Day #3 – Intermittent Fasting

Made it to day #3! So far, so good!

This morning, I slept in and didn’t workout, rest day. I am not a big fan of rest days but I appreciate the importance. I feel good today though!

I have done a lot of research and questions in my IF facebook groups and have learned something important in the IF world. Tracking macros. Macros, don’t you mean calories? Nope, macros are the ‘thing’ with IF.

So here is some info on it to explain it better.

“Macros” What are they?

There are three macronutrients, or Macros:

  • Proteins
  • Fats
  • Carbohydrates

And, technically, alcohol is a stand-in fourth.

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To macro, or not to macro? That is the question I pose.

But first, what does “to macro” mean? “To macro” means tracking the number of grams of protein, carbohydrates, and fats you consume on a particular day.

Protein

Well, adequate protein intake will help build muscle and/or prevent muscle loss if you are in a calorie deficit.  It controls appetite and staves off hunger better than fats or carbs as it causes you to feel full longer.

What’s it do?

It also requires more energy than other macros for your body to digest, thus effectively burning more calories gram for gram through the digestion process.

All of these reasons make high-protein diets great for fat loss.

Where do I get it?

Meat, fish, eggs, dairy and protein shakes are all good sources.

There are many commonly cited “good” protein sources, like nuts or beans, that are actually terrible sources of protein. Only about 15-20% of the calories in these foods come from protein.

Almonds, for example, are 73% fat and only 14% protein.  This is not to say you shouldn’t eat almonds, but it explains why “nuts are great protein!” is rarely coming from a credible source.

How much do I need?

It really depends on your weight, bodyfat % and goals – as low as 0.5 grams per pound of lean body mass (per day) and as high as 1.5-2 grams per pound of lean body mass.

Lean body mass is your total bodyweight minus your fat.  For example, if you weigh 200 pounds and are 20% bodyfat, your lean body mass is 160 pounds, or 200 – (200*20%).

So, if you weigh 200 pounds and have 160 pounds of lean body mass, 0.5 grams per day would be 160*0.5 = 80 grams of protein.

Fat

What’s it do?

Fat is an essential nutrient that our bodies require to live; it assists in vitamin absorption, hormone regulation, brain function, and more.

Where do I get it?

Meat, fatty fish, nuts, nut butters, oils and countless other sources.

How much do I need?

Again, it depends on your weight, bodyfat percentage and goal – probably somewhere between 15% and 45% of your total calories. However, it can vary based on your total calories consumed and whether you are in a caloric surplus or deficit. Somewhere between 0.35-0.7g per pound of lean body mass is a good range.

Carbohydrate

What’s it do?

Carbs are stored in the liver, brain, blood and muscles as glycogen. Our bodies use carbohydrates for energy.

Where do I get it?

Fruit, vegetables and grains.

How much do I need?

It depends. Technically, you can live on zero carbs. But, bodybuilders or endurance athletes have consumed 700+ grams per day. So, the range is pretty wide.

0.5-2 grams per pound of lean body mass is probably a decent range, again, depending on activity level, weight, bodyfat percentage and goals.

Remember, all calories come from macronutrients.

Vitamins, minerals, sodium, etc are micro-nutrients and do not contain calories.

ONLY proteins, fats, carbs and booze yield calories.

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