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Understand Your Basal Metabolic Rate for Weight Loss

Learn How to Lose Weight by Calculating Your Basal Metabolic Rate

The amount of calories that your body needs to perform basic and life-sustaining functions is called Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)

BMR Functions Include:

· Oxygen and blood circulation

· Breathing/Ventilation

· Nutrient (Food) processing

· Temperature regulation

· Protein synthesis (the process in which cells make proteins)


Basal metabolic rate (BMR) and resting metabolic rate (RMR) are almost similar. The difference between of BMR and RMR is defined below so you may understand.

  • Basal metabolic rate is a measurement of the number of calories needed to perform your body's most basic (basal) functions, like breathing, circulation and cell production. BMR is most accurately measured in a lab setting under very restrictive conditions.

  • Resting metabolic rate is a measurement of the number of calories that your body burns at rest. RMR is measured upon awakening in the morning before any activities.

As you can see, the definitions of RMR and BMR are almost identical. Your resting metabolic rate should be an accurate estimate of your basal metabolic rate. Because the terms are similar, some fitness and weight loss experts use both terms to describe the same thing. But the term "resting metabolic rate" is more common.

Calculate Your BMR

If you are looking to reach or maintain a healthy weight may find it helpful to calculate your BMR. You can either find the number using a formula designed by scientists, you can get it tested in a lab, or you can use an online calculator. No method is perfectly accurate, but a lab test will probably give you the best estimate.

But since lab tests can be costly, many dieters and exercisers use one of the other two methods to determine basal metabolic rate and/or the total number of calories they burn each day.

Equation to Calculate Your BMR

The Harris-Benedict Equation is often used to estimate basal metabolic rate.

  • Men: BMR = 88.362 + (13.397 x weight in kg) + (4.799 x height in cm) - (5.677 x age in years)

  • Women: BMR = 447.593 + (9.247 x weight in kg) + (3.098 x height in cm) - (4.330 x age in years)

Put your height, weight, and age into our online calculator to find your basal metabolic rate with the addition of daily activity. The calculator provides you with an estimate of the total number of calories you burn each day.

Use BMR to Lose Weight

Once you understand BMR and you get a good estimate of your number, you can use it to help you reach or maintain a healthy weight. First you can try to increase your basal metabolic rate, then you can increase the total number of calories you burn each day to help you reach your goal.

Change Your BMR

Your genetic factors, age, gender and your body composition plays a role on your BMR. Although you can’t control your genetics, age and gender, the way you can increase your metabolism is decreasing your body fat composition and increasing lean mass (muscles).

To change your body composition, you need to increase your muscle mass (build muscles). Muscles are more metabolic that fat.

· 1 Lb. of Muscle = burns 6-7 calories

You don’t have to lift like a bodybuilder to gain muscle, just start lifting weights or engage in resistance training that challenges you enough to elicit your body’s response to start building lean mass or even maintain what you have while you’re losing weight.

As research have shown, after a few weeks of consistent weight training, you may see an increase of 7-8% in RMR.

Increase Daily Calorie Expenditure

Your BMR dictates how many calories you’ll need each day depending on physical activities. By making changes to your nutrition and physical activities, you can also burn more calories.

Your basal metabolic rate combined with two other factors can give you an idea of the total number of calories you burn each day.

  • Basal metabolic rate accounts for about 60%-75% of total calories burned each day. Increase muscle mass to burn more calories.

  • Activity thermogenesis: (non-exercise movement and exercise) accounts for about 15%-30% of total calories burned each day. Increase daily movement to burn more calories.

  • Thermic effect of food: (calories burned from eating and digestion) accounts for about 10% of total calories burned each day. Choose healthy protein-rich foods to make a small difference.

If you can burn more calories than you consume, you will create a calorie deficit or negative energy balance.

A calorie deficit of 500-1000 calories per day should result in a 1-2 pound weight loss per week.

A Word From Pro Fitness

When you understand more about BMR/RMR and the total number of calorie burn you have achieve each day, it’s a sure way of reaching your ideal or desired goal.

When you’re more informed, it will be easier for you to embrace any realistic changes you are ready to commit to in your life. And ultimately, transform your life with real and sustainable results.

Accountability Checklist

· Track your numbers (calories per day)

· Track your weight weekly

· Get your body composition measured (fat to lean mass)

· Get support from family, friends or hire a personal trainer

· Check in with your medical professional and get an updated blood-work which would include your Thyroid production, Cortisol Production and other test to check for any metabolic dysfunctions.

Need a kickstart? Need new ideas because your progress is stagnant? Your progress is at a plateau? Your health is failing?

We're here to help you LOSE FAT, GET TONED, GAIN BETTER HEALTH AND FEEL AWESOME. Contact me today regarding our Personal Training, Nutritional Coaching and Group Fitness Sessions today or call 503.393.1080 for your free consultation. Let’s start living life “HEALTHY-FIT-LEAN.”


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