To determine the amount of calories you burn at rest, you need to know your: weight, height, and age.
With this information, you can determine your BMR (amount of energy your body needs to function at rest).
I use the formula below which only applies to adult females (scroll down for the Men’s BMR Calculator):
655 + (4.3 x weight in lbs) + (4.7 x height in inches) – (4.7 x age) = BMR in calories
Example: A woman who is 25 years old, weighs 140lbs, and is 70 inches tall.
655 + (4.3 x 140lbs) + (4.7 x 70 inches) – (4.7 x 25 years) = 1469 calories
Notice how this differs GREATLY from what you might have read on the back of your cereal box – ie that women need 2,000 calories per day, and men need 2,500!
This woman now has a choice…
- She can eat 1469 calories, do no exercise, and maintain her current weight.
- She can eat 1469 calories, do some exercise, and lose weight.
- She can eat less than 1469 calories, do no exercise and lose weight.
- She can eat less than 1469 calories, do some exercise, and lose weight most quickly.
When I wanted to lose weight I opted for the 4th option, because I just wanted to lose the weight and get on with my life!
We also now know that:
It’s HEALTHIER to lose weight more quickly.
We are more likely to maintain the weight loss if we lose it quickly.
We are more likely to be motivated to stay on the weight loss program if we see the number on our scales dropping rapidly.
As you lose weight, and get older, your calorific needs will decrease.
So if you’re losing a lot of weight make sure you recalculate your BMR regularly.
BMR Calculator for Men:
Adult male: 66 + (6.3 x body weight in lbs.) + (12.9 x height in inches) – (6.8 x age in years) = BMR