How Many Calories Do I Need?


Daily Caloric Intake and Basil Metabolic Rate

Click here to determine approximately how many calories your body needs at rest in order to sustain your current condition (i.e. weight, body fat%, fat weight). Remember, this is your body at rest. You then must add on additional calories for physical activity. Please read further to determine your approximate total caloric intake per day.

Gaining weight and losing weight is a very simple formula. When caloric intake exceeds caloric expenditure you will gain weight. When caloric expenditure is greater than caloric intake, you will lose weight. Thus, you must know how many calories (kcal) are in a gram of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. You should also know approximately how many calories you should consume and expend in a day. Food

Simply put, you must burn off more calories than what you consume in any given day in order to lose weight. Knowing how many calories you are consuming every day is going to be an important part of losing weight. Therefore, you should know how many calories are in the nutrients you consume.

  • Protein – one gram equals 4 kcal
  • Carbohydrate – one gram equals 4 kcal
  • Fat – one gram equals 9 kcal
  • Alcohol – one gram equals 7 kcal

To find out approximately how many calories you are consuming in a day is easy. There are apps available for smart phones and tablets such as lose it and fitness pal. These apps can help you to stay focused on your eating habits and keep you aware of the amount of calories you’ve been consuming. If you don’t have access to apps, then you can keep track of your caloric intake by writing down the foods you consumed in a daily food journal. Be sure to write down all foods, portion size, and liquids. You must do this for one full week. We then can compare your average daily caloric intake to your approximate Basil Metabolic Rate (BMR).

Your BMR measures the amount of energy expended at rest and usually represents about 70% of an individual’s total daily energy expenditure. Additional calories are then added on to one’s BMR based on physical activity level. Depending on whether the person is sedentary or very active, 400 to 800 kcal may be added. For example, if you have a job that requires you to sit at a desk all day and you don’t workout regularly, then you should add 400 calories on to your BMR. So, if your BMR equals 1,200 calories then add 400 calories to that number. This equals 1,600 cal/day to sustain your current weight and body fat. Remember, your BMR tells us how many calories your body needs in order to sustain your current condition (i.e. body weight, % body fat, muscle tissue) at rest. Now, if you are trying to lose weight you should try to decrease your daily caloric intake by 500 cal/day. This can be done by decreasing food intake, exercising more, or the combination of the two. Try to burn or reduce 3,500 calories in one week. That is equivalent to 500 calories a day. This will help you to lose 1 lb in one week (3,500 calories equals one pound of fat).

Basil Metabolic Rate is influenced by several factors. One’s BMR is primarily effected by body size (height and weight). If two people, one weighing 100 lbs and the other weighing 130 lbs, jog one mile together, the heavier person will expend more energy and burn more calories. Other important factors that effect one’s BMR include age and sex. BMR decreases with age and is highest in a growing child. Men have a higher BMR than women due to the fact that males are generally larger than females. Other factors related to BMR include diet, heredity, and hormones.


Tips for Quick Weight Loss


The following tips are just a few ways to shed pounds within a few weeks. However, following these tips alone is not enough to maintain a healthy lifestyle. In addition to these tips,  you must exercise regularly. Consistent healthy eating, decreased daily calorie intake, and daily exercise will certainly help you to lose body fat, decrease your overall body weight, and firm up your muscles. When exercising, be sure to incorporate all components of physical fitness into your workout. Not only will these components of physical fitness help you to lose weight, they will help you to get through your daily activities without being exhausted at the end of the day.

Weight loss

  1. Portion Control – Try eating 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day. This may help to keep your metabolism higher. Three large meals in a day can be higher in calories and can be more difficult for your body to burn these calories up.
  2. Do not starve yourself – Your body can actually hold on to fat and go into “starvation mode”.
  3. Eat food slowly – This can have the effect of making you feel satisfied sooner, helping to consume less food and fewer calories.
  4. Reduce your intake of refined sugar and refined flour products – Substitute these with whole grain and multi-grain products.
  5. Limit use of sauces, dressings, and creams – Always ask for it “on the side”.
  6. Do not go grocery shopping when hungry – People tend to buy junkie snacks and unhealthy foods when they are wanting to eat.
  7. Avoid eating fried foods – Instead of frying foods when cooking, try to bake, broil, or grill.
  8. Try to cook without adding butter, margarine, or oils – These can add a lot of unwanted calories.
  9. Always start the day with a healthy breakfast that includes complex carbohydrates and lean protein Breakfast will boost your metabolism and keep your energy high and hunger low throughout the day.
  10. If trying to loose weight/body fat, try reducing your caloric intake by 500 kcal per day – 3,500 kcal equals one pound of fat. So if you cut out 500 kcal every day for 7 days, you can loose one pound in one week.
  11. Keeping a food diary can help to reduce your weight – Keeping track of calorie consumption has been proven to be effective in weight reduction and loss of body fat.
  12. Have a support group – Talk to close friends and family about your plans for losing weight. They will be there for you!
  13. Water is best – Avoid soft drinks and juice. These are high in calories and sugar. Your body is approximately 80% water. Drink up.
  14. Alcohol contains a lot of empty calories and interferes with proper physiological functions of the body. Drink alcohol in moderation or preferably cut it out until you reach your goal.
  15. A positive lifestyle change rather than a crash diet is most successful in losing weight. Exercise, healthy eating, and motivation will help you reach your goals.

5 Tips to Improve Your Physical Fitness Level


Sorry for not being so regular with my blogs lately. Training clients and handling family life can be overwhelming! Thanks again to everyone that voted for Bring It Home Personal Training in the “Vote 4 the Best” contest. If you haven’t heard, we did win the contest! That’s the last I’ll mention it. Let’s get back to blogging…

These 5 tips are my best tips for improving physical fitness levels:


A standard push-up is a great example of a strength training exercise that improves muscular strength and endurance.

1. You must do strength training at least twice a week. Total body workouts are great for building muscular strength and endurance.

2. You have to do cardiovascular endurance training every day for at least 30 minutes. Your heart is the most important muscle in your body. Keep it strong!

3. Be sure to stretch all muscle groups every day! Stretching may help to prevent injuries and will certainly help you to release stress and relax.

4. Drink plenty of water throughout the day. A good rule of thumb is to drink approximately half of your body weight in ounces of water per day. For example: if you weigh 120 pounds, you should drink approximately 60 ounces of water a day.

5. Get plenty of sleep, at least 7 to 8 hours a day. Your body grows and repairs itself when sleeping. A good night sleep will help you to get through a long day of school and/or work and leave you with plenty of energy to exercise.

Obviously there are many more healthy tips out there. These are just five of my favorites to help improve physical fitness levels. Of course, be sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates, and lean proteins. Improving your physical fitness level can be accomplished at any age. As you’ve heard from me in the past, consistency and motivation are keys to achieving your goals. Stay active and eat healthy!


Having Heel Pain?


Are you experiencing pain in your heel during your favorite physical activities or even after sleep and putting weight on your feet? If you are, then you may have plantar fasciitis. This is caused by swelling of the tendons that connect your heel bone to your toes. A doctor should be consulted if you are experiencing such an issue.

In order to help with the heeling process, the Mayo Clinic recommends:

  1. Change activities and decrease exercises that place pressure on your foot.
  2. Check your footwear. Make sure your shoes have a minimum of one inch heel, good support and good cushioning. Do not go barefoot or wear sandals.
  3. Stretch and massage your foot. A good stretch would be a standing calf stretch with bent knee.
  4. Alternate ice and heat after activities. The Mayo Clinic recommends 10 minutes of heat, one minute of ice, followed by four sessions alternating four minutes of heat, one minute of ice.

If the pain is lasting more than 6 weeks or becomes worse, you should consult a doctor. If you have questions concerning plantar fasciitis or any other foot or ankle related problems, we recommend contacting Dr. Jeffrey Frederick at

Controlling Type II Diabetes


Having Type II Diabetes can be a debilitating disease, but a disease that can be controlled and reversed if exercising regularly and eating properly.

If you are obese and have a family history of diabetes, you are at a high risk for developing this disease. You may want to consult a doctor and have your fasting blood sugar tested. Normal fasting blood sugar is between 70 and 100 milligrams of glucose per deciliter (mg/dl) of blood. Prediabetes is between 100 and 125 mg/dl on two separate tests. If your fasting blood sugar is 126 mg/dl or higher on two separate tests, you likely have Type II Diabetes. If your blood sugar level is higher than 200 mg/dl and you have signs and symptoms of diabetes, you might need a second test.

Signs and symptoms of Type II Diabetes include: nerve damage (especially in your lower extremities), kidney damage, eye damage, heart and blood vessel disease, and infections.

Food choices are very important for a diabetic in order to keep blood glucose levels in a normal range. A diabetic should choose appropriate carbohydrates such as vegetables, dried beans and legumes, fruit without added sugar, and 100% whole grain products. Diabetics should also include monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fat instead of saturated or trans fats. Portions sizes should be limited as well as simple sugars and processed foods. Lastly, a diabetic should eat on a schedule, being consistent with time of day for meals and the amount of food consumed.

Combining a daily exercise program with proper nutrition will most certainly help to control diabetes and may even reverse the disease over time. A diabetic must be diligent with exercise and diet every day in order to keep blood sugar levels in the normal range. Contact your doctor or Bring It Home Personal Training for more information about diet and exercise for diabetics.

Source: Mayo Clinic Solutions

Strength Training is for Everyone

Jeff Angel

Muscle mass is important for many reasons. We need muscle to get through our daily routines, walking, lifting, general mobility, even for smiling and kissing. Muscle mass keeps our metabolism high. In general, the average person looses 10% of their muscle mass every 10 years after the age of 40. This can drastically slow down our metabolism, which in turn will put on unwanted pounds, increase body fat percentages, decrease self-esteem, and put us into depression. This simply does not have to happen as we get older. Strength training is the solution.

Strength training, or resistance training, or “lifting weights” is the best way to increase and maintain muscle mass as we get older. Men and WOMEN need to do strength training regularly, that means a minimum of 2 days per week.

I always hear from females about how weight training “bulks me up”. Well, this simply is not true if you are doing the appropriate type of training in addition to regular cardiovascular exercise and cutting back on calories. I often find that when I begin a program with a woman (who is carrying a higher percentage of body fat) and we go through a few weeks of strength training, the client sees her arms and legs getting larger. Many times her measurements around her arms or legs are larger. Then I ask, “Have you been doing your cardio as prescribed and cutting back on calories every day?” Every response back has always been “No”.

Exercise and nutrition go hand in hand. If you are not doing daily cardio and not cutting back on calories consumed, then YOU WILL NOT LOSE INCHES! You are building muscle under fat that is going nowhere. Of course your measurements will be higher.

So ladies, strength training is not the culprit for making your arms and legs larger if proper exercises are in place. It is one’s lack of discipline in sticking with recommendations and failure to be patient with your program. Strength training is the key to building and maintaining muscle mass, preventing osteoporosis, keeping our metabolism high, and the list goes on (click on Strength and Endurance at the right to see more). Everyone, men and women, need to strength train consistently in order to have a well-rounded exercise program.

A Blue SuperFood


Blueberries are one of the top 10 SuperFoods you should be consuming throughout your week. Not only do blueberries taste great, but they are full of antioxidants and phytochemicals which help to boost your immune system and may help to prevent some cancers. Blueberries, along with other fruits, are also a good source of fiber.

Try putting blueberries in a cup of sugar-free oatmeal, or in a bowl of multi-grain cereal with a cup of skim milk, in a fresh smoothie, or eat them just by the handful.

However you choose to consume them, blueberries should be eaten regularly with a healthy, well-balanced diet along with a daily exercise program to help maintain a strong immune system.

Importance of Flexibility


Flexibility is a very important part of a well-rounded exercise program and is one of the 11 components of physical fitness. Flexibility is a health-related component of fitness. As we age, muscle rigidity can slowly set in which can have hazardous effects on our daily activities. Immobility will certainly cause problems for individuals in their senior years if proper stretching is not performed regularly.

Prevent muscle rigidity in the future by doing a proper stretching program today. Stretching can be done every day and can only take up to 10 minutes to stretch your major muscle groups. Improving flexibility can be done at all stages of life. If done properly and consistently, you will see an increase in flexibility throughout your entire body.

Stretching should always be done after a 10 minute low-intensity warm-up. This warm-up is needed to get the blood circulating through your muscles and to prevent injuries. Always relax and go slowly into a stretch. An effective stretch should be held for 30 seconds on each muscle. Be sure to breathe normally when holding a stretch. A good stretch should be uncomfortable but not painful. Never use a ballistic movement, or bounce a stretch. This can cause injury.

Research shows that stretching not only increases flexibility, but can also help to reduce blood pressure, stress, and anxiety. Please contact us for more information regarding proper stretching and individual stretching programs.

Try Interval Training

Jeff Angel

Cardiovascular conditioning is a very important part of one’s training program. The number one reason for doing cardio is to keep your heart strong in order to efficiently pump oxygenated blood throughout your body. Cardio training also helps to reduce one’s body fat and body weight (see aerobic conditioning for more info).

Interval training is a great way to mix in high-intensity cardio bouts with low- intensity bouts. Research shows that interval training helps to boost one’s metabolism throughout the day, improve cardiac output, burn high amounts of calories in a short period of time, and reduce body fat and body weight.

The idea of interval training is to work harder in a shorter period of time (20-30 min.) to achieve higher levels of fitness, rather than exercising longer with the similar results. Interval training may not be for everyone, due to reaching a heart rate in the higher range of your target heart rate zone. Please be sure to use our Target Heart Rate Calculator by clicking on Aerobic Conditioning/Target Heart Rate to the right. This will give you your target heart rate zone. Interval training can be very beneficial, yet there is a higher risk of injury and the possibility of fatiguing quickly.

I recommend doing 2 days/wk of cardio interval training for 20-30 minutes each day and 4 days/wk of low to moderate intensity cardio for 40-60 minutes each day. Both types of cardio conditioning are beneficial, one is not better than the other. Staying physically active every day of the week is most important for keeping your heart strong and working efficiently.

The following is an example of 30 minutes of interval training on a treadmill. This example is for fit individuals accustomed to daily moderate cardiovascular conditioning. Interval training can be done with any type of cardio mode (i.e. elliptical, bike, swimming, walking outside, etc.) Always do a 5-10 minute low-intensity warm-up before any work-out. This example has a gradual cool down at the end.

Treadmill Interval Training involving Speed and Incline:

Speed (mph)                            Incline                                     Minutes

4.5                                             1%                                             3

6.0                                             0%                                             1

4.5                                             2%                                             3

6.0                                             0%                                             1

4.5                                             1%                                             3

6.0                                             0%                                             1

4.5                                             2%                                             3

6.0                                             0%                                             1

4.5                                             1%                                             3

6.0                                             0%                                             1

4.0                                             2%                                             3

5.5                                             0%                                             1

3.8                                             1%                                             3

3.4                                             0%                                             3

Eat Breakfast


Breakfast has been proven to be the most important meal of the day. Getting the proper nutrients such as complex carbohydrates, lean protein, and vitamins and minerals will give you great energy throughout the day, can help to boost your metabolism, and can help you to eat less late in the day