Macros are short for macronutrients. There are 4 macronutrients which include carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and fiber. You need to balance these macros to have an even diet with all the nutrients it needs to be healthy. A lot of people track these macros on their watches, fitness trackers, or apps on their phones due to them being so accessible now. You can track them with a few clicks as opposed to writing them down. They also can be used to determine what you need and where you need to improve. Let’s go through this simple guide on how you can use them to gain muscle!
What is Macro Tracking?
Tracking macros is where you decide which particular food or drinks to consume and which ones to eat sparingly, this way ensuring you get the necessary amount of nutrients that you need with a careful balance. This can be done by measuring or weighing out the foods and drinks yourself or looking at the portion sizes and seeing what’s recommended for your body weight.
Why Macro Tracking?
Macro Tracking is extremely important for gaining muscle, as it provides a calorie deficit to lose fat and build muscle. There are two main reasons why macro tracking is so important:
1. Protein Requirements: When cutting cycles, protein requirements tend to be higher. Why? Because protein has a high thermic effect (roughly 6 times more than carbs). Knowing this, protein is the best thing to consume when trying to lose weight. Protein does a lot of things for your body like it is required for the growth and repair of body tissues. It’s also vital in the metabolism of fat and building lean muscle. Without protein intake, it would be impossible to lose fat and gain lean muscle.
2. Macro Ratio: The macro ratio is crucial for gaining solid amounts of muscle, especially when gaining mass from running a calorie surplus. When macro tracking, you figure out how much of each macro you want to eat per day (don’t worry about changing this once it’s set). You then divide it up into each meal to have your desired macro ratio. A typical macro ratio for those trying to gain muscle is 40% protein, 40% carbs, 20% fat.
You have three macronutrients that you need to keep in check, otherwise, your diet can be thrown off and you will likely not become as big as you want. If your goal is to bulk or gain muscle, then you want a calorie surplus. This way your body will get the nutrients it needs and won’t be storing any of them as fat.
Benefits of Macro Tracking:
1) Losing fat
2) Building muscle
4) Eating the foods you love
5) Better sleep quality
6) Increased energy levels from nutrient-rich foods.
For best results with Macro Tracking, you need to follow these simple steps:
1. Decide on your goal: Are you trying to lose weight or just trying to have a leaner body? If you are trying to lose weight, do not go below 1200 calories per day. If your goal is just to have a cleaner look, then try committing yourself to around 1500 calories per day. This way, your body won’t go into starvation mode and store fat instead of burning it off.
2. Decide on your macronutrients/calories: For most of us, we want 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight. On top of that, you also want to consume 1 gram of carbs per pound of body weight, regardless if you are trying to gain muscle or lose weight. This will help you stay strong throughout the day and continue to burn off calories at night. If you know you can’t achieve this goal, then just decrease your caloric intake by around 1000 calories.
3. Calculate your macro ratios: You should be able to divide your daily caloric intake into one major meal and two smaller snacks (ideally 30-60 minutes apart). For example, if you consume 3000 calories per day and your goal is to gain muscle, then you will want 500 calories from protein, 500 calories from carbs, and 250 calories from fat per meal. This would mean that your overall macro requirements for the day are 2000 calories of protein, 2000 calories of carbs, and 1000 calories of fats per day. You can even check your macro ratio using a macro calculator app.
4. Track your macros: It’s time to start tracking your macros using a macro calculator app. All you have to do is weigh out the macros that you have calculated in step 3 above. You can use a food scale or just estimate with measuring cups or spoons depending on what foods/meals you are preparing for the day.
Macro Tracking For Muscle Building:
A lot of people use macros for bodybuilding by tracking their macronutrients, they basically consume more of the macros they need such as protein and carbs, and less of the macros they don’t need like sugar. It is basically a way of eating healthy and having a toned diet. There are some people who do this for aesthetic reasons but for most people, it’s for health reasons. It helps them get fit and stay healthy. It’s also a way for people to track how many nutrients their bodies are taking in.
How exactly do tracking macros help you lose weight? Well, it’s all about knowing where your calories are coming from and how much of each macro you need to consume. For example, if your body requires 2000 calories per day and you eat 1800 calories, then you will end up losing weight. However, if you consumed 2500 calories per day with the same 1800 output, then that’s when your body will start storing fat and because of this, it is very important to maintain a calorie deficit throughout the day.
Tracking Calories and Macros is a great way to keep your diet in check. It allows you to know exactly how many calories your body is taking in, which helps prevent you from gaining weight or losing too much weight. It’s also good to experiment with different ratios of macros so that you can find what works best for your body.