View Full Version : How many calories to lose 1 pound??

December 19th, 2004, 03:29 AM
Just wondering how many calories do you have to burn to lose 1 pound??

Deb in Cali
December 19th, 2004, 08:50 AM
I have been wondering the same thing. I used to know the answer. My 1968 World Book Encyclopedia doesn't give that information.

It would be nice to know when I am climbing onto that elipical machine to know how much effort I need to put out to lose that pound. LOL You know, that pound that was put on by eating a cookie weighing two ounces.

December 19th, 2004, 09:14 AM
The standard translation is 3,500 calories is equivalent to 1 pound. It's not exactly correct, but it is close-enough given all the other perturbations and inaccuracies inherent in measuring calorie intake and expenditure.

December 19th, 2004, 09:29 AM
Thanks so much!! 3500 sounds good.. It gives me something to look to.. It makes me sick how much you have to exercise to get the calories of one little cookie off!! :0) lol....

December 19th, 2004, 09:47 AM
We used to make a game of measuring food intake in terms of miles or hours we have to walk. Like 1 Cinnabon is 2 hours of walking. :-p

December 19th, 2004, 03:42 PM
DH & I do the same thing. We also have two lists of "goodie foods"...1) Oh, so worth it foods and 2) So NOT worth it foods. The goodies on the #2 list are those that we try to avoid at all costs. The #1 list foods would include my MIL's homemade apple pie or her Swedish Tea Log at Christmas time! :D When we have something on the #2 list, we just work out extra long and hard!


December 19th, 2004, 04:22 PM
Haven't talked to you in awhile. How's it going?
Your weather holding up? We have sun but cool..60's..
40's in mornings!

Take care. Happy Holidays!

Runner Girl
December 20th, 2004, 05:27 AM
I'll take that cool weather you're experiencing Belle. It's 13 degrees outside my window and I have to go out there and run!

Yes, it's disgusting how much work it is to burn off an extra cookie or whatnot. 3500 calories. That means you must burn 500 more than you use each day to lose 1 pound per week.

December 20th, 2004, 08:37 AM
Hi Belle!!

Our weather sounds about like yours right now except today it's only getting up to the mid 50's (which we already have hit), windy and tonight we have a freeze warning for our area. They're saying that tonight will be the coldest weather we've had in 2 years. I don't mind too much since it makes it feel more like Christmas!

I've been sooooo busy lately that I haven't had much time to post to any thread although I've been reading the posts and lurking a bit! :D


December 20th, 2004, 08:04 PM
Lynn..Glad your lurking even if not writing. Know this is a busy time.
Yes I hear Florida is really getting cold..our weather has changed to.
We've been in the 60's with sun. Now today was suppose to be 58 with sun.
Don't think it's got above 44 and no sun! To cold for me..need my sun!

Runner Girl..I know there's always someone that has colder weather then
me. That I have warm weather to others but it's still cold! lol
I couldn't live where it's 13 degrees, let alone run in it. How do you
do it? More power to you.

Those calories..How fast you can gain from eating them..and how long it takes to lose them..not FAIR!

Cruise Cat
December 21st, 2004, 09:25 PM
I'll confirm the 3,500 number. As you will see on the Physical Activites Calculator below, you need a 500 calorie a day deficit for 7 days to lose each pound. That is what I used on my 'Third Grade Math' diet last year As long as you have a deficit (doesn't matter where the calories come from: carbs, fats, protein, etc.).

Caloric Needs Calculator (http://www.marathonguide.com/fitnesscalcs/Caloricneeds.cfm)

Physical Activities Calorie Calculator (http://www.marathonguide.com/fitnesscalcs/physactcalc.cfm)

Body Mass Index Calculator (http://www.marathonguide.com/fitnesscalcs/BMIcalc.cfm)

Runner Girl
December 21st, 2004, 09:51 PM
Cruise Cat! I see you've been to marathonguide.com. Are you a runner? Do you run marathons?

December 22nd, 2004, 12:31 AM
Lynn and Runner Girl remember we were talking about the temps..

California weather is crazy... Got to love it!
44 yesterday, no sun..colder than normal.
Today sun early..went to the 70's + today!

So I can freeze one day and shiver the calories off or be hot and sweat the calories off the next day! LOL

Happy Holidays!

Runner Girl
December 22nd, 2004, 04:42 AM
Gee, it was 13 the other day and now it's 37. I ought to be running today instead of going to spinning class. There's a winter storm on the way though and I'll get to run Thursday and Friday.

No workouts on Christmas Day though for me!

December 22nd, 2004, 06:24 AM
(doesn't matter where the calories come from: carbs, fats, protein, etc.)Just a brief warning about this. While it is true that where the 3500 calorie deficit comes from doesn't matter in terms of losing weight, it does matter with respect to keeping the weight off after you've lost it. 14 years ago, a low-calorie diet high in carbohydrates and low in protein and fat gave me a flabby, thin body, and left me with a constant stuggle to maintain my weight loss. That was fine as long as I had lots of time on my hands to exercise everyday, and was willing to eat seemingly less and less each passing month, to maintain my "healthy" weight. However, as soon as life got "interesting" I gained all the weight back and more.

I'd recommend folks plan for their long-term health, focusing not only on creating the calorie deficit, but being sure that doing so doesn't catabolize lean-body mass necessary to help keep weight off. One of the best ways to do this is to create most of the calorie deficit from weight-bearing exercise, rather than simply cutting food intake. While losing weight in 2001-2 I regularly exercised 3500 calories off each week. It is a major commitment, but as a result I lost far less lean-body mass than I had 14 years ago, and have been struggling with weight-regain of 10 pounds, every so often, instead of weight-regain of 100 pounds.


December 22nd, 2004, 07:51 AM
Bicker - In the sense of maintaining weight loss, do you use a ratio of protein vs fat/carbs in order to not lose lean body mass? I, too, exercise daily with a combination of cardio and weight-bearing exercises. But I don't want to lose lean body mass by eating the wrong foods while maintaining my weight loss.


December 22nd, 2004, 04:41 PM
I don't worry as much about ratio as I do about getting a specific amount. I aim a comfortable amount higher than the US RDA of 60 gm of protein: 100 gm of protein was what I'd aim for each day, when I was paying very close attention. The rest fell into place from there.

Runner Girl
December 23rd, 2004, 05:10 AM
It IS extremely important to excersize to maintain the lean muscle mass. Without excersize, you couldn't achieve the 500 per day deficit without going so low on your calories that you aren't eating enough to sustain basal metabolism. Exercise will strengthen not only your muscles (which increases your resting metabolism-by the way) but also your bones.

I also dieted on and off for years, taking pounds off and putting them on. On, off, on, off. It wasn't until excersize became a regular part of my day consistently that I've been able to control my weight consistently.