Eating the Right Calories to Lose Fat?
by Todd Scott, ISSACPT Training Advisor, Men's Fitness magazine
The absolute most important thing we have to take special care of when we’re burning fat is what stuff goes in our body. More Specifically how much of this ‘stuff goes in our body. I mean, as hard as it is to believe, we can actually get fat if we eat too many chicken breasts and sweet potatoes. Seriously. If our maintenance calorie intake is 2,000 calories per day, and we take the “throw it against the wall” approach and really don’t pay much attention to how much “healthy” food we put in our body, we will still get fat. Period. End of Story. Here's a real world example: Let’s say we’re a big muscular guy and our maintenance calorie intake is 2,000 calories per day, and like the book says, we eat 2 Low Fat, High Protein HEALTHY Chicken Breasts & 1 medium Sweet Potato 6 Times per day… We’ll end up eating 2,580 calories per day. Big deal, right? It’s still healthy. Right? Wrong. At 580 calories above our maintenance per day, we’ll be eating 4,060 EXTRA Calories Per Week. Since we have to eat in excess of 3,500 calories to gain a pound of fat… Guess what happens? Well a good answer would be that we get Fat by Eating Healthy. Oxymoron it is. But sadly it happens all the time. So, on the following pages I’ll show you the “complex way” to calculate calories (if you want to get it down to the precise number, the easy way to calculate calories (the short version), and how to figure out the number of calories & such that we need for each meal, so we can eat healthy and actually burn some fat, cool? The following article is an excerpt straight out of my Fat Loss Program, HowtoGetSixPackAbs.com, so let's get going.
Calculating Daily Calories for Men For Calorie Calculations, you’ll need your  Age  Body weight  Height (in inches)  Activity factor (explained below) You will only use the activity factor to multiply it by the number that you deduce from the RMR formula to calculate how many actual calories you burn per day. Here are the activity factors and the corresponding numbers 1.3 = very light physical activity (sitting, driving, standing,lab work) 1.5 = light physical activity (tennis, walking 4mph, weeding) 1.7 = moderate physical activity (tennis walking 4mph, weeding) 2.0 = heavy physical activity (full court basketball, heavy digging, long distance running) 2.4 = exceptionally heavy physical activities (competitive triathlete, Navy Seal training) Once you calculate your resting metabolic rate (RMR), you’ll then multiply it by your activity factor.
The Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) Formula for men is as follows: 66+(6.22*body weight)+(12.7*Height)(6.8*Age)= Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) ___________________________________________________________________
Once you calculate the number above, you will then multiply it by your activity factor to determine the actual number of calories you burn per day. ___________________________________________________________________ To give you an idea of how to actually apply this formula in real life, we’ll use the statistics of the following Male as an example Age – 28 *Height (in inches) – 70” – this converts from 5’ 10” Weight – 250 pounds Activity factor – 1.3 (works an office job, isn’t incredibly active) ** An easy reference to convert feet to inches is to remember that 6 feet is 72 inches or 5’12”. If you’re shorter or taller than 6 feet, just add or subtract the appropriate number of inches to 72. For example, if 6’ is 72 inches, and you’re 5’6” (or 6 inches shorter than 5’12”), then simply subtract 6” from 72” to find your height, then plug it into the formula. Ie. 72 inches minus 6 inches = 66 inches. Calories Burned at Rest (Resting Metabolic Rate or RMR) After plugging in the age, height (in inches), and weight to the formula, we find that the resting metabolic rate of this male is 2319.6. This number is how many calories are burned per day in a completely rested state with zero activity. Actual Calories Burned To find the actual calories burned, we now multiply 2319.6 by his activity factor of 1.3. When we multiply the RMR 2319.6 by the activity factor of 1.3, we find that the actual number of calories burned per day is 3015.48. So to maintain his current weight of 250 pounds, he must consume 3015 calories per day. Now let’s look at how to calculate the number of calories he’ll need to lose 1 pound of fat per week. 20% Percent Reduction to Burn 1 pound of Fat Per Week Now that we’ve calculated the actual calories burn per day, the number of calories you need to consume to maintain your current weight… Let’s look at how to calculate the number of calories you need to consume to lose 1 pound of fat per week. Generally when I use this formula for my clients, to calculate the number of calories they need to consume per day to lose 1 pound of fat per week, I start with a 20% reduction from “Actual Calories Burned”. You can, of course, use a 10% or 15% reduction, but I like to use 20% as a starting point and tweak it up or down from there after a week or two. So the Actual Calories Burned is 3015 calories. Now, we’ll simply deduct 20% from this number, and this new number will be his starting daily calories. To deduct 20%, rather than multiplying by .20, then subtracting this number from 3015, simply multiply 3015 by 0.80 to calculate the starting calories. 3015*.80= 2412 calories So in order to lose 1 pound of fat per week, our example male should consume 2412 calories per day.
**The women’s formula uses slightly different numbers for the calorie calculation formula, so if you’re a woman, you will want to use the formula in the following section.
Calculating Daily Calories for Women Similar to the men’s formula for Calorie Calculations you’ll need your  Age  Body weight  Height (in inches)  Activity factor (explained below) You will only use the activity factor to multiply it by the number that you deduce from the RMR formula to calculate how many actual calories you burn per day. Here are the activity factors and the corresponding numbers. 1.3 = very light physical activity (sitting, driving, standing,lab work) 1.5 = light physical activity (tennis, walking 4mph, weeding) 1.7 = moderate physical activity (tennis walking 4mph, weeding) 2.0 = heavy physical activity (full court basketball, heavy digging, long distance running) 2.4 = exceptionally heavy physical activities (competitive triathlete, Navy Seal training) Once you calculate your resting metabolic rate, you’ll then multiply it by your activity factor.
The Resting Metabolic Rate Formula for Women is as follows: =665+(4.36*Weight)+(4.32*Height)(4.7*Age)= Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) ___________________________________________________________________
Once you calculate the number above, you will then multiply it by your activity factor to determine the actual number of calories you burn per day. ___________________________________________________________________ To give you an idea of how to actually apply this formula in real life, we’ll use the statistics of the following Male as an example Age – 37 *Height (in inches) – 65” – this converts from 5’ 5” Weight – 153 pounds Activity factor – 1.3 (works an office job, isn’t incredibly active) ** An easy reference to convert feet to inches is to remember that 6 feet is 72 inches or 5’12”. If you’re shorter or taller than 6 feet, just add or subtract the appropriate number of inches to 72. For example, if 6’ is 72 inches, and you’re 5’5” (or 7 inches shorter than 5’12”), then simply subtract 6” from 72” to find your height, then plug it into the formula. 72 inches minus 7 inches = 65 inches Calories Burned at Rest (Resting Metabolic Rate or RMR) After plugging in the age, height (in inches), and weight to the formula, we find that the resting metabolic rate of this female is 1438.9. This number is how many calories are burned per day in a completely rested state with zero activity. Actual Calories Burned To find the actual calories burned, we now multiply 1438.9 by his activity factor of 1.3. When we multiply the RMR 1438.9 by the activity factor of 1.3, we find that the actual number of calories burned per day is 1870.6. So to maintain her current weight of 153 pounds, she must consume 1870.6 calories per day. Now let’s look at how to calculate the number of calories she’ll need to lose 1 pound of fat per week. 20% Percent Reduction to Burn 1 pound of Fat Per Week Now that we’ve calculated the actual calories burn per day, and the number of calories you need to consume to maintain your current weight… Let’s look at how to calculate the number of calories you need to consume to lose 1 pound of fat per week. Generally when I use this formula for my clients, to calculate the number of calories they need to consume per day to lose 1 pound of fat per week, I start with a 20% reduction from “Actual Calories Burned”. You can, of course, use a 10% or 15% reduction, but I like to use 20% as a starting point and tweak it up or down from there after a week or two. So the Actual Calories Burned is 1870.6 calories. Now, we’ll simply deduct 20% from this number, and this will be her starting daily calories. To deduct 20%, rather than multiplying by .20, then subtracting this number from 1870.6 to find the 20% reduction, simply multiply 1870.6 by 0.80 to calculate the starting calories. 1870.6*.80= 1496 Calories So in order to lose 1 pound of fat per week, our example female should consume 1496 calories per day.
Now, the EASY way to calculate calories If you don’t want to go through the above formula’s to calculate the exact calories you need per day to get six pack abs, there’s an easier way to do it. Though it’s slightly less accurate, it will still put you around 50 calories of what you calculated in the above formulas. Remember, whichever way you decide to calculate your calories, it is only a starting point, so it will need to be monitored and tweaked to make sure you don’t hit the dreadful plateau. In the next sections, I’ll teach you how to effectively monitor and tweak your calorie intake in the least amount of time possible. QuickFire Calorie Calculations If you’re male, simply multiply your current weight by 10. So if you’re a male weighing in at 230 pounds, the formula is 230x10= 2300 calories. Again, this is just a starting point and falls roughly around the calculations you get from the formula’s above. Now, if you’re a female, you’ll need to multiply your weight by 8. So if you’re a female weighing in at 150 pounds, the formula is 150x8=1200. However If the calculations, as in this female formula, result in less than 1400 calories, then you will need to consume 1400 calories or risk losing Weight not Fat. The goal is to lose fat, so you look good naked. If you lose weight but the calories are so low that it also causes you to lose muscle in the process, you’ll have soft saggy skin… and will hardly look good naked. Figuring Out How Much to Eat At Each Meal You’ll be eating fairly frequently, about 56 small meals per day spread 33 ½ hours apart. If you’re female, you can get away with eating only 4 small meals per day, but as your metabolism speeds up, you’ll need to increase the number of meals per day to 56. Before we Start figuring and calculating, I want to explain WHY this is important. In this section we’re going to be breaking down the number of calories, protein, carbs, and fat contained in your daily nutrition program. It’s A LOT of numbers to deal with and can get confusing, but ALL you’ll need to concern yourself with is the final numbers of calories, protein, carbs, and fat you need to consume for each meal. Once you get that calculated, and follow it, everything else will work itself out, and at the end of the day, you’ll have consumed the precise calories you need to shed fat. For the purposes of this section, let’s assume that your daily calorie calculations come to an even 1800 calories per day. The first thing you need to do is divide this number by the number of meals you plan to consume each day. We’ll divide by 5, because we plan to eat 5 meals per day. So, 1800 calories divided by 5 meals = 360 We’ll be consuming 360 calories for each of the 5 meals per day. Now, these 360 calories aren’t just any old calories you can find. Obviously, if you eat 5 meals of ice cream, you won’t be heading toward your goal of fat loss. I normally recommend splitting the calories into percentages of protein, carbs, and fat with a split of: 45% of the calories from Protein 35% of the calories from Carbs 20% of the calories from Fat This split is what’s worked best for both me and the clients I’ve worked with over the past 10 years. The carbs are not too low, and they’re not too high, and I’ve found that it’s more than plenty to keep your energy levels high throughout the day. I wouldn’t recommend dropping the protein % below 3540% as this will ensure that you have a positive nitrogen balance and help you at least maintain your current levels of muscle tissue. And more than likely, you’ll gain a bit of muscle mass. If you’re female, don’t let “you’ll gain a bit of muscle mass” frighten you. This is what’s going to help give you the curves you want, and make your body appear tight and toned. Now, on to breaking each meal down further. Each meal will consist of 360 calories coming from 45% protein, 35% carbs, 20% fat. We’ll use the following chart to calculate the percentages and how many grams of each macronutrient we need for each meal.
Calculating Protein per Meal First we’ll calculate the number of protein grams per meal. Since there are 4 calories per gram of protein, and we’ll be consuming 45% of our calories from a protein source, we’ll multiply 360 by .45 to get: 162 calories from Protein for each meal To simplify it further and determine how many grams of protein to consume for each meal, we’ll divide 162 calories by 4 (the number of calories per gram of protein). The result is 40.5. So, we’ll try to consume 40.5 grams of protein for each meal. Calculating Carbs per Meal Next we’ll calculate the number of carb grams per meal. Since there are also 4 calories per gram of carbs, and we’ll be consuming 35% of our calories from a carb source, we’ll multiply 360 by .35 to get: 126 calories from Carbs for each meal To simplify it further and determine how many grams of carbs to consume for each meal, we’ll divide 126 calories by 4 (the number of calories per gram of carbs). The result is 31.5. So, we’ll be consuming 31.5 grams of carbs for each meal. Calculating Fat per Meal Last we’ll calculate the number of Fat grams per meal. Since there are 9 calories per gram of Fat, and we’ll be consuming 20% of our calories from a fat source, we’ll multiply 360 by .20 to get: 72 calories from Fat for each meal To simplify it further and determine how many grams of Fat to consume for each meal, we’ll divide 72 calories by 9 (the number of calories per gram of fat). The result is 8. So, we’ll be consuming 8 grams of fat for each meal. Breaking Down Each Meal for an 1800 Calorie per Day Nutrition Plan Since it is much easier to figure out foods and food labels when you know how many grams of carbs, protein, and fat you’re supposed to consume for each meal, you’ll need to go through this process once you figure out how many calories you’re supposed to consume per day. Fortunately, I’ve created a simple to use tool for you to use and included it in your package for you to download. All you need to do is input a few numbers, and it’ll spit out all the info you need. So back to the game plan… You’ll be consuming:
Per Day 1800 calories 202.5 grams of protein [(1800*.45)/4] 157 grams of carbs [(1800*.35)/4] 40 grams of fat [1800*.20)/9]
Per Meal (5 meals per day) 360 calories 40.5 grams of protein 31.5 grams of carbs 8 grams of fat This information (Per Meal) is ALL you need to start stripping the fat away, you know how much protein, carbs, and fat you need to be consuming per meal and how many meals to consume per day, now you just need to figure out what foods to eat that will fall into those categories, And Put It Into Action! Everything else will fall into place.
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