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My excessive energy, extreme narcissism, and intense love of neon-colored spandex is both managed and fueled by my addiction to fitness. I push myself to extremes and I push other people's buttons. Obviously I needed my own blog.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Planning My Macros

It's January so everyone's on a diet. At least four people have told me they're going to lose 20 lbs by cutting calories and doing lots of cardio. I cringe. You can totally drop a lot of pounds off the scale if you eat nothing and run your little heart out, because I've done it like 9 times, and I'm not going to tell you not to do that if that's the plan you choose. I just thought you might want to know my plan of attack for 2015.

Things I know to be true:

  1. I need a plan if I am going to be successful.
  2. I need a tracker if I am going to be successful.
  3. I won't cook vegetables that don't come out of microwavable bags.
  4. High quality ingredients are expensive and then you have to cook them yourself anyway.
  5. Carbs are the devil. I need to eat a certain amount of protein and fat every day to meet my goals.

I know how to eat clean. I know how to read labels. I'm pretty damn knowledgeable and yet I don't have the body I want so I've decided to make some changes. My goals are to give my body the nutrition it needs to train at high intensity multiple times a week and to change my body composition. I was looking at photos from old Weight Loss Wednesdays where I weigh the same as I do now, and I look much different, (read worse), because I had a lot more fat and a lot less muscle. I want to lose body fat while maintaining the muscle I have now AND hopefully add some more. This means that my weight in pounds doesn't matter to me but the percentage of my weight that is fat does.

My Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is projected at 1,404 calories a day for my size and my Resting Metabolic Rate was measured at 1,658 calories a day at my last body composition analysis. I know I used to think that I should be eating between 1,200 and 1,400 calories a day because that's what popular fitness magazines told me. I also know that I wasn't able to maintain that kind of calorie deficit in the long term and have regained the 20 lbs I have lost four times. Get those numbers out of your head and get over to the IIFYM Calculator.

If It Fits Your Macros is a flexible dieting approach that says that you can eat whatever you want as long as it fits into your macros for that day. You do not add back calories based on exercise because your level of activity is factored into your IIFYM results. Eat the same damn number of calories everyday and stop adding calories back. No, really stop it. I know that you're grumbling in your head about this. Just give it up.

IIFYM gets a bad rap because people are all, You can't eat McDonalds and have a sixpack! and That's so bad for you to eat junk all of the time. Well no shit Sherlock. No one said you had to eat garbage. There's just more room for flexibility.

I calculated my macros and I am supposed to eat 1,745 calories a day. These calories are supposed to come from 155 grams of carbohydrates, 59 grams of fat, and 148 grams of protein. If you have questions about these numbers, you can learn more about IIFYM.

I've been using MyFitnessPal to plan my meals a day in advance. Mind blown. I put everything in the night before and now I know exactly what to eat and when I need to eat it. If I eat my snack as my pre-workout or don't get to lunch until 5, I just move the foods around within the day. For three whole days I have managed to successfully only eat what has been on my tracker. I even went into Publix yesterday to pick up a prescription and I didn't buy any food (or Mallomars, or key lime pie, or fried chicken...)

I'm still wary of carbs so I've chosen to eat more fat. I personally don't think there's anything wrong with that, but I'm not following IIFYM correctly because I'm disregarding their carbohydrate requirement. I've also been coming in a little under my calorie allotment because I'd like to give myself the option to eat some Mallomars, key lime pie, and fried chicken in the near future without having to forgo a whole other meal to make it fit my macros.

So I've got a plan and I've got a tracker, but I've also got to figure out how to get the amount of protein and fat I need each day from high quality ingredients without having to cook. Everyone's all like, Oh, you should cook! There are so many recipes! Fuck that noise. I don't like to cook. I find it boring and messy and I'll do it like twice and then end up ordering my weight in Chinese food. I can't be bothered with learning how to season things properly.

Thank the Lord for Edesia Meals, Atlanta's very own paleo delivery. The chef, Chris, is my favorite person. He answers all of my nit picky questions and makes sure to post the nutrition info for all of his foods. I had been ordering dinners from him since I moved down here, but I recently started ordering the 4 Days Paleo package. It includes 2 of each meal on the weekly menu (so 8), 2 breakfast scrambles, and 2 breakfast hash. I don't even like eggs without cheese on them and I have been savoring every bite of those breakfast scrambles. Chris is a culinary genius.

So each night I plug in my menu for the next day. I drink the same shake everyday for breakfast, I eat a paleo breakfast item for my morning snack, an Edesia meal for lunch and another for dinner. I supplement these foods with protein shakes, whole milk, canned fish in oil, and Triscuits depending on my macros for the day. The meals I ate on January 8 had more calories and more macros so I didn't need as much supplementation.

I am drinking whole milk and eating Triscuits EVERY. DAY. And I am down two pounds since Monday. That's probably mostly water weight but who wants extra water bloating them up? The best part is that I'm not hungry and I have energy. I choose to eat the bulk of my carbs at night because I have trouble sleeping without them. Other people might prefer to eat carbs at other times of the day, and remember that no carbs after 6 nonsense is bullshit.

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