Why are macros so important you ask?
We say it’s like trying to bake a cake without a recipe. So yes, that is right, macros are like that recipe. Most of us know what we want when we look at our fitness goals and we know we have to eat right and do some type of physical activity. Just like, we know we want a chocolate cake that tastes good, but there is far more to it.
Having the proper tools to cake the perfect cake along with the right recipe is very important. One thing that many people lack when starting a fitness journey is the right recipe. The recipe should consider age, weight, height, physical activity level, stress factors, body fat percentage, and gender. All of these factors will be considered when getting to know the right amount of calories one should consume. These factors will be unique to each individual and thus will result in a unique recipe.
So what are Macros? Macros are short for macronutrients. Macros consist of the most important nutritional values when it comes to our bodies energy systems, Carbohydrates, Fats, Proteins, Water. The micronutrients are also part of the system but are considered minor and refer to vitamins and minerals only.
The first thing to look at is how many total calories your body needs to sustain all of the functions needed including physical activity and outside stressors. This number could vary between a large scale of 1,000kcal to 5,000kcal more or less depending on the individual. Once a person knows how many calories are needed then we can move to the next step into breaking down the calories into those macros (carb, pro, fat).
It is useful to know that:
1 g of carbohydrates = 4 kcal
1 g of protein = 4 kcal
1 g of fat= 9 kcal
And for those that might want to know, 1 g of alcohol= 7 kcal
Let’s say that out of 1500 kcal a person wants 500 calories to come from protein, this would be the math breakdown:
500 divided by 4 calories = 125 g of Protein
You would do the same equation till all of the 1500 calories are accounted for with the carbs and fats included.
There are apps and websites online that can help people breakdown macros. The importance of this short blog is to show that knowing where your calories are coming from is imperative to the meaning of success. Reaching your goals is just simply one part to feeling success, the other part comes from the knowledge acquired along the way.
We have worked with thousands of clients, some just starting the journey, some professional athletes and some very well versed in health and fitness and all have either learned macros or know how to work with them. Macros open up another door of knowledge and understanding to nutrition labels. Being able to walk down the grocery aisle and making decisions on what to place in your cart based on the value of food versus the marketing packaging makes one feel strong and informed.
Macros work for any diet or meal plan. Whether a person is going from Keto to carb cycling, to bulking, macros can be applied to virtually any diet or calorie count.
One highly recommended Macro tracker is My Macros +. This app is a one time $2.99 purchase in the app store, but by far it is top notch when it comes to helping our clients and ourselves track macros.