These are the questions I hear on a day to day basis, Some from even people in good shape that are trying to take their physiques to the next level or for performance on a certain lift. Others are just for general weight loss. Here they go.
- How many meals per day should I eat , I heard….?
- I eat every three hours to keep my metabolism high, why am I not losing weight?
- How much protein should I get a day to lose/gain weight?
- How much water should I drink?
- What supplements can I take?
- I eat clean, isn’t that enough?
….I typically answer these questions first with a question. How many calories are you taking in…
And I typically get the same answer everytime…
“well I have no idea, I heard calories didn’t count.”
^This is where the fitness industry has got you! Hook, line, Sinker! Calories are the most important part of the spectrum. Whether losing weight, gaining weight, or maintaining weight (this is the hardest), it is crucial to know how many calories one is taking in. If it is important to get in shape, its important to know your caloric intake.
If you are trying to lose weight, and you are eating every three hours “to keep metabolism boosted” (not real, it could help with satiation if meals are balanced properly) and you are eating “clean” and you are eating all organic, taking the best multivitamin, and supplements on the market, drinking the right amount of water, training 5 times a week, taking in the correct amount of fiber and IF you are eating more cals than your body is burning, YOU WILL NOT LOSE WEIGHT!
Don’t believe me ? Well then keep this up .. this will be you.
Stuck in a rut, upset, and trying everything other than the simplist thing. Tracking your calories.
But Travis, I track my calories and I tried to eat 1200 and I didn’t lose weight it doesn’t work..
Answer: Did you weigh your food out? …Client”No”. Me..”Then you don’t know if you were eating 1200 calories.”
Client” Well I weighed out my food and did 1200 cals and I still didn’t lose weight”… Me..” How did you do over the weekend?” Client ” Oh it was bad! we went to ….”. This is just like the picture of the truck. Calories can be looked at over the WEEKLY basis.
Here is a calorie formula to figure your cals
http://manytools.org/handy/bmr-calculator/ <—–this is a calculation try for 2 weeks and assess.
Here is an example of a woman trying her 1200 cal a day fat loss diet and weekend binging.
- 1,200cals x 7days =8,400 cals for the week….
- 1,200x5=6,000 then add 2 bad days on the weekend 2,500x2=5,000
- 6,000 +5,000=11,000 weekly.
- 11,000/7=1,571 cals a day.
So if 1,571 cals is close to the amount of calories you need to maintain your weight, then you will simply maintain your weight.
This makes you spin your wheels..Again..
Sometimes people don’t want to give up their weekends on eating out and drinking. I am all for that. If we plan it, we can’t lose. This is something that we want to make attainable, not miserable. And a fat loss diet is not forever. It is for a short period of time.
So lets give a little for the week and then leave some wiggle room for the weekend. Not 2,500 calories, lets go with 2,000.
mon tues wed thurs fri sat sun Weekly total avg cal per day this way
900 1100 1200 1000 1350 2000 1500 9,050 1,292
This is a way to may the fat loss diet sustainable by looking at the big picture.
What about the carbs,fats and proteins? What about water intake and supplementation? What about meal times?
Lets start with Calories and then I will break one into each subcategory and touch on it.
- Start with how many calories we need to lose,gain, or maintain weight.
- Look at calories over the weekly basis.
- Plan your mess ups. The days that are easiest to stay on track, use those to your advantage.
- Macronutrients, Water intake, food type, meal times, and supplements don’t matter as much as the caloric intake.