Last Thursday, I had my resting metabolic rate (RMR) tested. Prior to the testing, I had to make sure that I did not exercise for at least 12hrs before the test, and I also could not eat anything 12hrs prior to the test, only water. Let me tell you I was STARVING by the time the test came around at noon. Because I still went to bed at 10, and I ate dinner at 7:30, so I was hungry! I want to preface this post with, I was SO surprised by the results.
Before I go into the details of what I did, and what the results were, I want to explain what the purpose of this test is, and what it can find out for you. What your resting metabolic rate (RMR) is, is if you were to lie in bed all day and not do anything for 24hrs how many calories would you burn. This is very important information when figuring out nutrition either for sport specific training or to lose weight. Everybody’s RMR is different, it depends on how much lean body mass you have, your percent body fat, your weight, height, and age. There are many different formulas out there for you to approximate what your RMR is, but none of them will be as accurate as taking an actual test. The other big piece of information that a RMR test gives you is whether you are a fat burner or a carbohydrate burner, i.e what type of metabolism you have.
For my test, I went to Well Fit at Ashland and Hubbard in Chicago for my test, they use New Leaf testing equipment, and my coach Nina Jack from Transition Multisport looked into a few places for me to get the testing done, and this looked like the best bet. I got a great deal $150 for RMR testing, VO2 max testing, and the mask that is needed for both tests, that I can use over and over again, it pretty much lasts forever. So, I walked in and there wasn’t exactly a resting table, but I sat in a chair with my feet up on another chair to mimic resting, but not sleeping. You don’t want to fall asleep. I placed the mask over my face and then tried to relax (I forgot to have the guy who was testing me take a picture of me while I was there, so I tried to mimic it when I got home)
It can take anywhere from 10min to 30min to get a good test reading. Fortunately, I was done in about 15min. They tried to find a steady 5min where there are no spikes in your heart rate to get a good reading.
The mouth piece that you see coming out of the mask was hooked up to a tube and then a computer to read the findings. I also wore a heart rate monitor that was also hooked up to the computer.
Here are my results:
RMR (Kcal/day) – 1,229
VO2 (mL/min) – 182
VCO2 (mL/min) – 133
RQ – .73
CHO (Kcal/day) – 99
CHO/RMR (%) – 8%
Fat (Kcal/day) – 1130
Fat/Kcal (%) – 92%
So what does this mean you are probably wondering? It means I’m a fat burner! YAY! Seriously best news ever! The goal is to get your RQ as close to .70 as possible, which then indicates that you primarily burn fat when you are at rest. Since my body is efficient at burning fat, this means it is good at using it’s resources and that it doesn’t go to my glycogen stores right away, or most often, instead it uses my fat. It is inefficient for the body to burn sugar, and when the body is working hard when training or racing, or working out, we don’t want it to use our sugar stores, we want it to be efficient and use our fat storage. For those of you who have been following my Metabollic Efficiency Training Challenge, then you know that I have been doing it for a month now, and who knows what it was like before I started the challenge, but the results speak for themselves.
I also found out that my resting heart rate is 44 bpm! That is really exciting too!
I’m having my VO2 max testing done tomorrow, so I will keep you all posted on how that goes, and what the results are! Unfortunately, I don’t get to lay down and just breathe into a max for this one, I will be running on a treadmill and the incline will slowly go up until I can’t run anymore!
Have you had RMR testing done? How did it benefit your training?