Wednesday, June 8, 2011

BMR - Base Metabolic Rate

Base Metabolic Rate

This is something I began to grasp a few months ago. The BMR is the rate at which your body burns calories if you were to lay on the couch and never get up. Knowing this number can change your weight loss results almost instantly.

The way it works: If you want to lose 1 lb, you have to burn 3500 calories. If you want to lose 2 lbs then you have to burn 7000 calories and so on. It can seem complicated and overwhelming, but once you get it, you get it!

Here's an example:

My BMR is 1662.35.

My activity level during the day is low because I have a sedentary job. Since this is the case, I multiply my BMR times 1.1. If I was a stay at home mom or had a job where I moved around quite a bit during the day I would multiply my BMR by 1.2. If I was a construction worker, for example, or had a very active job, I would multiply my BMR by 1.3 and so on and so forth.

My BMR times my activity level is 1828.59. (This is the number of calories I burn every day, not including my workouts.)

I choose to eat approx. 1300 calories per day, which means I have a deficit of 528.59 calories. (Based on those numbers, if I did not work out, it would take me 6.62 days to burn 1 lb of fat.) Since I want to lose weight at a faster pace, I have to increase my activity level. I try to burn 1200 calories per day, 5 days per week through exercise. Now I multiply 528.59 times 7 days, 1200 times 5 days and add the two answers together. Then I divide the sum by 3500 calories and that gives me the approximate lbs I should lose that week, which is 2.77 lbs.

Of course, I have had weeks that have been lower and weeks that have been higher but this gets me close.

Knowing my BMR will help me maintain my weight loss. Knowing my BMR will tell me how many calories I can eat per day without putting weight on. It will be interesting to see how that works out.

Here is a link to a BMR calculator that will give you your base number. Multiply the answer by your activity level. Then figure out how much you need to work out that week based on your desired outcome.

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