Losing Two Pounds a Week

When I first started dieting the weight just flew off of me, but now things are definitely slowing down. I’m not at a weight loss plateau yet, but I’m having to work harder to lose the pounds. My goal each week is to lose 2 pounds, which is considered ideal weight loss if you do it safely. I was flabbergasted when I looked into how many calories I have to burn to lose even one pound of body fat – 3500 calories. So, to lose two pounds a week, I will have to burn an excess of 7000 calories from my diet . I have calculated my BMR value (using the BMR calculator), which is 1600 calories a day. The BMR value is how many calories my body needs just to perform its basic functioning, such as breathing and keeping my heart beating. What this means is that if I eat 1600 calories a day and do absolutely nothing but lie in bed, my weight should stay the same. At my current weight, my doctor has instructed me to eat a minimum of 1800 calories a day. So how does all of this work if I’m to lose 2 pounds a week? From a few calculations, I figure I burn an additional 600 calories a day driving to work, walking in the office, doing the odd chore at home and watching tv. Some days are more physical than others, but thats a guestimate. Basically, I will need to exercise the rest of the calories away. If I consume 12,600 calories a week and my body functions and daily life activities burn an average of 15,400 calories a week, then I will need to burn off an average of 4200 calories a week, or 600 calories a day, to meet my weight loss goal of losing 2 pounds a week.

Here’s a brief list of activities I can do to burn 600 calories:

  • 76 minutes of Aerobics: low impact
  • 60 minutes Aerobics: high impact
  • 60 minutes Aerobics, Step: low impact
  • 42 minutes Aerobics, Step: high impact
  • 104 minutes Aerobics: water
  • 60 minutes Bicycling, Stationary: moderate
  • 40 minutes Bicycling, Stationary: vigorous
  • 52 minutes Circuit Training: general
  • 60 minutes Rowing, Stationary: moderate
  • 50 minutes Rowing, Stationary: vigorous
  • 70 minutes Stair Step Machine: general
  • 139 minutes Weight Lifting: general
  • 70 minutes Weight Lifting: vigorous
  • 42 minutes Bicycling: 14-15.9 mph
  • 75 minutes Golf: carrying clubs
  • 119 minutes Golf: using cart
  • 70 minutes Hiking: cross-country
  • 60 minutes Ice Skating: general
  • 60 minutes Racquetball: casual, general
  • 60 minutes Rollerblade (inline) Skating
  • 42 minutes Rope Jumping
  • 52 minutes Running: 5 mph (12 min/mile)
  • 42 minutes Running: 5.2 mph (11.5 min/mile)
  • 46 minutes Running: 6 mph (10 min/mile)
  • 33 minutes Running: 6.7 mph (9 min/mile)
  • 70 minutes Swimming: general
  • 60 minutes Tennis: general
  • 92 minutes Walk: 4 mph (15 min/mile)
  • 83 minutes Walk: 4.5 mph (13 min/mile)
  • 70 minutes Walk/Jog: jog <10 min.

*to get these values I used the calculator found here Calories Burned – Exercise Calculator

As you can see, burning an excess of 600 calories a day is actually not that hard. There are a lot of activities that you can do to reach this goal. This list really shows what it takes and the kind of commitment you need to make. As for me, my new goal will to be to do aerobic exercise for one hour 5 days a week and build from there. I guess it’s time to buy myself some new running shoes.

2 comments to Losing Two Pounds a Week

  • Elena

    I have about 25 lbs to lose. I came across your web post and see that it may be very helpful. I was wondering about your success since it has been over a year since you posted this.

  • Hi Elena, I’m glad you found the post helpful. Following my own diet that consisted of portion control and healthier foods combined with exercising 3-4 times a week I managed to lose almost 50 pounds in 8 months. I am not dieting right now because I am 5 months pregnant, but I plan to start back at it after the baby is born this spring. Best of luck to you, I know you can do it! Please feel free to chat with me and our other members in the Weight Loss Forum if you are interested.

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