Updated on March 6, 2011

You realize that your weight is yo-yoing. You can’t seem to maintain that ideal weight that you want. You have pants of different sizes and you keep wishing to be able to buy the same size forever. You realize that having a steady weight will even save money as you will not have to purchase a different size dress or suit each time an important event arises. The decision to stabilize your weight is very possible, but by no means easy. It requires time, patience, tenacity, and a thorough understanding of WHY you gain and lose weight.

People gain weight when they intake more calories than they burn and people lose weight when they burn more calories than they intake. Hence, to maintain a fairly constant weight, you must find a way to intake and burn just about the same amount of calories per day.

One pound of body weight is roughly equivalent to 3500 calories, so eating an extra 500 calories per day will cause you to gain one pound a week. Of course you can also lose a pound in a week by eating 500 less calories per day.

In today’s date, there are many websites available online that will be able to help you to monitor your caloric intake. Some of these websites calculate the following:

• Your ideal weight based on your height, age, gender and body type
• The amount of calories you need to consume in order to maintain your present weight
• The amount of calories you need to consume in order to gain or lose a specific weight
• The calories you gain from specific foods

Once you calculate your daily caloric requirement, you should find food combinations for breakfast, snacks, lunch and dinner that will allow you to reach your desired weight and then maintain it. Of course calorie calculators allow you a time variable so that people can work with different time frames for losing weight.

Burning Calories

The calories your burn by exercising will vary according to the type of exercise you do, and how vigorously it is executed. Many websites online will tell you how many calories you can burn from different exercises. Below is list of how many calories a 150 pound person will burn per half- hour from some common exercises. Many websites will give the number of calories that will be burned in accordance with the weight of the person exercising.

`General aerobics - 225 calories/ 30 mins`
`Playing basketball - 210 calories/ 30 mins`
`Bicycling, BMX or mountain - 450 calories/ 30 mins`
`Bicycling, stationary, moderate - 240 calories/ 30 mins`
`Bicycling, stationary, vigorous - 365 calories/ 30 mins`
`Boxing, sparring - 315 calories/ 30 mins`
`Jogging - 240 calories/ 30 mins`
`Running - 275 calories/ 30 mins`
`Roller skating - 240 calories/ 30 mins`
`Tennis - 240 calories/ 30 mins`
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Example of a person trying to stabilize her weight

You are a 40 year old female who is 5 feet 4 inches tall with a medium body frame. You weigh 140 pounds and you do light exercise one or two days per week. You will like to be at your ideal weight and will intake the required amount of calories and do the necessary amount of exercise to get there.

You calculate you ideal weight for your gender, height, and body type using an Ideal Weight Calculator, or a Healthy Weight Calculator: 120 pounds

Using a weight loss calculator, you calculate the amount of calories you need to consume in order to lose 20 pounds in 5 months (at your current activity level): 1424 calories/ day

You decide that you will like to still reach your targeted weight within the same timeframe, but you will like to consume a bit more. You decide to burn more calories by doing half hour of moderate stationary biking daily: Extra 240 calories burned per day

You can now add these 240 calories on to your 1424 calories, and plan your meals around a 1664 daily calorie intake. There are many menu planners online than can help you to plan for 1660 calorie meals. The following can be your intake for one day.

`Breakfast (300 calories)`
`1 slice whole- grain toast`
`¾ cup 100% fruit juice`
`1 oz whole- grain breakfast cereal`
`½ cup fat- free milk`
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`Lunch (450 calories) `
`Zesty Chicken Burrito`
`Or`
`Sweet and sour pork stir- fry`
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`Mid-afternoon Snack (200 calories) `
`Banana smoothie`
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`Dinner (500 calories)`
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```1 cup vegetable soup
2 oz meat, poultry, or fish
1 medium sweet potato or white potato
½ cup broccoli
1 cup fat-free milk```
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`Late-night Snack (200 calories)`
```1 cup low-fat frozen yogurt
½ cup crushed fruit on top```
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Solution for maintaining the lost weight

Once your weight is lost, you can now recalculate the number of calories you need in order to maintain your weight and increase or lower these calories according to your daily level of exercise. After months of planning meals by calculating the calories of each meal, you should get accustomed to the types of foods and the amount of food you need to consume in order to lose weight. If you have trouble planning on your own, then keep using online calculators and meal planners to help you out.

Never view losing weight as being on a diet, view it as the step towards acquiring a healthy lifestyle. The key to maintaining your weight is to be consistent. Almost everyone has the capacity to lose weight and maintain their ideal weight. Just believe in yourself and take the first steps, you will be amazed at the results you can achieve with time.

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