How Caloric Need For Weight Gain Can make You Happy
There are dozens of formulas and methods for working out your energy expenditure. The overly analytical, highly complex methods are pointless because you simply cannot estimate on paper with any real accuracy, what your metabolism is.
And what is metabolism? For the purposes of this discussion we’ll quickly mention Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and why it’s important…
BMR is the amount of energy your body requires just to stay alive. Assuming you were in a deep sleep all day your body still requires energy to support vital organs and essential bodily processes. This is basal metabolism and you can estimate its caloric equivalent.
BMR is affected by weight – the heavier you are, the more cells you have, the higher your BMR will be. Males tend to have a higher BMR than females and BMR decreases with age. The amount of fat and muscle makes a difference too.
Suppose two women the same age both weighed 100lbs. One had a body fat percentage of 20% the other 30%. The lady with a 20% body fat will likely have a higher BMR because she has more lean muscle which demands more energy than fat.
Okay let’s work out your caloric needs…
How Millennial Are Getting Rid of Caloric Weight Gain
Here’s one of the simplest methods to determine your basal metabolic rate (BMR). You need your body weight in kg so divide your weight in lbs by 2.2. So if you are a 140lb male your weight is 63.6kg.
MALES: 1 x Body Weight(kg) x 24
FEMALES: 0.9 x Body Weight(kg) x 24
Sticking with our 140lb male their BMR works out as 1527Kcal (1 x 63.6 x 24)
A more accurate formula has been developed by McArdle, Katch and Katch. You need to know your body fat percentage for this one…
Step 1 – Work out your fat free mass in lbs. Suppose your body weight is 140lbs and your body fat is 10%. You know 10% of 140lbs is 14 so you have 14lbs of fat mass. Subtract that from your total body weight to get your fat free mass. In this example 140 – 14 = 126lbs.
Step 2 – Convert your fat free mass into kg by dividing the figure in lbs by 2.2. Again our example would be 126/2.2 = 57.2kg.
Step 3 – Multiply your fat free mass in kg by 21.6 then add 370. So our example works out as 57.2 x 21.6 = 1236 + 370 = 1605Kcal.
Both examples are fairly close – 1527Kcal and 1605Kcal for our basal metabolism. Now we need to account for daily activity. Best not to make it too complicated…
Sedentary activity – BMR x 1.2
Light activity – BMR x 1.375
Moderately activity – BMR x 1.55
High activity – BMR x 1.725
Extreme activity – BMR x 1.9
Our 140lb male is a manual worker and exercises 5 times a week so we’ll assume that’s high activity and multiply his BMR by 1.725. Our grand total then is 1605 x 1.725 = 2798Kcal. So in order to maintain his weight this man needs to consume about 2800 calories per day.
In order to gain weight the authorities that be suggest we add an additional 300 to 500 calories a day to our diets. So to gain weight our guy needs to consume 3100 to 3300Kcal every day. Now these are ballpark figures and you must not get fixated with them. Instead…
Start off by taking you statistics – your weight and body fat percentage first thing in the morning. Stick to a set number of calories that you can maintain for at least 4 weeks and then take your measurements again.
If you’ve failed to gain any weight or lean muscle mass add another 300 to 500 calories a day to your diet and train for a further 4 weeks.
So there you have it. Plan any weight gain diet firstly on the number of calories you’ve estimated will help you gain weight.
They say 500kcal over and above your maintenance needs should allow you to gain about 1lb a week. Why not put it to the test?