T Nation

Calorie Importance for New Dieter? Low Side?

So I’m still considered a noob to weight lifting. I have never rly stuck with a diet or eaten properly, I actually tend to under eat. Like 1500-2000 calls a day, sometimes less. After eating this way I’m currently 5’10, at 205lbs at probably like 25% bf. I’m basically skinny fat, no visible abs. I’m trying to change this but every time I try to diet I usually fail bc I try to much to quick. So Ive tried to form a diet off stuff like the 7 healthy habits etc and came up with something that has macros like this:

180g protein, 150g carbs, 65g fat.

Which totals around 1800 cals. Everyone says to not focus on any of this stuff and just eat better. Well thats what it turned out to be and I’m just curious that even if cals are that low (though more than I normally eat) can I still improve body comp, maybe drop to below 20% bf and gain some muscle in the process?
Once this becomes 2nd nature I’ll obviously add cals but for now this is what I’d eat daily, but on workout days I’d add a little more carbs and protein.

So is it possible to see improvement even though im eating only 1800 or so kcals?

If you just stick to progressing in the gym in terms of increasing strength through heavy lifting, doing circuits or some HIIT on off days or afer workouts and eat more protein your gonna recomp your body. Thats it. Once you make lifting and nutrition important to you, then it becomes second nature. Also dont worry about macros and grams and all that shit becauase as a noob your gonna become focussed on the minors and lose focus on what you really want.

Everybody is different, but 1800 seems way too low for you. You’re definitely not going to see any muscle gain, and your fat loss will probably stall after about a month.

Most of the time a beginner can just focus on eating clean, but eat as much as he wants (or even force-feed) and still not gain much in the way of fat. Maybe even lose some if you’re busting ass in the gym. I’m losing 2lbs per week right now, and I’m taking in 3500 clean calories per day. I can do that because I’ve been force-feeding for two years, put on 50lbs of decently solid weight (from 170 @16% to 220 @17%), and pushed my metabolism sky-high. As my metabolism slows, I’ll gradually cut calories until I’m down to 10%.

If you keep crash-dieting, you’re going to stay skinny-fat. Eat clean, but big, for a while. Gain some quality muscle mass, and then dieting will get much easier. A good starting point would be LBMx18 (2700-2800 calories for you). Keep your carbs focused mainly around breakfast, pre- and post-workout. 250-300g of protein, and lots of good fats. You will likely gain a lot of quality muscle and lose some fat in the process.

Thanks! I’ll try to set that up. I’ve done diets before that were around 300g protein and like 3000 cals but failed after like 2 weeks bc I either missed meals or couldnt afford the food. I’m 19 and currently in school so going from class to class it was kind of a problem.

Does anyone have advice on how to get calories in “on the go”?

Best way is protein shakes hey, or like tuna and chutney mushed together in a container, smear that on crackers and some boiled eggs. Can eat that pretty quickly…