How Many Calories Should I Eat in a Day?

How Many Calories Should I Eat?

Okay. One of the main things I always see with people is that they either overeat and won’t achieve their goals, or they under eat and won’t achieve their goals. People work, work, work, yet they don’t count calories even every once in a while to know what they consume. It is a bit mind boggling.

“How many calories should I eat to be healthy and still lose weight?”

Let’s first start with BMR.

What is BMR? Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the number of calories you’d burn if you stayed in bed all day or sat on your couch and watched Dexter from Season 1 to current (I’d be in heaven). This is the low end of your caloric needs. Go below, and your organs and muscles are not getting the proper amount of nutrition/fuel to function properly. Yes. All the organs.

I use this great site to figure it out –

Jason Wagner Fitness BMRThe photo you see is for my BMR. Remember, that number is the ABSOLUTE low. So for me, I will NEVER allow myself to go below 1789 calories (round up to 1800 to simplify).



But that is not the end of it. Why? Because I do not sit on the couch all day and watch Dexter. I have a job (not very active but stressful) and I workout daily. So how much to adjust while still being in a deficit so I can lose weight? I take that number (1789) and add 20% to it. To do that you multiply 1789 x 1.2 = 2146 calories. Why 20%. Because my daily activity aside from my workout is considered sedentary. 

Now if do not workout, then 2146 calories would be my number to not gain or lose weight (maintenance). If I wanted to lose, then I’d drop my intake to 1800 calories.

But I do workout. At a clip of about 500 calories a day. So therefore if I eat my 2146 calories (maintenance calories), and workout (500 calorie burn), it puts me at a deficit of 500 calories a day. A 500 calorie a day deficit = 3500 calories a week. Why is 3500 the magic number? Because there are essentially 3500 calories in one lb of fat and losing one lb a week is a very safe approach to weight loss.

So you now have information and knowledge. How will you apply it?


Jason Wagner Fitness

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3 Responses to “How Many Calories Should I Eat in a Day?”

  1. December 5, 2013 at 5:19 AM #

    thanks for that great link and explanation.

  2. December 6, 2013 at 9:39 AM #

    I agree with the Dexter thing except for the last two seasons. Which were kinda torture. I’d rather do Beast legs every day then watch that hot mess again! 😉

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