Fitness resolution

As an example of calculating calories and daily caloric need, I plugged my stats into the BMR (basal metabolic rate) calculator I referenced earlier.  It gives me a value of 1767 – let’s call it 1800.  There will be some variation in that number with lifestyle.  For example, if I was a couch potato, 1800 calories would be the absolute maximum BMR compared to maybe closer to 2000 if I were an athlete (roughly speaking).  Also, lean body mass is an important factor: the more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism is all day.

Then, you must determine your goal.  My initial goal is to cut fat, but I intend to bulk up at the same time (apparently easiest to do as a beginner).  As a rough measure, I will aim to lose 1 lb of fat per week just based on dietarty changes, in addition to extra fat loss by exercise.  Since 1 lb of fat consists of approximately 3500 calories, that would require cutting my daily caloric intake by 500 calories (3500 cal/7 days) to lose 1 lb of fat per week. 

One word of caution, it’s important to know where your calorie intake stands before you get too frustrated with lack of results.  For example, if you are steadily gaining weight (meaning your calorie intake exceeds your BMR) and you decrease your intake by 500 calories daily, you will probably not lose 1 lb per week. 

I recommend Fitday.com for an easy (and free) online calorie calculator.  It also lets you track your weight in a nice graph.   

Happy calorie counting.

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