T Nation

Caloric Calculations

I’m a bit confused about how to go about calculating my daily caloric intake. I’ve been following T-Dawg 2.0 for 12 weeks now and according to this diet my daily caloric intake should be:
D.C.I = (Body weight * 15) - 500
so for me my D.C.I = 1615 cals

But last week for me had to be the hardest because I was always getting hunger pains which I tried to counter by drinking 500mls of water every 1.5hrs cause I thought maybe my body was getting dehydrated but it didnt work.

So then I decided that maybe T-dawg 2 has taken me as far as it can (despite still losing 1-2lbs every week and my strength being constant) so I started to look at the Don’t Diet plan and followed the algorithm to determine D.C.I which for me is
D.C.I = 3000cals.

This is what is confusing me. Why does T-Dawg say to have 1615cals a day and Don’t Diet is saying to have almost double that.

So here are my questions:

  1. If I swich diets will I keep losing weight? and why?

  2. If the answer to the above question is “no” then can you PLEASE tell me how to stop these hunger pains.
    my p/f/c is:
    p = 201
    f = 67
    c = 58

Thanks for reading/helping.


First off: if your p/f/c breakdown is accurate your intaking 1855 cals not 1615 cals per day (p4+f9+c*4). That said your stat’s will be more helpful.

I’m 5’10", 180, 9-10% bf, and my maintanence is 2750 cals…I use 3500-3600 cals to put on mass. If your similar in stature to me 3000 cals will be hypercaloric rather than hypocaloric. That said 1615 (or 1855)is way too low if your about my build and activity level. 2200 is more along the lines for me to lose fat and keep my LBM.

That said, you may want to up your protein to 1.5 g/lb bw, and increase your fat intake to around 100g. Fat will make you less hungry then carbs generally. Also, take a look at what your sources of carbs are. When I have whole wheat pasta I’m starving for the rest of the day. Fruits will make you hungrier than if your carbs are coming from oats. Also, look at where your getting your protein. Are you getting it from food, or shakes/bars?


Thanks for the reply and info but I believe my caloric intake is correct give or take a few because i’m getting all my stats of the labels. You calculated it with p4+f9+c*4 which gives 1639 not 1855 unless the formula has a typo in it.

Regardless, my carb sources are:
Breakfast: Cheese
Post Workout: tortia & a protein bar
Dinner (meal 5): Veggies

protein sources are:
Breakfast: egg whites/cheese/milk
meal 2: protein shake
post workout: chicken/protein bar
meal 4: chicken
meal 5: steak
meal 6: protein shake

I’ve been trying to keep my protein intake at around 1.5 g/lb bw but in the last 2 weeks it has dropped by 10g or so because i’m finding it hard to keep my cals where they should be.

As with the fat I’m finding it damn near impossible to keep that anywhere near 100g because of the same reason. If I add anything I have to take something away to maintain cals and since I dont want to have my carbs < 50g (not sure why) and I need to keep protein high I can’t really change anything.

Any suggestions on what I could change or what i’m doing wrong would be great.



After the past few days of re-reading Berardi’s articles, I would go more towards the numbers of Don’t Diet for a couple of reasons. The first being as long as you’re eating less than maintenance, you’ll be losing, especially with exercise and the cardio you may be doing. Secondly, too great of a drop in calories will cause you to lose more LBM than you want too - again, don’t be too concerned with the numbers on the scale. If you lose a 1lb, make sure it’s fat because if it’s muscle, you just became worse off. The leaner you become, the higher you have to bring your calories back towards maintenance numbers because otherwise you’ll be sacrificing LBM.

I’ve found the calculations for the Don’t diet and massive eating to be way too high for me. Like around 300-400 calories too high. His calculations are just a guideline. Everyone is different and you need to find out what works best for you. As for the hunger, it’s just part of dieting. It’s something you have to learn to deal with while dieting. That’s when your willpower has to kick in. I’ve also found that the T-dawg works better for me.

Also, the t-dawg 2 diet calls for 70g of carbs on non-workout diets or 100g of carbs on workout days.

Damn non-scientific calculators! Hulk, your right…1639.

Hogan’s definitely right about being careful not to lose too much LBM or you’ll actually store fat quicker.

Consider eating chicken/protein shake post-workout (as liquid protein sources get to your muscles faster than food sources), and having the protein bar (or better yet cottage cheese or some other casein protein source) for meal 6. I find for myself I prefer food sources later at nite and will get away with shakes/bars during the day if absolutely necessary (though I try to use food as much as possible to avoid gas and hunger). From the looks of it it does seem like your undereating. Perhaps letting yourself have an extra 500 cals or so will help you out as well (provided your not over maintanence). Avocados are a great source of fat with tons of nutritional value and about 300 cals. Have faith! It’s a damn scary thing when your trying to lose fat or put on LBM and someone tells you to eat MORE not LESS, but for the lot of us pleasant surprises awaited.

Good Luck


Thanks for all the feedback I really appreciate it. I think this week i’ll experiment and instead of subtracting 500 cals from maintenance I?ll subtract 300 so I have some room to play with.

Thanks again!