No Big Deal

Weight loss may not be easy, but the formula behind it is.

A calorie is a unit of food energy. Each person must eat a certain amount of calories each day to survive. The number you need depends on your current weight, age, activity level, and sex. In order to shed some pounds, you’ve got to create a calorie deficit by burning more calories than you consume. This deficit causes your body to burn the calories stored as fat rather than the calories from the cheeseburger you just ate. Here are a few tips that the boot camp in Lloydminster want you to keep in mind when counting calories.

Weight Loss Calculator

For a quick way to estimate how many calories you should eat each day to lose your desired number of pounds by a certain date, find a weight loss calculator online. You’ll need to enter your sex, age, current weight, height, activity level, as well as your starting date and the number of pounds you want to lose. Once you’ve done this, it’s time to get started.

The Do’s and Don’ts

Many dieters are tempted to take the idea of a calorie deficit to the extreme by practically starving themselves. A calorie deficit of more than 1,000 calories (eating 1,000 fewer calories than you burn) a day is counterproductive and unsafe. Without enough calories for energy, your body will begin to burn muscle mass for fuel and go into starvation mode. Your metabolism will then slow and your weight loss will decrease or stop completely. Following such a diet, any lost pounds will likely be found once again. To avoid this, women should eat at least 1,200 calories a day, and men should go for a minimum of 1,500.

To lose weight the healthy way, the Lloydminster boot camp wants you to aim for a calorie deficit each day of between 300 and 1,000 calories. This means you must either eat that many fewer calories or—even better—eat fewer calories while increasing your physical activity at the same time. You may find you need to eat more to calories on the days you workout so your body has enough extra fuel. A healthy goal to work towards is dropping half a pound to two pounds per week. This way, your body can adjust to the changes and you’ll be more likely to maintain your new weight.

Calories In

Empty calories like sugars and fats don’t provide the necessary nutrients for optimal function and you’d have to eat a lot more to feel full and have enough energy. On the other hand, if your daily calorie intake is a balance of protein, carbs, and fiber, your body will have the energy it needs to stay healthy and you won’t have to eat as much to feel full.

As you can see, counting calories is important for weight loss, but it is only part of the picture. To count your “calories in” you’ll need to find a website that lists every food and drink and its corresponding number of calories. After each meal or snack or at the end of each day, keep a running count of your total daily calories.

Calories Out

Every action you perform burns calories. Your body burns calories just by being alive. Activities that require more energy (running, walking, lifting weights) burn more calories. Calories you burn are called “calories out.” This number is a little harder to determine.

To estimate how many calories you burn on a normal day, hunt down a basal metabolic rate calculator online. Once you determine your basal metabolic rate and the average number of calories you eat each day, you can use them to determine how many calories to cut from your diet and how many you need to burn in order to create the deficit needed for weight loss. Then get on it! And don’t forget to weigh yourself every few days to chart your progress.

This blog was submitted by the Lloydminster Personal Trainer from Fit Body Boot Camp Lloydminster.

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