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1. ## Finding Maintenance Calories?

What formula do you guys use to figure out your BMR calories and Maintenance Calories?

I've tried alot of online calculators with alot of different results. Just wondering how you guys figure out what you need to maintain on a daily basis.

2. The Harris-Benedict formula (BMR based on total body weight)
Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 X wt in kg) + (5 X ht in cm) - (6.8 X age in years)

Katch-McArdle formula (BMR based on lean body weight)
BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X lean mass in kg)

Then multiply the BMR with ur activity level

Activity factor
Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)

Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)

Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)

Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)

Extr. Active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp, contest, etc.)

3. Originally Posted by rvbball
What formula do you guys use to figure out your BMR calories and Maintenance Calories?

I've tried alot of online calculators with alot of different results. Just wondering how you guys figure out what you need to maintain on a daily basis.
I used an online calculator to just find a starting point, then I make my own personal adjustments from there.

4. Both of the first two responses are what I used.

I went with the K-M model and found my starting point.

5. This is a cut&paste of a post I made to another forum, but it may help out:

I answer a fair number of questions about calculations, so I though I would consolidate my answer into one post that I can refer to more conveniently.

There are two important concepts here: BMR (basic metabolic rate) and NAMR (normal activity metabolic rate). Your basic metabolic rate is the rate at which you burn calories by just living. This is an important number, because it will account for most of your calorie expenditure. There are many calculators online for BMR, and here is one I use:

BMR Calculator.

Use any one you like; they all have pretty much the same formula, and just because you have your BMR, doesn't mean you're done! The real challenge is to calculate your NAMR, i.e. the calories you expend every day doing what you do normally, without exercise. A lot of calculations take your BMR and use a multiplier for the level of activity you have. A good example of this is the Harris Benedict Equation. The problem is, as you can see if you look at this link, it includes your exercise activity.

What I do is this: I take my BMR and use the "sedentary" multiplier of 1.2. In my case, my BMR is 2,059 calories. Using the multiplier of 1.2, I get 2,471 calories. Since I have a sedentary job, this is just about right for me. However, if you have a job that requires a lot of walking, e.g. a school teacher, you would probably bump up this number a bit. My wife walks around 5 miles a day in her job as a teacher, so I would multiply her BMR by 1.2, and then add another 500 calories to that.

Now we want to get a weekly NAMR, so we multiply 2,471 calories x 7, which is 17,297 calories a week.

Next step: calculating your exercise calories. The best way to do this is with a heart rate monitor. Polar makes one that will also measure your calories, based on your heart rate, for around \$80 US. It's much more accurate than the machines. If you can't get an HR monitor, then you'll have to use online tables or the machines. Just keep in mind that machines typically overestimate calorie expenditure, except in the case of heavy interval or HIIT cardio, in which case they typically underestimate it.

The key here is to get your average exercise calorie expenditure per week. For me, a typical week looks like this:
Day 1: HIIT Cardio, 600 calories
Day 2: Weight Training, 550 calories
Day 3: Interval Cardio, 1000 calories
Day 4: rest
Day 5: Weight Training, 550 calories
Day 6: Interval Cardio, 1000 calories
Day 7: HIIT Cardio, 600 calories
-------------------------------------------
Total: 4,300 calories

Now I have my weekly calorie expenditure: 21,597 calories per week.
This gives me a daily maintenance expenditure of 3,085 calories. In other words, if I consume about 3,000 calories a day, and keep exercising the way I do, I won't lose weight and I won't gain weight.

Since I want to lose weight, but not lean muscle mass, I want to set the right calorie deficit level. For this, I use body fat percentage.

I think this is one of the most critical components of your plan. Forget about BMI, which is just a convenient index for insurance companies, and one that will penalize you severely for holding onto your muscle. (I'll give you an example of this later). Short of immersing yourself in a tank of water and paying for a scientific test at a lab, there are many less exact ways to do it.

One way that is a complete waste of time is buying a scale that measures body fat. These scales work by sending a light current through your legs. If you are male, and don't have a lot of fat on your legs, you will appear to be totally ripped. Another way is to get a cheap pair of plastic calipers online, and measure your skinfolds. This works well if you are consistent. I've actually found that the handheld devices give me a fairly accurate reading.

The key here is that you'll have to find a method that works for you, and then stick with it.

Once you know your body fat percentage, you can use it to calculate two important things: your "ideal" calorie deficit, and your target weight.

Currently, my body fat percentage is 25.8%. Not good, I know, but that's what it is. From this, I can get my lean body mass and my fat body mass, using my current weight of 237 lbs.
Lean Body Mass = 237 x (1 - 0.258) = 176 lbs.
Fat Body Mass = 237 * 0.258 = 61 lbs.

My formula for a safe deficit: 10 calories per pound of fat body mass. In my case, this would be 61 x 10, or 610 calories. In other words, if I set my average daily deficit at 610 calories, this will give me a healthy rate of weight loss that does not cut into my lean muscle mass, and one that especially doesn't trigger the "starvation" response in my metabolism.

This formula scales well, too. As you get closer to your target weight, your deficit will have to go down a bit; if you are really obese, it allows you to set a much higher deficit level, at least in the beginning.

As I said, forget about BMI. Instead, use your Lean Body Mass (LBM) and your Target Body Fat Percentage (TBFP). My goal is to get to 12% body fat. (If I were a woman, this would be higher, of course) The reciprocal of this is my Target Lean Mass Percentage (TLMP). In my case, this is 88%. My target weight is my current lean body mass (LBM), divided by TLMP:
LBM/TLMP = 176 lbs. / 88% = 200 lbs.

I think you would agree that a 58 year old, 6 foot, male with 12% body fat would be pretty darned good, right? Well take a look at the BMI for this: it's 27.1, right in the middle of the "overweight" category. This is a good example of how worthless BMI is in setting your goal, and how silly it is for anyone who has any muscle mass whatsoever.

Fine-Tuning As You Progress

One of the reasons I go to all the trouble of getting these calculations is that they're good measures to have as you go along. For example, I change my Normal Activity Metabolic Rate into a rate per pound, which in my case is calculated as:
NAMR / Weight = 2,471 / 237 = 10.4 calories per pound. This is important, because as you lose weight, you have to adjust your NAMR. For example, when I weighed 270 lbs., my NAMR was 2,808 calories per day; when I am at my target weight, my NAMR will be 2,080 calories a day, a difference of 728 calories a day!

This, by the way, is one of the reasons people "plateau." They forget to adjust their NAMR after they've lost 20 or 30 pounds, and the difference of 300 calories a day, which comes to 3 pounds a month, causes them to maintain rather than lose weight.

6. Bump. This is a really good explanation on how to determine your maintenance level of calories.

7. I used the first formula and apparently my maintenance is 2110 calories? For 6'3" and 195 lbs, I am told that it is around 2500. Any ideas? I do not know my BF% so I cannot use the second formula.

8. Originally Posted by Kaaud
The Harris-Benedict formula (BMR based on total body weight)
Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 X wt in kg) + (5 X ht in cm) - (6.8 X age in years)

Katch-McArdle formula (BMR based on lean body weight)
BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X lean mass in kg)

Then multiply the BMR with ur activity level

Activity factor
Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)

Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)

Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)

Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)

Extr. Active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp, contest, etc.)
5'9", 160, using the 1.55 multiplier although I excersize 6 days a week, I get a maintenance of 2800. Thats about 18x BW and is actually pretty close to what I eat now, 2500-3000.

9. Have you treied eating at one of those calorie levels or just using a calculator?

There is no substitute for doing it.

Pick one, eat that much, if you stay the same weight next week, then thats your maint.

10. Originally Posted by Finnegan Bell
The Harris-Benedict formula (BMR based on total body weight)
Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 X wt in kg) + (5 X ht in cm) - (6.8 X age in years)

Katch-McArdle formula (BMR based on lean body weight)
BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X lean mass in kg)

Then multiply the BMR with ur activity level

Activity factor
Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)

Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)

Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)

Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)

Extr. Active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp, contest, etc.)

After I did the calculations BMR= 2070x 1.725 = 3570 a day just for maintenance. That doesnt seem right. I work out 6 days a week with high intensity but still that seems a lil bit overboard for a daily caloric intake.

11. Originally Posted by Finnegan Bell
The Harris-Benedict formula (BMR based on total body weight)
Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 X wt in kg) + (5 X ht in cm) - (6.8 X age in years)

Katch-McArdle formula (BMR based on lean body weight)
BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X lean mass in kg)

Then multiply the BMR with ur activity level

Activity factor
Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)

Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)

Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)

Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)

Extr. Active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp, contest, etc.)

alright well i work out(weight training with no more than 45 seconds of rest between sets) 6 days a week for 45-60 minutes a day. does this mean i am very active?

12. 230lbs, 6'3" = 3760cals Maint.

LOL, I wish, I have to eat at around 2500 to lose on a cut, my maint is around 3000.

13. Very informative. The only thing I need to find out is my BF% so that I don't end up losing muscle while taking less calories than my maintenance level. How do you find the BF%?

Thanks

14. You might find this very useful guys

Copy of Copy of cut.xls - 0.82MB

15. BMR = 66 + (13.7 X 75kg) + (5 X 181cm) - (6.8 X 24years) =1835 x (sitting on your ass all day) = 2202 calories.......
BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X estimated 13%bf so 65.25kg)=1779 x 1.2 = 2135 calories

Honestly if i was just sitting around all day i would probably get hungry enough to eat half of that amount.

Then i checked out a few different online calculators and im seeing a trend, im making the assumption they use the same 1 or 2 formulas for finding your required basic calorie needs.

For me being 165lb and 71 inches tall and plugging in 'sedentary' for the activity levels. Just to get as a baseline number.

http://www.exrx.net/Calculators/CalRequire.html
1838 BMR (Calories

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cal...ulator/NU00598
2200 calories

http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm
1762 Calories/day

http://www.my-calorie-counter.com/ca...alculator.asp#
Daily Calorie Requirements
2199

http://www.healthycalculators.com/ca...equirement.php
BMR 1833.16
To maintain current weight 2199.80

http://www.1is2fat.com/calorie_requi...calculator.htm
2145 Calories a day to maintain

Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR -1832.45
•Sedentary (Absolutely no, or very little exercise): TDEE = BMR x 1.2 2199cal

http://www.stevenscreek.com/goodies/calories.cgi
Resting (basal) metabolic rate: 1796 calories per day

http://www.medindia.net/patients/cal...orieResult.asp

Age 24 Years
Sex Male
Weight 75 Kgs (165.37 Pounds)
Height 181 Cms

For the above Age, Sex, Weight and Height You Require Daily 2202.36 Calories.

16. strong bump is strong

17. well im just slightly confused as to how many calories i really need if i want to have decent strength and muscle tissue increases from proper training while at the same time staYING LEAN LIKE GI JOE OR BATMAN MAYBE.

This one on bb.com

Step 1 - BMR Based On Weight

For Men: 1 x 75 Kg x 24 = 1796

Step 2 - BMR With Bodyfat Percentage Calculation

Taking your bodyfat percentage into account, your adjusted BMR is 1706 calories per day. This is equal to 71 calories per hour.

Step 3 - Total Daily Calories Burned

Adding in your activity level, we times your BMR by 1.55. This means that your approximate total calories burned each day is 2645''

But then it said something about eating 120grams of protien a day or some crap so istopped reading.

18. Given your height and weight, training 3-4 times a week (lifting heavy) plus any other activity exercise related that you do, I would eat at 3000kcals for two weeks and see what the scale says. If the scale goes down, bump calories up to 3500kcal, if the scale stays the same, bump them to 3250-3400kcals, if you gain more than 2-3lbs (I'm guessing you will gain weight because of water if you are not use to eating this much) drop them down a couple hundred.

None of these calculation equations are going to be 100% accurate, so why not just find it yourself? Sure it will take a few weeks or a couple months, but if you are busting ass in the gym, you will be making positive changes regardless.

19. Strong bump..

20. how much calories does a 220lbs male with 15%fat need daily ?

21. I am a bit confused on the calculations. If I work a desk job but workout/exercise 4-5 times a week, would I use the 1.55 multiple or use the 1.2 multiple then calculate my caloric intake based off of what I burn during my workouts?

It seems like double-dipping if I used the 1.55 multiple because of the frequency that I exercise/workout but then I also were to grant myself extra food calories for burning those calories off in the gym.

Should I just ignore the "Moderately Active" multiplier altogether or should I use the Mod. active multiplier but not count the particular activities since they should already be factored in? Sorry if this is confusing.

22. Originally Posted by RawlsTofJ
I am a bit confused on the calculations. If I work a desk job but workout/exercise 4-5 times a week, would I use the 1.55 multiple or use the 1.2 multiple then calculate my caloric intake based off of what I burn during my workouts?

It seems like double-dipping if I used the 1.55 multiple because of the frequency that I exercise/workout but then I also were to grant myself extra food calories for burning those calories off in the gym.

Should I just ignore the "Moderately Active" multiplier altogether or should I use the Mod. active multiplier but not count the particular activities since they should already be factored in? Sorry if this is confusing.
Just an estimate. If you want to lose weight, err on the side of caution (mod. active), if you want to bulk lean "active." Regardless after 2-3 weeks (to account for water weight fluctuation) you should be able to get a much more accurate assessment of calorie needs.

23. my friend is 6'0 160 lbs, 8% BF, what is his Maintenance? Anyone ?

Also, im 6'2 185 lbs 16% BF, whats my maintenance?

24. Anyone?

25. bump

Originally Posted by 6PackUnderFat
bump

27. thx man! if i had reps i would rep you,,,what about my buddies?

28. 2200, thats both before with a seditary life style

Originally Posted by 6PackUnderFat
thx man! if i had reps i would rep you,,,what about my buddies?

29. Originally Posted by rvbball
What formula do you guys use to figure out your BMR calories and Maintenance Calories?

I've tried alot of online calculators with alot of different results. Just wondering how you guys figure out what you need to maintain on a daily basis.

Calorie calculators are BS.
Track your calorie intake for a month and your weight at the beginning and the end. Than calculate your average calorie intake.
Say you gained 2 lbs., there are 7000 excess calories required for that. So divide 7000 by the amount of days you tracked your calories and that's how many extra calories you over-ate on average per day. So your daily calorie intake minus the excess calories is YOUR PERSONAL maintance level. Not from some random calorie calculator

30. Wow, great post! Do you happen to know how to calculate your "bulking" calories with a similar formula?

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