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  1. #1
    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Can't figure out my daily calorie intake

    I will try to make this as short as possible to conserve your time as I appreciate you reading this and maybe even trying to give me some feedback.

    I am a 20-year-old 188cm (6.16 feet) male, a year ago I weighed 94kg (207 pounds), and since I had an active job and continuous workouts it helped me lose a lot of weight. Now I am down to around 77-78kg (169-171 pounds) and can see stomach and leg veins (not even mentioning about bicep veins). I've been lifting very seriously for a year, going for hypertrophy, and seeing huge results. I am training 5-6 days per week - 3 days training in a row, then 1 rest day, then 3 days training, and 1 rest (and so on and so on). The average workout lasts for around 1 to 1 and a half hours (and my mi-band shows I walk on average 8000 steps per day).
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    3 months ago I started tracking calories and decided to go lean, my calorie goal was 2000 calories per day, I saw major improvements in fat loss which lead to my current 77-78kg (169-171 pounds) weight. I started feeling super fatigued for the whole day, lost motivation to lift, had sleep issues for a couple of days, and felt cold all the time (and had leg cramps). I went up to 2600 calories now and while the cold, sleep issues have perished (when I increased calorie intake I also started taking a lot more salt (intentionally), as well as "Orange Triad" multivitamins) I still think about food 24/7. As soon as I'm done with my meal I'm thinking about the next meal. My weight has stayed EXACTLY the same even though I feel I've grown muscle in the process. In other words - I ate 2000 calories, hit 77kg (169 pounds), I upped calories to 2600 and still haven't changed gained weight.
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    I am eating around 250-350 protein, 200-280 carbs, and 20-40 fats per day. I know eating so much protein isn't necessary, but It keeps me full (my problem is that I like eating a lot, at this point I would devour anything in my way, just hoping it would satisfy and fill me up) and protein keeps me satiated (somewhat). I also know that eating carbs give me energy and so oatmeal and protein powder has been a pre-workout for me for quite some time now. I eat 6-7 times a day, early in the morning (pre-workout meal) as well as before bed (255g of quark which is around 45g slow digesting protein). I track calories, I track bodyweight every morning and median (as well as average) out the days of weeks, I track my lifts (while i only do isolation work the lifts have been increasing)... But I feel rather sluggish at times and I am thinking about food 24/7 and to be honest, It has made me less productive with college and work. Is there any feedback you could give on my calorie intake? Yes I've read stickies and other posts. I would be very thankful for anything. Thank you! (Sorry for the spam, I just can't seem to have "permissions" to post such a long post as a whole)
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    Swap 100-150 grams of protein for fat (you should try to get 25-30% of your calories from fats so maybe 60-80 grams) and carbs (the remainder) and see if that helps with the sluggishness.

    If not, up the daily calories by 200-300. You can consider yourself lean bulking if you are progressing on lifts while gaining 1-2 lbs of weight per month.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Everyone is having problems posting long posts. Having said that, it does seem related to how often you use (parentheses). Try removing them if it won't post.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Svings View Post
    In other words - I ate 2000 calories, hit 77kg (169 pounds), I upped calories to 2600 and still haven't changed gained weight.
    How long have you been at 2600?

    What's probably happened is that you lost more weight than your thought - but hard dieting sometimes makes you retain water - and when you start eating more, the water weight drops compensating for any weight gain.

    2600 could be your maintenance (I didn't check what rate your were losing at with 2k) so apart from some glycogen you won't necessarily see weight increase.
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by beowulf359 View Post
    Swap 100-150 grams of protein for fat (you should try to get 25-30% of your calories from fats so maybe 60-80 grams) and carbs (the remainder) and see if that helps with the sluggishness.

    If not, up the daily calories by 200-300. You can consider yourself lean bulking if you are progressing on lifts while gaining 1-2 lbs of weight per month.
    But If i eat more fat it means I can eat fewer quantities of food which would make it even worse... Would perhaps eating so much protein still make me sit in a caloric deficit as it's the hardest form of food to digest (it uses 20-30% calories to digest, right?).

    Also ty @SuffolkPunch!
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    How long have you been at 2600?

    What's probably happened is that you lost more weight than your thought - but hard dieting sometimes makes you retain water - and when you start eating more, the water weight drops compensating for any weight gain.

    2600 could be your maintenance (I didn't check what rate your were losing at with 2k) so apart from some glycogen you won't necessarily see weight increase.
    I started eating 2600 calories per day on August 29th up until now. Before that, it was 2000 per day.
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    Registered User CommitmentRulz's Avatar
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    If you are starving and can only think of food when eating 2600 calories, you've got a big adjustment to lose much more weight.

    Post pictures in your bodyspace. It MAY be that you don't need to lose more weight at 6' 1" and 170 pounds...
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  10. #10
    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by CommitmentRulz View Post
    If you are starving and can only think of food when eating 2600 calories, you've got a big adjustment to lose much more weight.

    Post pictures in your bodyspace. It MAY be that you don't need to lose more weight at 6' 1" and 170 pounds...
    Sorry, I guess I did forget to mention that loosing more weight isn't what I'm looking for. I just want to keep growing muscle and not gain fat, but at the same time don't want to cut/bulk. About the starving part, I think I'm just a person who naturally likes to eat a lot and to control that is hard. It's not that I feel I'm starving, I just feel like I should eat more and my mind kind of keeps wrapping around that/telling me it all the time. Thank you as well for your thoughts!
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  11. #11
    team ketchup AdamWW's Avatar
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    As already said, your fat is too low, your protein is MUCH higher than needed.

    In terms of feeling hungry, it may also depend how lean you are. Posting a photo will help us assess if that's likely a factor.

    However, given your lifestyle, im not surprised you'd be hungry still eating 2600 a day.

    This is just my personal stance, but as someone who is 6-foot tall and weighs 144, I usually feel hungry if I eat less than about 3000 a day.

    I lift weight for about 60-75 minutes four days of the week, I do about an hour of light cycling in the morning, and I get about 6-7miles of walking in a day.

    Calories usually range between 3000-3500 for me, and that is slow weight gain.

    You may also just have a high capacity for food, too, in which case more veggies can help.

    You need to consider quality of life alongside the desire to stay lean, too... if you're miserable, what good is having a 6-pack?
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    Registered User Strawng's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    I lift weight for about 60-75 minutes four days of the week, I do about an hour of light cycling in the morning, and I get about 6-7miles of walking in a day.
    This seems like an absurd level of physical activity. I mean, an hour of cycling PLUS 6-7 miles of walking each day and lifting four days per week? That's 3-4.5 hours of exercise per day.
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    team ketchup AdamWW's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Strawng View Post
    This seems like an absurd level of physical activity. I mean, an hour of cycling PLUS 6-7 miles of walking each day and lifting four days per week? That's 3-4.5 hours of exercise per day.
    The cycling is VERY, VERY light... it's mainly because i can't deal with walking around my area in the early mornings and it helps me wake up (I don't have the most morning energy).

    But yeah it's quite a bit of activity... I blame the pandemic... I can't really hang out with friends, and staying in my somewhat cramped townhouse just gets boring AF.

    Should also mention not all the walking is what i'd consider 'cardio' per se... I also stand/pace around while I take work calls... and that can easily rack up 2+ miles without even noticing.

    So really what it amounts to is:

    Wake up, 60min of light cycling (indoors)
    Train (on a training day) 6-75min
    Normal Work: ~2mi worth of walking without trying
    After work: evening walk to get some fresh air


    Most of it doesn't 'feel' like activity or exercise because I'm not getting my HR very high at all.
    Last edited by AdamWW; 09-26-2020 at 05:25 PM.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Seems like 2600 is your maintenance then. Fat too low is making your body crave what it needs. Also, don't eat 6-7 time a day, there is no advantage to doing this and it can certainly make your appetite harder to control.
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Seems like 2600 is your maintenance then. Fat too low is making your body crave what it needs. Also, don't eat 6-7 time a day, there is no advantage to doing this and it can certainly make your appetite harder to control.
    I feel like this way I can spread the protein intake better and fuel my body more efficiently. Even if there are some rumors not supporting this idea (of eating every 3-3 and a half hours), as long as there's some talk about it, why not take it in and do it. Could I just substitute fat with more calories? More volume of food? More vegetables? And I can't find an answer if this much protein per day would actually equal to less calories consumed per day, due to protein being so "hard" to digest?
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    team ketchup AdamWW's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Svings View Post
    I feel like this way I can spread the protein intake better and fuel my body more efficiently. Even if there are some rumors not supporting this idea (of eating every 3-3 and a half hours), as long as there's some talk about it, why not take it in and do it. Could I just substitute fat with more calories? More volume of food? More vegetables? And I can't find an answer if this much protein per day would actually equal to less calories consumed per day, due to protein being so "hard" to digest?
    No, eat more fat.

    You’re being very resistant to proven science here...
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    Registered User Svings's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by AdamWW View Post
    No, eat more fat.

    You’re being very resistant to proven science here...
    Alright, thank you so much! Will try to eat egg yolks and a bit more oily fish rather than just pure egg whites and tuna.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    If I'm dieting, I tend to have 2 main meals only and 2 protein shakes at different times. Only protein is in any way sensitive to intraday timing. And even then 6-7 meals is excessive and probably the wrong side of the sweet spot for protein synthesis. 4x a day is better.
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