How do you Know what your Macros Should be?Nov 15, 2023
How Do You Know What Your Macros Should Be?
Achieving specific fitness goals requires a well-planned approach to your macronutrient and calorie intake. Whether you aim to lose body fat, maintain your weight, focus on body recomposition, or go into a building phase, understanding your current status and maintenance range is essential for success. In this article, we'll guide you through the process of setting up your macros and calories for your fitness goals.
Step 1: Find Your Maintenance Range
Before you can make any adjustments to your macros and calories, it's crucial to determine your maintenance range. Maintenance calories are the amount you need to consume to maintain your current body composition and weight. To find your maintenance range, follow these steps:
Track Calories and Macros: Use a tracking app or journal to record your daily calorie and macronutrient intake accurately. Be consistent for at least two to four weeks.
Weigh Yourself Daily: Weigh yourself under the same conditions every morning. Take the average weight for each week to see how it trends.
Analyze the Data: If your weight remains stable throughout the tracking period, your calorie intake is likely around your maintenance range. If you notice a downward trend in weight, it indicates a calorie deficit. Conversely, an upward trend suggests a calorie surplus.
Step 2: Understanding Your Maintenance Range
Your maintenance range is not a fixed number and can vary from day to day based on two main factors:
- Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT):
This represents your general movement, such as steps taken per day. The more active you are, the higher your maintenance range may be.
- Protein Intake:
Protein has a high thermic effect of food, meaning your body expends energy to digest and absorb it. Drastically changing your protein intake can affect your maintenance range.
Step 3: Setting Up Macros for Your Goal
Once you have determined your maintenance range, you can adjust your macros based on your fitness goal.
- Fat Loss:
To lose body fat, you need to create a calorie deficit. Start by reducing your calorie intake from your maintenance range. Aim for a deficit of around 200-500 calories per day, but ensure that you are still outside your maintenance range to see meaningful results.
- Building Phase or Surplus:
For muscle building, you'll need to consume more calories than your maintenance range. Gradually increase your calorie intake to create a surplus of around 200-500 calories per day.
- Body Recomposition:
If your goal is body recomposition, aim to maintain your current weight and body composition. Set your calorie intake around your maintenance range, ensuring you meet your protein requirements.
Setting up your macros and calories for your fitness goals requires understanding your maintenance range and making adjustments accordingly. Keep in mind that maintenance calories are not static and can fluctuate based on your activity level and protein intake. By taking the time to find your maintenance range and making strategic changes to your macros and calories, you'll be well on your way to achieving your fitness objectives. Remember to stay consistent, be patient, and listen to your body as you work towards your goals.
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