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Being in a calorie deficit is the only way to lose weight. That means you have to be burning more calories than you’re consuming.

The ideal intake can vary hugely depending on your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR).

BMR is the amount of calories we expend just to keep our body going.

When taken into account with your activity levels it can have a huge bearing on how many calories you need to consume.

Your BMR can be found using a number of ‘macro calculators’ found online.

They take into consideration your age, work and exercise levels. 

Once you calculate your BMR, you subtract around 250 calories for steady weight loss, or 500 calories for aggressive weight loss. 

Additional exercise – such as a walk or run on the treadmill – can also be used as a tool to expend more calories, thus adding to your calorie deficit.

For example, a brisk half-hour walk on the treadmill may burn 250 calories.

How to calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate 


10-17 years BMR = 13.4 x weight (kg) + 692

18-29 years BMR = 14.8 x weight (kg) + 487

30-59 years BMR = 8.3 x weight (kg) + 846


10-17 years BMR = 17.7 x weight (kg) + 657

18-29 years BMR = 15.1 x weight (kg) + 692

30-58 years BMR = 11.5 x w eight (kg) + 873

Once you’ve got your BMR, you need to combine it with your activity rate. 

Inactive men and women: BMR x 1.4 

This applies to anyone whose job isn’t physically demanding, for example, someone who mostly sits in an office at a desk all day. You don’t have any form of structured exercise in your life and if you do, it’s low intensity such as walking.

Moderately active women: BMR x 1.6 

Moderately active men: BMR x 1.7

This applies to someone whose job is more physically intense or involves bein on their feet a lot. They would also take part in structure exercise of moderate intensity around three times a week. 

Very active women: BMR x 1.8 

Very active men: BMR x 1.9 

Someone with a very physically demanding job who also does some structured exercise, or someone who does intense exercise for an hour a day. 


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