Eating Clean, Counting Calories and Achieving Your Goals

Everyone has different fitness goals, but whether you’re trying to lose, gain, maintain weight or just look like Popeye, exercise alone is not the answer. Eating clean is an absolutely crucial part of a healthy fitness regimen. Don’t let all that hard work you’ve been doing at the gym go to waste! The hard truth is that if you really want to start seeing results, you’re going to have to start eating clean too. Knowing and controlling what you put in your body will surely help you to achieve your goals.

As a starting point you’ll need to get an estimate of how many calories you should be consuming a day based on your goal. Your basal metabolic rate can be estimated using your height and weight. What the heck is that? Your basal metabolic rate (BMR) is basically the lowest number of calories your body is burning a day naturally, just from being awake. Any exercise you do will contribute to calories burned. What you eat is your caloric intake. So for example, if you want to lose weight, you’re calories burned over the course of an average week should be more than your intake. If you’re exercising with us at Fit4U it’s possible that you’re burning from 300 to 500 calories in a one-hour session.

By now you’re probably thinking “Um..my Ti83 doesn’t have a BMR button”. That’s okay. Now that you understand how it all works you can put away the calculator and just head over to CalorieKing.com which has a simple tool for estimating all of this. Just plug in your height, weight, age, and they will give you a range of calories that you should be consuming on average every day depending on your fitness goal. Don’t forget, these are average guidelines. Everyone is different and your BMR could be affected by a number of factors including your genetics, your past or current eating habits or sleeping habits.

The next step is to make sure you’re balancing the content of your diet so that you’re getting the proper amount of fat, carbohydrates and protein. Fats are important for the production of important hormones in our bodies, to keep our skin healthy and most importantly of all, maintain healthy brain functioning. Carbohydrates are stored in the muscles for fast energy output. Proteins are muscle building blocks and provide long-term energy. You should also know that 1 gram of fat is equal to 9 calories, 1 gram of carbohydrates is equal to 4 calories, and 1 gram of protein is equal to 4 calories. A general rule is to allocate your calories to consist of approximately 15-20% fat, 45-65% carbohydrates, and 20-30% protein. Again, these are estimated guidelines to give you a starting point, but consulting your doctor about requirements specific to you and your body would be the best strategy.

Once you’ve got your dieting plan outlined you’ll be on your way to achieving your goals in no time! We won’t sugar-coat it (that would be unhealthy)–it’s going to take some hard work on your part. It’s important to get healthy and stay healthy with consistent effort if you want lasting results. But as long as you’re willing to work at it and keep at it, we are here to help you every step of the way. Contact us anytime to talk about your goals, set up time for you to come in and exercise, or just to high-five for all that hard work!

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