Let’s talk quickly about Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) and how they play a role in our health, fitness and body composition goals. Basal Metabolic Rate is essentially the amount of calories you would burn in a day’s time if you did nothing but lay in bed.

Breathing, digesting, cellular function, and maintaining body temperature are all things that fall under the BMR umbrella. This can be up to 70% of your total calories burned in a 24 hour period!

Resting Metabolic Rate is slightly different because it also takes eating, walking around, using the bathroom into account. Oftentimes, both BMR and RMR are similar in number. How do I find my BMR?


 The easiest way to find your BMR (more commonly used than RMR for our purposes) is by using any of the BMR calculators available online. There are many to choose from that prompt you to use your own numbers to give you an accurate value. My personal approach is to use 3 or 4 different BMR calculators and average out my results. 

Your BMR value is the starting point for how many calories you will be consuming each day based on your goals. Some calculators will even ask about activity level which ultimately plays a role in your calorie burning for a given day, week, and beyond. This is why it is important. It is not all one size fits all. This information is intended to help you realize that we all start at different places. The same principles can be used to achieve our goals but comparing ourselves to others is simply unfair.

A nice side note for this discussion is that an increase in muscle mass will positively impact these values. Your body “costs” more energy to run when it has more muscle than before. This is another reason why strength training is so valuable. Increases in muscle contributes to overall calorie burning day after day. What a great benefit to getting stronger!

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Michael Allen

Author Bio

Michael has been working with clients in the gym and countless adults in a physical therapy setting since 2013. He spent 3 semesters working at Towson University with student-athletes from nearly every sport at the school. He served as the Strength and Conditioning Coordinator for Kennard-Dale High School during the 2019-2020 school year. His goal is to always get better and give you the safest and most effective use of your time at First Capital Gym.