T Nation

How Many Calories to Lose Body Fat

6’2"
193 lbs
~13.5 BF

I have been in a major caloric and carb deficit (besids PWO) for 12 weeks and have become much leaner but have not yet achieved the level I am looking for. In that time I was taking in about 1800 calories on non-lifting days and 2050 calories on lifting days (3x per week.) Essentially, I shot myself in the foot by starting TOO LOW on calories and potentially slowed my metabolism down.

I hit a plateau, and per Thibs advice, I just spent the last 10 days eating normal (plenty of clean carbs and calories.) I basically have been cycling.

Now I am ready to get to the last stretch of the diet ( my body should be functioning normal now.)

Any suggestions on how many calories I should really be consuming to lose the last 4% BF? The calculators I have used seem to give ridiculously high numbers. At this point I hope the last lbs. come melting off. Thanks.

As I mentioned before, I lift heavy 3x per week and perform cardio 4-5x per week with a mix of low intensity and HIIT.

Average out the calorie calculators’ answers. And accurately track your calories. Look in the mirror and the weight scale. Slowly lower your daily calorie intake weekly or every other week. Or calorie cycle, whatever.

Who are you to say the calculators “seem” to give high numbers, when you just admitted that you lowered your calories too much before?

[quote]That One Guy wrote:
Average out the calorie calculators’ answers. And accurately track your calories. Look in the mirror and the weight scale. Slowly lower your daily calorie intake weekly or every other week. Or calorie cycle, whatever.

Who are you to say the calculators “seem” to give high numbers, when you just admitted that you lowered your calories too much before?[/quote]

Someone who tried the calculators numbers for 4 weeks about six months ago and gained approx a pound a week. They were TOO high

[quote]gaddismotivate wrote:
That One Guy wrote:
Average out the calorie calculators’ answers. And accurately track your calories. Look in the mirror and the weight scale. Slowly lower your daily calorie intake weekly or every other week. Or calorie cycle, whatever.

Who are you to say the calculators “seem” to give high numbers, when you just admitted that you lowered your calories too much before?

Someone who tried the calculators numbers for 4 weeks about six months ago and gained approx a pound a week. They were TOO high[/quote]

Then lower them by a couple hundred cals and wait. I don’t see why this is so hard.

What is your typical macro breakdown? Low Carb? Do you refeed every 3-5 days?

I didn’t have any refeed days worked in the last 12 weeks I was in the deficit. Macros were as followed:
Non workout days:
Protein: ~200g
Fat:~110g
Carbs:no direct sources

Workout Days:
Protein: ~200g
Fat~110g
Carbs:~60g PWO

[quote]gaddismotivate wrote:
The calculators I have used seem to give ridiculously high numbers. [/quote]

Well yeah, those numbers presume that the individual has already built a base of LBM and needs the requisite kcals to maintain it.

http://www.johnberardi.com/calc.htm

try the winning formula #'s…

I just tried the calculations on that site.If I ate the recommended cals for maintenance you could stand there and watch me get fat.Just goes to show that everybody is different and how tricky it can be.

[quote]grnhd wrote:
I just tried the calculations on that site.If I ate the recommended cals for maintenance you could stand there and watch me get fat.Just goes to show that everybody is different and how tricky it can be.[/quote]

Just goes to show you shouldn’t blindly follow anything. You should be able to tell if the calories are correct or not no later than 2-3 weeks and adjust.

[quote]grnhd wrote:
you could stand there and watch me get fat[/quote]

Somehow I doubt this.

take your ideal finished weight, and average that with your current weight. Then, use that middle weight to figure out calories. As you lose weight, keep adjusting down. Listen to your body and adjust calories as necessary till you’re losing weight at a rate you’re comfortable with.

[quote]spadesofaces wrote:
take your ideal finished weight, and average that with your current weight. Then, use that middle weight to figure out calories. As you lose weight, keep adjusting down. Listen to your body and adjust calories as necessary till you’re losing weight at a rate you’re comfortable with.[/quote]

That sounds like good advice.

[quote]gaddismotivate wrote:
I didn’t have any refeed days worked in the last 12 weeks I was in the deficit. Macros were as followed:
Non workout days:
Protein: ~200g
Fat:~110g
Carbs:no direct sources

Workout Days:
Protein: ~200g
Fat~110g
Carbs:~60g PWO[/quote]

I would loose a lot of size and have no metabolism eating like this for 12 weeks.

I have my best fat loss carb loading every fourth day. These macros might not work the same for you, but my basic fat loss diet boils down to this…

3:1 Low Cho/High Cho

Low Cho Days
50% PRO
30% CHO
20% FAT

High Cho Days
30% PRO
50% CHO
20% FAT

I don’t like dieting on “Low Carbs” for a number of reasons and I feel I retain and even gain lbm while dieting with a higher carb intake. Of course if you are prepping for a contest there will more than likely be a Keto type phase in your prep. Most guys I know who compete use carb cycling similar to this their entire prep. Good luck.

So you think I could lose this last stubborn body fat following a layout like that?

Have you considered the V-Diet? Coaches and trainers have put a lot of thought into constructing that in order to maximize fat loss while minimizing muscle loss. What makes you think that you can come up with something better?
Dan

[quote]LiarPantsOnFire wrote:
Have you considered the V-Diet? Coaches and trainers have put a lot of thought into constructing that in order to maximize fat loss while minimizing muscle loss. What makes you think that you can come up with something better?
Dan[/quote]

Have you done the V-Diet?

Personally, I feel I would lose a lot of LBM following their calorie recommendations and I would go crazy eating nothing but shakes for four weeks.

If this diet is so good, how come it is not popular with professional BBers, athletes, etc. You would think it would be all the rage in all the muscle rags by now.

I have plenty of will power (I lost close to 50bs) and I am constantly surrounded by people who don’t know a thing about nutrition BUT I still couldnt’t do and wouldn’t do the V-Diet. It is unrealistic for my life to be drinking shakes all day long.

Ok. I would recommend you find your new BMR and TDEE. Use an average of these two calculators since you already know your bf%.

The Harris-Benedict formula (BMR based on total body weight)

The Harris-Benedict formula uses the factors of height, weight, age, and sex to determine basal metabolic rate (BMR). This makes it more accurate than determining calorie needs based on total bodyweight alone. The only variable it doesn?t take into consideration is lean body mass.

This equation will be very accurate in all but the extremely muscular (will underestimate caloric needs) and the extremely overfat (will overestimate caloric needs).

Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 X wt in kg) + (5 X ht in cm) - (6.8 X age in years)
Women: BMR = 655 + (9.6 X wt in kg) + (1.8 X ht in cm) - (4.7 X age in years)

Note: 1 inch = 2.54 centimeters
1 kilogram = 2.2 lbs.

Once you know your BMR, you can calculate TDEE by multiplying your BMR by the
following activity factor.

Activity factor

Sedentary = BMR X 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)
Lightly active = BMR X 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/wk)
Mod. active = BMR X 1.55 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/wk)
Very active = BMR X 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/wk)
Extr. Active = BMR X 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 X day training, marathon, football camp,
contest, etc.)

Katch-McArdle formula (BMR based on lean body weight)

The Harris-Benedict equation has separate formulas for men and women because men usually have a higher lean body mass and a larger bodies. Since the Katch-McArdle formula accounts for LBM, this single formula applies equally to both men and women and it is the most accurate method of determining your daily calorie needs.

BMR (men and women) = 370 + (21.6 X lean mass in kg)

To determine TDEE from BMR, you simply multiply BMR by the activity factor

Once you know your TDEE eat at this level for three weeks to one month to recharge your metabolism.

Then possibly try the carb cycling method I listed above. I know thibs has am article (Carb Cycling Codex) that is worth a read. Also do an “Advanced Search” for Tampa-Terry and Carb cycling. you should find some really good info.

What I listed above will work, but you need to tailor it around you TDEE to were your high cho day is at or just a little above your maintenance calorie levels. I will take a little work at first to figure all this out, but once you put it into practice you will be in auto-pilot mode.

Also are you taking any thermos and what type and frequency of cardio are you doing

I am not taking any thermos (I have tried HOT-ROX in the past) But I can’t sleep regardless of when I take it. I do HIIT 2x a week PWO and Low intensity sessions of 20min 2-3x week