What is Metabolic Testing?

By Jonathan Davenport, CSCS, TSAC-F, CCC, CPT
Learn about metabolic testing and how it can help reshape your training and provide you with vital tools.

Resting metabolic rate (RMR) is the amount of energy that your body requires to maintain its basic functions while at rest. This includes the energy needed for essential bodily functions such as breathing, circulating blood, and maintaining body temperature.

RMR is typically measured in calories and varies based on several factors, such as age, sex, body composition, and genetics. Generally, people with more lean-muscle mass tend to have a higher RMR since lean-muscle mass requires more energy to sustain than fat. Additionally, RMR tends to decrease with age.

Advantages of Taking an RMR Test:

  1. Personalized nutrition and training plan: An RMR test can help you determine the number of calories your body requires to maintain its basic functions at rest. This information can be used to create a personalized nutrition and exercise plan that is tailored to your individual needs and goals.
  2. Weight loss or weight gain guidance: Knowing your RMR can be helpful in creating a weight loss or weight gain program that is specific to your body’s needs. If you are looking to lose weight, you can adjust your caloric intake to create a calorie deficit, while if you are looking to gain weight, you can adjust your caloric intake to create a calorie surplus.
  3. Monitoring changes in metabolism: As you age, your RMR may decrease, and this can make it more difficult to maintain a healthy weight. By monitoring your RMR over time, you can track changes in your metabolism and make adjustments to your diet and exercise routine accordingly.
  4. Improved athletic performance: If you are an athlete or someone who engages in regular exercise, knowing your RMR can help you optimize your energy intake to support your athletic performance. This can help you improve your endurance, strength, and overall athletic performance.
  5. Health insights: In addition to the above benefits, an RMR test can also provide insights into your overall health. For example, a low RMR may be an indicator of an underlying health condition or an unhealthy lifestyle, while a high RMR may be an indicator of a fast metabolism or a healthy lifestyle.