FVT Top Diet Mistake #1 – Calculating Your Calorie Needs

In a recent survey, fat loss ranked as one your top fitness goals.

And diet ranked as one of your top challenges in being able to reach it.

So, over a couple / few articles, I’m going to address a few of the top diet mistakes, that we see people coming to us making over and over and over … and what we do to FIX them, so that they can quickly and (relatively) painlessly, FINALLY reach their goals.


Today, we are going to start with how to calculate your calorie needs, based on your goals.

I like to use this online calculator to get a baseline, WHILE KEEPING IN MIND:

1 – Studies show that people vastly UNDERestimate how many calories they are truly consuming
2 – Studies also show that people vastly OVERestimate how many calories they are truly burning from exercise

These two factors, I believe, are the root of the problem when people go to figure out their calorie needs.

So let’s take a hypothetical situation. Let’s say you’re a 47 year old man, who weights about 190, who works at a mostly sedentary – type job. You work out somewhat regularly, but not quite as often as you’d like. And you have 20 pounds you’d like to lose.

If I enter your info in the calculator, using the “lightly active” setting, here’s what I get:

You need 2,397 Calories/day to maintain your weight.
You need 1,897 Calories/day to lose 1 lb per week.
You need 1,397 Calories/day to lose 2 lb per week.
You need 2,897 Calories/day to gain 1 lb per week.
You need 3,397 Calories/day to gain 2 lb per week.

So if I’m your trainer, I’m putting you somewhere between that 1397 and 1897 calories per day to get the scale moving.

(I’m also getting you active and moving and burning calories DAILY with a special program specifically designed for fat loss – but that’s a topic all itself, for another time.)

And again, I’m keeping in mind that, most people, if we set out to eat 2,000 calories, there’s a good chance we’re probably eating 2,300 or even 2,500 calories a day … and if we set out to burn 500 calories, there’s a good chance we’re really only burning 100 or 175 calories … and this is kind of “built in” to those calorie calculations.

Next step is, picking a meal plan that fits your calorie needs, goal, preferences, and prep time considerations.

Stay tuned, that’s coming in our next installment of this series 🙂

In the meantime, check out this online calculator to figure out your baseline and set some goals, while keeping in mind the #1 calorie needs mistake we talked about in today’s article.

’till next time –

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Certified Fitness Nutrition Coach

PS – I recommend the Underground Fat Loss Manual as a complete home study – type course to help you rapidly lose bodyfat:

Underground Fat Loss Manual

It is on sale this week.

And, when you order it thru my recommendation, I am going to send you nine separate 7 day meal plans, for free.

You’ll get 1500, 1750, and 2000 calorie versions of:

– 7 day Paleo plans
– 7 day Vegetarian plans
– 7 day “General Balanced” plans

Just order using the link below:

Underground Fat Loss Manual

Forward your receipt to fvtraininfo (at) gmail.com

And we’ll send you the bonus meal plans 🙂

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