Basal Metabolic Rate
This is a post you’ll find on my old blog. I’m re-posting because I still think it’s important, that whilst this is NOT a full-blown accurate measure, it might give you a general ide of where you’re at roughly. You will also see I’ve added a new category titled “learning”. Here I shall share interesting bits of information that could help all of us lead healthier lifestyles.
So, I see a lot of things flying around about foods & exercises that boost your metabolism. It got me thinking. What is my basal metabolic rate (BMR)? You can get this professionally tested, which is the most accurate, however, it can be very expensive. I did a bit of research and I found a calculation in a book I own called “Sports Nutrition for Women” by Anita Bean (it’s brilliant).
BMR is the number of calories burned during rest that enables your body to continue to function (heartbeat, breathing, maintaining body temperature etc.) This can really useful to know when trying to keep fit and healthy as it gives an indication of the amount of calories you need to consume to maintain/lose/gain weight.
The quick calculation is as follows (for women);
BMR= weight in kg x 22
If I do that I get my BMR is 1265, however, this doesn’t take into account your PAL (Physical Activity Level). So Anita Bean also provides a slightly more lengthy calculation that gives a marginally more accurate result, it’s as follows;
BMR= 665 + (9.6 x W) + (1.8 x H) – (4.7 x A)
Where W=weight in kg H=height in cm A=age in years
Once you have calculated your BMR you need to multiply that by your PAL, which you can workout as follows;
PAL Description Example
1 Inactive Sleeping/lying down
1.2 Sedentary Mainly sitting/ desk job
1.5 Moderately active Some walking
1.7 Active Daily walking/ gentle exercise
2.0 Very active Moderate daily training or sport
2.2 Extremely active Strenuous daily training or sport
I calculated mine with a PAL of 2.1, I believe I am very active (exercise 6 days a week) but I would describe is between moderate and strenuous, so I went for in between 2.0 and 2.2. My result is 2927 calories. I’m not going to lie, it’s surprising and a lot. The difficulty is in estimating your PAL, it’s not an easy thing to judge at all. I would say to ask yourself and then ask others. Ask people who knows your workout regime/intensity, then compare with yours and go for in between.
All in all, if you want a general idea of roughly how much you should be consuming to lose/maintain/gain weight then this is a good place to start, but take it with a pinch of salt. It’s not accurate and humans are notorious for overestimating their activity level (I could be way off). If you want a more accurate BMR reading then go and speak to your GP and ask about getting an accurate BMR reading.
Take a look at Anita Bean’s books on Amazon. She has loads on sport nutrition for everyone and books on weight training and exercise, she’s written excellent books for the general human being, not just professional athletes.
In terms of carbohydrate consumption you should be looking at roughly 5-7g per kg body weight on low-moderate training days and 7-10g per kg body weight for high intensity days.
For protein if you’re an endurance athlete aim for between 1.2-1.4g per kg body weight per day. If you’re a strength athlete, it’s a bit more, about 1.4-1.7g per kg body weight. Here, you could look at protein shakes.
Again, please let me emphasize, if you get a reading for 3,000 calories, chances are it’s slightly above. But you also shouldn’t then consume 1,200 calories. You’ll know if you’re eating enough depending on how you feel and whether you’re gaining muscle, fat or becoming skeletal.
Take it one day at a time, some won’t be as good as others, but don’t give up, you’ll get there. I, for example, just scoffed a 200g cadbury dairy milk in 3 days flat, but it was delicious.