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    Registered User Smw25's Avatar
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    Question Learning maintenance calories

    Hello I am new to fitness. I am trying to find out what my maintenance calories should be (ballpark). I am 6’4” 347 roughly 35% body fat. Recently started working out (last 2 months) I’m about to step up to a 5 x week program. I was told I should be eating 3200 calories to lose weight and build muscle. I’ve also read you should take your weight multiply by 14 to find maintenance then subtract 400 and that’s the range for losing. Just looking to get some advice from others that have been doing this for a while. Thanks for the help!
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  2. #2
    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Calculators often don't work properly for heavier people because they make bad assumptions about your body composition and about how metabolism scales with weight.

    The only real way to do it is by experimentation

    Try eating at 2500 calories. Ignore the first 3-4 days readings, then start recording your weight every morning for at least 2 weeks. You can then estimate how fast your weight is dropping and work it back. For every 1lb lost, it means you were 3500 calories short.

    You can post the numbers here if you need help with the maths. I use the SLOPE() function in excel to find a line of best fit - the slope gives daily weight change. You just multiply that by 3500 to get daily calorie deficit.
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    Registered User Spyrith's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Calculators often don't work properly for heavier people because they make bad assumptions about your body composition and about how metabolism scales with weight.

    The only real way to do it is by experimentation

    Try eating at 2500 calories. Ignore the first 3-4 days readings, then start recording your weight every morning for at least 2 weeks. You can then estimate how fast your weight is dropping and work it back. For every 1lb lost, it means you were 3500 calories short.

    You can post the numbers here if you need help with the maths. I use the SLOPE() function in excel to find a line of best fit - the slope gives daily weight change. You just multiply that by 3500 to get daily calorie deficit.
    Never heard this before, for men at least, does 3500 calories = 1 lb? I guess there's some more math involved about body size and composition but somehow it would be more helpful if I knew that XXX amount of calories = X lost weight.
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    Moderator SuffolkPunch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Spyrith View Post
    Never heard this before, for men at least, does 3500 calories = 1 lb? I guess there's some more math involved about body size and composition but somehow it would be more helpful if I knew that XXX amount of calories = X lost weight.
    Yes, it's a reasonable rule of thumb and it should be the same for anyone not just men. It's not precise and assumes that the weight lost is pure fat which it obviously isn't going to be. There is always noise caused by water weight changes to confuse measurement. That's why I recommend using SLOPE() which uses a statistical method to work around noise called Ordinary Least Squares.
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    Registered User zari212's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Calculators often don't work properly for heavier people because they make bad assumptions about your body composition and about how metabolism scales with weight.

    The only real way to do it is by experimentation

    Try eating at 2500 calories. Ignore the first 3-4 days readings, then start recording your weight every morning for at least 2 weeks. You can then estimate how fast your weight is dropping and work it back. For every 1lb lost, it means you were 3500 calories short.

    You can post the numbers here if you need help with the maths. I use the SLOPE() function in excel to find a line of best fit - the slope gives daily weight change. You just multiply that by 3500 to get daily calorie deficit.
    Thanks for the information it was very helpful for me.
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