If you want to lose weight and do it right the first time, it’s very important to understand your TDEE. Calculate your TDEE and learn how to utilize it, free!
What is TDEE?
Social sites like Reddit are ablaze lately about TDEE.
TDEE is simply an acronym for Total Daily Energy Expenditure. This is a measurement consisting of the total number of calories you burn in a day. Your TDEE includes calories burned during exercise, during normal physical activity (showering, walking to/from your car, etc.), and your metabolic baseline (the calories you burn during the day to maintain body temperature, digest foods, breathe, and so on).
If you intend on starting a diet for weight-loss, eating to build muscle, or even just tailoring your diet for ideal nutrition, it’s vital to know your TDEE. Without this figure, it’s difficult to achieve your goals.
Calories Out > Calories In
Fat loss sounds complicated when you consider the many facets of being healthy. There’s nutrition, exercise, and supplementation – but these all boil down to one basic concept: To lose weight, you must consume fewer calories each day than you expend.
One pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories. So, in order to lose one pound of fat in a week, you will need to take in 500 calories per day (3,500 / 7 = 500) less than your TDEE. To lose two pounds per week, you’ll need 1,000 calories per day less than your TDEE, and so on. You can increase your TDEE by more intensive exercise, or through metabolic hacks like using the ECA stack.
Here’s an easy calculator to figure out your personal TDEE:
Putting Your TDEE Results to Work
If you haven’t already, go ahead and take a moment to fill out the calculator above for a nice estimate. As you might notice, your TDEE depends on static factors (things you can’t immediately change, such as your height and age) along with your daily activity level. Obviously, you can increase your activity level by exercising more frequently – and as you do so, your TDEE will rise, allowing you to either lose weight faster or simply get by with eating more food.
It’s a good idea to bookmark this calculator (Ctrl + D) so you can find it easily in the future. As your weight and/or activity level changes, so will your TDEE. It’s important to keep an up-to-date idea of this figure – otherwise, you risk sabotaging your goals by working with outdated numbers.
Making a Plan
To expand on the Calories Out > Calories In concept mentioned above, let’s quickly look at an example. If I calculate my TDEE to be approx. 2,900 calories per day, and I wish to lose 2 pounds per week (8+ lbs per month), I can set my dietary goal at 1,900 calories per day. This 1,000 calorie deficit will place me at 7,000 calories under TDEE in a week, or 2 pounds (since a pound is 3,500 calories).
Note: Don’t take this to the extreme. A healthy calorie deficit is a great way to lose weight. Starvation, however, is not. Make sure to maintain a healthy minimum daily calorie level. You’ll feel better, and be much more likely to stick with your diet.
Is it Really That Simple?
Yes, and no. The example plan above is an easy, general sample of where to start. At the end of the day, nutrition is a quite complex area, and different people will always have somewhat different results. For example, if my 1,900 daily calorie goal above consisted of junk food and soda, the real-world results would be much different than if I ate the same 1,900 calories of lean protein, healthy fats, and minimal carbohydrates.
Looking at your TDEE is a great place to start when it comes to formulating a weight-loss plan, though.
Best of luck in achieving your goals!