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Calorie counting can be frustrating for women, but it doesn't have to be. The amount of calories you need depends on your weight, age, height and activity level, but calorie estimates can still be helpful. To lose weight, you first need to determine how many calories you need to maintain your current weight. This is also called your basal metabolic rate (BMR). Once you know your BMR you can cut calories and factor in the amount of exercise you need in order to lose weight. The formula for BMR for women is:
655 + (4.3 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in years).
If you do little to no exercise, multiply your BMR by .2. If you are lightly active, multiply your BMR by .3. If you exercise most of the days in a week, multiply your BMR by .4. If you exercise everyday at a high intensity, multiply your BMR by .5. This is your BMR and the amount of calories you need per day to maintain your weight.
One pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories. In order to lose one pound of weight per week, you need to cut 500 calories from your daily diet or integrate exercise into your weight loss plans to burn fat and calories. No matter what your weight goals, do not consume less than 1,200 calories a day. When you eat less than 1,200 calories per day, your body will most likely go into starvation mode and store your calories instead of burn them. Use a calorie chart to keep track of what you eat and join a fitness gym to kick your body and metabolism into shape.