T Nation

Setting Daily Calories


Hi guys.
Beginner (restarting) here.
Between the articles on food logs and diets, I have a pretty good idea on how to set up and track my food. I also have a workout routine and cardio plan set. My only question (for now) is how to decide how many calories I want to hit each day.

I am right now at about 300 lbs. I am not actually in "oh-my-god-obese" land, I have some decent muscle, I carry my size well and ppl usually guess my weight at about 250 or less, but I am of course pretty badly overweight.

My question is: Should I really set my calories at 300 x 15 = 4500 calories a day? That seems like an insane amount of food when I try to project my diet from the foods in the '7 Habits..." Whole foods, fruits, Grow, Surge, etc... only goes so far.

Anyway--any thoughts? Is the "weight times 15" still the best place to start?


It is a good starting point for most but not great for someone that is obese. You would be better off either just cleaning up your diet at first and see how far you can ride that pony thenm worry about K/cal levels.

And/Or set your intake at a goal weight. say 225lbsx15. While carrying a LOT of fat you have little worry about losing lots of muscle at first.

Now that 225 was just an example. If you are carrying more LBM than that then of course adjust it.

Hope that helps,


OK. I am going to get my bf% checked this weekend, which should help with that.


Here's a dietary calculator you can start from:


It's for massive eating, but you can make adjustments where you see fit. There are others.