Step # 1. ARE YOU AT A HEALTHY WEIGHT?
Use the Quick Health Calculator or BMI (Body Mass Index) Calculator to determine if you are at a healthy weight for your height. (Please note that this calculation does not take into account muscle mass. So if you have more muscle then the average person, this number may be slightly inaccurate).
Step # 2. ARE YOU LIVING A SAFE AND HEALTH LIFESTYLE?
Use the Life Expectancy Calculator to determine how your current lifestyle, diet and family history affect your life expectancy.
Step # 3. HOW MANY CALORIES DO YOU NEED ON A DALY BASIS?
Use the BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) calculator to determine how many calories your body burns at rest and the amount of calories that you will need to maintain your current weight.
Step #4 WHAT IS YOUR GOAL?
Determine what your goal is. If your goal is to lose weight then you will need to burn more calories a day then you intake. If your goal is to gain muscle and weight then you will need to take in more calories a day then you burn.
Take your BMR and add to it the extra calories that you are burning in your day from exercise and daily activities. Most cardio machines will tell you how many calories you burned during your session.
Another great tool is a step counter; use it to count the number of steps that you are taking in a day. Then from there you can calculate how many calories you burned that day (The BMR calculator can also approximate the amount of calories you are burning; but it is only an approximate number. For a more accurate number try to calculate it yourself).
Once you have your daily caloric expenditure (how many calories you need on a daily basis to maintain your current weight) minus 500 calories to get your required calorie intake for the day. This will equate to losing one pound of body fat every week. (1 LBS of body fat = 3500 calories). A loss of one pound per week is healthy; if you start losing too much weight too quickly you are more likely to gain it back down the road.
Example: BMR 1900 + Daily Caloric Expenditure 700 = 2600 cal / day. 2600 – 500 = 2100 cal/day
Weight / Muscle Gain
Take your BMR and add to it the extra calories that you are burning in your day from exercise and daily activities. Weight Training can burn 7 to 10 calories/min. depending on the intensity of your training.
Once you have your daily caloric expenditure (how many calories you need on a daily basis to maintain your current weight) add 500 calories to get your required calorie intake for the day. This will equate to gaining one pound every week.
Example: BMR 2200 + Daily Caloric Expenditure 900 = 3100 cal. / day. 3100 + 500 = 3600 cal/day.
Step # 5 HOW MUCH OF YOUR DIET SHOULD COME FROM PROTEIN?
Whether you are trying to gain muscle or lose body fat you need to incorporate weight training into your daily routine. By doing this; your body’s need for protein increases. The reason for this is because during weight training your muscles are under stress and this causes them to tear. In order for your muscles to repair themselves they need protein. It is through this tear and repair process that your muscle gets stronger, bigger and toned. Use the Protein Intake Calculator to determine how many of your calories should come from protein. Remember 1g of protein = 4 cal.
Step # 6 HOW MANY CALORIES AM I TAKING IN ON A DAILY BASIS?
Now that you know how many calories you need to intake on a daily basis use our Nutrient and Calorie Database to find out how many and what kind of calories are in the foods that you are eating.
Nutrient and Calorie Database (Downloadable Software for Windows)
By following these 6 steps you will dramatically increase your chances of success for achieving your desired goal.