You’re probably wondering what the heck macro tracking is and why you keep hearing about it everywhere right? You may have also heard the terms iifym or flexible dieting as well. They all refer to the same lifestyle and way of eating. IIFYM stands for “if it fits your macros”. The concept of iifym is that you can eat anything you want as long as “it fits your macros.” (Yep, even donuts!)
Basically iifym or tracking macros is a way of counting calories by eating a certain amount of protein, carbs and fat.
“Macros” is short for macronutrients.
Macronutrients are the foundation of what makes up all food. They include:
Each of these macronutrients serves a different purpose in the way our body functions and we need every single one of them for optimal performance and health. That’s right, you NEED carbs!
Here is a breakdown of each macro and why your body needs each one:
- Protein: Protein is made up of animo acids and is crucial for muscle growth/muscle protection. Protein helps you feel full longer and has been proven to help with weight loss.
- Carbs: Carbs are essential for energy! If you don’t want to feel sluggish and tired, especially during your workouts, EAT YOUR CARBS! Carbs also fuel your brain, so if you’re low on carbs, guess what? It’s hard to think and concentrate! Carbs have such a bad rap and for no reason at all. Don’t be afraid of carbs. They are so important!
- Fat: Fat is an essential macronutrient that our body uses for many functions. Fat is used for cell signaling and communication in our body. It helps with the absorption of vitamins and is essential for hormone balance!
- Fiber: Fiber is technically not a macronutrient, but I have included it on here because it is so important! Fiber can help prevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain and some cancers It is also so important for your digestive health.
Macro tracking requires you to eat a specific amount of protein, carbs and fat everyday. Each macro gram has a specific amount of calories. One gram of protein=4 calories. One gram of carbs=4 calories and one gram of fat= 9 calories.Those calories make up your total daily calorie requirement.
There are also micronutrients that you need everyday (vitamins, minerals and amino acids) but we’ll get into that in another post. 🙂
The best things about tracking macros is there is no food/food group that is off limits! There is no such thing as “bad” food! I eat dessert every single day (if it fits my macros) and I continue to make progress! YAY!!
With iifym you can eat whatever you want, as long as it doesn’t exceed your macros. There are some considerations you have to make though. If you eat only donuts, you won’t be getting in enough protein so you will have to pick and choose between foods to make sure you are hitting your macros, but if you feel like a donut one day, plan in advance and make it fit!
And this is NOT a fad diet! This is literally something I will be doing for life. Once you get the hang of it, it is so easy! You will learn very quickly what you can and can’t eat (no foods are off limits, but some foods are not worth it). And you’ll learn how to put certain foods together to make up your macro puzzle.
Because tracking macros revolves around the concept that you can eat anything you want, people find it more freeing and easier to stick with than restricting an entire food/food group from their diets or trying to eat super low calories. There will be times when you go out to eat, or go to a social event or celebrate birthdays/holiday. With flexible dieting you can enjoy life and food without freaking out and feeling deprived.
In this blog, I am going to show you exactly how to do this! You will feel like you can eat normal and be a normal person, not someone who’s “on a diet”. It’s not always going to be easy and you will get off track sometimes, but the important thing is not sabotaging your diet if you do fall off for a meal, a day! It’s okay! I will help you learn the tools to help you get back on track and not beat yourself up over a bad meal/day. I haven’t been perfect 100% of the time and you don’t have to be either. It’s about progress not perfection!
You can do it! I know you can!