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How many extra calories do I need for cardio-type exercise?
Asked by anonymous on Jul 05, 2009 in Nutrition

This summer, I decided to get back into a workout routine  to lose some weight. I plan to spin (for an hour) at least 5 days a week and on the other two days, do the cardio machines at my gym for an hour each day.   I'm 19, 5'8" and weigh 160. I want to lose about 20 pounds.  How many calories should I consume in order to find the balance of losing weight while being able to maintain my cardio exercises without feeling tired throughout the day?


It depends on your level of physical activity during the rest of the day.  Your daily calorie expenditure covers your basal metabolic requirements and physical activity, but assessing activity can be tricky.  For instance, one hour of cardio places an otherwise sedentary person at a “Light” activity level but it would tip the balance to “Moderate” for a fairly active person.  At 1600 - 1700 calories a day, you (personally) should lose ¾ - 2 pounds a week depending on activity.  If you are uncomfortably hungry, then do eat more.  At goal, your maintenance requirements are 2300 calories a day and so you can eat up to that amount.

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