Benefits of tracking macros
Have you heard of tracking macros, iifym, or flexible dieting
And are sick and tired of hearing about how to count macros?
See the way we “diet” has a significant impact on the way we choose to go about our everyday lives. Our energy levels, mood, and health are a result of how we decide to treat our bodies.
And if you’ve never heard of tracking macros, here’s a list of the nine benefits of counting macros so that you can kick ass in your health and fitness every day.
1. There are zero food restrictions
I know, I know!
Over the years, we’ve been adding foods to the “can’t eat this” list. Which probably includes about almost all the foods we love, like:
And more yummy foods.
I may sound like a broken record because I preach so much about how tracking macros gives you food freedom. But, I’m telling you it does. You can eat anything you want and still reach your goals.
And if you’re Latina like me, yes, that includes your mom’s home-cooked meals. Are some foods healthier than others?
But giving yourself food freedom and not punishing yourself or feeling guilty about eating your favorite chocolate is healthier.
2. You become educated about food
When I first started tracking macros, I had absolutely no idea how to track macros, let alone what foods were considered healthy fats, carbs, or protein.
My standard thought about eating healthy was to eat what the people in magazines were eating (yes, this was before Instagram) or eat what all the fit people ate on Instagram.
Foods that were boring and no fun.
The biggest benefit of counting macros is that you can pick and choose from a ton of food options when you’re out and about. – you don’t have to avoid foods or completely trash your goals on those days you can’t make it home on time for lunch and dinner or want to eat out.
3. You save money on groceries
I don’t think I’ll ever get over the fact that I paid off my $36,000 and some change debt in nine months! A huge part of this meant no more random trips to Wegmans or Aldi for random snacks, yes overpriced ice cream, or buying food I wasn’t planning on eating just yet.
I worked two jobs and spent very little time at home, which meant meal prepping ( or food prepping which is prepping the base and adding a source of protein later on), and a ton of it.
If you haven’t heard of Dave Ramsey, he preaches the rice and beans diet to cut down costs, but word on the street is carbs are bad, and rice is a carb.
But actually, carbs aren’t bad. Counting macros gave me the flexibility to save money on food and stop thinking I had to buy all organic, superfoods, or fancy supplements.
Here’s a list of staples that saved me money:
- 99 cent frozen veggies
- Tofu ( bought at an international store, it costs less here)
- 99 cent peanut butter from Aldi
- And pretty much anything that was on sale that week at the grocery store.
4. You don’t have to exercise
Generally speaking, as good as moving your body is, you can actually still reach your goals if you exercise five times a week, once a week, or zero days a week.
Counting macros or at least getting the gist of it says, “Hey, this is how much fuel my body needs to get to Z (z being the destination, your goal).”
During quarantine, I lost 17 pounds working out from home—no big weights, excessive cardio, or cutting out foods, just being mindful of the amount of fuel (food) I needed to reach my goals.
5. You feel more energized
Food is fuel! I’ve been counting macros for years now, And I’ll be honest. What I learned was that just because you’re trying to lose weight, it doesn’t mean you need to feel tired, hungry, or in a funk!
Macros make you aware of your energy levels. How much food will make you lose weight, gain weight, gain muscle, lose body fat…ALL OF THAT!
Heck, I used to think I had to eat under 2,000 calories and give up my mom’s homemade tortillas was what I had to do to lose weight. Yet here I am still losing weight eating around 2100 calories a day and eating oatmeal, rice, bread, and 99 cent pasta.
Why try and lose weight on a 1200 calorie diet when you could be losing weight eating 1700, 1800, 1900, or more calories.
Check out this post over at Healthline for more ways to feel more energized.
6. You have better workouts
Piggybacking off my last point. Once you start understanding how much or at least have an idea of how much fuel your body needs, your body will start responding by taking that energy and showing it off in your workouts and your day overall.
You’re more likely to look towards a workout when you feel energized vs. lazy, hungry, and ‘eh not in the mood.
P.S you’re not just waking up to workout. You’re waking up to show for your goals, crush your goals, and spend time with your friends and family – don’t you want to feel pumped up about it?
7. You have a plan for your goals
I think we’ve all told ourselves we need to gain or lose weight at some point. But it’s always an on and off thing, you know. Counting macros helped me get out of that cycle and pay more attention to eating foods that legitimately make me feel good!
It can be something hearty one day, and my mom’s salsa verde chicken enchiladas another.
Counting macros helps you say ok here’s what I need to do to reach my goals, I’ve learned a ton about food, I don’t need to skip out on alcohol, skip out on tasty food when I travel, or restart a diet next Monday.
8. you can ENJOY YOURSELF DURING VACATION WITHOUT the fear of GAINING WEIGHT
No one likes going on vacation or going into the weekend feeling restricted or, in my case, traveling to other countries and missing out on all the delicious foods that represent their culture and make their country unique.
Counting macros helps you ditch the idea of “go hard or go home” on vacation. Plus, vacations are supposed to be fun, whether that means getting away from the kids, relaxing by the beach, or hiking a ton. Not make you feel guilty about all the things you ate or drank.
9. You can actually stick to it longer than 30 days
Before counting macros, I tried three things.
I cut out certain foods, meal prepped the whole veggies and chicken diet and did paleo.
Luckily, when I discovered the paleo diet, I was also introduced to macros.
I couldn’t stick to cutting out food because that’s not sustainable
The chicken and broccoli diet was no good because good lord, I could not cook chicken on my own to save my life back then. I guess that was a good thing because it led me to search for something else that worked for me.
Do I count macros today? YES!
Does this mean I weigh and track all my foods? NOPE.
Once you learn how to count macros and start making the littlest tweaks like eating more protein and including a little bit of every food group throughout the day, you’ll notice the biggest of changes.
Conclusion for benefits of tracking macros
So does counting macros work? Ok, yes, maybe counting macros sounds intimidating. But is it time-consuming? Hard? Or not for you? If you take the opportunity to learn, trust me when I tell you it’s about the easiest way to reach your goals ever.
The benefits of counting macros should outweigh any doubt you may possibly have.
And if you’re a beginner, I don’t doubt that you’ll see drastic changes in your first week of tracking macros.
Let me know, have you tried counting macros before?
Related articles to the benefits of counting macros
- The Best Tips for Counting Macros: Even If You’ve Never Tracked Macros Before
- 4 Reasons Macros Are Not Helping You Lose Weight
- 5 Reasons Your 1200 Calorie Diet Is Sabotaging Your Weight Loss
- How to Easily Use a Food Scale to Track Your Macros