How to Regulate Macros for the Modern (wo)man
Get into and stay in fantastic shape without giving up your life
Fitness Column by Matt Kay of FITISM
Getting and staying in shape has never been so popular. Our gyms are experiencing the busiest July and August since we first opened. It seems every generation wants to get fit, look great and to do so is really not that complicated.
Below are three topical and relevant subject areas that influence body perfection that you may well struggle with. I will firstly provide an overview of each area and then provide alternative solutions to take the pressure off, so you can have a life at the same time as getting and staying in shape.
Measuring macro’s is a contentious subject but fundamentally it works. If you burn more than you consume more often than not you will lose fat. For some this is taken to extremes where every calorie is recorded, every calorie burnt is tracked and everything else in life is sacrificed in the pursuit of bodily perfection.
This might work for some but for the majority giving up everything in your life including socialising, family, friends and everything else other than clean eating and exercise is not a way to live.
So here is the FITISM approach to measuring macro’s for the modern (wo)man:
Eat natural foods, eat in moderation and drink lots of water
When you can control the consumption of natural foods and water do not reach for the biscuits. For the vast majority of people this will apply to 80 – 90 per cent of your weekly meals. If you commit to a healthy approach to eating outside of socializing and enjoy yourself when you do go out, staying in shape is perfectly possible.
Where it goes wrong is when you continue to eat naughty foods during your non-socializing times; at work, in the car, after your evening meal, at breakfast etc…. There is no reason to not eat natural foods, not eat too much and drink lots of water during these times.
Commit during those times where you have maximum control and reward yourself during those times when you have less control and enjoy yourself.
Not every calorie is created equal.
Eating clean is a term that has risen to popularity in the media and on social media over recent years. Many people have slightly different interpretations of the term but fundamentally it means eating foods free from refined sugars and foods that have been processed. Instead a clean food is a food packed full of nutrients and exists in nature; this is a food that will lead to a greater level of health. In other words 200 calories from a deep fried mars bar is going to behave differently in your body compared to 200 calories from a head of broccoli.
So when applying the principles of calories in and calories out, it is incredibly important to eat wholesome natural calories and by doing so you will lose body fat without feeling or looking haggard. Instead you will feel energetic, your hair will shine, nails strengthen, eyes brighten and your skin will glow.
Where Do Alcohol & Sugar Fit In?
I am a big believer in striking a balance and having fun away from measuring macro’s and eating clean. The principle behind this is fairly simple. If you go out and socialize the chances are you will consume far more calories that day compared to the amount of calories you burn. We give our clients this general rule of thumb when going out.
How many workouts does it take to combat a night out?
1 night out per week = 3 – 4 workouts per week
2 nights out per week = 4 – 5 workouts per week
3 nights our per week = 5 – 6 workouts per week
You cannot out-train a bad diet but at the same time you cannot give up your life. A balance is fundamental to long-term health in the modern world.
The take home message is this:
Eat natural foods, not too much and drink lots of water exclusively when you have control (80 – 90 per cent of your week).
When you go out, enjoy yourself. If you go out more than 1 – 2 times per week make sure you get back to clean eating straightaway and combat those extra calories consumed with more training. Health need not be complicated and it should never lead to resentment or restriction.