Once you understand the importance of calories, you're ready to figure out how many you need. The first step in designing your personal fat loss plan is to calculate the total number of calories you burn up every day. This is known as your total daily energy expenditure (TDEE). TDEE is also known as your "maintenance level," because this is the level where your calorie "deposits" are exactly equal to your calorie "withdrawals." TDEE is the total number of calories your body burns in 24 hours, including basal metabolic rate and all activities. Once you know your maintenance level, you will have a reference point from which to start your program.
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