Do you know your total daily energy expenditure? You should. It can help you build muscle or lose fat. Before you buy a calculator, there’s some info you need to know. Don’t worry. It’s all right here!
Have you been spending hours in the gym with nothing to show for it?
Are you and your training partner working the same program with visibly different results?
Nutrition and training go hand-in-hand, but each person’s body is different. The way the body metabolizes calories and changes shape depends on a lot of factors.
You need to eat not only according to your goals, but also according to your body type and current training schedule. It all seems pretty simple.
The question is: How do you know how much to eat and how often to train?
Whether you’re looking to build muscle or lose fat, science plays a big role in helping the way your body takes shape.
It’s not always as simple as choosing a diet and hitting the gym daily. To get a true picture of the nutrients your body needs based on the training you take on, you need to understand how many calories you are burning every day. This is where the total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) calculator comes in handy. In its most basic form, the TDEE calculator reveals how many calories your body burns per day.
But what does it mean for you and your fitness goals?
We’ll show you!
What Is The TDEE Calculator?
The TDEE calculator is a system that calculates how many calories your body is burning each day. Most people are used to the body mass index (BMI) calculator or the basal metabolic rate (BMR) calculator. The TDEE calculator is a little more complex than both of these.
More specifically, your body mass index is a very basic calculation of your body fat percentage. It is based on height and weight. Finding out your basal metabolic rate will tell you how many calories your body burns at rest. This will tell you how many calories a day your body needs to consume to carry out its basic functions.
The TDEE calculator varies in that it provides you with the total amount of calories your body burns per day at its resting level combined with the calories burned from physical activity in your day. By having this number, you can make sure your body is not only getting enough nutrition but is getting the best fuel to train at its peak level.
This Is How It Works
The TDEE calculator asks a few simple questions to figure out how many calories you are burning in a day. You are asked to provide your gender, age, height, weight, daily activity level and frequency and intensity of your workouts.
With these numbers plugged into the equation, you can then find out how many calories your body is burning in a complete day. The great thing about this calculator is that it’s easily adaptable.
What’s so great about that?
Your stats change.
Info On TDEE And Nutrition
Nutrition and body composition are not one and the same. There is nothing that says simply eating a healthy diet will produce muscle and reduce fat the way you want. There is also no promise that eating a poor diet will result in weight gain.
Without question, eating clean is the best way to get your body the nutrients it needs, but even a clean diet can produce unwanted results where your body composition is concerned.
Eating too many clean foods can sometimes provide your body with too little or too many calories to achieve your goals. You need to make sure the amount of energy your body intakes through food is equal to the outcome you’re looking to achieve.
So how does this help with your weekly meal prep?
Once you’ve figured out how much energy your body is using per day, you can then adjust your calories to the amount you need to see the type of results you want.
For instance, to increase muscle mass, your body needs more energy than it expends every day. To maintain your current mass, you need about the same amount of energy your body uses daily. To lose fat, you need to consume less energy than your body produces daily.
Info On TDEE And Exercise
How does exercise play a role in your total daily energy expenditure?
The more calories you burn, the more nutrition you’ll need to consume to make up for that energy being used by your body. Even fitness buffs sometimes fail to change their diets as their training level changes. A quick calculation of your daily caloric intake can help keep you training at your top level.
One thing to note is that the TDEE calculator does not distinguish between weight/strength training and cardio. All of the info is combined into one calculation. That’s why it is important to use a TDEE calculator that asks for your body fat percentage; this will help the calculator produce a more accurate result.
It is well known that the more lean muscle mass you carry on your body, the faster your body can process food. In a nutshell, the leaner you are, the more energy your body uses trying to maintain the muscle you already have.
It is also vital to recalculate your TDEE if your daily activity, outside of exercise, changes. For instance, if all of a sudden you find yourself sitting more often than you are on your feet, you should note that in the calculator for best results.
Info On TDEE And Fat Loss
Fat loss isn’t just for people trying to lose weight. Even pro bodybuilders go through phases of fat loss to showcase the muscle definition built underneath the extra layer.
To do that, you need to have some idea of how many calories your body needs per day. For the average person, this does not mean you need to count calories for every single meal. But, you should have a broad idea of what your caloric needs are and how they relate to the speed at which you’d like to see fat loss occur.
The TDEE calculator is especially important for people looking to lose weight because even though 1,200 calories is the minimum amount of calories needed to survive, most people need much more to preserve their energy and body functionality. If you try to build too big of a caloric deficit, you may end up stalling your weight loss.
It is always important to find the right balance of energy in versus energy out in order to make progress with your weight-loss goals. At the end of the day, it is the combo of energy exchange in your body along with the quality of food you are consuming that will make your body healthier overall.
Info On TDEE And Muscle Gain
Gaining weight and boosting your muscle mass requires the same amount of diligence that losing weight does. With muscle gain goals, it is almost more important to use a calculator so that you can get in the proper amount of calories for the day.
Eating less is something we have been trained to do over time. Between the media and our social interactions, eating less has almost become a favorite past time. But, when trying to gain weight or bulk, many people think that it is easy to eat more. It isn’t as simple as it looks.
Because our bodies are naturally conditioned to consume a certain amount of food at any given time, we become full faster than we expect when we eat more. It is hard to consume the amount of calories you need to increase weight and muscle mass the way most people want.
Knowing how many calories you burn in a day will help you to reevaluate the food choices you make. If you know that you need a significant boost in calories to meet your daily goals, you’ll start to choose lower density foods with higher caloric values. For instance, you might go with fatty fish, healthy oils and full-fat meat and/or dairy.
For both weight loss and weight gain, counting calories isn’t for everyone. But, it may be a good place to start in order to get a sense of the volume and quantity of food you need to consume to get to your goal. By keeping a daily journal of your food intake, you are able to see where you are falling short in terms of your food intake.
Some Devices That Measure TDEE
A quick Google search will show you many TDEE calculator options. Some of them are better than others. If you look at the info needed to make a calculation, you should be able to find one that suits your needs.
Remember that calculators with body fat percentages included are more accurate than those without.
There are also other ways to calculate your TDEE. Consumer markets are recognizing how good knowing your TDEE is. In the last few years there have been many activity monitors on the market designed to measure how much energy you’re using per day. These aren’t to be confused with ones that only track your steps. There are a lot of wearable monitors that track your heart rate and sometimes speed. Some of these can make fairly precise predictions about how many calories you’re burning each day.
Do These Watches Help You Reach Your Goals?
A study by the Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity noted that wearable devices like the FitBit and Nike Fuelband produced fairly precise TDEE results. But, you need to remember that the quality of the device will affect how much info it can accurately estimate.
Watches with no wearable heart rate monitor can’t track your level of intensity as well as those with a heart rate monitor. Also don’t forget that without accurate starting stats (including your body fat percent), these trackers can only go so far. It is important to use a reliable calculator to get the most out of your diet and exercise routine.
While the TDEE calculator can tell you how much energy you’re burning a day, it can’t calculate your macronutrient needs in relation to your goals. That means, in order to figure out how many carbs, proteins, and fats you’ll need in a day, you’ll need to use a separate calculator or consult a fitness professional. It’s also vital to note that your macronutrient intake will vary according to your goals and your energy expenditure results can’t give you that info.
Also, remember that the calculator only gives an estimate. You will have to go through a trial and error process with your diet and training regimen to figure out what works best for you. A calculator can only be as accurate as the info you give it. If you are unsure about some of the data you have to plug in, your results may be a bit more flexible than someone who has precise numbers.
Also, remember that every person’s body is different and how your body absorbs nutrients and responds to training is based on you as an individual. Use the TDEE calculator as a starting point. But, be aware that you may need to tweak and change things.
Info is the key to success. There’s no doubt! It is always a good idea to know what your body needs in terms of calories and nutrition. Even fitness junkies who have been doing it for years still need a tune up to refine their diet and training program to match their changing goals.
Knowing your total daily energy expenditure can help you be more efficient with your diet and training. The most important thing to remember is that you control how the info you receive gets used. It will take some trial and error with your food and training to find a system that works for you. The TDEE calculator is a great tool for not only those getting started, but those who find themselves at a plateau and even those just looking to fine tune their program.
By Aly Tyghter
After changing his best friend’s life by helping him lose over 70lbs, dropping him down to an amazing 7% body fat, Terry was inspired to be a full-time internet trainer knowing he could do the same for many more. In 2010, Terry published his own diet and fitness e-book that can be purchased on this website. Let Terry help you change your body for the better!
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