Life is too short to be miserable. Life should be enjoyed with the people whom you love and great tasting food. But great tasting food and being overweight don’t have to go hand in hand. “If it fits your macros” (IIFYM), is a strategic way of eating that will allow you to still include some of your favorite foods in your diet.
IIFYM – How it Works
Macronutrients are proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Yes, with IIFYM you will be keeping track of your calories and macros. It’s necessary, but not as difficult as you think.
Familiarize yourself with your favorite food’s nutrient profiles. You’ll be surprised at how many things you typically eat. Humans are creatures of habit and usually stick to the same 3-6 different things.
Finding Your Macronutrient and Calorie Needs
This is an important step. Just randomly deciding what your macros should be will not do you any good. There will be a little trial and error here, as well. It may take some time to find your ideal ratio, as everybody is different. However, here’s a good starting point.
Finding Your Metabolic Rate (MR):
Body Weight (in lbs) X 10 _________
Low-Sedentary (0-1 days/week) 1.2
Moderate (1-3 days/week) 1.3
Active (4-5 days/week) 1.5
Very Active (6-7 days/week) 1.6
Once you have you’ve multiplied your body weight by 10, you’ll take that number and multiply it by the number next to your activity level.
For example, if you are 170 lbs….
170 X 10 = 1,700
1,700 X 1.3 (Moderately Active) = 2,210
In the example above, the total calories needed to be consumed on a daily basis to maintain weight would be 2,210.
Once you have your metabolic rate, it’s time to add in your specific goals. Let’s say our example is trying to lose some weight. We will need to take away some calories to put the example into a negative caloric balance.
Aggressive Fat Loss = -500
Moderate Fat Loss = -300
2,210 – 300 = 1,910 calories
So, the goal for calories is 1,910. Now, it’s time to find our macronutrient goals.
A great place to start is with the 40:40:20 ratios. That is 40% protein, 40% carbohydrates, and 20% fat.
That would look like this:
This would be a great starting point and one could expect to lose some weight with this set up.
What Can You Eat?
As far as the rules of what to eat go, well, there aren’t any. Eat whatever you like as long as you hit those macronutrient numbers – it’s as simple as that! You may realize that you’re not going to be able to get away with eating junk food all day long but you’ll find that the flexibility this type of dieting allows for is quite nice!
Life’s too short to eat boring food. So spice it up and enjoy the foods you love while staying on plan!