certainly make you gain or lose weight. I mean, everybody would lose weight in a gulag. But, counting every calorie in and out, to the point of wearing a heart monitor and using a scale for every bite of food, is not simple.

diabolo Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:08

I think it is simple, the reason we fail is all mental and about our "wants" versus our "needs" - we want 3 chocolate biscuits, we don't need them, we don't want to go for a 5 mile run etc.

Once we sort out the willpower side of it, the weight gradually comes down.

There are only a very tiny % of people with metabolic disorders for whom this doesn't work.

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:29

You can exercise in a house!

StraightTalkinSheila Sun 13-Jan-13 14:13:17

YABU. It's not rocket science.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:13:43

I dont eat huge portions and i do try to eat relatively healthy. I noticed the biggest change when i stopped smoking. I am trying so hard to do things better but its just not working

WorraLiberty Sun 13-Jan-13 14:14:47

Ive never been slim and yes, i probably need to exercise more

No, you absolutely definitely need to exercise more.

It's not all about calorie intake, it's about plenty of exercise least until you're slim. After that, you may be able to exercise less to keep the weight off.

But initially to get rid of excess weight, you will have to exercise more.

Anonymumous Sun 13-Jan-13 14:14:59

It's very simple. Just replace some of your eating time with exercise time. There! Job done...

Tee2072 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:15:30

Well, what is 'eat relatively healthy'? And what exercise do you do?

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:16:36

You probably do what i do which is eat little picky things and then completely forget you have.

diabolo Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:00

I exercise at home. I can'r run as I have dodgy knees and loathe gyms. Being stuck at home is no reason not to find 20 minutes 5 times a week.

lljkk Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:00

It sounds a bit like excuse making, OP, to blame metabolism. One way or another, the energy you eat needs to match the energy you expend. It's taking responsibility for each of us to find that point. It may not be fair, but we are adults who should be able to suck up a bit of unfair.

dashoflime Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:05


Its more about the type of food than the amount. You can probably eat quite a lot and still loose weight if your eating loads of fruit and veg, little bit of lean meat, little bit of carbs and hardly any fat.

However, life doesn't make it easy: a diet like that is almost always always more expensive and less convenient. Plus, most people need a bit of instruction to get the hang of it

You might not think you eat huge portions but you almost certainly take in more than you need. Modern concepts of portion size are massively flawed, what your body needs to function and what moat people consume in one sitting are worlds apart... I'm always flabbergasted at the amount of food I'm served in restaurants or other people's houses.

Tryharder Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:59

I agree. If it were that simple, everyone would be thin!

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