So, now that I have shared why I love tracking my macros it is time to address something you probably surely care about more… you! It’s fine and dandy that flexible dieting works for me, but what about you? Let’s find out…
Did the things I mentioned in Part 1 (about me) resonate with you? If so, the next step is easy… start tracking your macros! Download my free beginner’s guide here -> Flexible Dieting 101 or contact me to figure out exactly what your body needs in order to get the results you desire.
NOW, for the rest of you who aren’t convinced that tracking your macros will work for you… Let’s address your reservations.
I am worried that I will become obsessive about the numbers.
This is a legitimate concern. However, even if you think this may end up being the case, I say, give it a shot. Just because there are numbers involved does not necessarily mean you will feel restricted by them. On the contrary, having set boundaries may be freeing. Sound weird? Well, it kinda is. But that’s the human brain for ya. Without boundaries, many people panic and say “screw it” and end up eating without direction – flexible dieting fixes that! (sound familiar?) However, if you do get to the point of obsession, this method is not the best fit for you. You are better off trying a mindful eating approach (a topic to be addressed at a later date.) Until then, focus on eating protein and veggies, get in a couple servings of healthy fats, and eat carbohydrates relative to the amount of exercise you are getting #onesentencemealplan.
I’m too busy.
The cliché response to this is, “shut up, no you aren’t, you lazy sack of shit, you make time #priorities”. This holds pretty true in this situation. See what I did there? I made it seem like I was going to break the mold and spoon-feed you an excuse. Psyyyche. If you want to make progress in any area of your life, it is going to require a time investment.
The good news is – in the case of tracking your macros – it doesn’t have to be a significant time investment.
Current technology makes tracking your food intake ridiculously simple (large databases, barcode scanners, nutrition data from chain restaurants). It should take you a couple minutes per meal to enter your food into a smartphone app (MyFitnessPal, MyMacros+, Lifesum). Assuming you consume food or drink 3-5 times per day, that comes out to about 10 minutes per day. This is a minimal time investment for a potentially significant return (the return being those physique changes you really want to make).
I don’t have any interest in eating pizza, burgers, ice cream. I like my cage free chicken and organic vegetables.
Uhhh, you must be a crazy person. Jusssst kidding. No judgement here. With flexible dieting, you get to eat what you want. Just because I want to have ice cream every night (every meal?) for the rest of my life doesn’t mean that you have to. As long as you are hitting your macros (and fiber intake), it doesn’t matter how you get there.
Let me say that again – from a purely aesthetic perspective, it does not matter how you get to your macros. For example, if you need to eat a meal consisting of 40g protein/55g carbs/25g fat, you can do that by having:
Meal A) 6 oz. chicken breast, 1 cup rice, ½ an avocado, 1 cup broccoli w/1 tbsp. olive oil
Meal B) 5 oz. ground beef (90/10), ¼ cup reduced fat shredded cheese, ¼ cup salsa, ½ cup tomato, 1 cup lettuce, 1 cup reduced fat ice cream
Each of these meals adds up to an almost identical macronutrient breakdown and overall calorie count. Feeling like chicken and rice? Great. In the mood for taco salad and ice cream? Not a problem.
This is the main reason flexible dieting is so successful. It is a framework – not a rigid, restrictive “eat this, don’t eat that” approach. It’s like the “choose your own adventure” of eating. (Anybody else remember these books?? So great.)
I don’t understand how it works.
Well that’s easy, you should read my free beginner’s guide to tracking your macros (All you have to do is sign up for my newsletter – in which I will be sharing more nutrition info, fitness tips, and general thoughts on the human condition.) Buttt, since I’m a generous guy and I want to make your life easier – I’ll answer ze question here also.
Flexible dieting is based on science. Your body will change to your liking provided you are hitting the proper macronutrient amounts for your body, consistently. The concept is quite simple – if you are consuming fewer calories than you expend (caloric deficit), you will lose weight; if you are consuming more calories than you expend (caloric surplus), you will gain weight. Proper macronutrient distribution of these calories contributes to overall health and body composition (ratio of muscle-to-fat).
I don’t believe that it works.
See above – “flexible dieting is based on science”.
See below – I dropped to 5% body fat while still having ice cream, cupcakes, and cookies in my diet. This is not because I am genetically blessed. This is because I hit my macros consistently while systematically decreasing calories.
I don’t like science-based approaches to nutrition.
Sorry to hear that 🙂
Well, whaddya think? Excited to give flexible dieting a try? Still not convinced it’s for you? Here are my final thoughts:
- I am not here to convince you that you need to follow this approach to eating. I am here to convince you that this is a very successful method that has worked for many people, myself included.
- Track your food intake for two full weeks. This is something that everybody should do, whether you plan to continue it or not. You will learn something about your eating habits. Maybe it will be something minor, maybe it will be something significant – but I promise, you will learn something.
- Eating should be an enjoyable experience!! If eating is stressing you out, you are doing something wrong, please seek help on how to change that.
Final comments or questions? Add them below or shoot me an email.
Happy tracking 🙂flexible dieting, IIFYM, macros, nutrition, tracking macros