I´ve talked about the importance of hitting your macros and why it´s more important than to focus on calories, calories are only part of the equation and it´s the basics. Talking about macros is talking on a higher more advanced level where we are taking in consideration the job of each macro nutrient in our body to work efficiently and perform at its max.
There are different ways and formulas we can use to calculate macros and there are some good formulas on internet you can use if you don´t want to do the math.
For this I´m going to work on a balanced diet where carbohydrates and proteins are almost at the same percentage and fats are lower. For this option to set macros we are considering our weight in pounds, and some numbers we can use a guide to set our intake. There´s research about how many grams of protein, carbohydrates and fats are recommended per pound of body weight, this is what we´re going to use, for this option we don´t need to calculate calories first, we only need to know our weight in pounds.
To set macros we need to consider our goal but proteins and fats will stay the same regardless of whether we want to lose fat or gain muscle mass, the only macro we´re going to change is carbohydrate
For proteins you can start with 1.5 per pound of bodyweight. Research shows that it´s necessary to consume at least one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight and if we can go up to 2 grams to get best results, I prefer 1.5 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight so we multiply our weight in pounds:
138 X 1.5 = 207
For fats 0.5 grams of fat per pound of bodyweight is optimal
138 X 0.5 = 69
As I said before we keep proteins and fats the same now if our goal is fat loss we reduce carbohydrates we can start with 0.5 grams
138 X 0.5 = 69
If our goal is muscle growth we can go from 1.5 to 2 grams of carbs per pound of bodyweight so we need to pay attention to our body, how we feel and our results, we can start with 1.5 grams and if we feel tired during the day or we feel like we can´t finish our workouts we can increase them:
138 X 1.5 = 207
If you are interested in calories then setting macros this way make calories fall in place, if we take the example above we can calculate calories we only need to remember that there are 4 calories per gram of protein, 4 calories per gram of carbohydrates and 9 calories per gram of fat:
207 grams X 4 = 828
69 grams X 9 = 621
Carbohydrates fat loss
69 grams X 4 = 276
Total calories = 1725
There´s another way to calculate calories where you take your bodyweight in pounds and multiply it by 12 and those are the amounts of calories you need to consume, in this case:
138 X 12 = 1656
As you can see there´s a slight variation between setting macros and calories with this formulas, you can calculate your calories and from there set your macros. You can use any of this formulas as a guide and from there keep making the adjustments you need.
This numbers are just a guide, we can use them as a baseline but we need to listen to our body and be aware of how we feel and our results. We also need to find the best macro ratio for us, some of us may feel great and get amazing results with a more balanced diet like the one we use here as an example, others may prefer a lower carbohydrate approach, others may need more fat or more protein, others may prefer a ketogenic diet.
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