(Closed) Who eats 1200 calories a day?

posted 6 years ago in Fitness
Post # 3
5109 posts
Bee Keeper

@dannielle89:  I aim for 1200  but seriously cant make it. I’m on Nutrisystem and can rarely make 1200 per day – usually between 900-1100 per day. Crazy, right? But I’m satisfied and full! Previously when I’ve been on 1200 calorie diets, I was unable to exercise; weak, tired, out of breath…. But now that my blood sugar is stabilized, I can definitely still do treadmill time but nothing too intense.

Post # 5
4676 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

When I was dieting I did.  I did eat back about half of the calories I lost through exersize though, so 1200 + 1/2 calories burned.  So usually I ate around 1400 a day.  During that time I would mainly do home exersizing (Just Dance 3, 30 day shred), and walking.  I would have a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, fruit and yogert, or another low cal option for lunch or snakes, and a low cal supper (I would usually aim for under 7-500 calories).  Over 3 months I lost 10-15 lbs.  I also allowed myself some days to be bad.  I need to get back on that diet.  

Post # 6
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I do! on weekdays that is! I usually excersice about 3 to 4 times a week.Spinning, zumba, total body workouts (insanity like), or pilates. (Starting the insanity challenge on Monday yikes!)

Here’s how I do it. However, you have to be careful because I recently had to gain some weight because my metabolism was crazy fast and I was losing a lot of weight, but if that’s what you want here’s what I do:

1. Breakfast at 7ish. Protein! you can go for eggs, greek yogurt, a shake with whey protein (I use non-fat milk, any berries, apples or pears (less sugary fruits) or oatmeal (add nuts for protein).

2. Snack around 10:30ish. Usually I keep it simple with peanut butter and celery sticks or greek yogurt with blueberries. 

3. Lunch around 2ish. Any protein and complex carbs. Chicken and veggies (green), salmon, brown rice etc. Make sure all grains are sprouted. 

4. Dinner. 5:30 You can go for leafy greens salad with nuts, etc. The fiber intake is important.

After my workout I usually have another snack, and my only big meal is at 2. I’ll go for something light, like cucumber etc. Nothing too big because it’s after 7 or 8 PM. 

Make sure you are eating around 250 calories at snack times and around 500 during your lunch time, that makes about 1500 and say you burn about 300 during a 45 min workout, not to shabby. If you excersice more make sure you eat more calories and are intaking enough fat. Fat is important believe it or not. Nuts, avocado, etc. You will hardly be hungry because you’re eating all day. 

Post # 7
69 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I was on a 1200 diet for about 6 months 7 years ago and I lost 40 pounds. Honestly it wasn’t incredibly healthy but to be fair, I had a pretty unhealthy life style and it fit me pretty well. I was in college and I could get away with sleeping in, eating a granola bar at noon, going to class, snacking intermittedly on nuts or other healthy snacks, and then eat a single big meal at 7pm for dinner (mostly portien, avocado, vegatables). I exercised at night (running, swimming, weights) for 2-3 hours before crashing and beginning the whole cycle again. 

It worked out decent for me and while I was in college and grad school I kept the weight off because my life style was pretty similar. 

I started a full-time job three years ago and I found it IMPOSSIBLE to do 1200 calories. I’d be so hungry and cranky and tired. I’ve been trying to eat greek yogurt with granola in the morning (200 calories), a Healthy Choice entree (300-400 calories),  a granola bar snack (150 calories) and a protein based dinner. But I found that by dinner time I couldn’t eat anything decent for 400-500 calories. 

Sorry this wasn’t very helpful. Just wanted to share that 1200 is freaking hard for me to keep without feeling hungry and tired.

Post # 8
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013


Figure out what you need for maintenance. I’m not clear if you’re working out (cardio and weights) three times a week, or doing weights three times and cardio the other days, but that would make a difference. You probably need at least 2000 calories for maintenance, and 1200 is just too little if you want to get the most out of your weight training. (If you want to build muscle, or “tone” as people sometimes say, you need to have something to build that muscle with.)

If I were on your current diet, I’d aim for about 1400 calories on non-weight days and at least 1700, with a focus on more protein and fat, on weight training days.

Also, get out a measuring tape, because if you start building muscle, it’s going to weigh more. 

Post # 10
1068 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@dannielle89:  Working out that much and eating only that many calories will DEFINITELY mess up your metabolism.


Post # 11
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

It’s harder when you’re eating a lot of protein because it really is filling. 

Definitely get yourself at least to 1200, even on non-weight days. By sugar free jelly, do mean a jam thing or a gelatine and is it no sugar added or artificial sweetener? Your calories are so low right now, the last thing I’d be worried about is low & no fat & sugar replacement foods. Instead, I’d be looking to carbs like starchier veg and fruits as an easy way to add some calories and micronutrients.

One of my favorite snacks is a half cup of cottage cheese with a teaspoon of jam (with sugar :), a quarter cup of fruit chunks (apple, banana, pineapple) and a tablespoon of chopped nuts (walnut or almond). (160-180 calories, depending on fruits/nuts)

Nuts in general are pretty good for picking up some extra calories. Half a dozen almonds and 100ml of orange juice before or after your walk will get you another 100 calories in your day. 

Maybe add a sweet potato to one of your snacks. Or a glass of milk.

If all else fails, you can always cram a couple hundred calories into a smoothie (a full or middle fat yogurt helps 🙂 to make up the difference.  

What do your macros look like? How many grams, and what percentage of calories from fat/carbs/protein?

I use http://www.1percentedge.com/ifcalc/ to balance mine.


Post # 12
587 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@MrsJenBee:  It is absolutely NOT definite so you shouldn’t really make statements like that. She’s being healthy and working out which will keep her metabolism up.


@dannielle89:  The reality is, this is how people lose weight. I dont know where the 2000 calorie a day diet came into play but if I ate that much, I’d gain. I also gain at 1500. For me to lose weight I really MAX out at 1300 (including work outs). Sure, I have days when I’m less careful and go up to 1500 and I have days when I eat 900. Just depends on where the day takes me.

I think that’s a great meal plan and an even greater work out routine. I wouldn’t panic about starvation mode. I’ve read quite a bit about it and you’re eating enough. You’re getting plenty of nutrients and variety. I’d throw in some more veggies if you really want the extra calories but if you’re not hungry, don’t worry. People are just different. Some people would shrivel up on that but I know that I wouldn’t.

My routine:

AM work out (cup of coffee before) about 5-6 days per wk. Cardio + weights

Breakfast: coffee, apple, soy protein (I live in Asia so there is this soy product I love to eat, not available at home) 250 cals

Lunch: sashimi and egg salad (for example) 400 cals

Snack: almonds, whatever 150 cals

Dinner: fish, eggs, salads, whatever ~400


If I’ve had a super great work out, I’ll happily go over by 200 or so


Post # 13
1068 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@nushka:  …That is incorrect. She’s exercising more than she’s taking in. You need calories to help keep the engine running. You can’t expect to eat nothing and work out. Eating healthy is awesome, but you need something to help you energize yourself. 

People eating too little will lose weight in the beginning, but then their body’s metabolism will begin to slow and they realize their weight is not budging. They will be stuck at a plateau and from there on, it’ll be a battle.

I suggest reading this to see exactly how much you should eat: http://www.myfitnesspal.com/groups/home/8017-in-place-of-a-road-map

I lost 30lbs and my daily intake was 1700 calories and sometimes up to 2000 calories while exercising 4 days a week for 1 hour.

Post # 14
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013


Your abs look great in 133.

Post # 15
623 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I eat 1200 calories a day

– Breakfast at 7am = banana with a bottle of water (strangely filling)

– Morning tea at 10.45am = piece of fruit with a yoghurt or 10 rice crackers with carrot sticks

– Lunch at 1.00pm = chicken breast and salad on mountain wrap bread, or a salad with some form of meat).

– Dinner at 6.00pm = grilled fish, steak or chicken with baked vege. If it’s hot I’ll sometimes make a variety of salads, grilled pumpkin & feta is a current fav. Also love making chicken/lamb/beef skewers on the BBQ.

Then I’ll have a homemade fruit salad for desert at about 8.

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