Think we need a nutrition post, haven’t had one in a while.
This is one where the PT’s/Coaches can get involved and display how they work with their clients.
Despite what some Guru’s claim, they do matter.
Those crafty little things that people seem to struggle to have any form of candour with when tracking them.
At a base level, for those without any for of genetic or medical conditions, calories influence you the following ways:
Energy balance 101 –
– Positive Energy Balance = Calorie Surplus = Weight Gain
– Negative Energy Balance = Calorie Deficit = Weight Loss
– Energy Balance = Caloric Maintenance = Weight maintenance
Your own personal caloric needs will differ depending on these and other factors:
– Activity (TDEE)
– Lean Mass
– Current Weight
There are other factors as well such as TEF & NEAT/NEPA, however these will do for the purpose of this post.
We can also look at macros as well however that will be best suited to another day.
The big question now is this.
How do you establish the calories you need each day?
This is in regards to weight maintenance, once you know how many you need to consume to sustain your current physique you can manipulate then accordingly for your desired goal.
You have the following methods to choose form:
The Katch-McArdle Equation
The Cunningham Formula
The Mifflin-St Jeor Equation
The Revised Harris-Benedict Equation
The Owen Equation
The WHO/FAO/UNU Equation
The Aragon RMR Equation
The Eric Helms M&S Pyramid Equation
To name a few.
Those will all give you an estimate of your BRM (Basal Metabolic Rate) from here you’d then take the number provide by them and use an ‘Activity Multiplier’ to get again an estimate of your total calories for daily needs.
It’s worth noting that as with anything these are estimates.
There will always be some degree of movement, you’ll even find with the different equations above there can be up to a 300 calorie difference between them.
An older equation I’ve used was pilfered from a book called PowerLifting and is as follows:
(This give you calories for your daily needs based on your goal)
Losing Weight = BW in Lbs X 11-13
Gaining Weight = BW in Lbs X 17-19
I’ve found these to be pretty similar numbers wise to all of the others that involve activity multipliers and so on.
However if I do use this with a client I will not necessarily put them straight at those calorie targets.
What typically happens is the target is compared to their current (this is established by having them track all their foods by the number for 2-3 weeks to gain a solid understanding of how much they’re eating).
Once this is done calories will be dropped or increased periodically by 50 per week until their is movement on the scales, then we stop adding and stay there until the scale stalls again, at which time 50 is added/dropped each week until steady movement once again begins.
This is repeated until people fall in the target ranges estimated form above, typically.
It has always seemed that people want an all or nothing approach with nutrition.
They want nutrition plans that they evidently won’t stick to (plus not many are actually qualified to write them anyway).
Or they want that drastic calorie drop because they think it will get them faster results, which is does for about 4 weeks and then they crash and burn in a glorious blaze.
You have to remember you can also factor in training, recovery and various other things as well.
If you start to hard and fast you soon find you run out of places to go, I speak from experience on this one.
How do you establish your calories?
What recommendations do you give your clients?
Perhaps you have questions on the above, if so feel free to pop them down below.
Let’s get discussing that ever so complicated (which is needn’t be) topic of nutrition.