Ever wonder why this weight loss thing doesn’t work as it’s supposed to?
In this previous post titled “7 Surprising Reasons to Stop Counting Calories” Paul Jenkins discussed many of the reasons calorie counting does not really work as advertised.
“Eat less, move more” is standard mainstream advice for weight loss, but while this is basically true it is just more complicated than that.
This is why almost all of the standard calculators which determine number of calories to eat to reach or maintain a given weight give erroneous results.
These calculators almost universally rely on the simple math that once you either decrease your intake of calories or increase your expenditure of calories to equal 3500 calories, you will lose a pound of weight.
This would be true if your body was a static system moving along at the same speed every day.
Instead our bodies are profoundly DYNAMIC, constantly adjusting to new inputs and “changing the rules” as a result of eating less or moving more.
There is a comprehensive article on this concept linked in my prior post on The Energy Balance Equation.
Precision Nutrition’s Weight Loss Calculator
I am linking below to an article titled “Precision Nutrition’s Weight Loss Calculator” written by Dr. John Berardi, PhD in Nutrition, certified strength coach, and co-founder of precisionnutrition.com.
The article introduces and explains Precision Nutrition’s version of a calculator originally developed by Dr. Kevin Hall, PhD, who is a Senior Investigator in the Laboratory of Biological Modeling at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). Dr. Hall’s laboratory investigates how metabolism and the brain adapt in response to a variety of interventions to diet and physical actvity.
The calculator was developed using data collected at both the NIDDK (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) and the NIH (National Institutes of Health) and attempts to model the dynamic changes our metabolism makes in response to the changing environment and various inputs it receives.
This tool is really awesome, in my opinion.
By varying the inputs of goal weight, number of days (or date) to reach that weight, percentage calories changed and percentage of exercise activity changed, it really helps you zero in on a realistic expectation of what reaching your goal weight will take, as well as gives you a chart of your daily weight along with an error balloon either side.
While nothing is 100% perfect, as long as you stay within that balloon path you should reach your goal weight in the days expected, give or take whatever error rate you assign in the calculator.
So, based on how much calorie change you think you can realistically sustain (even if it is zero), you could play with the other inputs to see whether you can reach your goal weight and how long it would take.
Or if you know you want to lose weight for an event coming up in six months, you can play with the goal weight, calories and exercise inputs to see what you could realistically expect to reach.
The variations are endless, which is why this thing can really help you zero in on a plan you think you can actually execute and sustain.
Go ahead and read the article now – the calculator is an embedded form in the article and you can have some fun playing around with it to see what you might be able to achieve over the next year.
I would even suggest you may want to bookmark it for future use as well.
If all this planning is not for you, but you would still like to change your body composition and weight for the better, I suggest you consider a low cost coaching program with a world class tool which has allowed over 45,000 clients to lose over 900,000 pounds.
I am talking about ProCoach, Precision Nutrition’s online coaching software which I can offer as a Precision Nutrition Certified Level One Nutrition Coach.
You can read more about it at this link – ProCoach Advanced Nutrition and Exercise Coaching.
Committed to your health,