Maintenance calories are the amount of calories you should eat per day to maintain your current weight.
Contrary to popular belief, you actually shouldn’t spend most of your year focused on losing body fat and dropping weight. Instead, you should spend most of the year eating around maintenance, until your ready to go into a 4-12 week cycle of fat loss or adding muscle mass.
Eating at maintenance is especially important after a fat loss phase because it is what allows your thyroid and hormones bounce back from being in a deficit.
If you’re chronically under-eating (which is more common than you think), than you’re going to want to slowly work your way up to maintenance and hang out there for a bit (four weeks, minimum) before toying with the idea of dropping body fat again.
Curious to see what your maintenance calories are?
Here’s a quick, two-step approach to calculating yours:
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