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Thread: Maintenance calories and such

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  1. #1
    Banned IHaveToCrushYou's Avatar
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    Maintenance calories and such

    Hey guys I've been reading these forums for a while but I feel it's time I start posting. I'm a 20 year old guy, 6'1.5", 190lbs with 30% BF as of April 20/06 (BF was measured using DEXA body comp testing). Now I'm not the biggest fan of having 30% BF so my goal is to get down to about 15%. That means I have to lose 28lbs out of the 57lbs that make up that 30%. In orer to accomplish this I'll be doing 20 minutes every morning on my elliptical (on an empty stomach) and then hitting the gym at least 3 times a week. My cardio burns around 400 calories according to the machine and I have heard the average weightlifting session burns around 400 calories as well. So on pure cardio days I'll have burned 400 cals and 800 on cardio + weight days. Thats a lot of calories burned in one week .

    The only thing left for me to figure out is my maintenance calories. I know that my caloric intake for the day has to be below maintenance on a cut but I'm not sure how to figure out what my maintenance is, whether it changes over time as I lose fat, and whether or not I subtract my cardio/weightlifting calories burned from it.

    Would appreciate your help greatly. Oh and anyone think its possible to lose 28lbs in 12 weeks or less?

  2. #2
    Former Fatass Unreal's Avatar
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    Can you lose 28lbs in 12 weeks or less, sure. Can you lose 28lbs of fat in 12 weeks? Probably not. Can you lose 28lbs in a healthy manner in 12 weeks, probably not.

    First, don't trust the machine or anything when it comes to "burn calories". That 800 is probably WAY off. Second, cardio is not the way to lose weight, diet is. Use the cardio for cardio, IE train your heart/lungs. Cardio on an empty stomach is just asking for catabolism and loss of lean body mass.

    For maintence, you need to figure it out. Track everything you eat for a week or two, and measure your weight and see how it changes. Measure first thing in the morning, naked to try to minimize water weight flucuations. Your maintence calories will chance. You adjust accordingly. I use to cut on 2300 and now I find myself starving on anything less then 2700.

    Being new to it, don't worry about details. Lift HEAVY. Get a real weight lifting routine, start eating clean and track cals. Get use to going to the gym, and enjoy it. You'll never stick to it unless you enjoy it. The highlight of my day is always my trip to the gym. At first I hated going, messed around alittle with machines, then would do 45 minutes of cardio a day. That worked ok for awhile, but it got boring, strength didn't really go anywhere. I was losing weight, but wasn't getting where I wanted. I went from alittle over 300 to 195 and now I'm currently 225 but leaner then ever.

    Learn to squat and deadlift now. Get form down, learn to love them. Nothing is more exciting then a new best deadlifting or squatting.
    Last edited by Unreal; 04-22-2006 at 10:15 AM.
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  3. #3
    mmm... meat... ottomanart's Avatar
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    I am 24, 190lbs and 5’10” I have no idea what my body fat % is and until I tone some I would rather not find out (though I am guessing it’s up around 30). I am also trying to slim down and I had a similar question about finding my Maintenance Cals level... it was up here a few days ago and this is what people told me:

    "it is cliche, but true, that everyone is different. You are going to have to keep track of your food for at least 3-7 days, 7 being ideal. This will give you an idea of how many calories you consume in a week. If you don’t gain any weight during that week, you know your maintenance. If you lose/gain weight, +- 500 cals from what you were eating before and try again the following week. You will be happy in the long run to figure out what your maintenance is and not what an online calculator found to be your maintenance. Sign up a www.fitday.com which is a website where you can log the foods you eat to make keeping track of them easier." -canada-

    "Nope, don't use the BMR formulas. Just plug everything in and track what you eat for a week, and if you don't gain or lose any weight, that's your maintenance level. For most it's around 3000 cals, so you could start around there if you aren't sure. Just make sure to get at least 0.5g/lb LBM in fats and 1g/lb LBM in protein.”
    –Jordan-

    I am pretty active and run almost every day so I am going with the 3000 cals a day for now and seeing how I feel. I hope what these guys told me can help you too. It seems to be doing well for me so far. Good luck and let me know how it turns out.
    "I lift, I sleep, I work, I eat (a lot), I run and then... I do it all over agian!"
    "Lifting is like a box of chocolates... onces you start you can't stop!"

    Keep my body weight below 200lbs (for now)
    Aug 10 ('06)Bench: 115kg ______ goal by Dec 31: get back up to 115kg
    Get both my Dead and Squat above 120kg before 2008

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  4. #4
    Banned IHaveToCrushYou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unreal
    First, don't trust the machine or anything when it comes to "burn calories". That 800 is probably WAY off. Second, cardio is not the way to lose weight, diet is. Use the cardio for cardio, IE train your heart/lungs. Cardio on an empty stomach is just asking for catabolism and loss of lean body mass.
    Unreal: I've read that cardio and diet are oth equally important in fat loss and usually keep my heart rate at about 70% of the maximum (the fat burning zone) when doing cardio.

    On a side note I noticed in your sig that you go to the Uofa. Nice to see a local person on here, cause Im in Edmonton too.

    Ottomanart: Thanks for passing on that info to me Otto, I'm gonna start keeping track of my cals, but the the thing that sucks is I dont have a scale in my house so I always have to use the YMCA scale. Ah well, I guess its just as good.

    As far as getting a BF% test goes I say get one done so you know how much weight you need to lose in order to get down to 15% or less. Before I took the test I thought I was only 20% so finding out I was 30% was a bit of a surprise. You've just gotta be prepared to face the truth, since the numbers are there in black and white, nothing better, nothing worse.

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