Is your heart beating normally as you breath?Can you feel your brain working efficiently as you work through the day?Has your wound, from the other day, healed well?
Is it not great to wake up to another day and find that your body is functioning as well as it was yesterday, and the day before that, and many other daysprior to it?Do you know why?It’s all because of your “Metabolism”. Metabolism carries out many more activities which are invisible to the human eye. It clears toxins from the body, creates, breaks, and repairs tissues, and regenerates blood cells and so on.
Now that you know what metabolism does, so let us go further ahead in the study and find out how our body’s metabolic rate functions at rest and what we call it.
What is RMR?
Many of us think that we use very little or no energy at all while we are at rest. But that is not true. We actually tend to burn hundreds or thousands of calories even when we are sitting and doing nothing at all. This process of energy expenditure carried out by the body while a person is at rest is what we call Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) or Resting Energy Expenditure.
So, do we need to know our RMR? It’s the same question isn’t it?
Why do we need to know our weight?
Why do we need to know our height?
Why do we need to know the size of our waist?
Why do you think we need to know our numbers at all?
It’s simple. We need to know our numbers so that we can set an accurate target for ourselves to be able to obtain perfection in any particular area. In the same way knowing our RMR will help us judge the amount of calories that our body requires in order to function appropriately everyday.
Those of us who are chronic dieters, fitness freaks and health buffs especially need to know our RMR. We need to know how much calories we need to take in because if our food intake is below our RMR, the body fights back and the metabolic rate decreases.
Determining your RMR
RMR is responsible for about 70% of our body’s energy expenditure. Did you know, the Resting Metabolic Rate can easily be calculated if some key variables are known. These variables are the age, sex, weight, height, and fat free body mass.
Let me give you a simple equation to help you determine your RMR so that you can know how much calories you can consume. This is called “Mifflin’s equation” which gives us the approximate values that we need. Just remember-
w= weight, h= height, and a= age
So the equation is:
For men: (10 x w) + (6.25 x h) – (5 x a) + 5
For women: (10 x w) + (6.25 x h) – (5 x a) – 161
Try it out. It will give you results similar to any RMR calculator.
I just calculated my RMR to be 1257.37 calories. What’s yours?
According to a few studies it was found that RMR increases with the increase in workouts or weight training programs while many have discussed that RMR does not decrease in response to that. Some researches have shown that people coming from disparate aerobic levels of fitness do not have much difference in the RMR levels.and it is independent of the type of their training status.
Few of the studies wherein an increase in RMR was reported, were conducted on older adults and the results were so due to the impaired effect of weight training on age-associated loss in muscle mass.
RMR and Strength Training
The common myth that we get to hear among a lot of fitness professionals is that strength training adds muscle and this in turn will help in the process of losing weight as it increases our RMR.
But that is not true and if your math is good then you should be aware that RMR has no relation to the muscle mass that we add into our bodies by lifting weights.
The RMR is acutely high after a high intensity and long duration workout, usually referred to as Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC). This means that the more intense the workout is, higher the post workout metabolic rate will be, resulting in higher calories burned.
It is a logically known fact that we can only lose weight when we burn more calories than what we consume. Now let me tell you that this procedure of losing weight is called as being in the negative energy balance.
According to recent research , if people lose weight because of the negative energy balance then RMR decreases. In a similar way when someone tries to maintain their muscle mass by weight training then the Resting Metabolic Rate decreases as well.
When we are at rest, our body burns approximately eight to 15 calories when we consume just one pound of fat free food. Now if we compare that to the 3500 calories that need to be burned for losing that one pound, you can imagine what a difference that is.
Hence, even though strength training is important for various reasons, the increase of RMR will not lead to the loss of weight. While doing hardcore workouts will also increase the post workout metabolic rate, yet the best way to lose weight is to burn as many calories as possible.
Do not forget to leave your comments below. Share your story, tell us your experience.