Daily Archives: June 24, 2011

Calorie School Basics – Your RMR

How in the world do I figure out how many calories I burn every day?

I didn’t know where to start.  I *thought* I lived a pretty active life style.  I might have been a little generous thinking I moved more than I did…

I moved around a lot – changed a lot of diapers, picked up a lot of toys, ran up and down a TON of stairs.  I even did walking and light workouts several days a week.  Surely I burned a lot of calories – right?

BUT how much did all of that really equate into and what is the difference in calorie burn between moving around and truly getting your heart rate up and keeping it up there to get a good cardio workout?  Hmmm…

When I read Scale Down, by Danna Demetre, she mentioned something I hadn’t ever heard of in regards to your daily total calorie burn: your RMR, or resting metabolic rate.  I mean, I knew I had a RMR – but I guess I didn’t think about it in regards to how it was burning calories all of the time.  (Even while I slept – YES!)  It was definitely making more sense on how God created my body to need a steady intake of food throughout the day.

Your RMR is your normal rate of burning calories.  I mentioned previously that we DO NOT want to cut too many calories too quickly, and this is why.  Your body NEEDS a certain amount of calories to function at it’s best.  When you cut calories too quickly…

It actually kills your metabolism!!!   The quality of calories you’re putting in can also kill your metabolism.  You can also burn through muscle vs. fat … this is the last thing you want!!

Our RMR decreases as we age, so if you’re middle-aged (like me) – now is the perfect time to get a handle on things, but it’s never too early or late to more aware of what you’re doing to your body and help it to perform at it’s best.

Around the time we turn 30, our RMR begins to slow down.  Awesome huh?  What is it with that “magical” falling apart number?  I’m not sure but…  that decrease almost doubles by the time we turn 40, and continues on a rapid decline as we age, and our activity level decreases…


Yep – that was a punch in my gut too.  I didn’t want to continue feeling poorly, frustrated and tired.

Here's picture of my CalTrack monitor. It's very simple to operate, and holds a weath of information.

I  mentioned that I bought a CalTrack monitor from Amazon.com, but I realize that isn’t always practical for some people.  There are several estimates of what someone for your height, weight and gender should be, so check that out online (Google RMR) for an estimate or get yourself a medium priced calorie monitor and see where you compare for your activity level at your height and weight from your daily movement.

I  mentioned that I ended up buying a CalTrack monitor from Amazon.com, but I didn’t have it to start with – I used it as a fine tuning tool.  Through that device, I learned my RMR is about 1700 calories daily, and I’m also able to monitor how many calories I’m burning in different workouts I do (anywhere from 350-600)!  Good to know!

Remember this isn’t an event.  It’s not a race.  You’re in a process to be the healthiest you can be for Him.  Take your time.  If this is over whelming to you, slow down – focus on the steps you can make each day.  Don’t become so focused on the little things and get short-sighted.  If you can only become more aware of a few things, that’s better than nothing – start there!

Thank God for the awesome body He gave you, take great care of it EACH DAY.   Make sure to move it while you are able – it’s gift we often take for granted!

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. – James 1:17

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