Is TDEE or BMR considered 'normal' daily intake?

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Is TDEE or BMR considered 'normal' daily intake?

This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  TracyJ 8 years, 4 months ago.

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  • Hi all,

    I’ve just started back doing the 5:2 thing and am already confused. Although I had the same concern last time I never quite got to the bottom of it.

    The book and all the posts I’ve read so far indicate that we should ‘eat normally’ on a fast day, but I’ve never quite determined what ‘eat normally’ means. Is it the BMR value, or the TDEE?

    What helps to mystify me is that my BMR is 1833 calories which I can come to terms with as I’m quite heavy (for the moment) and I’m 5’10”. However, I consider myself lightly active as I go to the gym at least three times a week and do a lot of walking to and from work. If I select this then it indicates that my TDEE is 2520 calories which just seems a bit much at 700 calories over my BMR. If I select sedentary then it goes down to 2200 calories.

    So, what do I do. I read something about people being able to go at most 10% over their ‘normal’ intake but that undereating on non-fast days can be just as bad as overeating. I don’t want to mess up by eating too much or not enough.

    Essentially, do I eat my BMR or TDEE on non-fast days?

    Thanks in advance and sorry if this has already been asked.

    It’s the TDEE that you need to be on or slightly under (Don’t worry about rigid calorie counting, as long as you know you’re about on it or a bit under).

    It sounds like you’ve got a way to go before worrying about your actual TDEE is an issue. If you want to you can just stick to the ‘standard’ 2000 calories on non fastdays and 500 on fastdays if you like. You’ll lose plenty of weight to start with and eventually you’ll notice that it’s starting to slow, at which point you can revisit the TDEE calculator and see where you should ‘really’ be aiming. It will also get you aclimatised to the 500 calorie goal on fastdays and mean that when you do start needing to take a closer look at your non-fastday intake it’s not such a struggle.

    I’d never heard of TDEE until I came to this site almost a year into this fasting lifestyle. Until then I’d been doing the 500/2000 thing (bit less than 2000 towards the end as I’d started to realise that I needed to be eating less on non-fastdays to keep it moving). By that point I’d lost almost 3 stone. I’m a lot shorter than you and therefore you probably have less to lose before you start to level out but 500/2000 should work fine for a while.

    TracyJ thank you so much!

    I did wonder if I was overthinking it a bit! I’ve been working to 550 (500 is really hard but those extra 50 sort me right out, how bizarre!) on fast days and approximately 2000 on non-fast days but kept wondering somewhat.

    That’s a great suggestion to revisit the BMR and TDEE calculations once I’ve lost a bit of weight.

    It’s over-eating that’s got me fat again after having lost nearly 4 stone previously. That’s why I’m quite keen to keep track even on non-fast days so that I know I’m not using ‘eat normally’ as an excuse to eat platefuls of food and vast quantities of chocolate or donuts.

    Thanks again
    Jo x

    That’s great. You sound very like me – I always go over my 500 too but only by the price of a piece of fruit 😉

    Just try and stay on or slightly under 2000 on non-fastdays and if you ARE anything like me the weight will just fall off you for a little while before you start to level out and need to revisit the TDEE calculator.

    It does seem like undereating when you say “I’m eating 500 calories less than my TDEE” but when your ‘suggested TDEE’ is well over the 2000 mark I honestly don’t see any harm in it (it’s not like someone with a TDEE of 1500 eating 500 calories less is it?) and it helps you get used to reducing portions on non-fastdays, for when you have to ;D

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