What is BMR?
- Basal Metabolic Rate (or "BMR") refers to the amount of energy you use while at rest (i.e. not performing physical activity other than some internal metabolic processes, not including digestion).
- It's measured in a unit of energy per unit of time, and is usually given in Calories per day.
- Basically, BMR calculations are useful for people who want to know how many Calories their body is burning on a daily basis without performing any type of physical activity.
IMPORTANT: In general, competitive athletes with a consistent and rigorous training regimen burn much more energy than non-athletes, even on days when these athletes don't train.
Still... BMR is a useful first step for athletes to determine how many Calories they should be consuming each day. Once an athlete's BMR is calculated, it can be adjusted to more accurately account for all the Calories an athlete burns each day, both while exercising and at rest.
How to Calculate Your BMR
The Mifflin-St Jeor equation is seen by the nutrition community today as the standard in calculating BMR. This formula changes slightly between males and females, and is expressed as follows:
(10 x weight in kilograms) + (6.25 x height in centimeters) - (5 x age in years) + 5
(10 x weight in kilograms) + (6.25 x height in centimeters) - (5 x age in years) - 161
NOTE: 1 kilogram equals 2.2 pounds, and 1 centimeter equals 0.4 inches
The numerical value calculated from the equation of choice above refers to the number of Calories burned by the body on a daily basis without performing any physical activity (including normal activities like walking around or even eating and digesting food).
Normally active people usually multiply this baseline value by about 1.2- 1.7 to account for their physical activity energy needs.
But for athletes, this value usually increases significantly more than for non-athletes, because athletes burn significantly more Calories every day in order to fuel the body with the nutrients and energy it needs to perform at its best. When long bouts of exercise are incorporated into the athlete's daily (or near daily) routine, this initial BMR value increases sometimes by two to three times.
PLUS... if an athlete is trying to gain or lose weight, this figure will be modified (higher or lower) even more to meet those fitness goals.
NOTE: when attempting a weight-loss or weight-gain program, consult with your coaches, your doctor, and/or other experienced health professionals in order to safely and responsibly execute the demands of a dieting program. In general, it is recommended that competitive athletes not lose or gain more than 3-4 pounds of fat and/or lean muscle mass per week so their bodies perform at their best, athletically and otherwise.
... in other words... BE CAREFUL when dieting!!!
So... once BMR is calculated for an athlete for an athlete trying to maintain weight, this number may be multiplied by about 1.2 to 2.0 or even higher in certain cases, depending on sport. Some popular sports and corresponding BMR multiple suggestions are included below:
|Track & Field:||1.5- 2.0+|
|Baseball/ Softball:||1.2- 1.8+|
|Water Polo:||1.5- 2.0+|
|Dance/ Pep/ Cheer:||1.5- 2.0+|
A 20 year old male wrestler who is 5'10" and 170 pounds, his BMR baseline intake number would be:
(10 x 170/2.2) + (6.25 x 70/0.4) - (5 x 20) + 5 = 1772 Calories (approx)
to account for this athlete practicing 5-7 times a week or more, every day he should consume about 1.8 times the number of calories calculated by the BMR equation for men (above) to stay at his current weight.
1772 x 1.8 = 3,190 Calories (approx)
based on this modified BMR value, the athlete can now design meal plans (daily, weekly, etc.) that meet the caloric needs of the athlete to perform at his or her best on a daily basis.
ATTENTION : All content relating to nutrition herein should be considered general, non-clinical information and guidance. Always consult with your doctor or a professional nutritionist when seeking ANY personalized dietetic advice that may significantly affect your immediate and/or long-term health.