Counting Calories

Now that Emmie is almost 8 weeks (gasp … where did time go?!) old I am starting to focus more on myself and my postpartum weight-loss goals.  SO … I turned to Dr. Google to see how to lose these last 8-10 pounds.  My findings were surprising!

I have never been a big calorie counter because I have honestly never had to lose weight.  I tracked my nutrition and exercise on Daily Burn for awhile just to see how things compared.  Pre-pregnancy I was eating on average 1500 calories a day (my BMR was around 1500 as well).  After I had Emmie I went back to my normal eating habits and therefore was still eating around 1500 calories a day.  As I was googling about postpartum weight-loss I started realizing that I am not properly fueling by body to compensate for the increased energy that breastfeeding demands.  

As a rule of thumb, women who are exclusively breastfeeding a child 0-6 months they should add 500 calories to the amount of calories needed to maintain their pre-pregnancy weight.  That brings my daily caloric needs up to 2000-2300 calories per day.  Adding in the fact that I exercise I actually need to add even more.  Another ‘rule’ I found was that you should add 100 calories for every mile run or 15 minutes exercised.  WOAH.  I now see I was gipping my body between 750-1000 calories PER DAY.  When you don’t eat enough your body compensates by slowing your metabolism thus limiting how many calories your body burns.  PLUS not eating enough can decrease your milk supply.

I was by no means intentionally not eating enough – I just wasn’t thinking.  Now I know what I need to do.  I downloaded “MyFitnessPal” for my iPhone and logged in online.  I am going to track how much I eat every day, as well was plug in my exercise for the day, to ensure that I am eating enough.  Here is what my day looked like today:

Two eggs scrambled with 1 tablespoon cheese, bacon, sausage, cinnamon raisin bread with Earth’s Balance, and 1/2 a grapefruits.  Calories: 456

Snack: Myoplex Lite Chocolate Protein Shake.  Calories: 170

Buffalo chicken salad on romaine with shredded parmesan cheese and ranch dressing.  Kettle brand BBQ chips.  Calories: 347

Snack: 1 cup puppy chow.  Calories: 360 (so bad for you but so so good!)

Snack: 1 cup Earthbound organic baby carrots.  Calories: 35

Buffalo chicken burger, steamed green beans, and homemade baked french fries.  Calories: 662

Dessert: 3 Hershey Bliss dark chocolate squares.  Calories: 99

Snack: 1 cup multigrain Cheerios with skim milk.  Calories: 200

Daily Calorie Total: 2329

BUT I also burned 500 calories at Body Pump today … so my actual intake was 1829 … still under my goal.  To burn around 1/2 pound per week I should consume right around 2000 calories per day.  

SO … I am going to keep counting calories to make sure I am fueling my body adequately.  Not only should this help with my weight-loss but it will also ensure that I keep a good milk supply for the Emster.

Stay tuned for updates!

Are you a calorie counter?  Was any of this surprising to you?

Published by

Madeline @ Food, Fitness, and Family

Healthy living blogger sharing my love of yummy eats, sweaty workouts, and my sweet family!

7 thoughts on “Counting Calories”

  1. I don't count calories, but I do count grams of protein an servings of fruits n veggies. Congrats & good luck losing those last few pounds – you can do it!

  2. Wow!! All of your meals look so good!!! What in the world is puppy chow though? I count calories too but after doing it this long it isn't a strain or even a thought most days.

  3. Grwat job…i had the same problem when nursing and exercising…i coldnt eat enough….what the heck is puppy chow???

  4. Isn't it NUTS that your body slows down your metabolism when you arent consuming enough? This was a huge struggle of mine throughout my weight loss journey because I had the tendency to under-eat according to the amount of calories I was burning. I thought I was doing a great thing for my body, but I couldn't have been more wrong.

    You've got this in the bag! Best of luck :)

  5. I only count calories if I am trying to lean because it just becomes time consuming and I start obsessing over it! I have found that I can eyeball portion sizes and hit my macros. My fitness pal is what I use though when I do check, and I love it! It's great that you can access it online and via the app too.

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