CAROL’S CORNER

Well I 'm back after a much needed rest. I had been up about 48 hours straight and just couldn't stay up another 4 or 5 hours to work on a new blog entry. It's the first time in 100 days I didn't publish a blog post. Well I picked out today's outfit so I could wear my flag FitBit band. Too funny that I am wearing an outfit so I can wear a certain band for my FitBit. But I like Royal blue. And this was another thrift store purchase.

Pretty neat band , don't you think? My two grandsons from Pa love this one. Ok tonight's topic is another one that was requested. We are going to talk about how many calories you should consume each day on a weight loss diet. For this, we are going to be using material from Shape .com with an article titled”Ask The Diet Docter:How Many Calories Should I Eat To Lose Weight”? Calculating the calories you need to lose weight is a three part process. The method most commonly used is called The Harris-Benedict equation. Here is the equation for women. Note:BMR in the equation stands for basal metabolic rate. BMR =655+(4.35x your weight in lbs) +(4.7xheight in inches)-(4.7 x age in yrs). Put in the numbers, calculate and what you get will be your BMR or basal metabolic rate. This is the calories you need to exist. And since most people don't lie in bed all day, you will burn more calories in your daily activities. To estimate how many calories you will burn in your daily activities we will use one of the following activity factors.

SEDENTARY: -minimal movement=activity factor =1.4

LIGHT ACTIVITY:-Office work 1 hour of moderate exercise/activity during the day =activity factor =1.5

MODERATE ACTIVITY: light physical/manual labor during the day and more active life style=activity factor =1.6

VERY ACTIVE:-active military, full time athlete, hard physical/manual labor job =activity factor =1.9.

So next multiply your actvity factor by your BMR. The result you get will be your total caloric needs, or roughly the amount of calories you need to eat each day, to maintain your present weight. To lose weight you need to eat less, but how much less? That is the next step. Determining how many calories to cut each day, is where weight loss becomes more of an art than a science, as there are many variables that can impact the calories in our equation, including:

1. The type of exercise you're doing. Resistance and interval training will burn more calories after you stop exercising as compared to traditional aerobic training.

2. The type of diet you're eating. High -protein diets burn more calories, as protein takes more effort for your body to digest and metabolize.

3. How much weight you have to lose. For simplicity's sake your total body weight was used instead of your lean body mass( which is your total body mass minus your body fat). So the caloric needs calculated above will be too high.That is because the calorie needs of body fat are not the same as for lean tissue. Your body fat has a much lower caloric need,(close to zero). It will be expained how to adjust for this below.

4. Your individual metabolism . The equation used here or any other equation that estimates your caloric needs is just that, an estimate. The equations are based on averages, and you might not be average, so don't take them as gospel, but as a starting point. Put them to the test and adjust from there.

Traditionally, recommendations are made to cut 500-1000 calories from your total caloric needs in order to lose 1-2 pounds a week. That is because a 500 calorie daily deficit yields a 3,500-calorie weekly deficit- which is the number of calories you need to burn, to lose one pound of fat. The writer in the article thinks these reductions are too aggressive initially, and that cutting too many calories too soon, sets you up for long-term-weight-loss-failure.

If you are in weight training, doing interval cardio sessions during the week , and eating a carb- controlled /moderate-protein diet, this writer suggests that you only cut 250 calories from your daily caloric needs( or 500 calories if you have more than 25 lbs to lose to reach your goal weight). You will see results that will make you happy , while being able to eat more.

THE FINAL STEP: Put it to the test. At the end of two weeks, see how much weight you have lost. If you aren't losing at a rate that makes you happy, opt to do more activity, before you cut more calories. If you need to cut more calories, remove another 250 and put that new calorie level to the test for two weeks. Repeat again if you find it necessary.

I hope you found this to be helpful, as it does give you a fairly easy way to determine what calorie level you need to get on the right track in your weight loss efforts. By the time you read this , Monday will have arrived, so set your goals for the week in both your eating and exercise plans and start working it. Make this a successful week. You are worth it. Talk the talk, and walk the walk. Till next time, God Bless!

 

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