Training Day 21 – Body Fat Mass, & your BMR

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Happy Thursday!

Beautiful day today, the wind finally decided to stop blowing but the dust was still lurking, creating a perfect environment for runny noses and itchy watery eyes. Ah the joys of spring, thankfully visine and claritin were readily available.

Today was another successful training day, 8 mile bike ride to the fitness assessment lab, and 8 miles home. A great service offered at the community college here is the bod pod. If you have never heard of the bod pod, its basically a machine that measures your body fat percentage.

With all this training I wanted to set a baseline for myself and then make a goal that I wanted to obtain by the end of my training. According to the bod pod my 5’4, 114 pound frame has 16.5% body fat, and a basal metabolic rate of 1400 calories. Basal metabolic rate is the amount of daily energy expended by humans. Basically how many calories your body burns while at rest every day.

If I laid in bed all day and did nothing but sleep, my body would burn 1400 calories just maintaining normal body functions. This number increases as your lean muscle mass increases. I have talked in previous posts about how sprints, and high intensity exercises is more effective at building lean muscle mass, well its also more effective at increasing your metabolism.

It was previously thought that aerobic exercise such as running, biking, walking etc would increase your BMR, however recent studies published indicate that the level of aerobic fitness of an individual does not have any correlation with the level of resting metabolism.  Anaerobic exercise, such as weight lifting, and high intensity exercise, builds additional muscle mass. Muscle contributes to the fat-free mass of an individual and therefore effective results from anaerobic exercise will increase BMR.

There are several websites with BMR prediction calculators. They try to predict your metabolism  solely based on your height, weight and age. Which really is far from accurate because it doesn’t take into account your muscle mass.

I mean think about it, if the only information you had about an individual was his or her height and weight, you couldn’t possibly know this individuals weight/fat mass. If available, try and see if your local gym has body fat analysis testing. Finding out your BMR can help you more accurately determine how many calories your body is burning, and in addition help you plan how many calories you should be consuming to help reach your fitness goals.

Tomorrow is my birthday and I still plan on getting in a morning workout before I celebrate and head out to the mountains for a weekend camping trip. Have a safe and wonderful weekend everyone! CHEERS!
With Love
-Crista

“Every year on your birthday, you get a chance to start new.”
Sammy Hagar

“How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?”
Satchel Paige

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