My same aspirations and views on the industry for anyone interested.
My same aspirations and views on the industry for anyone interested.
Have you ever wondered why some people just can’t seem to get in enough calories to keep from shrivelling away, while others look at a slice of pizza cross-eyed and gain 5 pounds?
As it turns out, we don’t all work on the same metabolic platform. Bodyweight, muscle mass, height, and age all play a role in daily caloric intake.
Maybe you’ve entered your stats into one of those online calorie calculators and thought to yourself, “There’s no way this is right!”
It’s time for some simple, straightforward answers to determine how many calories you need to consume based on where you are in your fitness journey.
Whether you’re looking to maintain your current weight, strip fat, or pack on lean mass, these tips will help you establish a framework to meet your dietary needs and achieve your goal physique.
The first and most important step on your nutrition journey is to figure out how many calories you’re currently consuming on average. Keep a food journal and log a typical week of meals.
During this time, track your calories closely, either by hand or by using an app like MyFitnessPal. Then, use your intake log to figure out your average daily caloric load.
When it comes to the numbers on the scale, are you losing, gaining, or staying the same? If your weight hasn’t fluctuated much, you know your current intake is pretty close to your maintenance—the number of calories needed to maintain your current weight.
If you’re gaining weight, your average intake is higher than maintenance. If you’re shedding pounds, then it’s safe to assume you’re eating less than your maintenance intake.
Finally, compare your average intake to the recommended intake of someone your age, height, weight, activity level, and gender. You can enter the information into an online calculator, or figure it out with good, old-fashioned pen and paper.
For people looking to put their math skills to the test, here’s the actual equation:
Men: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (y) + 5
Women: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (y) – 161
Since the above equation only gives your basal metabolic rate (BMR), or how many calories you’d burn lying in a hospital bed, make sure to multiply by an activity factor:
Sedentary (little or no exercise): BMR x 1.2
Lightly active (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week): BMR x 1.375
Moderately active (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/week): BMR x 1.55
Very active (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days a week): BMR x 1.725
Extra active (hard exercise/sports and physical job or 2x training): BMR x 1.9
BMR can also be estimated simply by multiplying body weight by 10-11 calories per pound or 22-24 kilocalories per kilogram. So, someone weighing 150 pounds has a BMR close to 1,500-1,650 calories per day.
You might be thinking, “Why go through all the trouble of tracking calorie intake and figuring out average daily intake if I can just use a calculator?” the numbers you plug into a calculator might not yield results that are entirely accurate.
Your metabolism is not limited to whatever you’re born with. While genetics do play a role, metabolism is highly adaptive. If you’ve been consistently eating less or more than those handy dandy calculators say you should and maintaining weight just fine, then your metabolism may have already adjusted to your current intake.
Nothing good comes from crash diets. Keep in mind, any time you restrict calories for more than a day or two, whether through diet, exercise, or both, your metabolism actually slows down to some extent. The effect is more noticeable with long-term diets or drastic calorie reduction. This explains why so many people who follow crash diets end up gaining every ounce—or more—back.
If you subject your body to constant dieting or extreme calorie restriction—meaning cutting calories to less than 40 percent of maintenance—your body responds to the perceived “energy crisis” by down-regulating metabolic rate as a survival mechanism against starvation. Under starvation-like conditions, metabolic rate can drop as much as 40 percent over a 6-month period.
Maintaining this deficit for an extended period of time results in various metabolic adaptations that effectively cause you to burn less and store more.
Here are some metabolic adaptation examples:
Increased cortisol levels mean the addition of stubborn belly fat.
Increased levels of appetite hormone ghrelin increase your hunger and longing for starchy carbs.
Decreased leptin levels means that there’s less of the appetite-suppressing, metabolism-boosting hormone in your system.
When your body is in “energy crisis” mode, the body has a tendency to lose muscle and cling to fat. Muscle is expensive in terms of calories: each pound of muscle burns about 6 calories per day, whereas fat burns about half that.
As a fuel reserve, fat also offers more bang for the buck: 1 gram of fat provides 9 calories, while muscle provides only 4 calories per gram. Because muscle is more expensive to maintain and less “fuel efficient,” the body may ditch muscle mass and hold on to fat during an energy crisis.
To achieve healthy fat loss, the best prescription is moderate calorie restriction combined with physical activity. Try to reduce your intake by no more than 30 percent of your total calories. Never go below 70 percent of maintenance intake. For example, if you’ve been maintaining weight on 2,000 calories, try to get at least 1,400 calories while dieting.
Try incorporating “cyclical dieting” and “re-feeding” days. A possible form of re-feeding would be restricting calories for six days in a week and eating at maintenance on the seventh day—although you could adjust the frequency to meet your needs and re-feed once every two weeks or a couple of times per week. Re-feeding days help boost leptin levels, lower cortisol, and take you out of energy deficit, even if only for a day.
“Cyclical dieting” is simply alternating between longer periods of calorie restriction and maintenance. Try to limit your dieting phases to no more than 4-6 months at a time to avoid the negative metabolic consequences of chronic dieting.
It’s impossible to ensure that every extra calorie you put into your body goes toward increased muscle mass with absolutely no increase in body fat. If only nutrient partitioning was that perfect. At best, the natural bodybuilder who’s been training long-term and doing everything perfectly can only put on about two pounds of muscle each month.
If you truly want to max out lean mass gains and put on the greatest amount of muscle possible, you need to be willing to accept a small amount of fat gain. This is especially true if you are transitioning out of a lean state, such as post-competition.
Don’t worry, we’re still talking snail’s pace weight gain. Aim for one pound per week of lean muscle mass gains, though you may initially gain faster if you started out extremely lean or glycogen depleted. Start by adding 500 calories to your current daily intake, and maintain that intake until you plateau. If or when this happens, add another 250-500 calories and repeat.
A cyclical approach to bulking and cutting to optimize anabolic hormones and minimize unwanted fat accumulation. This could be 16 weeks of above-maintenance intake for lean mass gains, followed by 16 weeks below-maintenance intake for fat loss. Of course, feel free to experiment with what works best for you. When done correctly, this approach will yield considerable lean mass gains while you stay pretty darn lean.
While these guidelines should give you a solid starting point, never neglect to pay attention to your own body! Your calorie needs might need to be higher or lower, depending on your unique metabolism.
Also, remember to be patient when making changes. Just because you don’t see results in week one doesn’t mean you should start one of those crazy crash diets or binge on everything in the fridge. Anything worthwhile takes time, and this is no different.
Aspire to Inspire.
Yes this is a fitness based video. But for f*** sake would you look past that, listen to the lessons. Life is about improvement, evolving, development. That applies to all aspects of life. Live it the best you can.
Aspire to Inspire.
The war has begun.
And it’s between you, and you, there ain’t nobody else in your way.
See I’ve heard it all, from I’m too small, to I’m not fast enough, to I’m not strong enough, to I can’t make it back.
This is what it takes, this is the sacrifice made for a greater good.
Its called dedication, to the small things, to the little details, you aim small, you miss small.
Because it’s the small steps, that ultimately, climb mountains.
So why would YOU skip that workout? Why would YOU give up on that last rep? Why would YOU cheat on that meal? Why wouldn’t YOU give it your ABSOLUTE all. Time, it stops for no one, YOU got one shot at this thing called ‘life’, so it’s up to YOU to make it happen. YOU got a choice how you spend EVERY minute of your day, no one decides that but YOU.
So who else is it on? WHO ELSE, but you.
When the dust is settled and everyone packs it on, that’s the critical moment, when no one else is there to tell you what to do, its on you to create that vice that goes on in your head.
IS it gonna say I’m gonna get 5 more? I gotta get my work in before I play?
Or is it gonna say I’ve had enough, lets go to the bar, lets relax.
That voice, its gonna be your biggest asset, or your biggest enemy. But its all On You.
Its on You to let it fuel you, its on YOU to be positive and let it open up the possibilities.
Greatness is telling your friends ‘I cant go out tonight’, ‘I can’t do drugs’, ‘I wont pick up that drink’.
I’ll be the leader amongst all of you. You’re just one step away from having it all, but you just gotta put in the work first.
You wanna be an elite? you gotta make up ion your mind that you’re gonna be elite. Nobody is BORN special. And physicality? Will always be trumped by what’s going on in your head.
You see, they think it’s genetics, they think its god given, god is good. BUT they don’t see this side of it, they don’t see the drive, they don’t see the rise up, they don’t see the sacrifices, they don’t see the continual hunger or the fury in my eyes. They don’t see that I’ll do WHATEVER it takes to get it.
Talent means absolutely nothing if you don’t hone in on improvement, and that comes from staying focused, in your mind, to push forward, to push past the pain, push past the barriers.
So you have one thing you gotta do
Get Comfortable, being Uncomfortable,
Do YOU have what it takes.
Aspire to Inspire.
Everyone that is a part of this sport in one capacity or another has been inspired by someone else. Regardless of who it is that inspired you to start living a new lifestyle, you are obviously glad they did because without that initial inspiration, where would you be now?
Regardless of whether you are rich, famous, or just one of the regulars at your gym, you have the power to inspire others and change their lives for the better. You can inspire members of your family, your friends, your co-workers, or as I found out, people that you don’t even know can be inspired by your actions. I don’t know about you, but that is absolutely amazing to me. It inspires me just thinking about it.
How You Can Inspire Others
At this point you may be wondering how you can influence others in a positive way too. What can you do to help someone start training, eating healthy, and becoming a better person too? I am going to cover three things that I feel have helped me both help people and keep myself inspired.
1. Be Proud Of What You Have Done
Part of the whole mystique of being inspired by someone is knowing that the person is proud of what he or she has done.Regardless of what the feat is, be proud of what you have accomplished because it took a certain mindset, determination, and passion to reach your goals. Most of those people that have been or need to be inspired are more than likely feeling down on themselves and are looking for something to make themselves feel a sense of pride again.Seeing someone coming out of a gym with that confident look is something to be admired. You are focused on your goals and going to the gym every day and not cheating on the diet shows that you are organized, dedicated, and successful.All of those qualities are what people look for themselves and seeing it helps them realize that it is reachable for them too.
2. Be Humble
Although you should be proud of what you have done on your journey, most people don’t like those guys that brag about everything they have done day in and day out. Everyone has an ego but being a braggart not only fails to inspire people but it actually will turn most people off of what you are doing.I am sure you have heard the stigma about how those muscled up guys in the gym are so narcissistic and do nothing but admire themselves in the mirror and have stuck up attitudes. That is not the image that inspires people. Being the first one to talk about yourself, making claims about yourself, and feeling the need to tell everyone of your accomplishments doesn’t show confidence. It seems like a cry for attention and praise. Now if someone asks you about what you are doing, then obviously they want to know more about you and this is the time to talk about your accomplishments and accolades.
3. Be Approachable
Chances are someone is going to work up the courage to finally approach you and ask if you can share any wisdom that can teach them to do what you have done. Taking the time to talk to people, especially younger people, goes a long way in showing others that they not only can do what you have done, but they should do it. I don’t care if you are a bodybuilder, pro athlete, successful CEO, or the employee of the month at the office. Being a nice person goes a long way in proving to others that they need to do what you are doing. Nothing beats being positive. Now if you are in the middle of training when someone approaches and you really want to stay on the task at hand, there is a positive way to handle this. You can tell the person that you really need to concentrate on the training session and if he or she wouldn’t mind waiting a little bit, you will be happy to talk afterwards. If you need to get out of the gym in a hurry, pass on an email address and say to contact you that way and you will be happy to help. Most people will understand you saying no as long as you show that you are interested in helping somehow.
Inspiring Others And Not Knowing It
Now those points are if people talk to you. You could very well inspire people and not know it. Think about it. Have you ever been in the mall and seen someone with big arms and thought to yourself “Man I would like for my arms to be that big.” Then you think about that guy the next time you are in the gym. It may not be on a major scale, but that guy inspired you and he never met you.
Ladies, have you ever seen a fit, toned woman walking in the store and thought to yourself, “If I lost weight, I can look like that too.” Doesn’t it stand to reason that you could very well be doing the same thing for someone in a bar or at the store after reaching your goals?
You have the potential to inspire others.
I feel the greatest honour I have ever received is when people have said that I have inspired them to start training, eating, and living as a body-builder or fitness athlete.
Aspire to Inspire.
Before I start – Thank you!! This blog has had near 1000 views which I have to say has made me damn happy and a little proud, any requests on anything just ask! I am here to please.
Anyway, travelling fitness, in a week i’ll be off to China for three weeks!
Anyone that has read my blog before (or knows me) will know that for me, that’s a bit terrifying. Three weeks, no gym, no dietary control.. Going to be one hell of an experience. I have invested in resistance bands and will be training every morning in body weight work and cardio when possible. Anyone who has been through this or uses these forms of training please contact me! I could do with the help in this field.
Aspire to Inspire.
Independence is a beautiful thing. It can also be an addiction.
When life got hard, I got mean and I did what it took to fight against what was going on in my life. I found that not one person stood by me, not really. There were those who dotted about at times, but frankly it was all on me. So I learnt. I learned that if I was prepared to become someone new, I alone would be capable of changing my life.
You know what? It worked. Everything that I have done will show that.
So here’s the problem.
I told myself for the last two years not to rely on anyone, at the time it was the right thing, the people on my life were not going to support my dreams or me in general. However, though the list hasn’t exactly exploded, names are there. People I can rely on are in my life, some a little newer than others. Hell, if that list is one person long I can live with that!
But I think it is safe to say, though I will always be me, an individual, self driven, crazy ass guy, I think I will have to get used to the fact, it doesn’t have to be ALL on me…
I don’t know I am rambling.
Aspire to Inspire!
To laugh is to risk appearing the fool,
to weep is to risk being called sentimental,
to reach out to another is to risk involvement,
to expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self,
to place your ideas your dreams in front of a crowd is to risk being called naive,
to try is to risk failure,
to live is to risk dying.
But the greatest risk in life,
is to risk nothing.
The person who risks nothing,
and becomes nothing,
only the person who risks it all,
if truly free.
Seeing as I am still awake, the irony of the topic seemed too much to avoid. No Balance, No Sleep, No Surrender.
These ideas are pretty straight forward, don’t stop working untill you have what you are chasing. Yeah there are nights I wish I could just settle and sleep, workouts I wish I would just go home, days where I wish I were ordinary. Then, then there is every other second of the day. I will work myself to death, and then some…AKA the Zombie mentality – Work past dead.
There is something to inspire pride in that, a willingness to push past the norm, past social expectations and realities, and then go on further to chase and hunt down my dreams. It might kill me, hell the reality is that it probably will. Day by day there is suffering that goes hand in hand with this. I can’t just ‘relax’, take a break or chill. The sad truth is that there is far too much sacrifice involved in reaching my dreams. I’ve lost friends, I’ve missed memories, I gave up foods, nights out, a stress free life, and what do I get for it? I get daily pain, I get judged, laughed at, mocked, I lose time with the people I care about and I get a daily battle against myself where I start it all over.
So is it worth it? Doesn’t seem it does it?
I have gained far too much to even contemplate this not being worthwhile, I’ve gained knowledge, I’ve transformed, I’ve saved myself from depression and pain, I’ve surpassed expectation and earned respect, I’ve found like minded people and people who appreciate me for me.
This was never going to be easy, and I am fucking glad it’s not. I live to be different and I will die chasing my dreams.
There is a whole world out there, who in their right mind wouldn’t want a piece of that.
The only thing that ever holds us back are our bullshit excuses. My mind will tell me i’m not good enough, i’ll pretend it is all impossible, it’ll say that I don’t stand a chance. I will overthink every fucking situation and I will push myself so hard it would scare your average person.
You know why? ‘your average person’ – AVERAGE. We are not chasing average. We are chasing exceptional.
‘Live extreme and push your boundaries, WHY?! simply because there will be no other time for you to do this’
Aspire to Inspire