When it comes to weight loss, we are here to keep it simple and focusing on eating well, moving more and building great habits.

You may have heard about Calories in and Calories out - it is a simplified way of saying:

If you eat more food than you burn, you gain weight. When you eat less than you burn, you lose weight. This is a fundamental concept in body weight regulation, and about as close to scientific fact as we can get.

We are here to keep it as simple in terms that are really important to understand BMR - Basal (Resting) Metabolic Rate and TDEE - Total Daily Energy Expenditure.

These formulas can be used as guidelines around how much energy you use per day, and this allows you to set your calorie goals much more efficiently.So when you understand your BMR and TDEE and the relationship between them, it can be MUCH easier to reach your targets/weight loss plans/goals.


Your BMR is the amount of energy expended while at rest. This is the number of calories you would need to eat if you stayed in bed all day performing no activity at all and wanted to stay the exact same weight.

While this varies from person to person we can use a few key measurements to give us a fairly good estimate that we can use as a start point.

These measurements are your Age, Sex, Height and Weight.


You will know your Age, Sex and Height but you will need to obtain your Current Bodyweight. We recommend using a set of quality scales and weighing yourself first thing in the morning in minimal clothes. You will need this figure as accurate as possible, estimate the weight of clothing and deduct this from your reading if need be.

Now you will need to Calculate your Current Activity level.

Use the Activity Level Guide to help you determine this number. Be honest with your current activity level even if you are planning on signing up for daily Spin classes next week. Your Success Coach will adjust your activity level value if this increases as you progress. We find that most people over estimate the amount of calories they burn through exercise so we prefer err on the side of caution here, your results will be the proof in the pudding here.

What’s your Activity Level?


Now you have all the measurements you need to calculate your TDEE.

In the Calculator further down you need to enter your Age, Sex, Height, Weight and Activity Level.

This will give you a TDEE value - the amount of Daily Calories you need to eat to stay pretty the same weight.

But you're not here to stay the same weight. You want to lose some right? This is where we load a Calorie Deficit into the equation and the Science kicks in.


So you know how many Calories you need to eat to stay the same weight - you just need to eat less than this and you'll lose weight right?

Yes and No. When we talk about Weight Loss we mean:

Healthy Sustained Body Fat Reduction that Preserves Lean Muscle

The Smart Kitchen Weight Loss journey is not a crash diet that starves you and makes you feel strung out. It is an easy and convenient solution that fits into your lifestyle and helps you lose body fat FOR GOOD.

Scientific studies have proven the mantra time and time again that rapid weight loss from crash diets cause many side effects that often lead to weight rebounds. You may have tried them yourself in the past. Drastic reductions in your Calorie intake can lead to unpleasant side effects like constipation, headaches, cramps, fatigue and worse. They simply aren't sustainable for most people so they give up, binge eat and end up back at square one feeling defeated.

The other thing is your body adapts to your energy intake over time. Weight Loss is not linear and will require adjustments as you progress. If you drop your caloric intake drastically you'll certainly achieve some initial results. But when your body adapts to this huge reduction in fuel and you plateau where do you go from there?

This is why we use we use the safe and manageable Caloric Deficits Values of 350/day or 500/day



Now it's decision time. For now anyway.

You choose how much of a deficit you want to run. The Conservative Deficit will generally see you lose 5-6kg over the 10 weeks of Smart Kitchen and the Moderate deficit will see you lose 7-8kg. These are just general guides and you may lose more or less over your journey depending on your start point, adherence and bodies natural response.

Once you have made your choice you will have a Daily Calorie Target to begin your programme. This is just a start point and your Success Coach will amend this based on your progress.



Conservative Deficit
5-6kg Weight loss


Moderate Deficit
7-8kg Weight loss


Absolutely! All calories are not equal. While all calories have the same amount of energy when it comes to your body things are not that simple. The human body is a highly complex system with elaborate processes that regulate energy balance. Your body metabolises different foods and macronutrients in different ways which means you digest, absorb and metabolise calories from one source differently to another.

For example Calories that come from Protein are less 'fattening' because they take more energy to Metabolise than Carbs and Fat and Whole Foods require more energy to digest than processed foods.

High protein diets also lead to significantly less appetite which is important when you are in a caloric deficit, the last thing you want is to feel hungry all day dreaming about food. You have more important things to focus on!

We have built the Muscle Fuel menu around these rules. All of the our Pre-made meals contain generous servings of Protein and are made from scratch with unprocessed quality ingredients.


The Smart Kitchen Calculator displays the Daily Caloric Intake target and directly underneath the Muscle Fuel Points Value.

While it's nice to know exactly how many calories you should be eating to meet your target the reality is your energy intake does not need to be accurate to the exact calorie for your to progress. The Smart Kitchen programme is designed to be easy to work with on a daily basis, not requiring you to pull out a calculator every couple of hours so we have simplified things by dividing the Calorie target by 100 and rounding to one decimal point.

So 1748 Calories becomes 17.5 points.Much easier right!

Once you have followed these steps you have calculated your Daily Muscle Fuel Points Value to achieve your desired Weight Loss Goal.


Your Daily Muscle Fuel points target is how many calories you need to aim to eat each day on your programme. Within 0.5 points is fine but the closer the better.

You have selected which Muscle Fuel meals you would like to eat for Lunch and Dinner each day when you registered and these can be changed as often as you like. The meals conveniently display their Muscle Fuel points value on the front of the label. We weigh every ingredient to the gram when we cook your meals so you can feel safe knowing that your Calorie intake is accurate whenever you are enjoying one of our meals.

Using your Daily points target you subtract the values of your Muscle Fuel meals leaving you with a points balance to spend on your breakfast and snacks for the rest of the day.


Achieving a Calorie Deficit is the foundation of this programme so it's important to know how much energy you are eating each and every day. But who wants to be recording every meal they are eating and counting their calorie intake all day long? Not us!

Fear not, we have done the maths and made it simple for you to ensure you are hitting your target daily.

Using the Smart Kitchen Points Tracker tool you simply enter your Muscle Fuel Daily Point allocation in the top field. Next enter in the values for your Muscle Fuel Lunch and Dinners in the appropriate fields. The points remaining will be displayed at the bottom on the calculator. These points are to be split between your breakfast, snacks and anything else you eat during the day.

The Smart Kitchen Breakfast and Snack guide has a bunch of easy to make options for each meal type categorised by their points value. Pick options from this guide and enter their values into the Points tracker to achieve your target.

There is also a field for 'Anything else' that you eat during the day. We promote purposeful eating, not mindless snacking, so keep an eye on any handful of chips or slices of cake you might find yourself eating during the day (or night!). We aren't restricting you from these things, just make sure you record them. Accuracy is power!

Daily points tracker


You can feel free to eat meals (Breakfast, Snack or main meals) that aren't listed in the guide. The Caloric value / MF points value will need to be manually calculated for these options and they need to be accurate so you'll need to weigh your ingredients or use your best guess. You can use online tools such as My Fitness Pal or Fat Secret to do this task.

Eating out can be tricky as you won't know the exact portions and ingredients so we recommend leaving this for your cheat meals or restricting your portions.

After a while you will develop a good sense of what you can eat to fit into your plan. We are creatures of routine and unconsciously quickly learn what ingredients and portion sizes fit into our programme so after an initial learning curve it should all become a lot easier.


The health value of the Fruit and Vege in your diet cannot be understated. Being high in Fibre they will aid digestion of the nutrients in your meals, contain many essential micronutrients that will help keep your energy levels high while you're in a Calorie deficit.

Most Fruit and Vegetables are low in calories as they are but their thermogenic qualities and the energy expended means that they add close to zero net calories to your daily intake. In fact there are several options you can add to your diet without adding any points. You will find a list of these 'Free Foods' such as apples, Asparagus, Broccoli and Carrots in the Snack and Breakfast guide.

We recommend at least 2 additional servings of Fruit and Veggies to your diet each day on top of the veggies contained in your Muscle Fuel meals. More is fine too! Either add them as a side to your main meals or include them in your Breakfast or Snacks each day.

Muscle Fuel Points Calculator

Calculator placeholder


The Muscle Fuel Smart Kitchen is not a programme where you can kind of wing it. It requires you to adhere to every detail, at least in the first couple of weeks as you get used to portion sizes and monitor how your body reacts. We NEED to get your body used to being in a Caloric deficit. The cravings are worst at the start, don't give in - your success depends on it.

Pre-planning is KING. Make sure you have your Muscle Fuel meals with you when it's meal time or the ingredients ready to go in the fridge. Failure to be prepared could very easy lead you to taking the wrong food option so make sure you are prepared and ready!

If you are on the 14 meal pack you will have all of your Lunches and Dinners sorted for you. You will just need to make the Breakfast and snacks.

If you are on a 10 or 12 meal programme then you will need to make some of your Lunches and Dinners yourself. You have lots of options provided in the E-book but you can also look up some recipes on Google. There are lots of websites and Forums where you can find great tasting meal idea's that fit your calorie intake needs.

Once you make it to the end of Day 7 you can pat yourself on the back, you have made it through your first week! You can choose to take a 'Cheat meal' over the next few days if you like. Remember these are not a free for all, they are purposeful and planned. Replace one of your meals with a meal you are craving. Your calories may go over your target this day but try to keep them within reason.

The first few days might feel like a bit of a slog and it’s not unusual to feel a bit rundown. This is common. IT WILL PASS! We have given you some tips to help combat this in the Ebooks.

Make sure you don’t add to much more physical activity to your daily routine than you would normally do in the first couple of weeks. If you haven't been doing much exercise prior to the programme you may start looking at low exertion exercise options such as Yoga, stretching or meditation during this first phase. We want your body well rested so entering a Calorie Deficit is not stressful on your body. We can increase your exercise once you are adapted.

MF Points Calculator

Daily points tracker

Programme Overview

Any questions get in touch with our success coach team success@musclefuel.co.nz

Here's to your smart success!