Counting Calories… and you still aren’t losing weight….
3,500 calories is equivalent to 1 pound of body fat. So if you need to lose 10 pounds, that’s 35,000 calories you need to expend from your body. Whether you burn calories through exercise or take on the task of counting every calorie that you put into your body, its the best route to take in achieving your fitness goal (losing weight and even gaining muscle).
Workouts are a task in its own right but for the sake of this blog, we’re going to break off a piece of the iceberg with the nutrition side of things.
The very first thing I have a client do is simply write down every single thing they eat, drink and chew. Doing this will make I’m able to really see what their food intake is. How many times a day they eat, what times they have their meals, how many snacks/meals they have a day, and lastly, what they are eating?
For about 3-5 weeks I am looking at their patterns making minor adjustments each week. Depending on how consistent they are after that time, I have them start looking at calories. I don’t require them to count every calorie but I do ask that they focus on at least one meal per day. Slowly but surely they start counting all meals.
I NEVER force people to count calories from the beginning because it is a lot to take on. To me, if my client wants to achieve their goal they listen to what I tell them to do and even though it’s tough, they’ll do it because nothing will stop them from achieving their goal. I’ve discovered that having them take baby steps towards changing their lifestyle will make it more attainable and they are more likely to stick with it!
So if this is where you’re at… you’ve probably lost some weight but now you’ve hit a plateau. If you know what your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR), the rate at which your body burns calories at rest, the next step is looking at WHAT type of calories you are taking in. Calories are not created equally. The nutritional value changes with everything you put in your mouth.
Take the picture below. Both are approximately 130 calories. Obviously the chicken and broccoli will fill you up and keep you satisfied much longer then the 5 Hershey kisses! The chicken (approx. 4oz) and broccoli (approx 1/2 cup) also has a higher nutritional value. Chicken has about 20 grams of protein, broccoli about 6 grams of carbohydrates. While the Hershey’s has about 8 grams of fat, 11 grams of carbs (10 being grams of sugar) and less than 2 grams of protein. (These are Milk Chocolate Kisses with Macadamia Nuts). **NUFF SAID**
Now that you can see what a difference the type of calorie makes, its time to figure out what your Macronutrient ratio should. Here is how I figure out the intake for my clients. First step is finding out your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR), check out this blog to find the formula. Remember, if you want to lose weight you’ll need to decrease the Total Daily Energy Expenditure by 20% or approx 500 calories. Once you have that number you’ll multiply this number by the following breakdown:
You can change the ratio depending on your preference of carbs or proteins. I personally like a 55% carbs, 30% proteins and 15% fats ratio. You can adjust it based on how you are feeling throughout the day. Make sure to give your body a couple days before you decide to change it.
For example, if you have a 1500 calorie intake, the ratio would be:
Carbs: 825 calories (55%)
Protein: 450 calories (30%)
Fats: 225 calories (15%)
If you really want an easier way to track these calorie intakes from above then find out the grams per nutrient.
Carbs: 1 gram= 4 calories
Protein: 1 gram= 4 calories
Fats: 1 gram= 9 calories
Using the numbers above:
Carbs: 825 calories = 206 grams
Proteins: 450 calories = 112 grams
Fats: 225 calories = 25 grams
If you are serious about losing weight, you’ll get serious about counting calories and not just calories but WHAT TYPE OF CALORIES!!!
Good luck! And please if all of this is confusing, please don’t hesitate to call, email, text, facebook me!
I JUST WANT TO HELP YOU!! 😉