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Bare Minimum calories????

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    tshaw024's Avatar
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    Bare Minimum calories????


    I currently weigh 215 lbs. I want to cut out some fat, I'm between 12 and 13%. What is the minimum number of calories I can take in without losing any of my muscle mass? Still going to lift heavy and cardio 4 times a week. Going to take in about 350 grams of protein a day.

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    you can go slow and steady on maintence calories in protein and fat...
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    Thanks for the help, lol
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    I wouldn't go less then 300 calorie deficit on training days and 400 calorie on off days
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    Crazy gives a good guideline; that's solid advice.

    Another good way to do it is to track your bodyfat. I say "good" but actually, I think it's critical to get to know yourself and how you react to your diet/training regime. And especially so as you approach less than 10% BF.

    Measuring BF also allows you to adjust your calories/protein up or down in accordance with your new weight as you move downward. I think many people make an error in thinking, when they set a caloric level for fat loss and then fail to adjust it downward as they lose weight. For example, at 230lbs and 15%, you can eat 3000 cals and lose weight quickly, but at 215, those cals come closer to your maintenance level and fat loss slows down.

    To know if your training/diet is working, I'll use an example of measuring BF to illustrate:
    If you are 200 lbs at 13% you are holding 26lbs of fat. Your lean mass is 174lbs.

    So, let's say you lose 5 lbs, you are now 195. In the best possible scenario, (and without AAS) your lean mass should still be 174 lbs. Your bodyfat should now be 21 lbs (if you've lost 5 lbs of fat only) or 10.7%. That would be a perfect diet for cutting.

    Conversely, if you lose 5 lbs and find your bf at 12%, you know you've lost 2.6 lbs of fat and 2.4 lbs of muscle. Not a good diet, and I'd say adjust protein upward, add in some cals from healthy fat, then carbs last.

    We can all say what "should" work, what's "supposed to" happen and what we "feel" is right. Measure your BF and get to the truth, Bro. Save yourself some headache!

    By the way, this works for bulking too. If you gain 5lbs on a cycle or just a natural bulk and find that you've gained 4lbs of fat, and 1 of muscle, time to readjust the diet!

    Hope this helps, good luck!
  6. UKStrength
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brenn View Post
    Crazy gives a good guideline; that's solid advice.

    Another good way to do it is to track your bodyfat. I say "good" but actually, I think it's critical to get to know yourself and how you react to your diet/training regime. And especially so as you approach less than 10% BF.

    Measuring BF also allows you to adjust your calories/protein up or down in accordance with your new weight as you move downward. I think many people make an error in thinking, when they set a caloric level for fat loss and then fail to adjust it downward as they lose weight. For example, at 230lbs and 15%, you can eat 3000 cals and lose weight quickly, but at 215, those cals come closer to your maintenance level and fat loss slows down.

    To know if your training/diet is working, I'll use an example of measuring BF to illustrate:
    If you are 200 lbs at 13% you are holding 26lbs of fat. Your lean mass is 174lbs.

    So, let's say you lose 5 lbs, you are now 195. In the best possible scenario, (and without AAS) your lean mass should still be 174 lbs. Your bodyfat should now be 21 lbs (if you've lost 5 lbs of fat only) or 10.7%. That would be a perfect diet for cutting.

    Conversely, if you lose 5 lbs and find your bf at 12%, you know you've lost 2.6 lbs of fat and 2.4 lbs of muscle. Not a good diet, and I'd say adjust protein upward, add in some cals from healthy fat, then carbs last.

    We can all say what "should" work, what's "supposed to" happen and what we "feel" is right. Measure your BF and get to the truth, Bro. Save yourself some headache!

    By the way, this works for bulking too. If you gain 5lbs on a cycle or just a natural bulk and find that you've gained 4lbs of fat, and 1 of muscle, time to readjust the diet!

    Hope this helps, good luck!
    Awesome post and great advice for all trainees
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