It's not hard to develop a basic diet and exercise plan the you can stick to over the years, but fine-tuning your progress offers a different set of challenges -- often in the form of maths. BodyBuilding.com put together a series of calculators to do the hard work for you so you can figure out exactly what you need to do to meet your health and fitness goals. Title image remixed from originals by Axsimen (Shutterstock) and grmarc (Shutterstock).
Let's get one thing out of the way -- you don't have to be a bodybuilder to use this stuff. I'm not a big guy, nor do I want to be. I don't want big muscles. I just want my diet and exercise routine to keep my body healthy and strong. When you hit an annoying plateau, or you just want some numerical guidance so you don't feel like you're guessing, fitness calculators can help fill in some important blanks.
With nutrition, for example, you might wonder how many carbohydrates you should eat or how much water you should drink based on your work life and exercise regimen. When it comes to fat loss goals, counting kilojoules (or protein, if you prefer) can help you track progress your eyes can't see (if you don't use it as an excuse to eat more) -- but not if you don't know how much you're burning during a workout. These calculators figure out those sorts of things for you, in addition to other helpful information like your maximum heart rate and body type.
In most cases, you enter a few statistics like age, height and weight, and answer a couple of questions about your food intake or activity level. Click "Calculate" and you'll get the information you're after. While all results are going to be approximate, as they would be with any comparable tool, you can quickly figure out what you need to do to drop a little fat or even get a six pack.
Check out the full listing on BodyBuilder.com to get started. They're all free to use.
A Large Selection of Easy to Use Fitness Calculators! [BodyBuilder.com]