Adjust Your Calorie Intake Based On Your Workout Regime
Unsure of how to rework your calorie intake in conjunction with your workout plan? We take a look at each phase of your schedule and how to adjust your meals.
Every F45 Challenge member is unique, with different energy requirements and goals. The Challenge meal plans are based on 1300 calories per day for females and 1900 calories per day for males. These meal plans are set at a calorie baseline and will likely need to be adjusted depending on individual energy requirements. On your F45 Challenge Dashboard, there is a calorie calculator that can be used to estimate your individual daily energy (calorie) requirements. It’s recommended to familiarize yourself with the calorie calculator, as you may need to add or subtract food from the provided meal plan depending on your recommended TDEE (total daily energy expenditure).
First, the calorie calculator will provide your BMR, which is based on your gender, body weight and height. This is the amount of energy or calories that your body requires at rest to keep you functioning. Next, you’ll input your weekly exercise level, which allows the calculator to determine your specific number of ‘maintenance calories.’ This is the amount of energy your body requires to maintain your current body weight while taking into account activity level.
If your personal goal throughout the F45 Challenge is to maintain your current body weight, then the ‘maintenance calories’ are your daily caloric target along with your existing F45 routine.
For example, a female with estimated maintenance calories at 2000 calories per day would need to add an additional 700 calories to the F45 Challenge meal plan (1300 baseline calories + 700 = a 2000 calorie maintenance target).
However, if your goal is to lose body fat or increase muscle mass, you will need to adjust your calories a few times throughout the Challenge so that you can best support your body, health and goals. Below is a step-by-step process of how we recommend doing this across the phases of the Challenge:
SPRING TRAINING (10 days)
Weeks 1 and 2 focus on setting up the foundations to help you succeed. The meal plan in these two weeks focuses on primarily lean protein and high vegetable intake as you adjust to a calorie deficit. Focus on body fat loss during this time by creating a calorie deficit.
A moderate calorie deficit of 250-500 calories per day is a more sustainable and realistic amount to aim for, as opposed to a dramatic decrease in calories. It is important to focus on habits that will be sustainable for you long-term.
To create this calorie deficit, all you need to do is subtract 250-500 calories from your calculated maintenance calories. For example, a female with a maintenance calorie requirement of 2000 calories might aim to consume 1500 calories per day during the first two weeks of the Challenge to achieve a caloric deficit for weight loss.
REGULAR SEASON (10 days)
Weeks 3 and 4 of the Challenge shift the focus to learning more about the role of macronutrients in your body. You may have adjusted to your caloric deficit and already lost some weight, so it is time to revisit the calorie calculator to see if your energy requirements have changed (when you lose body weight, your maintenance calories will slightly reduce). Continue with a calorie deficit as above, aiming for 250-500 calories deficit per day for body fat loss, while ensuring you eat well around your training sessions to maximise your performance and results.
CHAMPIONSHIP ROUNDS (10 days)
After a four-week caloric deficit, it’s time to bring those calories back up again to help your body to build muscle mass! The body requires additional energy to be able to build muscle mass. Extra energy will also allow you to consume more micronutrients to support recovery and gut health. Revisit the calorie calculator on your dashboard, and add 250-500 calories to your maintenance calories. For example, a female whose maintenance energy requirements are 2000 calories per day, would need to add 250-500 calories to her daily energy intake during this phase.
If your goal is to simply increase strength without increasing muscle size/mass, then you may not need a surplus of calories. Instead, aim to continue your weight loss or increase your calorie intake to around maintenance calories at this stage to help you maximise your F45 Training sessions.
WORLD SERIES (15 days)
Continue with your progress as above. Use the calorie calculator to work out your maintenance calories to help you maintain your results.
How do I add additional calories to the meal plan as needed?
If you have calculated that you need to add additional calories to the meal plan to suit your individual requirements, we have created a convenient Calorie Guide for you to be able to do so. Simply choose food from the below options that matches your additional calorie needs. For example, if you are a female aiming to consume 1500 calories per day, then you could use the guide to add two slices of whole-grain bread to the F45 meal plan, which would bring your intake up from 1300 calories to 1500 calories.