How Many Calories do I need? This question I get asked a lot; everybody’s calorie requirements are different depending on his or her lifestyle and exercise.
We all have a basal metabolic rate which is what we require to maintain weight and to perform our daily activities and exercise.
The way work out how many calories you need is using the Harris Benedict’s formula which is as follows:
- Women 665+(9.6xweight in kg)+(1.8xheight in cm)-(4.7xage
- Men 66+(13.7xweight in kg)+(5xheight in cm)-(6.8xage)
That is your Basal metabolic rate of what your body requires to function
Now put yourself into the relevant category below to work out what you need:
- Sedentary little/no exercise BMR X1.2
- Lightly active light exercise/sport 3-5 days a week BMRX1.375
- Moderately active moderate exercise/sport 3-5 days a week BMRX 1.55
- Very active hard exercise/sport 6-7 days BMR X1.725
- Extra active, tough exercise/sports/physical job or training 2xday BMRx1.9
To get your daily calorie intake to eat a well-balanced diet of lean protein such as chicken, fish, turkey, lean red meat. Carbohydrates should come from vegetables, brown rice, couscous, rye, oats quinoa bulgar wheat, and fruit but not too much fruit as it is a sugar. Good fats from oily fish, nuts and seeds, avocado, olive oils, olives, This will provide you with the energy for your day to day life and performance in exercise. As a guide, if you up, your exercise level then up your calorie intake to provide you with the fuel to perform and recover. If your exercise reduces then your calorie intake needs to reduce too. So if you train for an endurance event, you will need to up your intake of food but then reduce when the event is over.
If you have a rest day from training, you won’t need as many calories as on a training day. Use the Basal metabolic as guidance, not as a way to start counting calories.