How do you calculate how many calories you eat?
What kind of Calories are you eating?
Are you frequently feeling tired and bloated, can’t seem to improve your shape?
Well, your not alone! Most people have no clue how much they, should eat or what is the make up of the calories. Do you know how much protein or carbs you eat, or should eat?
Here are a few quick fixes. The way I would calculate a baseline calorie intake for a client would be; get them to write down everything they eat for 5 days, including the time they eat at, and include the weekend. You can do the same. I ask a ton of other questions as well. You can use my calorie guide from articles 1-4 to help you. Read them!
So now we have our list of food we eat, calculate using the guides in article 1-4, and at the bottom we can total up, protein, Carbs and Fat. In some cases I do add sugar or sodium. Next, the quick way…..you multiply your body weight by the following factors. X 10 if you are light framed, smaller, or not very active. You go up as high as 15 x Body Weight, if your heavy, taller, or very active. If you fit in-between, go between 10 and 15. Example 220 pound male who is moderate active (which can be a subjective topic) 12.5 x 220 = 2750. A woman who is inactive, who weighs 115 pounds would be 10 x 115 = 1150. Now these are both fairly low calories so, if you start training harder and doing some running, you will need to bump up the calories. If you are trying add muscle mass, you need to bump them up. The same goes for weight loss, you slowly and gradually lower the intake.
If you want to fine tune protein and carbs, now that you know how much you eat, here’s a rough idea what the nutrient breakdown could look like. Here goes:
For woman .75 to 1 gram of protein per bodyweight. Men 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per bodyweight. (yes some pro body builders take 2 + grams, but that is a whole other story) Fat, should never be more than 20% of total calories, unless your health practitioner is prescribing it. The protein intake may be lowered slightly, if you are trying to gain mass, and eating higher carbs. Or you can do carb rotating. Like, high protein day, high fat, low to zero carbs, followed by low fat, medium protein, high carb meal. This will vary depending on your goals.
135 grams of protein (135 x 4 calories =540 cal
40grams of fat (360 x 9 calories = 360 calories (20% of 1800)
225 grams of Carbs (220 x 4 calories = 900 calories
This is a very moderate caloric intake, activity goes up, or wants to build muscle, increase the carbs, or have a higher carb meal every few days, and will maintain a fairly lean year round shape. If this woman’s BF was slightly high, and wanted to loose say 10 pounds, I would reduce the carbs to 100grams, increase the fat to 60grams, increase the protein with one extra small meal, on non training days, keep the carbs on the training days. But you have to be working it!
There are many factors, to determine your needs more accurately, like consider, height, age, body type, body fat, activity level, goals. There are many formulas used. I have tested them out several times on myself and with clients, just like the quick way, they are all surprising close.
The 2 most famous formulas are the Harris-Benidict and as well, the Katch-McArdle, you can look them up, however most coaches only use these as a guide. It takes years of learning how to tweak a diet, working closely, and most important listening carefully to your client.