What You Need to Know About Macros
As you probably know, I am mostly a macro based nutrition coach. Not all my clients follow macros. However, following macros based eating can be an effective way to get better awareness around what you are eating and how that affects your body. Specific outcomes require specific behaviours. If you are unfamiliar with macros, start by reading this article that I wrote providing an overview on macros.
There’s a lot of confusion around macros. I am going to break down some of the most frequent mistakes I see surrounding macros.
“What Are Your Macros?”
Oh my goodness…I see this all the time in forums. Someone will post a compelling progress picture and inevitably someone will ask, “What are your macros?” I get it. You want to see how much or little they have been eating to get those results. However it doesn’t matter what they have been eating. You are not them and they are not you. You do not have the same history. Give them a high five and resist the urge to compare yourself.
Here’s a truth that I know as a coach, you are a unique individual and your macros should reflect that. No template can determine what is actually best for you. I have clients who weigh 115 pounds, can crush 2300 cals and still is losing weight. I have other clients that weigh more and have to eat less to promote fat loss. It just really depends
What to do:
Ideally, hire a coach. A coach can consider your unique needs and history. A coach can help you to navigate not only figuring out your macros but how to actually hit them without having to eat just chicken and broccoli. Of course I would be honoured if you chose me as your coach. If not, that’s alright. Just choose someone who knows more than dieting themselves once for a bikini competition.
I understand that not everyone can afford to hire a coach. If you aren’t in a place that you can hire a coach, then just start somewhere! People get so wrapped up in doing it perfectly that they allow it to paralyze them from starting. Don’t let that be you.
Start by tracking your macros for a week or so and see what your overall intake looks like and what your balance of macronutrients looks like. Most people tend to undereat on protein. In all of my clients, I have only ever had one person who I pulled their protein down. If you are under eating quite a bit on protein, start to increase it slowly so that you are hitting somewhere around 0.7-1.0g per pound body weight (or per ideal body weight). If you are looking for a a calculator that is grounded in science, use the Harris-Benedict to help determine your caloric need.
Consistency is King
It’s not sexy but consistency trumps all! And I’m not talking consistency for M-F, I’m talking consistency for weeks and months. Nothing you do on any given day is not going to make the difference, it’s the cumulation of your effort over the long term that leads to LASTING CHANGE. Sorry, no detox teas sold here. You have to put in the work.
What to do:
Wrap your head around the fact that this isn’t a diet. This isn’t something you are going to do for 30 days or 6 weeks or however long all of those challenges tend to last. If you can’t see yourself eating this way 5 days, 5 months, 5 years from now, the weight loss isn’t going to last.
Start with the Basics
So many people get wrapped up in should I do this or that? Should I try intermittent fasting? What about keto? If you don’t have a solid foundation of basics down, that is where you need to start. There is so much noise in today’s world surrounding weight loss and health that it can be overwhelming to figure out what you should be doing. Starting with the basics will always win. Once you have the basics down, then try some of the other protocols and see how your body responds.
What to do:
Like I said above, we live in an age of information overload that it can get confusing as to what to do. Even the basics is confusing. Let me break it down for you. Eat lean protein 4-5x a day. Half your plate veggies. Supplement with carbohydrates and fats based on your unique needs. Choose foods as close to nature as often as possible. Enjoy your food. Eat cake and pizza (or whatever food suits your fancy) once in a while because life is too damn short not to.
Still have more questions about macros? Leave me a comment below or join my private Facebook group and ask there!