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  1. #1
    Registered User intwarrior's Avatar
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    Bulking calories include calories burned?

    Ok so from the research I have done I need about 3500 calories a day to bulk up. My question is do I need to add calories for the exercise I do? I went to a web page that helps me track my calories and i logged in an exercise activity and it took away from the calories I have eaten already saying I needed to eat more now that I worked out. Is this correct? Or is the 3500 calorie marker already figuring in a typical weightlifters calories burned?
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  2. #2
    Chasing cats since 1967 WonderPug's Avatar
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    The average number of calories you expend per day -- called total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) -- is a function of your basal metabolic rate (BMR) and your average weekly activity level.

    To estimate your BMR, it's important to have a sense of how much lean body mass (LBM) you carry. If you're not sure, post a photo or two and we can estimate your percentage body fat and, from this number and your total body weight, it's easy to estimate LBM by using the following formula:

    LBM = body weight * (1 - percentage body fat)

    To estimate BMR, use the the Katch-McArdle formula:

    BMR = 370 + (9.8 * LBM in pounds)
    or
    BMR = 370 + (21.6 * LBM in kg)

    The next step is to estimate average weekly activity using the following guidelines to calculate an activity factor (AF):


    • 1.1 - 1.2 = Sedentary (desk job, and little formal exercise, this will be most of you students)

    • 1.3 - 1.4 = Lightly Active (light daily activity and light exercise 1-3 days a week)

    • 1.5 - 1.6 = Moderately Active (moderately daily Activity & moderate exercise 3-5 days a week)

    • 1.7 - 1.8 = Very Active (physically demanding lifestyle & hard exercise 6-7 days a week)

    • 1.9 - 2.2 = Extremely Active (athletes in endurance training or very hard physical job)


    To estimate TDEE (the calories at which you will neither gain nor lose tissue weight), use the following formula:

    TDEE = BMR * AF

    Now that you've estimated your TDEE, it's important to refine that estimate empirically. To do so, consume an average amount of calories equal to estimated TDEE for two weeks, monitoring weight change. The results will confirm your actual TDEE.

    Once you know your actually TDEE, set your caloric intake to match your goals as follows:

    To gain weight, consume 10% 20 20% more than TDEE.

    Monitor weight change via the scale and also body composition via the mirror and how clothing fits, making adjustments as needed biweekly.
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  3. #3
    Sriracha Megadoser SideSteal's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by intwarrior View Post
    Ok so from the research I have done I need about 3500 calories a day to bulk up. My question is do I need to add calories for the exercise I do? I went to a web page that helps me track my calories and i logged in an exercise activity and it took away from the calories I have eaten already saying I needed to eat more now that I worked out. Is this correct? Or is the 3500 calorie marker already figuring in a typical weightlifters calories burned?

    Myfitnesspal is one application that will give you additional calories to eat when you enter in exercise. It does this specifically because the calculation it uses to determine your intake recommendation does not include exercise thermogenesis. So in that specific example where you are using it's default recommendation, you would eat back some/all of those calories because it expects you to do so when it gives you a calorie intake recommendation.

    In my opinion, a better method would be to use the info Wonderpug just provided, and disregard the idea of eating back calories burned during exercise. (MFP will allow you to customize your intake).
    Training log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=160275721&pagenumber=
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  4. #4
    Resident Fat Guy MetilHed's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by intwarrior View Post
    Ok so from the research I have done I need about 3500 calories a day to bulk up. My question is do I need to add calories for the exercise I do? I went to a web page that helps me track my calories and i logged in an exercise activity and it took away from the calories I have eaten already saying I needed to eat more now that I worked out. Is this correct? Or is the 3500 calorie marker already figuring in a typical weightlifters calories burned?
    In the research that you did, did you estimate a TDEE that included an activity multiplier ? Or did it just say "To bulk, start eating 3500 cals a day" ?
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  5. #5
    Registered User intwarrior's Avatar
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    Thanks WonderPug for the extensive info, I will try to get some pictures/ wrap my brain around the info. I'm still kind of a newbie. I've only been lifting for maybe a year now but I've been putting a lot of work into the research of the exercises and proper forms and supplements and all that good stuff but was never too crazy about tracking calories.

    I've always been skinny and hard to gain weight so I figured as long as I eat healthy I would be fine, but I'm starting to get a little belly fat now (a first ever haha) and so I started to focus on this aspect of it. I have been using Real Gains weight gainer to help as well, and also creatine monohydrate.

    I used LiveStrong's buking article which said bodyweight multiplied times 17.5 for calories and their formulas for protein/fat/carbs as well plus some of the online just enter your weight and info and it poops out a number and they all came to about 3500. I use caloriecount.about because its super easy and had all the foods I use already stored in there so its super easy, but it did also say 2600 calories but I changed it to 3500 and my protein/fat/carb profile (maybe thats why it bumped me up after exercise?)
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  6. #6
    Chasing cats since 1967 WonderPug's Avatar
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    FYI: Supplements are pretty much irrelevant to outcomes because proper diet and exercise are what matter. If you want to lose wallet weight, then supplements do make sense, but otherwise...not so much,
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  7. #7
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    Yes always take those into account!
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