What Is a Calorie Deficit?

Do you want to lose weight? If the answer is ‘yes’ then stop what you’re doing, sit down, take a minute, relax, listen in really carefully, ready?


Ignore these awful pyramid schemes that claim to know the secret answer, all they’re doing is blurring your view of the real ‘secret’ – being in a calorie deficit. (I guess we’ve just exposed numerous companies, oh well…). Let’s break this down so it’s more understandable – you are the sprinter, calorie deficit is the finish line, the area in between is the anxiety of the race, the negative thoughts that pop into your head, the little niggle that apparently feels 100x worse all of a sudden… This area is also the weight loss companies that just want your money.

What is a calorie deficit?

‘Being in a calorie deficit is when you consume less calories from food and drink than you burn through activity. Being in a healthy calorie deficit is the only way in my opinion to achieve healthy weight loss.’ – Bradley Simmonds, Celebrity Trainer. What the companies don’t tell you is that what you need to do to lose weight is eat less than your energy expenditure. Instead they tell you to – eat what you want and drink this ‘special’ tea or coffee, eat what you want but remember how many ‘sins’ are in it, replace your meal with a shake. Need I go on?

How do I know if I’m eating less than I’m expending?

Firstly, figure out roughly what your basal metabolic rate is (BMR). To do this you need to complete a little formula…Don’t worry, I’ve got you a link to follow:


In the formula state that you do no exercise. This will give you your BMR, when doing exercise per day, don’t then eat the calories you’ve burned, instead, grab a protein shake after exercise, most protein shakes mixed with water will contain between 150-250kcal (mixed with milk or milk alternatives may add a few more calories, THIS ISN’T THE END OF THE WORLD!) and continue to eat healthily. Another top tip is to increase protein intake, decrease unnecessary carb intake, this is explained in the ‘Do’s and Don’ts of Diets’ blog.

Anything else I need to know?

Yes, everyone is different. Everyone will lose weight, drop fat, gain weight, reduce water weight, etc at different rates! Don’t compare to other people. Start tracking your food for a bit to gain a rough idea of kcal of foods that you eat, then for a week or two, stop tracking your foods and try and measure by eye, by fullness, by hand servings. Finding the right foods and types of diets for you is a process and a long one at that! Enjoy food, eat pizza, go out for coffee and cake with your friends, have that fry up you’ve craved, just keep in mind moderation and getting back on track with a healthy lifestyle!

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