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Exercise couting against me sbehnke330 — Jun 14, 2019 04:16PM PDT

Why are my calories I burned in my steps and my exercise being counted against my remaining calories?

1 Community Answers

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Maximiliano MyFitnessPal Agent Jun 14, 2019 04:38PM PDT


We actually do recommend eating back your calories burned via exercise.

When you set up your profile, we ask you for your age, height, weight, gender, normal daily activity level and how much weight you would like to lose/gain per week. We then use all this information and calculate it against the scientific calculation to give you your daily recommended goals. These initial goals already include a deficit to lose weight, even if you did no additional exercise. If you do exercise, then your daily totals will go up to replenish what you have burned via exercise.

Your normal average daily burn is already taken into consideration when we set up your profile. However, we do not actually take into consideration any extra exercise you do outside your normal day, until you add them to your diary under the “cardiovascular” section.

We set your nutritional target in Net Calories which we define as:

Calories Consumed (Food) – Calories Burned (Exercise) = Net Calories

What that means is that if you exercise, you will be able to eat more for that day. For example, if your Net Calorie goal is 2000 calories, one way to meet that goal is to eat 2,500 calories of food, but then burn 500 calories through exercise. When your exercise calories increase, your other nutritional goals will also fluctuate to match.

Think of your Net Calories like a daily budget of calories to spend. You spend them by eating, and you earn more calories to eat by exercising. To help avoid setting your body into starvation mode, we do not recommend for any member to consume under 1200 net calories.

If you are following a guided plan from your doctor or nutritionist, we also allow an option for you to customize your own nutritional goals. You can set your own nutritional goals by following these instructions.

Our program currently only calculates calories burned via our “cardiovascular” section. Estimating the calories burned from strength training is very difficult because it depends on a variety of factors: how much weight you lifted per repetition, how vigorously you performed that exercise, how much rest you took between sets, etc. Because of this, we do not automatically calculate how many calories you burned from strength training exercises.

If your guided plan does request that you do not account for your exercise calories, then we would recommend either trying to keep track of similar exercises via the “strength” training section (as per mentioned that area will not award any calories) or you can add your cardiovascular exercises to your diary as you normally would, and then change the calories burned field to 1 (0 will not register). To do this just add the exercise to your diary and then tap into the calories burned field and change the number to 1.

Or another option would be to just follow your daily “total” calories instead of your “remaining”. The program should break this down for you. So, if you know you have 1500 calories for the day without exercise, then when your “total” for the days gets to 1500, you will know you have reached your amount.

MyFitnessPal Staff

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