So by now (hopefully), I have more people following along on here. I thought it might be helpful to do a refresher on how to count your macros, why, and just what exactly they are.
Basically macros are what your food is made up of. Macros are the macro-nutrients or building blocks of your diet: carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Your macros are calculated in grams. For every 4 calories of protein and carbohydrates eaten that equals 1 gram. For every 9 calories of fat consumed that is 1 gram. Fat is the obviously, the most costly macro to consume.
Carbs: 4 calories = 1 gram
Proteins: 4 calories = 1 gram
Fats: 9 calories = 1 gram
For instance I have allotted myself, based off of what my body NEEDS to perform in the gym and overall daily tasks is 169 grams of protein, 195 grams of carbohydrates, 87 grams of fat, spread out over 2,239 calories. It is important to note that on days that I do not workout hard or days that I can’t make it to the gym (because life happens with a 2 year old and 4 month old) I DO NOT try to eat my goal, which sucks because I like to eat.
Jimmy Bloodworth at E8 helped me figure out my goals and I have tweaked them slightly along the way to see what works best for me. I get nervous messing with my numbers, but Josh loves to experiment and see what type of changes his body will go through. He has currently been upping his carb and protein intake, a little at a time, big drastic changes are not recommended, and he is actually cutting more fat by eating more carbs and protein. I always thought I was pretty healthy, until I took his nutrition class. My weight has not really changed much, I think I have weighed the same thing since high school, but my body looks totally different, because my body fat has gone down a good amount.
I HIGHLY recommend taking a nutritional class, it was such an eye opener for me. Remember there is no quick fix to being healthy. It takes work, no one is just naturally fit and healthy. Fad diets don’t work. Hard work works.
Now you need to calculate what you should be eating to reach your goal (fat loss, muscle gain)! You can go to a nutrition class, like I did and get someone to help you set your goal or you can use a basic macro calculator like this one. To get a more detailed macro count it is helpful to have your BMI handy, if not just get a rough estimate and get going!
Then you need to find an app that you like to track your food. I use MyMacros, but there are several others that work just the same, such as MyFitnessPal, MyFoodDiary. and CronOMeter. I do not know much about MyFittnessPal, but here is a great tutorial on how to set up an account with them if you choose that one.
MyMacros was awesome and decided to give you ‘How to Tutorials’. Literally any question you could have, they have answered. If you download this app, I would be happy to walk you through setting up an account and how to input your goal, input food, and make recipes using the app. Sometimes it is easier to have someone show you than read how to do it. They do have some helpful YouTube tutorials, as well!
A basic rule, if you don’t workout, is to divide the number of carbs, protein, and fat between the number of meals you plan on eating. I cannot follow this rule, because in addition to my 3 meals a day, I need a pre-workout meal, post-workout meal, and 2 snacks to get me through the day. You don’t want to consume much fat, if any in your pre and post-work out meals. I eat a decent amount of my carbs before and after my workouts and in my breakfast. By 10:30 I have typically consumed around 700-800 calories and trust me, I am still hungry come lunch time. If you are working out, you want to have your largest portion of protein at night so your body can repair itself while you sleep. Rest and repair are very important.
Try tracking your food for a week to see what you are putting into your body. Scan the labels on your food, but double check them on your app because they can be wrong, and just see what you are eating! You may be over-eating or even under-eating! Recently, a co-worker of mine started counting her macros according to the goals she set and has lost 5-7 pounds in the first two weeks! She was really surprised by how many carbs that she could eat and how much REAL food it was going to take her to reach her goal. To me that is the most exciting thing! I love when people are dedicated to counting and see the results so soon! It won’t hurt to try, it will take effort but anything worth doing takes effort.
Grilled Chicken Thighs+ Roasted Eggplant & Tomatoes
These are amazing! I don’t think I could say enough about these delicious roll-ups. I am a sucker for anything that has ginger and garlic. They have huge flavor and are high in protein and low on carbs. Per serving, the last time I cooked these they had 16.1 grams of protein, 9.1 grams of carbohydrates, and 9.6 grams of fat. Yes, there is a lot of fat in these, which is probably why they taste so good. Just skip the cream in your coffee, ditch the cream cheese on the bagel for a day and enjoy these instead!
These taste delicious reheated, so don’t be afraid about meal prepping these. Don’t skimp on the hoisin sauce and remember to thin it out with water. It adds so much flavor to the dish, I would not recommend skipping it. I have found that it makes it easier to break the napa cabbage in two places so it makes rolling them easier. I will snap the cabbage about 1 inch from the bottom and 1 inch from that spot. I use a measuring spoon to scoop even amounts onto the cabbage before rolling them. If I have smaller leaves I will make half servings, so I keep my macros straight.
This recipe does make a lot of roll-up,s but I promise they won’t go to waste!
Since we have an abundance of fish right now from Josh’s fishing trips, we are going to make some fish tacos. He definitely wasn’t excited when I mentioned using his hard earned fish in tacos, but he gave in. Score! I have really been wanting to make a fresh fruity-spicy salsa and that just goes wonderfully with fish to me.
Don’t be fooled, the first time I made these, they lit us on FIRE. I mean, super hot and I love spicy food. Take it easy on the jalapenos and chipotle peppers or if they aren’t your thing just add the sauce from the chipotle peppers. Make sure you go with a low carb tortilla, there is no sense in eating 30 g of carbs just for a tortilla. You can always sub the tutorials for rice if you want.
∗ ∗ I am substituting the sour cream for non-fat greek yogurt.
To piggy-back on this theme of fresh fruity-spicy salsa I am going to try this marinaded chicken and salsa. I am gong to marinade the chicken overnight so it really soaks in well. It recommends filleting the chicken so it cooks quicker, but so it also soaks in the marinade better.
I won’t be cooking my chicken on the grill this night. I am going to cook it in a cast iron pan on the stove. You can opt for any kind of rice, but I will be using the ever so delicious jasmine rice. You are going to want to make a recipe for this meal if you are counting your macros. Between the orange juice, avocado, and mango you are going to want to keep track of how many carbs and fat you really are consuming here.
Grilled Chicken Thighs+ Roasted Eggplant & Tomatoes
We are going to grill boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Thighs are definitely my favorite part of the chicken and I much prefer them with the skin on, but to be macro friendly I am going to cook them with the skin off. We are going to baste them with a sauce while we grill. I love making sauces and dressings with whatever random ingredients we have in the fridge. I like to joke and tell Josh that should just be my job.
Here is the sauce I plan to make for this chicken: 2 Tbsp whole grain mustard, 2 Tbsp yellow mustard, 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar, 1-2 Tbsp sriracha, 1 Tbsp honey, water if needed
Since we are going to be using the grill I am going to grill the eggplant, instead of roasting it.
Don’t forget the list!