People who consume more energy can eat more without gaining weight. But how much energy do we need?

The good news is that no one gains weight when they use more energy than they consume. So through exercise you can ensure that your energy requirements are significantly higher and you won’t gain weight from overeating. If you exercise enough, you don’t have to worry about being overweight.

The human energy balance is referred to as the basic metabolic rate and the performance metabolic rate. The basic metabolic rate corresponds to the amount of energy that a person needs in 24 hours of complete rest to maintain his basic metabolism (heart activity, breathing, etc.).

The performance metabolic rate is the additional amount of energy that is added by physical activity in everyday life. At rest, a (young) man burns about 1 kilocalorie per hour per kilogram of body weight. A man weighing 80 kg therefore has a basic metabolic rate of around 1920 kilocalories per day. In women, the basic metabolic rate is about 10% lower than in men due to the higher fat content. For a woman weighing 60 kilograms, this means that at rest, the basic metabolic rate is around 54 kilocalories per hour. Converted to the day, this amounts to 1296 kilocalories.

In addition to the basic metabolic rate, there is the so-called performance metabolic rate (PMR), which is the amount of energy consumed in daily activities such as work, household and gardening, but also in sports. The PMR value has become established as an estimate of this daily energy consumption.

The calculated basic metabolic rate is increased by the corresponding PMR value, which results in the daily metabolic rate (= basic metabolic rate plus performance metabolic rate). The PMR values range from 1.2 for predominantly sedentary activities to 2.4 for construction and forestry workers. For housewives, for example, a PMR value of 1.8 is used.

There is also a rule of thumb for calculating the amount of energy consumed during exercise: for moderately strenuous exercise, consumption is estimated at 0.1 kilocalories per kilo of body weight per minute. Thus one comes with 80 kg men on an hourly calorie consumption of 480 kilocalories, with 60 kg women on 360 kilocalories. With very intense loads these values can be doubled, in top-class sport the 1000 kilocalorie limit per hour is partly even cracked.

For the ideal figure, all forms of exercise are most effective. in addition to high calorie consumption (all endurance sports), it is good to add other training that requires as many muscle groups as possible, i.e. group fitness training as well as specific strength training on machines.

#### Sample calculation

A total energy calculation of a 60 kg mother and housewife, who does one hour of medium-intensive endurance sports three times a week, looks like this

- Basic metabolic rate = 0.9 x 60 x 24 = 1296 kilocalories
- Daily turnover normal = PMR value housewife 1.8 × 1296 = 2332 kilocalories
- Sports turnover/day = 3 × one hour per week of 360 kilocalories divided by 7 = 154 kilocalories
- Daily sales total: 2332 plus 154 = 2486 kilocalories
- Thermogenesis* = 174 kilocalories
- Daily turnover effective = 660 kilocalories

Our 60 kg active woman can therefore consume almost 2700 kilocalories daily without gaining weight, with men it is correspondingly more. The situation would be somewhat different for a woman of the same weight and unathletic with predominantly sedentary activities: She should only consume about 1900 calories. An active everyday life as well as regular Athletic activities provide a daily bonus of 760 calories.

*Thermogenesis is the amount of energy required for digestion; it corresponds to about 7% of the daily turnover.

*This blog post was provided by Fit for Life Fit for Life is the Swiss magazine for fitness, running and endurance sports. Would you like to read such articles regularly? Then click here.*